Witches and tornadoes can't keep a good Cairn Terrier down! A Cairn played Toto in the iconic film, “The Wizard of Oz.” The cinematic comparisons don't stop there, either. A Cairn Terrier is the Glenn Close of the dog world: it will not be ignored. And like many artists, they're left-handed (left-pawed?)
This confident canine comedian is full of personality and pep. Cairn Terriers will always be excited to see you. But it's not just jokes with these dogs. They were bred to be pest control and are strong hunters and diggers.
Originally from Scotland's Isle of Skye , this small-sized and medium-energy dog can grow to between 13-14 pounds and lives an average of 12-14 years. The breed is recognized by the American Kennel Club and classified as a member of the Terrier group.
|Breed's original pastime||Pest control|
|Average lifespan||12-14 years|
|Date of origin||1700s|
|Original function||Killing vermin|
|Today's function||Earthdog trials|
|Average size of male||Height: 10 Weight: 14|
|Average size of female||Height: 9.5 Weight: 13|
|Energy level||High energy|
|Affection level||Moderately affectionate|
|Friendliness toward other dogs||Friendly|
|Friendliness toward other pets||Shy|
|Friendliness toward strangers||Shy|
|Ease of training||Hard to train|
|Protection ability||Not very protective|
|Grooming needs||Moderate maintenance|
|Cold tolerance||Medium tolerance|
|Heat tolerance||Medium tolerance|
BEHAVIOR & TRAINING
WHAT IS A CAIRN TERRIER'S PERSONALITY LIKE?
Cairn Terriers are inquisitive and gutsy. These are playful dogs who will fit well with an affectionate and active family. They're very playful and great with children. Most are friendly toward other dogs, though some are a bit scrappy.
Cairn instincts are to chase small animals, but with socialization, they can possibly get along with family cats. They'll probably never learn leave your pet rat or ferret alone, however.
WHAT IS CAIRN TERRIER BEHAVIOR LIKE?
The Cairn Terrier is spunky, smart, brave, and tenacious. These dogs can be mischievous, but they're usually not bratty. This breed is prone to digging, though, so keep them away from your prize rose bushes! They are alert and not too inclined to be protective.
Cairns can be prone to barking; you'll want to discourage this early and often.
HOW EASY IS IT TO TRAIN A CAIRN TERRIER?
Cairn Terriers can be stubborn. Start early, and be patient and consistent with your pup. This breed responds best to engaging and creative training methods.
These dogs excel at agility, trials, and tracking. But no matter how much you work with them, their strong prey drive means Cairns are not good candidates for off-leash play. Be sure your yard is securely fenced and consider microchipping your furry friend.
CARE & HEALTH
HOW MUCH DO CAIRN TERRIERS SHED AND WHAT ARE THEIR GROOMING NEEDS?
Plan for daily brushing and seasonal grooming. Their short, coarse single coats are wiry and scruffy, both water resistant and weatherproof. Your Cairn Terrier will need hand-stripping every six months.
WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS DO CAIRN TERRIERS HAVE?
Generally speaking, this is a healthy breed. Some Cairn Terriers can develop orthopedic problems, eye ailments, and heart disease.