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Scottish Terrier

 

Many Americans were introduced to the Scottish Terrier in Disney's iconic animated film, Lady and the Tramp. Jock stole our hearts (and chewies from the kitchen) with his song about burying his “bonnie, bonnie bone” in his backyard. Lovable and gruff, with a distinctive silhouette, the Scottie is a true terrier.

Originally from — you guessed it — Scotland, this small-sized and medium-energy breed can grow to between 18-22 pounds and lives an average of 11-13 years. The breed is recognized by the American Kennel Club and classified as a member of the Terrier group.

 

AKC RecognizedY
Breed's original pastimeHunting
OriginScotland
Breed groupTerrier
Average lifespan11-13 years
SizeSmall
Bark factorModerate
AKC Ranking43
Family Terrier
Date of origin1800s
Original function Vermin hunting
Today's functionEarthdog trials
Average size of maleHeight: 10 Weight: 18-21
Average size of femaleHeight: 10 Weight: 18-21

 

Other nameAberdeen terrier
Energy level Medium energy
Exercise needs Medium
Playfullness Moderately playful
Affection level Moderately affectionate
Friendliness toward other dogs Friendly
Friendliness toward other pets Friendly
Friendliness toward strangersFriendly
Ease of training Easy to train
Watchdog ability High
Protection ability Not very protective
Grooming needs Moderate maintenance
Cold tolerance Medium tolerance
Heat tolerance Low tolerance

BEHAVIOR & TRAINING

WHAT IS A SCOTTISH TERRIER'S PERSONALITY LIKE?

Scottish Terriers are spunky, spirited, and spry. You wish you carried yourself with as much confidence and dignity as this dog does. A true Highlander, the Scottish Terrier believes there can be only one…pet in the house, that is. She doesn't have much patience for other dogs or cats — although she can be socialized to accept them, if need be. (She's never going to get along well with your ferret, though.)

This breed will do best with a single person or a child-free couple who can handle the concentrated force of this dog's singular affections. But Scotties can be playful and good with kids who will respect this dog's opinions about how play should be conducted. It's always best to supervise.

WHAT IS SCOTTISH TERRIER BEHAVIOR LIKE?

Scottish Terriers are a somewhat active breed who will appreciate a brisk jaunt through the heather or a good romp in the backyard every day. They are clever and curious dogs, who will appreciate regular opportunities to explore what the world has in store for them.

Like many terriers, the Scottie is not afraid to let you know what's on her mind. This breed can be vocal, so be sure to discourage nuisance barking early and often. And of course, these earthdogs love to dig. Be sure to keep an eye on your Scottish Terrier while she's playing in the yard — she might re-landscape your lawn or dig an escape route.

HOW EASY IS IT TO TRAIN A SCOTTISH TERRIER?

If you've ever met a Scottie, you know this is a dog who knows her own mind. That said, with patience and consistency, this breed responds well to training. Scottish Terriers are quick learners and people-pleasers at heart. Be gentle with this sensitive soul; reward good behaviors with treats and games. She'll bore quickly, so keep training sessions short and fun.

CARE & HEALTH

HOW MUCH DO SCOTTISH TERRIERS SHED AND WHAT ARE THEIR GROOMING NEEDS?

Scottish Terriers' double coat is soft and dense underneath, overlaid with wiry, hard outer hairs. They are light seasonal shedders. You'll want to comb your Scottie a few times a week, and have her clipped or hand stripped once a season.

WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS DO SCOTTISH TERRIERS HAVE?

As a breed, Scottish Terriers are generally healthy. Some are susceptible to bone or bleeding disorders, allergies, cancer, liver disease, or autoimmune disorders. These dogs are uniquely prone to a neuromuscular disorder called “Scottie Cramp,” which can cause muscle spasms and affect mobility.

Some tend toward stoutness, so be mindful about meals and snacks.

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