Aberdeen Terrier, ScottieFamily: Canidae Canis lupus familiarisPhoto © Animal-World: Courtesy Justin Brough
Poised with a dignified air, the Scottish Terrier has been bred pure since the 1800's.
The Scottish Terrier, also called Aberdeen Terrier, are beloved for their charm and protectiveness. Scotties are playful as puppies, but become more sedate as adults. They become attached to their families, and they make great guard dogs.
When selecting a Scottish Terrier, it is important to ask the breeder about the possibility of genetic disorders and predispositions. They are also prone to skin and jaw problems.
Breed Type This small terrier was originally bred as a hunter of vermin, foxes and badgers. Scottish Terriers possess a dignified air about them, and are much stronger than they look. The Scottie does best in areas with cool weather.
Background The Scottish Terrier originated in Scotland, along with several other types of terriers. They were favorites of farmers and fox hunters, as well as King James VI. There has been some debate as to whether the Scottish Terrier is the original highland terrier breed, or if it originated from the Skye Terrier. It is known that the Scottie has been bred pure since the 1800's.
Description Scottish Terriers come in black, wheaten, and brindle colors. They have short legs and pricked ears, with dark eyes and large noses. They are typically 10-11 inches tall and weigh 19-23 pounds.
Care and Feeding The Scottish Terrier thrives on foods high in carbohydrates and low in protein. Poultry, mutton, and wheat are good component choices. The Scottie's wiry coat needs to be brushed regularly. Baths should be given as needed, and the dog needs trimming twice a year.
Scottish Terriers need annual checkups, and should be vaccinated as follows:
- 6-8 weeks: Distemper, Leptospirosis, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, Parvo, and Corona virus (DHLPPC)
- 10-12 weeks: Second DHLPPC
- 14-16 weeks: Third DHLPPC and rabies
- Annually: DHLPPC and rabies booster
The breed sheds very little and is generally well behaved in the house, requiring little cleaning up after.
Social Behaviors Scottish Terriers may be aggressive toward other dogs unless they are introduced to them while young. They like to chase other animals. They do best with adults and older children, and are generally shy around strangers.
Activities Scottish Terriers need daily walks in addition to play time. They enjoy playing in the yard without a leash, but it is best if your yard is fenced in to keep them from running off after other animals.
Breeding/Reproduction Scottish Terriers are often confused with West Highland White Terriers, but the true Scottish Terrier is never white. This is an important distinction in breeding. Due to the breed's predisposition to health problems, it is crucial to check into a potential mate's lineage. Scotties sometimes have difficulty whelping.
Common Health Problems Common health problems in Scottish Terriers include von Willebrand's Disease (a bleeding disorder), Cushing's Syndrome (a hormone imbalance), and epilepsy. Scottie Cramp is a hereditary disorder unique to Scottish Terriers. It causes a painful change in gait when the dog is stressed. Careful monitoring of your dog and regular veterinary checkups are essential.
References "Scottish Terrier", Dog Breed Info Center, Copyright 1998-2008
"Scottish Terrier", Wikipedia, Copyright 2008
Cusick, William D., "What to Feed a Scottish Terrier", Referenced online, 2008
"Choosing a Scottish Terrier", PetPlace.com, Copyright 1999-2008
Orsborn, Jim, "Genetic Health Issues", Scottish Terrier Club of America, Copyright 2000 STCA, Referenced online, 2008