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West Highland White Terrier

West Highland White Terrier


Height: 10-11 inches

Weight: 15-20 lbs.

Life Span: 12-14 yrs.

Breed Group: Terriers

Overview
West Highland white terriers are good family dogs adaptable to life in the cities, suburbs, or country. They are more high-strung than cairn terriers but still respond well to obedience training.

They love to romp with children if socialized with them at an early age and will accept strangers after an initial inspection. Westies are good watchdogs.

They usually get along well with other dogs but may fight for dominance. They get along with cats that are raised in the home but may chase strays.

Appearance
The outercoat is straight, hard, and about two inches long, shorter on the neck and shoulders; the undercoat is short, soft, and tight. Coat color is pure white. Among the breed's distinguishing features are small, erect ears with sharp tips and a black nose.

Grooming & Exercise Needs
The West Highland white terrier needs to be brushed and combed twice a week and trimmed every three months. Several walks and some playtime daily suit this dog well.

Origins
The West Highland white terrier originated in the 19th century and probably shares a common Highland ancestry with the Scottie, cairn, and Dandie Dinmont. They were used for ratting and for "going to ground" after game in their burrows.

Special Alerts
It is especially important to obtain a West Highland white terrier from a reputable breeder.

Breed-related health concerns: Legg-Perthes disease, craniomandibular osteopathy (a disease characterized by excessive growth of bones in the head), atopy, cataracts, copper toxicosis (a hereditary disease that can lead to liver failure), inguinal hernia, deafness, pyruvate kinase deficiency (a fatal enzyme deficiency).

 

Reference: AKC - American Kennel Club

 


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