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Cairn Terrier

Cairn Terrier Dog Breed Information

In a Sentence:

A small, scrappy and energetic breed with a shaggy coat and a fearless attitude.

Scientific Name:

Canis lupus familiaris.
Type:Mammal

Size:

Cairn Terriers are considered a Small Dog breed.
Weight:6-7 kg.
Height:28-31 cm (11-12 inches).
Length:40-45 cm.

Lifespan:

The average lifespan of a Cairn Terrier is around 12-15 years

Behavior:

What type of dog is a Cairn Terrier, how do they behave and what temperament do they have? See below for a detailed overview of their traits and personality.

Personality & Temperament

Cairn Terriers are known for their lively, friendly and playful personalities. They are intelligent and curious dogs that love to explore and investigate their surroundings. Cairns are also known for their loyalty and affection towards their owners and are often described as being very loving and devoted.

In terms of temperament, Cairn Terriers are generally confident and self-assured dogs. They are not easily intimidated and are known for their fearlessness and courage. However, they can also be stubborn and independent, which can make training a challenge.

Cairn Terriers are also known for their high energy levels and love of play. They are very active dogs that require plenty of exercise and mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy. They are great companions for families with children and other pets, as they are generally very social and enjoy being around others.

Overall, Cairn Terriers are lively, friendly and playful dogs that make great companions for those who are looking for an energetic and affectionate pet. They are loyal and devoted to their owners and are always eager to please, making them a great choice for those who are looking for a dog that is both fun and loving.

Intelligence

Cairn Terriers are generally considered to be intelligent dogs. They are quick learners and have a good memory, which makes them easy to train. They are also known for their problem-solving skills and can be quite creative when it comes to finding solutions to challenges. However, like all dogs, their intelligence can vary from individual to individual and their level of intelligence can also depend on their training and socialization.

Trainability

Cairn Terriers are generally intelligent and eager to please, which makes them relatively easy to train. However, they can also be stubborn and independent, which can make training a challenge at times. Consistency, positive reinforcement and patience are key when training a Cairn Terrier. It is also important to start training early and socialize them with other dogs and people to help prevent any behavioral issues. Overall, with proper training and socialization, Cairn Terriers can be well-behaved and obedient companions.

Sleep

Cairn Terriers typically sleep for around 12-14 hours per day, although this can vary depending on their age, activity level and individual personality. Puppies and older dogs may sleep more, while younger and more active dogs may sleep less. It’s important to provide your Cairn Terrier with a comfortable and quiet place to sleep, as well as plenty of opportunities for exercise and mental stimulation during their waking hours.

Bark

Cairn Terriers are known to be vocal dogs and can bark quite a bit. They were originally bred to hunt small game, so barking was a useful tool for alerting their owners to the presence of prey. However, with proper training and socialization, Cairn Terriers can be taught to control their barking and only bark when necessary. It’s important to note that excessive barking can be a sign of boredom, anxiety or other underlying issues, so it’s important to address any excessive barking behavior with your veterinarian or a professional dog trainer.

Drool

Cairn Terriers are not known for excessive drooling. They are a relatively dry-mouthed breed and typically do not drool much, if at all. However, like all dogs, some Cairn Terriers may drool occasionally, especially if they are excited or have just eaten. Overall, Cairn Terriers are considered a low-drool breed.

Lick

Cairn Terriers are known to be moderate to heavy lickers. They are affectionate dogs and often show their love and affection by licking their owners. However, excessive licking can also be a sign of anxiety or boredom, so it’s important to monitor their behavior and provide them with enough mental and physical stimulation. Regular grooming and dental care can also help reduce excessive licking.

Jump

Cairn Terriers are known for their agility and athleticism and they can jump quite high. On average, Cairn Terriers can jump up to 2-3 feet in the air. However, the jumping ability of a Cairn Terrier can vary depending on their age, size and physical condition. It’s important to keep in mind that excessive jumping can be harmful to their joints and bones, so it’s best to limit their jumping activities and provide them with proper exercise and training.

Dig

Cairn Terriers are known to be avid diggers, as they were originally bred to hunt small prey in underground burrows. They have a natural instinct to dig and may do so in gardens, lawns or even inside the house. However, the amount they dig can vary from dog to dog and can also depend on their training and exercise routine. Providing them with plenty of mental and physical stimulation, as well as designated digging areas, can help minimize their digging behavior.

Good Fit for You?

Is a Cairn Terrier the right dog for you? Keep reading to find out how compatible you are with a Cairn Terrier.

Exercise

Cairn Terriers are a high-energy breed that require daily exercise to stay healthy and happy. They typically need at least 30-60 minutes of exercise per day, which can include walks, runs, playtime in the yard or interactive games such as fetch or tug-of-war. It’s important to note that Cairn Terriers are also prone to weight gain, so regular exercise and a balanced diet are essential to maintaining their health.

Space

Cairn Terriers are small dogs that typically weigh between 13-18 pounds and stand 9-10 inches tall at the shoulder. They are active and energetic dogs that require daily exercise and mental stimulation. While they can adapt to apartment living, they do best in a home with a small yard or access to a park or other outdoor space where they can run and play. As long as they get enough exercise and attention, Cairn Terriers can thrive in a variety of living situations.

Apartment

Cairn Terriers can make good apartment dogs, but they do require daily exercise and mental stimulation. They are small in size and do not require a lot of space to move around, but they are active and energetic dogs that need regular walks and playtime to prevent boredom and destructive behavior. Cairn Terriers are also known for their alertness and tendency to bark, so it’s important to train them to control their barking in an apartment setting. Overall, if you are willing to provide your Cairn Terrier with enough exercise and attention, they can make great apartment companions.

Left Alone

Cairn Terriers can tolerate being left alone for short periods of time, but they are social dogs and prefer to be with their owners. If left alone for too long, they may become anxious and exhibit destructive behavior. It is important to provide them with plenty of exercise, mental stimulation and socialization to prevent boredom and separation anxiety. Additionally, crate training can be helpful in providing a safe and comfortable space for them while you are away.

Kid/Family Friendly

Yes, Cairn Terriers are generally good with kids and families. They are known for their playful and energetic nature, which makes them great companions for children. Cairn Terriers are also loyal and affectionate and they enjoy spending time with their families. However, like any dog breed, it is important to supervise interactions between children and dogs to ensure that both are safe and happy. Additionally, Cairn Terriers may not be the best choice for families with very young children, as they can be quite active and may accidentally knock over small children.

Perfect Fit

Cairn Terriers are great pets for households that have a lot of energy and enjoy outdoor activities. They are active dogs that require daily exercise and playtime. Cairn Terriers are also great for families with children, as they are friendly and playful. They are also good for households with other pets, as they are social animals and enjoy the company of other animals. Cairn Terriers are also good for households that have a lot of time to devote to training and grooming, as they require regular brushing and grooming to keep their coats healthy and shiny. Overall, Cairn Terriers are a great fit for households that are active, social and have a lot of love to give to their pets.

Pros and Cons:

Cairn Terriers are a popular breed of small dogs that are known for their playful and energetic personalities. While they make great companions, there are also some downsides to owning a Cairn Terrier. Here are five pros and cons to consider before bringing one into your home:

Pros:
  1. Affectionate: Cairn Terriers are known for being very affectionate and loving towards their owners.
  2. Low maintenance: They require minimal grooming and are generally easy to care for.
  3. Good with children: Cairn Terriers are great with kids and make excellent family pets.
  4. Intelligent: They are quick learners and can be trained to do a variety of tricks and commands.
  5. Active: Cairn Terriers are energetic and love to play, making them great companions for active owners.
Cons:
  1. Barking: They can be quite vocal and may bark excessively if not properly trained.
  2. Stubborn: Cairn Terriers can be stubborn and may require patience and persistence during training.
  3. Digging: They have a natural instinct to dig and may need to be trained to avoid destructive behavior.
  4. Health issues: Cairn Terriers are prone to certain health issues, such as allergies and skin problems.
  5. Terrier traits: They have a strong prey drive and may be prone to chasing small animals, such as squirrels or rabbits.

Cost:

The cost of a Cairn Terrier in Australia can vary depending on several factors such as the breeder, location, age and pedigree. On average, a Cairn Terrier puppy can cost between $1,500 to $3,000 AUD. It is important to research and find a reputable breeder who can provide health clearances and proper documentation for the puppy. Additionally, there are adoption options available through rescue organizations that may have lower fees.

Breed History:

Cairn Terriers were originally bred in Scotland for the purpose of hunting small game, such as rats and foxes, in the rocky terrain of the Scottish Highlands. They were used to flush out prey from cairns, which are piles of stones used to mark boundaries or graves. Cairn Terriers were valued for their tenacity, agility and ability to work independently. They were also used as watchdogs and companions. Today, Cairn Terriers are still used for hunting and make great family pets due to their friendly and playful nature.

Current Usage

Cairn Terriers are primarily kept as companion pets, but they can also be used for various types of work. Here are some examples:

  1. Therapy dogs: Cairn Terriers have a friendly and outgoing personality, which makes them great candidates for therapy work. They can visit hospitals, nursing homes and schools to provide comfort and companionship to people in need.
  2. Hunting dogs: Cairn Terriers were originally bred to hunt small game, such as rats and foxes. They have a strong prey drive and are skilled at tracking and flushing out prey. Some Cairn Terrier owners still use their dogs for hunting today.
  3. Agility dogs: Cairn Terriers are agile and athletic, which makes them well-suited for agility competitions. They can navigate obstacle courses with ease and speed and their high energy levels make them great competitors.
  4. Show dogs: Cairn Terriers are a popular breed in dog shows, where they are judged on their appearance, temperament and movement. They are known for their shaggy, wiry coat and their distinctive facial expression.

Overall, while Cairn Terriers are primarily kept as pets, they can also excel in a variety of working roles.

Guard Dogs

Cairn Terriers are not typically known for being good guard dogs. They are small in size and are generally friendly and outgoing with people. While they may bark to alert their owners of strangers or unusual activity, they are not typically aggressive or protective in the same way that larger breeds such as German Shepherds or Rottweilers are. Cairn Terriers are better suited as companion dogs and are known for their loyalty and affectionate nature towards their owners.

Where Are They Found?

Cairn Terriers are popular in many countries around the world, but some of the countries where they are most popular include:

1. United States6. Sweden
2. United Kingdom7. Norway
3. Australia8. Finland
4. Canada9. Denmark
5. Germany10. Japan

These countries have active Cairn Terrier clubs and breeders and the breed is recognized by their respective kennel clubs. However, Cairn Terriers can be found in many other countries as well.

Climate

Cairn Terriers are best suited to moderate climates with mild temperatures. They can tolerate both hot and cold weather, but extreme temperatures can be uncomfortable for them. They have a thick, weather-resistant coat that protects them from the elements, but they are not well-suited to very hot or humid climates. Cairn Terriers are also sensitive to extreme cold and should be kept warm in colder temperatures. Overall, they do best in climates with moderate temperatures and moderate humidity.

Population

It is difficult to determine an exact number of Cairn Terriers in the world as there is no centralized database or registry. However, according to the American Kennel Club, Cairn Terriers are ranked as the 69th most popular breed in the United States, with an estimated 5,000 new registrations each year. Additionally, Cairn Terriers are recognized by kennel clubs in many other countries, including the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada, among others. Therefore, it is safe to assume that there are tens of thousands of Cairn Terriers worldwide.

Physical Appearance:

Cairn Terriers are small to medium-sized dogs with a sturdy and compact build. They have a broad head with a short muzzle and a pair of dark, expressive eyes. Their ears are small and pointed and they stand erect on top of their head. Cairn Terriers have a shaggy and wiry coat that comes in a variety of colors, including cream, wheaten, red, gray and brindle. Their coat is weather-resistant and requires regular grooming to prevent matting. They have short legs and a level topline, giving them a square-shaped appearance. Cairn Terriers have a lively and alert expression and their tail is usually carried high. Overall, they have a charming and rugged appearance that reflects their Scottish heritage.

Coat:

Colours:

Cairn Terriers can be various shades of cream, wheaten, red, grey or black. They may also have brindle or dark points on their ears and muzzle. The breed standard allows for some white markings on the chest and feet.

Hair/Fur Length:

Cairn Terriers have a medium-length, shaggy coat that is typically around 2-3 inches long. They have a dense undercoat and a wiry topcoat that gives them their distinctive scruffy appearance. Regular grooming and trimming are necessary to keep their coat healthy and prevent matting.

Shedding:

Yes, Cairn Terriers do shed, but their shedding is minimal compared to other breeds. They have a double coat, which consists of a soft undercoat and a wiry topcoat. They shed their undercoat twice a year, typically in the spring and fall, but regular grooming can help to minimize shedding. Brushing their coat regularly can also help to remove loose hair and prevent matting. Overall, Cairn Terriers are considered a low-shedding breed, but they do require regular grooming to maintain their coat and minimize shedding.

Grooming:

The Cairn Terrier has a wiry, weather-resistant coat that requires regular grooming to keep it in good condition. They should be brushed at least once a week to remove loose hair and prevent matting. They also need to be bathed occasionally, but not too frequently as it can strip their coat of natural oils.

As for haircuts, Cairn Terriers do not require regular haircuts like some other breeds. However, they may need to have their coat trimmed occasionally to keep it neat and tidy, especially around the face, feet and tail. It is recommended to take them to a professional groomer for this task.

Hypoallergenic:

Yes, Cairn Terriers are considered hypoallergenic dogs because they have a wiry, non-shedding coat that produces less dander and allergens than other breeds. However, no dog breed is completely hypoallergenic and some people with severe allergies may still react to Cairn Terriers. It’s always a good idea to spend time with a dog before bringing them home to see if you have any allergic reactions.

Speed:

Cairn Terriers can run at a maximum speed of around 24-30 kph (15-18 mph).

Health:

Cairn Terriers are generally healthy dogs, but like all breeds, they are prone to certain health issues. Some of the most common health issues faced by Cairn Terriers include:

  • Allergies: Cairn Terriers can be prone to allergies, which can cause skin irritation, itching and hair loss.
  • Hip dysplasia: This is a genetic condition that affects the hip joint, causing pain and mobility issues.
  • Patellar luxation: This is a condition where the kneecap dislocates from its normal position, causing pain and limping.
  • Legg-Calve-Perthes disease: This is a condition where the blood supply to the femur is disrupted, causing the bone to degenerate and leading to lameness.
  • Progressive retinal atrophy: This is a genetic condition that causes the gradual degeneration of the retina, leading to blindness.

Teeth:

Cairn Terriers typically have 42 teeth, which is the same number of teeth as most other dog breeds.

Eyesight:

Cairn Terriers are known to have good eyesight, which is important for their role as a hunting breed. They have keen eyesight that allows them to spot prey from a distance and track it down. Additionally, their eyesight is also important for their overall well-being, as it enables them to navigate their surroundings and avoid potential hazards. However, like all dogs, Cairn Terriers can experience vision problems or eye diseases, so it’s important to have regular check-ups with a veterinarian.

Nipples:

Cairn Terriers typically have 8 to 10 nipples, arranged in two rows on their underside.

Gestation:

Litter Size:

The typical litter size for Cairn Terriers is between 2 to 6 puppies. However, litter size can vary and may be influenced by factors such as the age and health of the mother, genetics and environmental factors.

Gestation Period:

The gestation period for Cairn Terriers is approximately 63 days. However, it can vary by a few days depending on the individual dog. It is important to monitor the pregnant dog closely during this time and provide proper care and nutrition to ensure a healthy pregnancy and delivery.

Heat:

Cairn Terriers typically go into heat twice a year, but the timing can vary slightly between individuals.

Male vs Female:

Male and female Cairn Terriers have some physical and behavioral differences. Males tend to be slightly larger and heavier than females, with a height of 10-13 inches and a weight of 14-18 pounds, while females are 9-12 inches tall and weigh 13-17 pounds. Females may also have a more refined appearance, with a narrower head and body. In terms of temperament, males may be more dominant and assertive, while females can be more independent and reserved. However, these differences are not always consistent and can vary based on individual personality and upbringing.

Tips and Advice:

Cairn Terriers are a small and active breed that make great family pets. They are known for their spunky personalities and loyalty to their owners. If you are considering adopting a Cairn Terrier, here are some tips and advice for caring for them:

  • Grooming: Cairn Terriers have a wiry coat that requires regular grooming. Brush their coat at least once a week to prevent matting and tangling. They also need to be trimmed every few months to maintain their coat’s shape.
  • Exercise: Cairn Terriers are energetic dogs that require daily exercise. Take them for a walk or play with them in the backyard to keep them active and healthy.
  • Training: Cairn Terriers are intelligent dogs that respond well to positive reinforcement training. Start training them early and be consistent with your commands.
  • Socialization: Cairn Terriers can be wary of strangers and other dogs. Socialize them early by exposing them to different people and animals in a positive and controlled environment.
  • Health: Cairn Terriers are generally healthy dogs, but they are prone to certain health conditions such as allergies, hip dysplasia and eye problems. Regular vet check-ups and a healthy diet can help prevent these issues.
  • Dental care: Cairn Terriers are also prone to dental problems. Brush their teeth regularly and provide them with dental chews or toys to help keep their teeth clean.
  • Safety: Cairn Terriers are curious and adventurous dogs that can easily get into trouble. Keep them on a leash or in a secure fenced area to prevent them from wandering off or getting into dangerous situations.

By following these tips and advice, you can provide your Cairn Terrier with the love and care they need to thrive as a happy and healthy companion.

Food:

Cairn Terriers are small dogs and typically require around 1/2 to 1 cup of high-quality dry dog food per day, depending on their age, size and activity level. However, it’s always best to consult with your veterinarian to determine the appropriate amount of food for your specific dog.

Cairn Terriers are known to be food-oriented dogs and can be prone to overeating if given the opportunity. It’s important to monitor their food intake and provide them with a balanced diet to maintain their health and prevent obesity. Additionally, Cairn Terriers may be more prone to food allergies or sensitivities, so it’s important to choose a high-quality food that meets their nutritional needs and doesn’t contain any potential allergens.

Facts:

Cairn Terriers are small, sturdy dogs that originated in Scotland. Here are three interesting facts about them:

  1. They were originally bred to hunt rodents: Cairn Terriers were originally bred to hunt small animals like rats and mice. They were often used on farms to keep vermin under control.
  2. They played a role in the Wizard of Oz: The dog who played Toto in the Wizard of Oz was a Cairn Terrier named Terry. Terry went on to appear in many other films and became a beloved Hollywood star.
  3. They have a unique coat: Cairn Terriers have a wiry, weather-resistant coat that comes in a variety of colors, including cream, red and brindle. Their coat requires regular grooming to keep it looking its best.

Names:

Cairn Terriers are known for their spunky and energetic personalities, so names that reflect their lively nature are a great fit. Here are 15 names that would be perfect for a Cairn Terrier:

1. Scrappy6. Rusty11. Buster
2. Toto7. Charlie12. Teddy
3. Gizmo8. Max13. Bailey
4. Ziggy9. Rocky14. Winston
5. Pepper10. Finn15. Louie

Famous:

Cairn Terriers are a beloved breed known for their spunky personalities and loyalty. Over the years, several Cairn Terriers have become famous for their appearances in movies, television shows and even for their heroic acts. Here are some of the most famous Cairn Terriers of all time:

  • Toto – Perhaps the most famous Cairn Terrier of all time, Toto appeared in the 1939 film “The Wizard of Oz” alongside Judy Garland.
  • Barney – Owned by former U.S. President George W. Bush, Barney was a beloved Cairn Terrier who often made appearances in White House press conferences and events.
  • Terry – The original Cairn Terrier who played Toto in the 1939 film “The Wizard of Oz.”
  • Bobby – A loyal Cairn Terrier who famously guarded the grave of his owner for 14 years in Edinburgh, Scotland.
  • Skippy – A Cairn Terrier who appeared in several films in the 1930s, including “The Thin Man” and “Bringing Up Baby.”
  • Higgins – A Cairn Terrier who starred in the television show “Petticoat Junction” in the 1960s.
  • Rusty – A Cairn Terrier who played the role of Eddie on the television show “The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin” in the 1950s and 60s.

These famous Cairn Terriers have captured the hearts of people around the world with their charm, loyalty and incredible talents.

Summary:

The Cairn Terrier is a small, sturdy breed of dog that originated in Scotland. They were originally bred to hunt small game, such as rats and foxes and are known for their tenacity and courage. Cairn Terriers are typically between 9-13 inches tall and weigh between 13-18 pounds. They have a shaggy, weather-resistant coat that comes in a variety of colors, including black, cream and brindle.

Cairn Terriers are known for their playful and energetic personalities. They are intelligent and trainable, but can also be stubborn and independent. They are generally good with children and make loyal and affectionate pets. Cairn Terriers are also known for their alertness and make good watchdogs.

The breed has a long history, dating back to the 16th century and has been used for a variety of purposes over the years. They were popular among farmers and hunters in Scotland and were also used by the military during World War I. Cairn Terriers gained widespread popularity in the United States after the release of the movie “The Wizard of Oz,” which featured a Cairn Terrier named Toto.

Overall, Cairn Terriers make great pets for those who are looking for an active and playful companion. They require regular exercise and grooming, but are generally easy to care for. Their loyal and affectionate personalities make them a great addition to any family.