The Border Terrier - Breed Profile
Tue, 1 Nov 2011
THE BORDER TERRIER
The Border Terrier is a small breed that is best suited to active people and families. They are an affectionate, loyal and energetic dog and were originally used in the Scottish Borders, originally in the 18th Century, hunting foxes that preyed on livestock. Their ability to go to ground after a fox was of upmost importance, so they were bred to be well boned but not too heavy, have strong jaws, and have a chest of sufficient capacity but that would still allow them to back out of ground that they had entered.
The Border Terrier coat is durable and needs very little care. It is a harsh and dense coat. It may grow quite long if not groomed. To maintain a short coat, it must be stripped which is a technique that can be performed by a groomer, and the owner can continue once the technique is learnt. Borders can be red, wheaten, grizzle and tan or blue and tan in colour.
They are small to medium in size, have otter shaped heads, with dark eyes. They are strong and active, keen of eye and all terrier. They are primarily working dogs and they exude a working presence.
They were capable of following a horse on the hunt, and combine activity with gameness. Because they were bred originally for the hunt, they like to use their intellect as well as their bodies on a daily basis in the pet home. They are an active dog and have plenty of stamina that will keep them going for as long as they are asked to do so by their owners.
They may chase small creatures that take their fancy so training from an early age is important, and good response to the handler is essential for a harmonious pet relationship.
They are generally a very robust, healthy breed, but trends have been seen in years gone by with luxating patella in the Border Terrier (dislocating knee-caps). However, it is interesting to note that a high percentage of vets own Border Terriers, as do dog breeders as they are heading toward retirement age – which sends a strong message that they are a breed that encounters very few health issues.
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