Dog Breed Information and Pictures

Scottish Terrier Temperament,

scottish terrier

Scottish Terrier Information and Breed Notes

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The Scottish Terrier Temperament is Sensible, Reserved, Stubborn, Bold and Courageous

Active and agile, the familiar Scottie that we all know is a courageous and highly intelligent breed. Loyal, faithful, reserved and dignified are adjectives often used to describe these terriers, they are bold but never aggressive.

This breed has a distinctive profile and is one of five different terrier breeds originating in Scotland, with the others being Skye, Cairn, Dandie Dinmont and West Highland White Terriers respectively.

Scotties were given the nickname "Little Diehard" by King George IV on account of their bravery and single minded determination.

Scottish Terriers are small, resilient and muscular little dogs with powerful neck and shoulder muscles plus short sturdy legs that can move surprisingly quickly when the mood takes them. Having large paws, they are perfectly designed for digging or rooting out prey which they will do with gusto if given half a chance.

The Breed's popularity developed slowly after being introduced into the United states around 1883, but it wasn't until after the second world war that its popularity soared, helped in no small part by Franklin Roosevelt's faithful Scottie companion 'Fala'.

This proved to be a mixed blessing for the breed as for some time as they were the subject of exploitation by the scourge of back yard breeders ,looking to cash in on their undeniable popularity. Happily the health and well being of this fabulous dog has settled down now and they are in the main the good tempered dog they were bred to be .

Scottish Terrier Temperament:  

Scottish Terriers are a breed with two very different sides to their personality; strong willed and feisty with a stubborn streak that could try the patience of a saint, they can be particularly hard to train or house break out of sheer obstinacy, and will require a firm stance in early training if they are to be prevented from trying to run the entire household!

The Scottish Terrier temperament  makes them prone to mood swings, being curmudgeonly and crabby one minute, playful and cheerful the next.

They are incredibly loyal to their family and will form a special bond with perhaps one or two members but have little interest in making friends with with those outside of the family group.

They do however ooze charm and it is hard not to fall in love with the Scottie's playful and friendly nature, their devotion to one or more family members makes them very in tune with their owners moods, they can be surprisingly sensitive and sweet if you are going through a bad spell.

Children: Not an ideal dog for young children and unless properly socialized can show aggressive tendencies, having said that they have the potential to be a great dog for older children, as they are active sporty and full of comedy value. Why not check out these other great dog breeds that are good with children

The Scottish Terrier  or “Scottie” has been documented since the late 19th Century and were a particular favourite in the Aberdeen area of Scotland which explains why they are still sometimes referred to as the "Aberdeen Terrier”.

Bred as a working farm dog to hunt badger's foxes and even wildcats, Scotties were required to act independently in their duties without direct instruction from the farmer, this requirement has led to the independently minded,  stubborn and famously loyal breed  that we see today.

Protection level: Moderate, nervous around strangers and can bite.

Other Animals Not the best dog if you have a menagerie of squeeky little rodents. Can be dog aggressive

Coat: Double coated,profuse topcoat that falls straight to either side of the body with a soft undercoat, fur is especially profuse around the head covering the forehead and eyes.

Grooming: Despite looking like a groomers nightmare the Scotties coat is resistant to tangling, but regular brushing will always be beneficial.  Considered to be a suitable dog breed for allergy sufferers.

Exercise: Owing to its small size this terrier doesnt require a particularly heavy exercise regime and can tire easily, this is a great breed for people who dont want to or cant take their dogs on long walks.

Health Issues..Can be susceptible to certain cancers. Prone to developing von Willebrands disease, "Scottie cramp", patella luxation and skin & jaw problems. Finding  a reputable breeder and ensuring adequate pet insurance will of course always bring extra peace of mind regards the well being of your furry friend.

  Ideal Scottish Terrier owners are...

Experienced and patient, having the determination to overcome their Scottie’s stubbornness in order to get the best out of this charming breed.As always if you like this breed, please do the research  and ensure that you are choosing the right dog for your own lifestyle.  For more information, why not visit this breeds national club or learn more about different  types of small dog breeds.

Comparable Breeds

norfolk terrier

Norfolk Terrier


Do You Have A Scottish Terrier? We would love love to hear your story, why not upload a picture and share your experiences, tell us why the are your favourite breed. Do You Have A Related Question? - Just ask and we will be happy to help .


 The American Kennel Club and Others

Norwich Terrier

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© 2010-2015 Choosing-A-Dog-Made-Easy. All rights Reserved.Not intended to replace professional opinion or recommendation. Always consult your vet for advice about the medical condition of your pet.

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Older Children


Ease Of Training

Novice Owners

Breed Popularity

Breed Health




Other Dogs

Shedding Amount

 Younger Children


Active Lifestyle


Apartment Living

Cats Or Small Pets

How many registrations per year that are made for this breed. Generally breeds are popular for a reason and high popularity breeds are often a great place to start your search.

How willing and able this breed is to protect you, your family and your  home , how territorial they are and how dominant they can be. This is not necessarily  a sign of how aggressive the breed is.

Not to be confused with protection/guarding this is how alert , how vocal and how trusting your dog is. Even tiny dogs can make great watchdogs.

Being able to physically manage your dog is a vital consideration, dogs are much stronger than humans pound for pound.

 Breed Stats At A Glance:  1-5 Scale 5 is most or best 1 is least or worst

Nearly all dogs are trainable, some breeds  however are inherently more stubborn, wilful, lazy or less intelligent than others. Stubborn and stupid is a bad combo, Clever and eager is a good combo!

A variable combination of trainability, inherent temperament, dominance or natural aggression make some breeds less suitable for the novice owner  than others.

Older children are much more able to understand how to treat their dog appropriately. Parents must guage the maturity of their own children before choosing a dog.

Very young children are liable to annoy or provoke a dog and can injure smaller ones through rough play. They can themselves be knocked down or accidentally hurt by a larger or over enthusiastic dog.

A combination of how naturally active this breed is and how much daily exercise they will need. Under stimulated dogs can develop unwanted problem behaviours such as excessive barking, chewing and digging.

Some breeds happily live in apartments as long as they get enough daily exercise. Some however need big yards and lots of space. Some breeds bark a lot  so think of your neighbours!

Some breeds love nothing more than snuggling up on the couch with you whilst others are much more aloof.

Playfulness represents how eager, willing and exuberant your furry pal will be when it comes to getting down and joining in the fun.

Representing yearly averages as some breeds only shed seasonally, some shed throughout the year, and some hardly shed or dont shed at all.

How much upkeep you will need to do to keep your dog looking their best and being healthy, grooming, brushing, cleaning and  bathing etc.

All dogs can suffer health problems. Some breeds however, either through over breeding or inbreeding are more prone to serious congenital disorders than others.

How well does this breed naturally get on with other dogs? Proper socialization will mitigate most  intolerance. Intact  males generally are more problematic with other intact  males

Some breeds have naturally higher prey drives than others, however nearly all dogs can live with small animals providing they are introduced young enough and are well socialized.

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