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Top Things to Know About a Cairn Terrier

Cairn Terriers are great companions to humans. They are small in size, scrappy, and have fun-loving traits that make them great pets to home. In fact, dog lovers call this dog breed the best little pals known to man.

There are lots of things that make the Cairn Terrier a remarkable pooch breed. Still, there are several things to note about a Cairn Terrier. So, before deciding to adopt one, here are the top things to know about this dog breed. This will help you determine if they are the right fit for your home.

Cairn Terriers Date Far Back Centuries

Scottish highlanders first homed this pooch breed. They were developed to eradicate pests and vermin such as rats from barns. These tasks were carried out perfectly by this breed. Back then, this pup wasn’t originally referred to as Cairn Terriers. Majority of Scottish terriers were referred to as Scotch Terriers till sometime in 1873. This was the time when there was a division in the earlier breeds.

The name Cairn Terrier comes from stone heaps used to engrave the Gaelic culture burial sites. It is believed that they obtained the name due to their ability of squeezing through rocks to frighten foxes and vermin. These foxes and vermin usually find shelter in the gravesites.

It was not until 1913 that the earlier Cairn Terrier arrived in the US. The AKC (American Kennel Club) found out about this breed sometime in the same year. This breed later ditched their hunting jobs to enter circus rings in many areas in the US. Still, if given a chance, they can give a rodent a good pursuit.

Cairn Terriers Although Little Aren’t Lap Dogs

This dog breed is diminutive in size. Growing just about 10 inches tall for males and 9 ½ inches tall for females. As for weight, the male should be about 14 pounds. At the same time, a female should weigh around 13 pounds. Although connoisseurs claim that this pooch breed will get bigger in time, they are still relatively small.

Its diminutive size might give an impression that it is a lap dog. However, because of their history as hunting canines, it isn’t the case. While this pup is friendly and well-behaved, it is as well busy and independent. So, although they are great human companions, they do not cling to their owners all the time. Yes, they enjoy petting from parents, but they go elsewhere to entertain themselves after a while.

They are available in a Variety of Colors Except for White

People often confuse the Cairn Terrier with the West Highland White Terrier. However, there is a tell-tale difference. The West Highland White terrier is of only white color. While the Cairn Terrier is seen in a variety of colors except for white.

You can find this breed in colors including cream, grey, black, red, Wheaton, or red. Their coat usually varies in color. You notice darker patches on their ears, tail tip, and muzzle. They are also fond of changing colors from light to dark or the other way around. This is done throughout the entirety of their lives, mainly when growing from puppies to adults.

They are Loyal and Obedient, But Still Have a Mind of Their Own

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Cairns have loyal and loving personalities. This makes them excellent household pets. They relish being around their parents and can be funny, affectionate, and intelligent. However, this pup does have a mind of its own.

So, unless they understand that you are its parent, they can walk over you. This doesn’t mean you should treat them harshly. It also doesn’t mean you use negative reinforcement as a tool for instilling dominance. You just have to ensure you remain consistent and firm with your discipline.

Even the best-trained cairns aren’t to be left off-leash. Only when indoor you are free to let them off-leash. This is because of their natural curiosity. 

This behavior tends to send them wandering off towards directions that might be unsafe. And, only when they are satisfied and fulfilled with their adventure, they return to their parents. This website has valuable tips to help you bond with your dog. 

They are an Active Breed that Requires Regular Exercises

Although cairns can thrive in any surrounding, including indoors, they need to take strolls at least once a day. They have a powerful prey instinct. This is why they bark and try and run at any rodents they come across during their walks.

They also get unsettled if they do not get regular exercise and training. So, you should be an active family before considering this dog breed.

They are a Healthy Dog Breed

This pup is long-lived and healthy. This means that they have a longer life span. On average, this pooch can live for as long as 15 years.

 I recommend that you always take your pet to the vet regularly. This will ensure that they age well and remain active during their older years. Cairns have large gene pools, minimal genetic manipulations, and do not suffer from congenital ailments.

However, they are prone to allergies, heart defects, cataracts, seizures and epilepsy, and patella. According to connoisseurs, these medical issues occur only once in a long while. You can check here https://www.yourpurebredpuppy.com/health/cairnterriers.html for more medical problems affecting Cairns. 

So, I would advise you to research your breeder. Make sure they are reputable. This is because reputable breeders regularly test their dogs for known conditions.

Final Note

Cairns are generally excellent companions to have. However, they are things you have to know about the breed. The discussion above will provide the correct info on this breed. This will give you a more informed decision on whether or not they are the right choice for your home.

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