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Scottish Terrier (Scottie Dog) - Small Breed Dog Profile

Updated: Feb 21

Scottish Terrier (Scottie Dog) sitting on a gold chair

Scottish Terrier: A Small Breed Dog with a Fearless Personality

The Scottish Terrier, often affectionately called the "Scottie," is a small breed dog known for its distinct appearance and bold personality.

In this article, we'll explore the Scottish Terrier's origin, characteristics, grooming requirements, exercise needs, age range, measurements, and common health issues.

Let's delve into the world of this remarkable Scottie dog breed.

What is the origin of the Scottish Terrier?

The Scottish Terrier, as the name suggests, hails from Scotland.

This breed is part of a group of terriers native to the region, and its history can be traced back several centuries.

In the beginning, Scottie dogs were reared to hunt pests like foxes and rats in the rough Scottish Highlands.

What is the Scottish Terrier bred to do?

Scottish Terriers were bred for their tenacity and hunting abilities.

Their primary purpose was to assist in pest control.

The Scottie dogs small size and fearless demeanour made them excellent at chasing and capturing rodents in the challenging terrain of Scotland.

What are the physical characteristics of the Scottish Terrier?

Scottish Terriers have a distinctive appearance.

Scottie dogs are small and sturdy dogs with a wiry, weather-resistant double coat.

Their coats can be black, brindle, or wheaten.

Scotties have a bushy beard, erect ears, and a confident, dignified stance.

They are known for their distinctive eyebrows and deep-set, dark eyes, which add to their charming expression.

What are the personality traits of the Scottish Terrier?

Scottish Terriers are known for their strong-willed and independent nature.

They are confident, dignified, and have a no-nonsense attitude.

While they can be reserved with strangers, they are fiercely loyal to their families.

Scottie dogs are known for their intelligence and determination, which can make training them a rewarding but sometimes challenging experience.

Grooming Requirements

Scottish Terrier grooming needs are moderate, regular brushing and trimming needed.

Regular grooming is essential.

The Scottish Terrier's wiry double coat requires regular grooming to keep it in top condition.

Brushing is needed often a week to avoid matting and evenly disperse the natural oils in their coat.

Occasional hand-stripping is also recommended to maintain the Scottie dogs rugged appearance.

Exercise Requirements

Despite their small size, Scottish Terriers have a moderate exercise requirement.

Daily walks and playtime in a secure area are essential to keep Scottie dogs physically and mentally stimulated.

They have a strong prey drive, so interactive toys and games can be particularly engaging for them.

Moderate exercise needs; Scottish Terriers (Scottie Dogs) enjoy playtime and daily walks.


Independent, dignified, and confident.

Scottish Terriers are known for their alertness and bravery.

Scottie dogs may bark to warn their owners of any possible intruders or strange noises, and they may be rather communicative animals.

While their independent nature can make them seem aloof, they are deeply attached to their families and can be affectionate companions.

Age Range

Scottish Terriers typically live between 11 to 13 years, making them relatively long-lived for a small breed dog.

Scottie dogs can provide loyal companionship for many years with proper care and attention to their health needs.


Scottish Terriers are small dogs, typically weighing 18 to 22 pounds (6-10kg) and standing about 10 to 11 inches at the shoulder.

The Scottie dogs compact size makes them suitable for various living situations, from apartments to houses.

What are their health issues?

Scottish Terriers can be susceptible to specific health conditions, including:

Scottie Cramp

A neurological disorder that can cause muscle cramps and stiffness.

Von Willebrand's Disease

A clotting condition in the blood.

Hip dysplasia

A genetic condition that impacts the hip joints.


Scotties may be prone to various types of cancer.

A balanced diet and routine veterinarian exams are crucial for preserving their health and well-being.

Scottish Terrier Scottie Dog  looking grumpy

Is a Scottie Dog a Good Family Dog?

Scottish Terriers are cherished family-friendly dogs.

Their endearing personality and unshakable loyalty make them an excellent addition to any household.

What is their Personality?

Scottish Terriers are known for their distinctive personality.

These small Scottish Terrier dogs exhibit confidence, independence, and a charming, no-nonsense demeanour.

Their loyalty to their family is unwavering, and while they might not always express it traditionally, the bond they form is profound.

The Scottie dog intelligence and alertness add to their unique character.

Are They Noisy? Do Scottie Dogs Bark a Lot?

Scottish Terriers, in their role as watchdogs, can be vocal.

Their keen alertness prompts them to bark when they sense anything unusual.

While not the noisiest breed, their vocal tendencies can be quite pronounced.

Proper training and early socialisation can help manage their barking and teach them when appropriate.

What is the Noisiest Dog Breed?

Determining the noisiest dog breed can vary, but some small breeds, including terriers and toy breeds, are known for their vocal tendencies.

With their protective nature, Scottish Terriers can undoubtedly make their voices heard when needed.

Can Scottie Dogs Be Left Alone?

Scottish Terriers thrive on companionship and are best when not left alone for long periods.

While they can handle reasonable periods of solitude, consistently extended absences may lead to anxiety and undesirable behaviours.

Regular interaction and mental stimulation are essential for their well-being.

Are Scottie Dogs Hard to Train?

Training Scottish Terriers can be challenging due to their independent nature.

Patience and positive reinforcement methods are essential.

Their unique character makes them responsive to consistent, respectful training techniques.

How much is a Scottish Terrier uk?

The cost of a Scottish Terrier in the UK can differ depending on factors such as pedigree, breeder reputation, and location. On average, they may range from £800 to £1500 or more.

How to groom a Scottish Terrier perfectly?

To groom a Scottish Terrier perfectly:

Start by brushing their coat thoroughly to remove any mats or tangles.

Trim their fur to the desired length, paying attention to areas such as the legs, chest, and belly.

Use a stripping knife or stripping comb to hand-strip their coat if necessary.

Finish by cleaning their ears, trimming their nails, and brushing their teeth for a well-groomed appearance.

How long does a Scottish Terrier live for?

Scottish Terriers typically have a lifespan of 11 to 13 years, although some may live longer with proper care and attention.

How much are Scottish Terrier puppies?

The cost of Scottish Terrier puppies can vary widely based on factors such as pedigree, breeder reputation, and bloodline. On average, they may range from £800 to £1500 or more.

How much is a Scottish Terrier?

The cost of purchasing a Scottish Terrier can depend on factors such as breeder reputation, pedigree, and geographic location. On average, they may range from £800 to £1500 or more.

How to groom a Scottish Terrier?

Grooming a Scottish Terrier involves brushing their coat regularly to prevent mats and tangles, trimming their fur to the desired length, and maintaining their overall hygiene by cleaning their ears, trimming their nails, and brushing their teeth.

How to groom a Scottish Terrier head?

To groom a Scottish Terrier's head, use grooming scissors to cautiously trim the hair around their eyes, ears, and muzzle.

Pay attention to the shape of their head and ears, and ensure the hair is neatly trimmed for a polished appearance.

How to draw a Scottish Terrier step by step?

Drawing a Scottish Terrier step by step can be done by sketching the basic shapes of their body, head, and features, then adding details such as fur texture, facial expression, and posture.

There are many online tutorials and videos available that provide step-by-step guidance for drawing a Scottish Terrier.

What is the average lifespan of a Scottish Terrier?

The average lifespan for a Scottish Terrier ranges from about 11 to 13 years. However, individual lifespan may depend on factors like genetics, health care, and lifestyle.

Final Thoughts

Scottish Terriers are indeed family-friendly dogs with distinctive personalities.

Their loyalty, vocal tendencies, and suitability for family life make them a remarkable choice for those willing to embrace their unique character.

Join the London Scottie Club to find out more!

Disclaimer: This article is intended for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for veterinary advice. For specific veterinary dog health advice, contact a veterinary pet healthcare provider.

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Kate Phillips, Chief Editor

BSc (Hons), MSc

Kate is the UK's very own Mary Puppins, a professional Dog Nanny and expert in small breed dogs. With over 30 years' experience and successfully helping high profile celebrity pet parents raise their furry families, Kate shares her top tips with you. Kate guides readers on small breed dogs, dog health, dog training, dog nutrition, dog food, dog walks, dog accessories, dog enrichment, rescue dogs, dog behaviour, dog grooming and the best products for dog mums and dog dads to create the ultimate luxury lifestyle for their small dogs.


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