The Cairn Terrier (also known simply as the “Cairn”) is a terrier that features a fox-like face with pointed ears and a wiry coat that comes in virtually any color but white. The breed can be traced back to the early 1900s in Scotland, and they were originally raised for the main reason of hunting foxes and other small game.


A small number of their most typical features usually are their non-shedding coat, high level of energy and playfulness with children – which in essence make the Cairn Terrier a regular option for allergy sufferers and active owners or families.

The Cairn Terrier originated in the regions of the Isle of Skye and the Highlands of Scotland where they became a distinct breed from the Scottish and West Highland White Terriers in the early 1900s. They were originally used for the purposes of hunting prey such as foxes and rodents that resided in ledges and rock piles throughout the countryside.

Cairn Terriers are classed as a small-sized dog. The suggested standard size for the Cairn Terrier male is 10-12 inches tall from paw to shoulder and a weight of 14 pounds, whereas the suggested size for female Cairn Terriers is 9.5 inches high from paw to shoulder with a weight of 13 pounds.

The Cairn Terrier is well-known for their spirited and independent nature. They are usually reserved with unfamiliar people and are a natural watch dog but their size can mean they are unsuitable as a guard dog.

The Cairn Terrier is also demonstrated to be quite intelligent – ranking 35th compared to other dogs when considering their capacity to learn obedience directives. They are additionally renowned to be playful with kids – making them fairly suitable as a family pet. The Cairn Terrier is not highly compatible with other animals like rabbits, cats or mice due to their natural prey instinct but they can get along with other dogs when properly socialized.

The Cairn Terrier needs a well-fenced yard if they are to be left outside as they love to dig, but they can be also quite suitable for life in an apartment provided they are exercised on a regular basis.

The Cairn Terrier likes endeavors like chasing after a ball or stick, going for a jog or play sessions with canine companions. They possess a high degree of energy and require exercise each day in the shape of moderate-length daily walks to prevent destructive behavior such as digging or excessive barking.

The Cairn Terrier can be the right dog breed for active owners or families, apartment dwellers and allergy sufferers due to their non-shedding coat. They are fit to anyone that is willing to carry out a small amount of grooming and allow time to provide them with early socialization and sensitive obedience training where the human is the leader as well as take them for moderate walks each day and bestow a very high quantity of company and attention – they do not do well if left alone all day. Though they might be somewhat unsuitable living with most other pets, if you are able to meet their needs for a well-fenced yard, high companionship and appropriate physical as well as mental stimulation then the Cairn Terrier may possibly make the ideal dog for you.

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  • AKC Breed Popularity: Ranks 69 of 191
  • Height: 10 inches (male), 9.5 inches (female)
  • Weight: 14 pounds (male), 13 pounds (female)
  • Life Expectancy: 13-15 years
  • Group: Terrier Group

Cairn Terrier Club of America

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