Full of spunk and dauntlessly courageous; these and more are what makes the West Highland White Terrier an absolute charmer and enthusiastic little gamer. This dog is widely recognized for having a short, brilliant white hair, compact little body and fearless spirit. Tagged as well as “Westie”, this little diminutive charmer has a wide base of admirers and the number continue to rise by the day.

It’s a out of the question how Westies are being hailed as one of the top favorite breeds today but looking back almost hundreds of years ago, they were surprisingly not so pampered and not so favored like today. In Scotland before, the place of origin of the Westie, believe it or not they were treated as despicable and meaningless pets of the peasants and of the poor. In the hands of sadistic humans, they were abandoned, left to fend for themselves, and even killed.


Thanks to the influence of a soft- hearted man of rank, however, that this animal was saved from persecution and was started to be remarked as one having unique abilities and useful strengths as a watchdog and vermin hunter. Col. Edward Donald Malcolm of Poltalloch, Scotland was the first man to give importance to this breed and so it was called the Poltalloch terrier then. Col. Malcolm developed several colored terriers but it is the white colored one that gained the most concentration for this typical color is the most useful in bushes and woods setting.

Having been breed from other Scottish terriers such as the Skye, Cairn, and Dandie Dinmont, the Westie of today is nothing but pure blooded terrier. In 1905, the first Highland terrier club was formed in the overseeing of Col. Malcolm. A year later, The Kennel Club cited the club as an official member and gave it the name The West Highland White Terrier Club; in 1908, the American version of the club was included in the AKC.

Being a terrier by blood, the Westie is naturally ready and game, toughie and unaware of its own size, fairly sociable with strangers and adores children; active, self-assured, and strives for companionship. It lives for playing, chasing, and chasing kids; and other smaller animals for fun. In the presence of other smaller and larger dogs, the Westie is affable, harmonious, and confident and thus fights are not likely to be started by it.

Outwardly, this dog is draped with 2 inches length of hair that’s thick, soft, and pearly white in brilliance. It solidly and robustly boasts its 10-12 inches of height and its hair that has a softer and thicker undercoat and courser and tougher overcoat. Maintenance for the hair minimally requires daily brushing and regular trimmings and clippings.

In addition to its already wonderful appearance, this dog is quite the showman, too, for it is docile in training and obedience which makes him a winner at every dog show competition. In terms of health, this dog needs an amount of regular walks so as to avoid the development of unpleasant behaviors. Aside from that, this dog also needs a regular chance at playing, running around, and frolicking in order to keep his physical and mental health in check.

The West Highland White terrier, despite its morbid and pitiful past, is streaming with recognition and spoiling nowadays. Clubs for this breed are popping out in almost every city in all parts of the world and this additionally proves the adoration it receives today. Without the effort of the Malcolm family, this animal must not be of existence now and we would have never known a sweet, charming, and protective little dog called Westie.

Author Jack Richardson has decades of experience in West Highland White Terrier breeding, grooming, and training. Get more helpful tips and articles from him by checking out his website about West Highland White Terriers.