Breed Type: Terrier
Country of Origin: Scotland
Height: 8 – 11 ins. (20 – 28 cm) at shoulder.
Weight: 18 – 24 lbs. (8.2 – 10.9 kg)
Lifespan: Average about 15 years
Exercise Requirements: Medium
Care Requirements: Low- Medium
Best Suited as: Pet for an Adult
The Dandie Dinmont Terrier was bred in the 17th century as an otter and badger hunter in the Cheviot and Teviotdale Hills in Southern Scotland. The Dandie a short legged, long bodied terrier, sometimes described as ‘all curves’, with its curved haunches, curved moustache…. its curves are said to be in keeping with the curving, sloped country side from where they hail.
The Dandie Dinmont Terrier is named after the the character Dandie Dinmont, a jovial farmer in the Novel Guy Mannering by Sir Walter Scott’s. The character also gave his name to the breed’s colours, pepper and mustard, which were adopted from the names of his dogs. The Dandie Dinmont is the only breed to be named after a character from fiction.
In the 1870s. when exhibiting dogs became popular the United Kingdon Kennel Club formed in 1873 and, just after this time in 1875, Dandie enthusiasts to form their own breed specific club, at a meeting held at the Fleece Hotel in Selkirk on the Scottish Borders. It is one of the oldest pedigree breed clubs in the world.
The first task was to draw up a breed standard and Mr William Wardlaw Reed, a founder member of the DDTC. worked on this, smoothing out the many differences between the current speciments. The following year at the Red Lion Hotel, Carlisle, the standard was agreed and adopted.
The breed was first registered with the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1888. They are rare in Australia with only a handful of breeders and less than 200 dogs in the country.
The Dandie is all terrier, another example of a big dog on small legs. They have retained the hunting instinct and will chase anything. They are scrappers, do not expect to keep two adult males peacefully, and as with most terriers, they are not suited for families with small children, they will not tolerate the punishment or clumsiness handed out by toddlers. Got a pet Dandie? Got a pet rabbit? Not any more! They are ferocious hunters of rabbits and vermin, and don’t expect them to befriend your cat either.
Having such short legs, they don’t need a lot of exercise – this is not a dog to get for running beside you whilst on your bike. They respond best to praise an encouragement when training than punishment, which will make them resentful and sulky.
A very healthy breed with few problems, expect them to live to 15 years. They shed very little, and require regular clipping. Some problems with the breed with some specimens being overly aggressive, so do seek out a reputable breeder. Being short legged and long backed, they should never be encouraged to jump frmo heights, especially when young.
Suits an owner with a relatively inactive lifestyle, with no children or other animals. Has a deep bark for a littlish dog and they are great watchdogs, guarding the yard from intrusion. A proud animal, that will flourish with praise and a gentle hand. They are not for everyone, but are a fine, strong willed and bodied little dog.