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West Highland White Terrier
West Highland White Terrier

Country of Origin: Scotland

Group: Terriers

Section: Small-sized Terriers

Original Function: fox, badger, and vermin hunting

Todays Function: earthdog trials

Dimension Male: 25-30 cm

Dimension Female: 23-28 cm

Weight Male: 7-10 kg

Weight Female: 6-7 kg

Litter Size: 2-5 puppies, average 3

Life span: 12-14 years

Other Names: Poltalloch Terrier, Westie

Colors: The traditional color of the west highland white terrier is white, but some may be a wheat color or

Living: The west highland white terrier has the ability to live on a farm, in a city apartment, with a famil



This sturdy, hardy, compact little terrier has a two inch all white coat that is uncurled with a soft, dense undercoat. They have bright, dark, deep-set eyes with a penetrating gaze. The ears are small, pointed and erect, giving the animal an alert ready-for-anything look. The tail is carried jauntily, is about 5-6 inches (12?-15cm.) long and should not be docked. It has a deep chest and muscular limbs. The Westie has a short, closely fitted jaw with scissors bite, a pronounced stop, and slightly convex skull.


The busy Westie is happy, curious and always in the thick of things. It is affectionate and demanding, one of the friendliest terriers. It is not friendly, however, toward small animals. It enjoys a daily romp in a safe area or a walk on lead, as well as playtime at home. It is independent and somewhat stubborn. It barks and digs.


The Westie enjoys the outdoors, but it can also function as an indoor dog if taken for regular exercise. It needs either a short to moderate walk on leash or a good game in the yard every day. It should sleep inside in all but the mildest climates. Its wire coat needs combing two or three times weekly, plus shaping every three months. Shaping for pets is by clipping, and for show dogs is by stripping. In some areas, it may be difficult to keep the coat white.


The harsh, straight, short-haired double coat is fairly easy to groom and sheds little to no hair. Simply brush regularly with a stiff bristle brush. Brushing should keep the coat clean, so bathe only when necessary. Trim around the ears and eyes with blu


Major concerns: globoid cell leukodystrophy, Legg-Perthes, CMO

Minor concerns: copper toxicosis, cataract, patellar luxation

Occasionally seen: deafness

Suggested tests: hip, knee