The Cairn Terrier
Terriers are intelligent, lively, strong, and loyal. Like most terriers,
they are stubborn and strong-willed, and love to dig after real or imagined
prey. Cairn Terriers have a strong prey instinct and will need comprehensive
training. However, they are highly intelligent and, although very willful,
can be trained. Although it is often said that they are disobedient, this
is not the case provided correct training is applied; they are headstrong
though, and should always be walked with a leash.
characteristic of Cairns is that brindled Cairns frequently change color
throughout their lifetime. It is not uncommon for a brindled Cairn to
become progressively more black or silver as it ages. The Cairn is double-coated,
with a soft, dense undercoat and a harsh outer coat. A well-groomed Cairn
has a rough-and-ready appearance, free of artifice or exaggeration.
dogs were used by crofters, shepherds, and foxhunters for pest control
- foxes, rats rabbits were their early quarry, but with the advent in
the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries of sporting pursuits, the dogs
were much favoured for use against badgers and otters. Their “gameness”
- the ability to ignore pain and continue to fight on - became legendary,
and even at the beginning of the 20th century there were packs of Cairns
that could not be handled by anyone other than their keeper! Dogs varied
enormously in size, shape and colour depending on the terrain they worked,
and the quarry they were used against.
origins of the Cairn Terrier are lost in the mists of time, but the dog
is undoubtedly descended from the original indigenous working terrier
of the Scottish Highlands and Islands. There are references to them in
the sixteenth century, when King James 1 and V1 sent a group of Earth
Dogges to the King of France. So prized were they, that he stipulated
that they be sent in separate ships lest disaster befall them en route.
Breed Clubs and Societies