Dandie Dinmont Terrier, a Complete Guide: A Complete and Reliable Handbook


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Dandie Dinmont terriers are unusual looking dogs, with short legs and long backs, like Dachshunds. They have a mix of silky and rough fur, with a silky topknot, and need a fair bit of grooming to show off their looks. Their fur can become matted if they don't get a regular brush, though they don't shed much. Dandie Dinmont terriers don't need a lot of exercise, in fact, too much exercise of the wrong sort can damage their backs.

Like dachshunds, it's best not to let them jump off high places, or rush up and down stairs, and they need proper support when they are lifted. This breed is not the ideal choice for a family with children, though they can get on well with sensible, older children. They are too easily damaged by being roughly picked up, and also have a strong independent streak. Some individuals can be aggressive with dogs of the same sex, especially if they are close in age.

Dandie Dinmont terriers were originally bred to be vermin catchers, and they should be kept on the lead if you take them for walks where there is a chance they might spot a cat! They can be content just having off-leash time in a garden, and make good watchdogs, with their surprisingly deep bark. This breed is generally free of health problems, apart from the vulnerability to back trouble, and hypothyroidism in some lines.

The Kirby's guide to the breed is short, but is packed with useful advice, and is well illustrated. It's a good introduction to the breed, though experienced owners are likely to want a more in-depth guide.