The origins of the dandie dinmont terrier dog breed are Scottish. It is not the result of targeted or scientific selections but of crossbreeding, by gypsies and local hunters to obtain a dog of great courage and tenacity and good for hunting. Its origins are very ancient, as it is thought that dogs such as the French Dachshunds that were brought from Normandy at the time of the conquest by William I in 1066 influenced this breed. One legend says that all modern dandie dinmont terriers came from a poacher’s dog found in a trap on the Duke of Buccleuch’s estate.
The most accepted theory is that he was born from a cross between scottish, skye and bedlington, in fact he took several characteristics from each breed.
This dog is the only one that does not take its name from the place it belongs to, but has inherited it from the protagonist of the story “Guido Mannering” by Walter Scott, whose real name was Dandie Dinmont, Dandie was the nickname the writer gave him for his extreme elegance in every occasion. This fact gave a little bit of popularity to this breed, but unfortunately there are few specimens and it is little known, even in Great Britain.
Initially, this dog was selected for hunting badgers, otters and other small prey, now, however, thanks to its character is an excellent companion dog.
Dandie Dinmont Terrier Dog Breed Character
The dandie dinmont terrier has some typical terrier traits; it is tenacious, has an independent spirit and is determined. However, it is also affectionate and sensitive, especially towards its owner. He is a tame dog, however he is rather stubborn and has a tendency to constantly test his owners to see where he can go, but when he understands his limits he is a great companion.
It likes to play, it is cheerful and compared to its ancestors its temperament has changed and has calmed down, since it is no longer used for hunting, but as a companion animal. It remains, however, an independent dog that is often taken out for walks, in fact it needs to do enough exercise as this prevents it from becoming obese. In fact it is a dog that eats a lot, but we will talk about this later on.
With strangers it is rather diffident, therefore it is an excellent guard dog, which does not hesitate to alert by barking as soon as it hears something out of the ordinary. In spite of its small stature it is a very courageous dog that is not afraid, if necessary, to confront larger dogs or dangerous animals such as foxes. As for living with other dogs and cats, it must have an early socialization to have a serene coexistence.
Appearance of the dandie dinmont terrier dog breed
The appearance of the dandie dinmont terrier is very particular. It is a small dog, the height at withers for a male ranges from 25 to 30 centimeters for a weight between 8 and 11 kilograms. It has a long and flexible body, while the limbs are short, but strong and with well-developed thighs. The tail is short and has a length around 25 centimeters. It resembles the weasel in terms of its body. Its gait is flowing, loose and firm.
The head is larger than usual, compared to the body. The truffle is wide and black, the ears are drooping, well placed back, far apart, adhering to the cheeks. The eyes are an intense dark hazel color, distant and low, large, full and round with a very lively look.
The head has a very nice appearance especially because of the hair on the head that looks like brush hair, and the large mustachios.
The coat hair is one of the typical characteristics of the breed. It has a double coat with a soft and fluffy undercoat, and an outer coat that is harder but not rough, but still gives a frizzy feeling when stroking it. It can be found in two colors: pepper or mustard.
Health and Care of the Dandie Dinmont Terrier Dog Breed
As an adult, the dandie dinmort terrier is a sturdy dog, in the growth phase its health must be monitored very closely. Like many small dogs, he can suffer from patellar problems, and his shape makes him prone to spinal disorders. As a hereditary disease, he may suffer from eye disorders, so annual eye tests and examinations are recommended.
It is a dog that suffers a lot from the cold, in winter it is preferable to make him sleep indoors. Its average life expectancy is about 13 years.
As for the care of the coat, it must be brushed at least twice a week and sheared at least twice a year.
The diet must be very well cared for and above all balanced as this breed tends to eat much more than necessary. This is also why it needs at least a couple of daily outings.