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The Skye Terrier is small, low set, sturdy
and muscular with a long and flowing coat.
He is elegant, agile, friendly, happy and
loyal. The Skye Terrier traces its roots back
to the Isle of Skye, the most northern island
off the west coast of Scotland. While its
exact origins are not known, it appears the
most popular theory involves a Spanish shipwreck
off the coast of the Isle of Sky in the early
1600s. Survivors of the ill fated ship included
Maltese dogs, which are claimed to have been
mated with local Terriers, thus producing
the Skye Terrier.
The Skye Terrier was primarily used to hunt
fox, otter and badgers. This breed is fearless,
bold, courageous and has great stamina. Skye
Terriers also have a keen sense of smell and
excel at seeking and digging out vermin or
small game from their burrow.
Queen Victoria helped the Skye Terrier gain
popularity as she was quite a fan of this
unique breed. In addition, Skye Terriers were
depicted in the famous artist Sir Edwin Landseer's
paintings which added interest and popularity
of these good natured dogs.
The Skye Terrier was recognized by the American
Kennel Club in the Terrier Group in 1887.
While they were once very popular, the Skye
Terrier population has been on the decline
and is now considered a rare breed.
The typical height for a Skye Terrier is about
10 inches (25 cm) at withers. The Skye Terrier's
length is twice as long as his height.
The weight of Skye Terrier ranges from 35
to 45 pounds (16 - 21 kg). AKC Standard.
The Skye Terrier has a long, flowing, profuse
and protective double coat. The outer coat
has a harsh texture and is straight. The under
coat is shorter, soft and woolly. To keep
the Skye Terrier's coat in good condition
and free from matting, it is essential to
keep it brushed and clean.
According to the AKC Standard, part
of their description of the Skye Terrier's
coat color includes..."must be of one
over-all color at the skin but may be of varying
shades of the same color in the full coat,
which may be black, blue, dark or light grey,
silver platinum, fawn or cream".
The Skye Terrier is very loyal, happy, affectionate
and good natured. He is alert, protective,
wary of strangers and is considered a good
watch dog. The Skye Terrier is forever faithful
to his master and very friendly with those
he knows. This breed is the type that needs
to size up a person first before becoming
friendly and / or attached. One should never
force a relationship with a Skye Terrier as
he will come around on his own. The Skye Terrier
must have an owner who is dominant, otherwise,
this type of dog will try to rule the home
which would only cause behavior problems.
Skye Terriers are fine with children they
are accustomed to and who do not tease. Proper
and early socialization is very important.
Daily walks, run and play are all considered
good exercise for a Skye Terrier. Note: Care
must be taken when exercising a Skye Terrier
puppy as too much stress on his growing bones
may cause injury. Strenuous exercise and play
should be avoided until the puppy is 10 months
Concerns: The Skye Terrier is generally
a healthy breed, although they can be affected
by any of the conditions: degenerative disc
disease, hemangiosarcomas, autoimmune disease,
hyperthyroidism and mammory cancer. Because
the Skye Terrier is very short legged, he
is more prone to injuries to his growing bones
if exercised too much while before 10 months
of age. The average life expectancy for a
Skye Terrier is between 12 - 15 years.
• There are two different
varieties of the Skye Terrier - the drop ear
and the prick ear.
AKC: Terrier Group
ANKC: Terriers Group 2
CKC: Terrier Group 4
FCI: Group 3 Section 2 Small sized Terriers