At 10 to 11 at the shoulder, waving happily with deep piercing eyes, a compact body, and a carrot-shaped tail, Westy’s look is unique. Under the plush-toy exterior, however, is a true working terrier of gameiness and adventure. Born to hunt mice and other underground rodents, the Vesties are surprisingly strong and strict. The completely white double coat is hard to touch, not soft and fluffy.
Vigilant and proactive, the Westies exhibit signs of a plucky and self-sufficient ratting terrier: they need no pampering, will chase anything that moves, and their independence can make training a challenge. But, thanks to his loyalty and deep intelligence, the Westies will be well trained with time and patience.
Long ago the nobles, landlords and poor peasants of the British Isles faced the same problem: infection of rodents who looted grain stocks and spread disease. The solution was the development of a vast array of terriers called EarthDogs, which specializes in finding and sending mice.
It is believed that Scottish terriers — including the Westy, Cairn, Sky, Scottish, and Dandy Dinmont terriers — are all branches of the same family tree. The precursors of Vesti’s precursors are, in the poetic terms of a historian, “”wrapped within the mist of the Scottish hills””.
The breed we know today as the West Highland White Terrier comes into historical focus in the 1700s, when the Malcolm clan began breeding small white destroyers on their property called Poltaloch. She was reared and maintained there for over 100 years before her appearance on the Dog Show. It is possible that the lineage of Malcolm Dogs dates back to the time of King James I, who asked for some “”earth-dogs”” from Argilshire. The breed was sometimes referred to as the Poltalloch Terrier; An alternate name was Rosaneth Terrier, named for another Scottish estate where early breeding was done.
By 1896, when the breed was first featured on the Scottish Dog Show, it was known as the West Highland White Terrier, referring to the northwestern part of Scotland, where the Westies earned their fame. The Westies were first shown on the AKC show in 1906. Entertaining, adventurous and portable, the Vesti has been a popular Companion Dog in the US for over a hundred years. Jussie Couture and Black and White Scotch Whiskey are two brands that have used Vesti’s delightful image to attract customers.
The West Highland White Terrier is a small, sporty, well-balanced hardy-looking terrier, exhibiting good showmanship with no small amount of self-esteem, solidly built, deep in the chest and back ribs , Muscular legs with a straight back and powerful HQ, and exhibiting a great combination of strength and activity in marked degrees. The coat is about two long, white in color, hard, with a soft undercoat. The dog should be neatly rendered, trimmed to blend into the long coat on the back and sides, the short neck and shoulder coat. Considerable hair is left around the head to act as a frame to generate a distinctive vesty expression for the face.
The gestation period in lasts for 60-64 days The primary period of the reproductive cycle of the female is called Proestrus and goes on for around 9 days. During this time the females begin to draw in males. The subsequent part is the Estrus when the bitch is receptive to the male. It goes on for around 3 to 11 days. The third part is the Diestrus. Usually, it happens around day 14. In this period the bitch’s discharge changes for distinctive red and reaching its end. The vulva gets back to average, and she will no longer allow mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time span between heat periods ordinarily keeps going around a half year. The litter size ranges between 6 to 8 puppies at a time’
To show Westy his best, it is necessary to be prepared regularly. Separating (or breaking) old, dead hair is the traditional method of caring for a terrier coat, and this is the grooming method that should be used if you are interested in showing your dog. Pet owners often cut their dogs’ coats for cleanliness. Most people look for a professional groomer who will help maintain that beautiful vesty look. Usually the groom’s visit every 4 to 6 weeks will work fine. It is important to brush and comb daily. Because the coat of the vest is hard, frequent bathing can do more harm than good.
Smart, confident, adaptable, and endlessly entertaining in play, the adorable Vesti has captivated owners for over 300 years. Like all terriers, the Westies were restricted to working alone. This terrier can make independence training a challenge, but thanks to his deep intelligence, the Westies take patient, consistent lessons that are kept upbeat and interesting. Despite their size, vesties are strong, crap dogs that require little pampering.
The Westies love to cry and play, and they enjoy a nice walk. Since by nature they will run behind anything that moves, the breed does best in a fenced area or on a leash. With their intelligence, energy and do-it-yourself attitude, the Westies excel in a variety of canine sports and activities, including obedience, rally and agility. True to the original intent of the breed, they have a tendency to land and are superstars at Earth events.
The West Highland White Terrier should perform well on high quality dog food, whether it is commercially manufactured or prepared at home with the supervision and approval of your vet. Any diet should be appropriate for the age of the dog (puppy, adult, or senior). Some dogs are at risk of being overweight, so watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Treatment training can be an important aid, but giving too much can lead to obesity. Know which human foods are safe for dogs and which are not. Contact your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean, fresh water must be available at all times.
West Highland white terriers are usually healthy dogs, and responsible breeders check their stock for health conditions such as heart disease and patellar luxury. Vesti’s teeth should be brushed frequently using toothpaste formulated for dogs. Regular visits to the vet for checkups and parasite control help the dog ensure a longer, healthier life.
Recommended health tests from the National Breed Club: