Cairn Terrier

Hardy little terrier with a fox-like expression!

Country of Origin: Scotland

Dog Group: Terrier dog breeds

Origin of Name: The Cairn Terrier is one of the oldest of the terrier breeds, originating in the Scottish Highlands and recognized as one of Scotland’s earliest working dogs. It is used for hunting and burrowing prey among the cairns.


A bit low

Monthly keeping cost







Tendency to Bark:

Very Less

Life span: 12 to 15 years

Availability: Easy to get

About Cairn terrier:
The Cairn Terrier today is a modern attempt to preserve the old-time working terrier of the Isle of Skye, where they were used to flush rodents, otters, foxes, badgers and other vermin from rocks, cliffs and ledges on the wild shores of their misty isle.

Modern-day Cairn Terriers remain true to their heritage: they are short-legged, hardy, versatile, active and game. Much like the character “Toto” in The Wizard of Oz, Cairn Terriers are adventurous, alert, playful, loving and wonderful companions for adults and children. This cheerful breed is highly intelligent, and most Cairn Terriers have a stubborn streak. Their fearless tenacity can lead them into trouble if their owners are irresponsible.

The Cairn Terrier was developed more than 200 years ago on the Isle of Skye, where Captain Martin MacLeod is credited with developing one of the oldest strains of the breed.

All terrier breeds in Scotland were originally classified as Scotch Terriers. In 1873, a new system was implemented and Scotch Terriers were separated into two classes: Dandie Dinmont Terriers and Skye Terriers.

The first Cairn Terriers were imported to the United States by Mrs. Henry F. Price and Mrs. Byron Rodgers in 1913.

Visits to Groomer-Medium



Tolerance to heat- Basks in it

Tolerance to cold- Loves snow

Exercise Requirement-Lots

Under Coat-Yes

Colour- Brindle, Black, Cream, Red, Grey, Wheaten

Coat Type- Harsh outer coat and soft, close furry

Hair Length-Flowing

Hair Density-Dense

Cairns are generally healthy, but like all breeds, they’re prone to certain health conditions. Not all Cairns will get any or all of these diseases, but it’s important to be aware of them if you’re considering this breed.

Craniomandibular Osteopathy


Globoid Cell Leukodystrophy


Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease

Patellar Luxation

Secondary Glaucoma

Portosystemic Liver Shunt

Most Cairn Terriers are exactly like Toto loyal to their family, curious and brave. They are excellent companions for families of all shapes and sizes and can even be useful vermin exterminators on farms. Though they are good family dogs, small children and Cairn Terriers are not a good mix. This breed doesn’t have a lot of patience and has been known to bite.

Training & Intelligence
The Cairn is intelligent and curious. Training won’t require too much attention and effort, though it won’t be easier than other breeds. Expect results to come gradually. They must be trained early on to understand who is in charge of the house, and that the leaders mean what they say.

Litter Size- 2 to 10 puppies (approximately)

Complication in Breeding-No

Cairn terrier are healthy and sturdy breed . Generally a dog takes around 18 months to reach his or her full height and structure. It is advisable to breed your dogs after at least two years of age. If you are a first timer at breeding then taking a vets help.

Cairn Terrier Profile


Loves kids


Easy to train

Litter Size

2 to 10 puppies (Approx.)


Easy to groom
Regular grooming require



Veterinarian Visits


Cairn Terrier Image Gallery

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