Top 7 List - Scottish Dog Breeds

Top 7 List - Scottish Dog Breeds

Author WDF Staff


Scotland is a beautiful green country with absolutely stunning lakes and hills. They are known for their whiskey, kilts, and historic castles. However, our favorite thing about Scotland is their dog breeds.

Scottish dog breeds come in all shapes and sizes, and Scots have bred some of the smartest, best working breeds in the world. We love their lovable characters and intelligence. One of the Scottish dog breeds is the Border Collie, which is the most intelligent dog breed in the world. Check out the most famous Scottish dog breeds;

1. Border Collie

Let’s start this list with the breed we already mentioned - the Border Collie. This is known as the smartest dog breed in the world. That is absolutely true, and one Border even holds a Guinness world record for learning more than 1.000 words. Border Collies are sheepdogs, and if you ever get the chance, see how these dogs herd a flock. We promise you it is something you will not easily forget.


Border Collies are active dogs that love spending time with their owners. These dogs are highly active. They will not do well in inactive families that have no time to work with them. Borders need an incredible amount of physical and mental activity. Luckily, they are very easy to work with. Border Collies excel in dog sports like agility, obedience, or rally.

2. Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever is a Scottish dog breed, a fact that not many owners and lovers know. They were initially bred as gundogs, and many Goldens still keep their hunting jobs. They have a “soft jaw,” which means they are best at retrieving prey without damaging it. In addition, their thick, double coat keeps them insulated from cold water and weather, which is helpful since they are usually used for waterfowl hunting.


Golden Retrievers are the most popular family dog breed in the US for a decade. Their lovable, playful, affectionate character makes them easy to handle, and they are fantastic with children. Their endless patience and kindness make Golden Retrievers ideal choices for first-time owners.

3. Shetland Sheepdog

The Shetland Sheepdog, or Sheltie, is a small working breed known for their amazingly luscious coats. They have thick double coats, whose main task is to shield these dogs from cold Scottish winds. These relatively small sheepdogs are incredibly smart, and that’s is one of their most popular characteristics.

shetland sheepdog

Shetland Sheepdogs are intelligent, friendly (even with strangers), and will get along with everyone. These dogs make great workers and family pets. However, one thing they will need is activity. They are not as active as Border Collies, but they are still fairly active. Luckily, if you take them out for some playtime, they will not object to having some downtime for the next few days.

4. Scottish Deerhound

One of the most impressive dog breeds in the world, not only in Scotland, is the Scottish Deerhound. These magnificent giant dogs are astonishing. They are among the largest of hounds and have a royal history. These dogs were on the brink of extinction because ownership was allowed only to nobles and royals. If a commoner hurt one of these dogs, lords were permitted to execute or imprison them.

Scottish Deerhound

These dogs were used for stag hunting. Only a giant dog could be able to hunt the wild Scottish stag. These are big deers, and it took a special dog to pursue them. Modern Scottish Deerhounds are one of the most impressive Scottish dog breeds, but they are not popular. They need plenty of room to move, and keeping such a huge dog is not cheap.

5. Collie

There are two Collie varieties - the Rough and the Smooth Collie. The Rough Collie is known as “Lassie,” but both varieties share their characters and intelligence. These are one of the best herding dogs in the world. Their intelligence allowed them to work with a shepherd and independently, making them very desirable. Plus, the stunningly soft coat of the Rough Collie makes them great dog show participants.


Modern Collies are mostly family pets since the role of dogs significantly changed in the past 50 years. Despite the job loss of working dogs, the Collie successfully shifted and adapted exceptionally well to their new role as an intelligent and active family pet. They are great with kids and have plenty of energy that makes allow them to keep up with the toddler pace of playing.

6. Bloodhound

The Bloodhound is known for its extraordinary sense of smell. These dogs have more scent receptors than any other dog breed, and that’s why Bloodhounds are the most effective search and rescue dogs. Their original purpose was to hunt wild boars and deer. These dogs tracked prey and cornered it until hunters caught up.


The exact origin of the Bloodhound is actually in Belgium, but it was bred in Scotland from the 13th century. These dogs are great family pets, but they need to be walked on a leash because they are easily distracted by different scents.

7. West Highland White Terrier

The West Highland White Terrier, or Westie, is a popular little companion Terrier with a charming character and disposition. These little friendly dogs were initially bred as vermin controllers. They were entrusted with keeping the Scottish farms rat-free. They still have a hunting instinct, so don’t be surprised if they don’t get along with other small pets.


Westies make great family pets. They are friendly, affectionate, and incredibly sweet. They love nothing more than cuddling and playing with their owners and other dogs in the park. If you get a Westie, you can be sure you will have an intelligent, funny companion that is always ready for action.

World Dog Finder team

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