The Skye Terrier is a small-sized dog breed that is mostly a family pet and a companion. These dogs were originally bred for hunting purposes and their main prey were foxes, badgers, and otters. The Skye Terrier was named after the isle of Skye in Scotland, the place where they were first bred and came to life.
These dogs tend to be shy but are generally friendly towards everyone and everything so they make excellent family dogs. This is a very adaptable breed that will fit in great no matter the living conditions. The only thing they require is your attention and love.
9-10 in (23-25 cm)
30-45 lb (13-21 kg)
The Skye Terrier is a fairly old breed that is just over 4 centuries old. Their original purpose was to hunt animals that dig burrows. These sturdy and brave dogs used to go into animal burrows and drag the prey out. If the hunters weren’t around, the Skye Terrier used to kill the animal itself.
The first-ever record about the Skye Terrier was found in a book called “Of Old English Dogges” from 1570. In that book, Johaness Caius describes small terrier dogs that are fearless hunters. Those dogs had long such hair that no part of their body could be seen. At that time, the modern-day Skye Terrier was known by different names and some of them were Fancy Skye Terrier, Silky Skye Terrier, Glasgow Terrier, and most popular, the Clydesdale Terrier.
These dogs were quite popular in the old days and even Queen Victoria had a couple of Skyes. After the Queen got these dogs, they became extremely popular among British royals and nobles.
Dog Breed Characteristics
The Skye Terrier is a small-sized terrier breed that can have either pricked or flat ears. These dogs are twice as long as they are tall. They have a sturdy and strong built. The Skye Terrier is fearless and brave, but not aggressive.
They have a thick double coat that has a long, outer, protective coat and a soft, short, and wooly undercoat. The outer coat should never be curly. Their standard allows several colors and those are black, various shades of grey, fawn, and cream.
These dogs are an old breed that is fully registered and recognized by the biggest cynology union in the world - the FCI. The FCI has a full standard in place for these dogs and it places them in Group 3 (Terriers), Section 2 (Small-sized Terriers).
According to the FCI standard, male Skye Terriers should measure a height of 10-10,2 in (25-26 cm) and should have a length of 41 in (105 cm). Females should be slightly smaller yet keep the same proportions.
The Skye Terrier was registered by the FCI on the 20th of October 1954.
The first Skye Terrier was imported to the United States of America in 1887 and the American Kennel Club, as the governing cynology institution for the USA, has accepted and registered this breed. They too have a full breed standard in place for these dogs and according to their standard, the male Skye Terrier should measure a height of 10 in (25 cm) while the female Skye Terrier should measure 9 in (23 cm). Their average weight is 35-45 lbs (16-21 kg) for male dogs and females should be slightly lighter.
The Skye Terrier was registered by the AKC in 1887.
Skye Terriers have a straight outercoat and a soft and wooly undercoat. Their coat requires weekly brushing to keep the dog looking good.
Skye Terrier coat colors:
- Light gray
- Silver platinum
Brush their teeth at least three times a week to prevent tartar buildup and infections. Make sure you use products that are made especially for dogs as human products could potentially harm them. Trim their nails if they don’t wear them down naturally. A good indication is if you can hear them clicking on the floor while they walk. Clean their ears and check for signs of redness or infections. Use a cotton cloth and never insert anything in their ear canal. You can always check with your Vet about the products you should use and the proper technique.
Skye Terriers doesn’t require much daily exercise to be happy. Short daily walks will be enough to keep him happy and healthy. These dogs love to participate in canine sports such as agility, and obedience.
Skye Terrier temperament
These days, the Skye Terrier is mostly a family dog that loves nothing more than to be included in all family activities. They are devoted and loyal to their family and they hate to be neglected or excluded. If that happens, these dogs can become problematic and destructive.
They are generally friendly towards everyone they are properly introduced to. They have a natural distrust and suspicion towards strangers and that is what makes them excellent watchdogs. When meeting a Skye Terrier, you will need to take your time and wait for the dog to make the first move. They do not like being mistreated and people that are pushy and approach them too quickly.
Skye Terrier and children
These dogs usually make a better fit with older children. They don’t like being mistreated and should have a playmate that knows what it can or cannot do to a dog. Socialization can greatly improve Skye’s social skills. Make sure you teach your children how to properly approach and handle a dog and in that way prevent any possible injuries to the kids or the dog.
The Skye Terrier is a terrier after all so they are not the most trustworthy around other pets like guinea pigs, cats, ferrets, or gerbil. They were bred to control vermin and hunt smaller animals and no matter how well they are socialized, they might never be tolerable of other small pets.
Like any other dog breed, the Skye Terrier can potentially develop health problems. If you are buying a dog, make sure the breeder can provide you with the necessary health tests and guarantees. Always ask to see the results of tests from the puppy’s parents. The health problem these dogs are associated with is:
- Orthopedic problems
The Skye Terrier is generally considered a very healthy breed that can live 12-14 years.
When getting a dog, the most important thing is to get it from a responsible and reputable Skye Terrier breeder. These dogs are energetic and protective, and getting a poorly bred dog can have catastrophic results. Responsible breeders will breed dogs that don’t only look good but have great characters as well. You must find a good Skye Terrier breeder that can help you learn about this breed and make an informed choice about getting a dog with these characteristics.
If you are unsure whether this is the breed for you, check out this FREE GUIDE that will help you decide which dog breed is right for you.
When you bring your new puppy home start with the training and socialization immediately. By doing so, you will end up with a well-behaved dog whom you can trust. Provide him with enough daily exercise for him to be happy. With this dog, you must be firm and you must be an alpha for him to listen to you. If you devote your time and energy to this dog, you can be sure that you will end up with a companion for life.
World Dog Finder team