West Highland White Terrier Information & Dog Breed Facts

Collection of all the general dog breed info about West Highland White Terrier so you can get to know the breed more.

Group Hunting Dogs
Popularity Rank42
Reviews1
User Ratings
Compare the West Highland White Terrier With Other Dogs
Select at least one dog breed to make the comparsion.
 
 
West Highland White Terrier dog profile picture
OriginScotland flagScotland
Other Names
What other names does the West Highland White Terrier have?
Roseneath TerrierWestieWestyWhite Roseneath TerrierPoltalloch Terrier
Breed Type
What type of dog breed is it?
Purebred

Photo Gallery of the West Highland White Terrier Breed

West Highland White Terrier Price and Availability

Price
How much does the West Highland White Terrier puppy cost? What is the price range of this puppy? What is the average price of this dog in the United States? Is this puppy expensive? How much should I pay for it?
$900-$1200
If you choose to purchase the West Highland White Terrier, you should know that the mentioned amount of money is an average of the collected data from breeders’ sites and puppy finder places. If you have a West Highland White Terrier for sale, please advertise it on a reliable website to make sure the West Highland White Terrier gets to a happy place.
Availability
How easy is it to get a West Highland White Terrier?
Very frequent: The West Highland White Terrier is quite easy to get. There is a risk of overbreeding, as it is an extremely popular breed.

Inbreeding is common because of its popularity. A new study suggests that inbreeding contributes to the incidence of disease and health problems.

So be careful, buy from a trustworthy place or kennel and seek the help of an experienced person, a professional, to make the right decision.

West Highland White Terrier Size

Size
What size is this breed? How big is this dog?
Small
Weight
How much does the West Highland White Terrier weigh? West Highland White Terrier weight:
Male: 15-22 pounds (7-10 kg), Female: 13-16 pounds (6-7 kg)
Average Weight
What is the average weight of the West Highland White Terrier? West Highland White Terrier average weight:
Male: 18.5 pounds (8.5 kg), Female: 14.5 pounds (6.5 kg)
Height
How tall is the West Highland White Terrier? West Highland White Terrier height:
Male: 10-12 inches (25-30 cm), Female: 9-11 inches (23-28 cm)
Average Height
What is the average height of this fido? West Highland White Terrier average height:
Male: 11 inches (27.5 cm), Female: 10 inches (25.5 cm)

West Highland White Terrier Grooming, Hair and Care

Coat / Hair Types
What type of coat does the West Highland White Terrier have? What does this canine coat/fur look like?
Dense
Colors
What color is the breed's coat? What color is a proper West Highland White Terrier's coat?
White
Grooming
How to groom the West Highland White Terrier and how often?
Advanced: The West Highland White Terrier requires a lot of grooming. Cutting the dog's hair by a professional groomer can be helpful sometimes.

Regular brushed dog's coat is less likely to shed. Ears and eyes should be cleaned often to avoid infections.

Don't skip the seasonal flea treatment too. Occasional dog nail trimming and dog baths are important.

Check the local pet store for dog grooming supplies and find the best dog shampoo to keep its coat healthy and to give your West Highland White Terrier a pleasant experience of a dog bath.

If you don't have the time, skill, or money to take care of your West Highland White Terrier, search for the best dog groomer or clipping service in your area and book an appointment.

Maybe you're lucky to have a dog boarding service that includes grooming or walk-in dog bath places nearby.
Shedding Level
How much do West Highland White Terrier dogs shed? How to control, reduce and prevent the shedding of the Roseneath Terrier?
West Highland White Terriers shed none to minimal. Having a puppy from this breed you don't have to be afraid of your couch or car being covered by dog hair. West Highland White Terrier dogs could be the best choice if you don't tolerate dog hair.
Bath Time / Bathing Frequency
How often does the West Highland White Terrier need a bath? How often should bathe this dog? Can I bathe my West Highland White Terrier every day?
4-6 weeks
Average. Experts recommended at least every 4-6 weeks for this family pup. According to a study, 56% of pet parents don’t bathe their dogs as frequently as they should, and 60% use the sniff test when deciding when it’s bath time. Bathing your dog is beneficial to them in more ways than just one. It’s also a good time to look for unusual scratches, bumps, fleas, and other irregularities. When their hair is wet and flat against their body, these details are more visible.

West Highland White Terrier Personality / Temperament

Temperament
What kind of personality does the West Highland White Terrier have? What characteristics or traits does the breed have?
AffectionateCourageousFriendlyIndependentAlertIntelligent
Intelligent Rank
How smart is the West Highland White Terrier? Are they intelligent?
Average: It takes patience to teach this breed any tricks or commands, but the effort is worth it. They understand and remember new commands after an average of 25-40 repetitions.
Trainability
Are West Highland White Terrier dogs easy to train? Do they go well on dog training?
West Highland White Terriers are easy to train. They find out the association between commands and actions quite quickly.
Playfulness
How playful is this breed?
The West Highland White Terrier is a highly playful breed. Excited barking and sometimes nipping will alert you to play.
Sensitivity Level
How sensitive are they? West Highland White Terrier sensitivity:
They are a little bit more sensitive than other dog breeds. Soft punishment affects them emotionally. West Highland White Terriers don't tolerate irregular daily routine, noisy household, and frequent guest visits really well. They are receptive to their owner's emotions and make wonderful family companions.
Affection Level
How affectionate are they? Are they affectionate?
Average to High: West Highland White Terriers are highly affectionate dogs. They like being involved in the family's life. This breed isn't considered an aloof dog.
Social Needs
How much social interaction does the Roseneath Terrier need? West Highland White Terrier social needs:
West Highland White Terriers are a social breed. They enjoy being around people or other animals. This breed doesn't tolerate being left alone.
Barking
Do West Highland White Terrier dogs bark a lot? Are they barkers/noisy? Why does my Roseneath Terrier bark?
A lot: West Highland White Terrier is a particularly loud breed. They often enjoy barking and howling loudly. If you want a quiet dog, not the best choice. The main triggers for barking are fear, attention, alarm, boredom, greeting, separation anxiety, compulsive barking, and defense.
Watchdog Ability
Is West Highland White Terrier good as a watchdog? Are they alert at night?
West Highland White Terriers are average watchdogs. If they sense something different, they will alert you, but the observation isn't considered their main job.
Guarding Behavior / Territorial
Do West Highland White Terrier dogs have an aggressive behavior to protect their home/house/territory? Do they have guarding instincts?
West Highland White Terriers are extremely protective guard dogs. This breed doesn't hesitate to protect its territory so the West Highland White Terrier can be a good choice if you want an excellent guard dog. Keep calm and the West Highland White Terrier will take care of unwanted people or animals.
Biting Potential
Do West Highland White Terrier bite humans? How likely are you to get bitten from the Roseneath Terrier? What are the odds of getting bitten by a West Highland White Terrier? Why do dog bites happen?

Low 🔽

The West Highland White Terrier has a low chance of biting somebody. Top reasons for dog bite: protection, pain, excitement, herding instinct, being provoked. (Data based on the available online bite statistics.)
Bite Force
Does the West Highland White Terrier has a hard bite?

Between 100 and 200 PSI 🔽

West Highland White Terrier bite force: Weak. Dogs that have the weakest bite force below 200 PSI. However, it is important to note that despite the fact that their bite force is considered the “weakest” it can still be very dangerous as all dog bites are. They are usually not aggressive and very friendly towards children and other animals.
Mouthiness
How much mouthing/nipping/play biting does the West Highland White Terrier do?
West Highland White Terriers have a lower than average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people. It's a common habit during puppyhood, not aggressive behavior. These "bites" don't hurt, but West Highland White Terriers need to be taught for a good attitude.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
How likely is the West Highland White Terrier to run away? Does this breed explore or wander a lot? Does West Highland White Terrier roam?
West Highland White Terriers have average wanderlust potential. Sometimes they like to explore the world and they might escape once or twice, but usually, they prefer staying safely at home. Safer to teach them how to get back to you on command.
Prey Drive
Do this canine have a strong prey drive? Does West Highland White Terrier have high prey drive?
West Highland White Terriers have a higher impulse to chase and catch something than other dog breeds. Cats or any other small animals might be in danger. It's a natural instinct, doesn't necessarily mean that West Highland White Terriers are aggressive. Better to keep this breed on a leash.
Apartment Friendly
Is West Highland White Terrier good as an apartment dog? Can they live in a flat?
It is not the best choice if you want to keep them indoors, however, with careful exercise and several walks a day, they will tolerate the indoor environment, so it is possible to keep West Highland White Terrier indoors.
Adaptability
Are they adaptable and easy-going?
West Highland White Terriers adapt well to lifestyle changes and different living environments. They don't mind moving from one place to another with their owner.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Can you leave this breed home alone?
West Highland White Terriers do best when a family member is at home during the day or if their workplace is dog-friendly so they can take the dog at work.

West Highland White Terrier Good With

Stranger Friendly
Are they aggressive or friendly towards/with strangers? West Highland White Terrier temperament with other people:
West Highland White Terriers are stranger-friendly dogs.
Pet Friendly
Are they pet-friendly dogs? How well do West Highland White Terrier dogs get along with other pets? Are West Highland White Terrier dogs good with pets? What is this canine temperament with other pets?
West Highland White Terriers are generally with other pets.
Child Friendly
Are West Highland White Terrier dogs kid-friendly? Are they good with young children? West Highland White Terrier temperament with children:
West Highland White Terriers are kid-friendly dogs. This breed is a good choice if you have children.
Cat Friendly
How well do West Highland White Terrier dogs get along with cats? Are they good with kittens? What is this fido's temperament with cats? Can they be good with cats?
West Highland White Terriers are average friendly towards cats.
Dog Friendly
Is West Highland White Terrier good with other dogs? Are they dog-friendly dogs? How well do West Highland White Terrier dogs get along with other dogs? What is this canine temperament with other dogs?
West Highland White Terriers are dog-friendly dogs. If you want more dogs in your family or you'd like to join dog meetups, the West Highland White Terrier can be a great choice.
Good For First Time Owners
Is West Highland White Terrier breed good for first-time owners? Do they make a good dog for novice owners?
Yes
West Highland White Terriers are good for novice owners, due to their easy-going personality.
Office Friendly
Are West Highland White Terriers good office dogs? Do West Highland White Terriers make good office friendly dogs? Can West Highland White Terriers be office dogs?
No
West Highland White Terrier is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
Are they senior citizens friendly dogs? How well do West Highland White Terrier dogs get along with the elderly people? What is the Roseneath Terrier temperament with senior people? Are West Highland White Terrier dogs good for elderly owners?
West Highland White Terriers are usually recommended for elderly people.

West Highland White Terrier Health

Health Issues
Is it a healthy or unhealthy breed? Do West Highland White Terrier dogs have health problems or genetic diseases?
Very healthy dog breed. The West Highland White Terrier rarely meets with the veterinarian.
Health Problems
What genetic/health problems does the West Highland White Terrier breed have? What are the health issues and concerns of the West Highland White Terrier breed? Most common health risks of West Highland White Terrier:
Atopic DermatitisCataractsCraniomandibular OsteopathyGloboid Cell LeukodystrophyHyperplastic DermatosisInflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)Legg-perthes DiseasePatellar LuxationPulmonary FibrosisWhite Dog Shaker Syndrome
Veterinarian Visits
How often does the West Highland White Terrier breed need to go to the vet? How often should you take your dog to the vet? How often should the West Highland White Terrier see the vet?
Rare
The West Highland White Terrier should have a complete physical check-up at least every 12-18 months (but preferably once per year). If your dog shows any symptoms, call your veterinarian.
Life Expectancy
How long do West Highland White Terrier dogs live? What is the average lifespan of this breed? How old can a West Highland White Terrier be? What is the age limit of the West Highland White Terrier? How many years can the oldest West Highland White Terrier live?
12-16 years
The average lifespan of West Highland White Terrier: 14 years
Hypoallergenic
Is the West Highland White Terrier breed hypoallergenic?
Yes
West Highland White Terriers do well with allergy sufferers by causing fewer allergic reaction. However there are no 100% hypoallergenic dogs in the world, there are a variety of breeds that are considered to reduce or minimize the possibility of an allergic response. Coat type isn't necessarily relevant, because most people are allergic to dander (flakes on the dog's skin) or saliva, not actually to dog hair.
Energy Level
How much energy does the West Highland White Terrier have? What is the activity level of the West Highland White Terrier?
West Highland White Terriers have a higher energy level than other dog breeds. If you want a dog for snuggling on the couch, this breed isn't the perfect choice for you.
Activity Requirement / Exercise Need
How much activity does this dog need? How much exercise do West Highland White Terrier dogs require per day?
West Highland White Terriers need quite a lot of exercise. Daily walks should be on schedule. If you live an active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Sleeping Need
How much sleep does this fido need?
West Highland White Terriers are quite energetic dogs and they don't spend too much time with sleeping. If you live an active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Average daily food consumption
How much food does the West Highland White Terrier need? How often should I feed my canine? What dog products should I buy?
1/2 to 1.5 cups of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two meals.
Weight Gain Potential / Prone to Obesity
How easy to gain weight for this dog? West Highland White Terrier risk for obesity:
Average to High: If you don't pay attention to the West Highland White Terrier's weight, he can easily gain weight. More than one daily walk should be on schedule. To make your dog happy and fit, feed him with quality dry dog food and live an active life together. Try to find the happy medium between exercise and feeding. If you notice any weight gain, consult your veterinarian and make a diet plan. Reduce unhealthy food and snacks, and measure the West Highland White Terrier's weight regularly.
Weather and Climate
Which weather condition is preferred by this dog? Can they tolerate hot or cold weather and climate?
Prefers average to cold weather conditions
The West Highland White Terrier can adapt to well to cold weather conditions, some dogs even can be a good mountain dog.
Stinkiness
How stinky is this dog? Why does it smell bad and how to get rid of the smell?

Low 🔽

The West Highland White Terrier has a low chance of bad smell. Top reasons for dog stinkiness: infection of bad tooth/ear/skin folds, gas attacks.
Drooling Tendency
Does the West Highland White Terrier drool?
The West Highland White Terrier is a perfect example of a very low drooling tendency. If you're disgusted by slobber spots on your clothes, the West Highland White Terrier could be a perfect choice for you. Drooling is the unintentional saliva flowing outside of the mouth. It can be completely normal or a sign of a health problem. Certain dog breeds drool minimum compared to others, just like the West Highland White Terrier. If you notice any change in your dog's drooling habit, you should contact a vet as soon as possible.

West Highland White Terrier As a Working Dog

Service Dog
Are they good as service dogs? Can West Highland White Terrier be a guide dog? Are they used as seeing-eye dogs?

Not really

This breed generally not used as a service dog. A service dog is a term used in the USA to refer to any type of assistance dog specifically trained to help people who have disabilities, such as visual impairment, hearing impairments, mental disorders, seizures, mobility impairment, and diabetes. Service dogs are protected under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). West Highland White Terrier is not the best breed for service purposes.
Therapy Dog
Are they good as therapy dogs? Can West Highland White Terrier be a therapy dog? Are they good anxiety dogs? Can a West Highland White Terrier be an emotional support animal?

Not really

This breed generally not used as a therapy dog. A therapy dog is a dog that might be trained to provide affection, comfort, and love to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with anxiety disorders or autism. West Highland White Terrier is not the best breed for therapeutic purposes.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog
Are they good as detection dogs? Can West Highland White Terrier be a sniffer dog?

Not really

They are not typically employed for this type of work, but there may be exceptional cases. A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones. West Highland White Terrier is not the best breed for detection purposes.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR)
Are they good as SAR dogs? Can West Highland White Terrier be a search and rescue dog?

Not really

This dog breed is not typically used as a search and rescue dog. The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and locating missing people. The West Highland White Terrier is not the best breed for SAR purposes.
Boat and Sailor Dog
Are they good as boat dogs? Can West Highland White Terrier be a boat dog?

Not really

West Highland White Terrier breed usually doesn't like being on a boat.

Boat dogs were typically bred for their strength, stamina, and water resistance, as they were often required to perform tasks such as pulling in fishing nets, and jumping into the water to retrieve ropes or lines, or helping to move cargo.

Sailor dog is a type of dog that was bred to accompany sailors on their voyages. They were typically used for three purposes: as a working dog, a watchdog, and as a companion. A boat dog is a term used to describe a type of dog that was traditionally bred and used as a working dog on boats.

Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog
Are they good as cart pulling dogs? Can West Highland White Terrier be a drafting dog?

Not really

A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling. Dogs bred for this work have strong builds and qualities that are needed, strength and determination. West Highland White Terrier is not the best breed for drafting purposes.
Fighting Dog / Military Dog
Where West Highland White Terrier dogs used as fighting / military dogs in history?

Not really

In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

West Highland White Terrier Reproducibility

Gestation Length
How long does this dog's pregnancy last? How long does this dog pregnant? How long does it take to have puppies?

60-64 days

Reproductive cycle of the female West Highland White Terrier: The first period called Proestrus lasts for about 9 days. During this time the females start to attract males. You can notice by swelling vulva and bloody discharge. The second part is the Estrus when the female is receptive for the male. It lasts for about 3 to 11 days. The sign of the proestrus part is the soft and enlarged vulva. The discharge decreases and lightens in color. The third part is the Diestrus. Normally, it occurs around day 14. In this period the female’s discharge changes for vivid red and coming to its end. The vulva returns to average, and she will no longer permit mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time frame between heat periods normally lasts about six months.
Litter Frequency

Once a year.

More frequent breeding is not healthy. It is very important not to buy a dog from a puppy mill, where the needs of the pups and their mothers are ignored. It's an inhumane high-volume dog breeding facility, where puppies born several times a year.
Litter Size
How many puppies can the West Highland White Terrier have? What is the average litter size of this fido?
2-5 puppies

West Highland White Terrier Recognition

AKC Group
Is West Highland White Terrier recognized by the American Kennel Club?
Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1908 as a Terrier breed.
FCI Group
Is West Highland White Terrier recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)?
Recognized by FCI in the Terriers group, in the Small sized Terriers section.
Breed Recognition
What kennel clubs and organizations recognize or register the West Highland White Terrier breed?
American Canine RegistryAmerican Kennel ClubAmerica's Pet RegistryCanadian Kennel ClubDog Registry of America Inc.Federation Cynologique InternationaleKennel Club of Great BritainNorth American Purebred Registry, Inc.American Canine Association, Inc.Australian National Kennel CouncilContinental Kennel ClubNational Kennel ClubNew Zealand Kennel ClubUnited Kennel ClubClub Espanol De Terriers

West Highland White Terrier Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Trainability: West Highland White Terriers are easy to train.
  • Health Issues: Very healthy dog breed.
  • Hypoallergenic: West Highland White Terriers do well with allergy sufferers by causing fewer allergic reaction.
  • Shedding Level: West Highland White Terriers shed none to minimal.
  • Drooling Tendency: The West Highland White Terrier is a perfect example of a very low drooling tendency.
  • Stinkiness: The West Highland White Terrier has a low chance of bad smell.
  • Mouthiness: West Highland White Terriers have a lower than average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people.
  • Adaptability: West Highland White Terriers adapt well to lifestyle changes and different living environments.
  • Child Friendly: West Highland White Terriers are kid-friendly dogs.
  • Dog Friendly: West Highland White Terriers are dog-friendly dogs.
  • Senior Citizens Friendly: West Highland White Terriers are usually recommended for elderly people.
  • Good For First Time Owners: West Highland White Terriers are good for novice owners, due to their easy-going personality.
Cons
  • Grooming: Advanced: The West Highland White Terrier requires a lot of grooming.
  • Weight Gain Potential / Prone to Obesity: Average to High: If you don't pay attention to the West Highland White Terrier's weight, he can easily gain weight.
  • Tolerates Being Left Alone: West Highland White Terriers do best when a family member is at home during the day or if their workplace is dog-friendly so they can take the dog at work.
  • Office Friendly: West Highland White Terrier is not the best dog breed for office environment.

West Highland White Terrier History

The West Highland White Terrier, or in its more common name, the Westie can trace its origins back to Scottish Highlands to the 16th century. Alongside other Terrier breeds, including the Skye, the Dandie Dinmont, the Scottish, and the Cairn, the Westie was initially also developed in order to tackle the problem of the massive rodent population.

The West Highland White Terrier was used by farmers and Scottish landowners in order to hunt badgers, foxes, weasels, martens, rats, and other types of rodents around the farms. Thanks to their small size, the dogs could fit into burrows and other small places during their pursuit. Moreover, because of their robust physique, they could easily hunt down these animals individually, and also in packs. Some of the landowners intended to perfect their terriers, by breeding the dogs for the most desirable capabilities and behavioral traits, that satisfied the owners’ requirements. The creation of the West Highland White Terrier is attributed to the Clan MacCallum, who was located on the West coast of Scotland. A member of the family, named Edward Donald MacCallum, the 16th Laird of Poltalloch, is considered to be the first original breeder of the breed. At the beginning of the 1800s, he used his own Skye Terrier, and the Poltalloch Terrier, which is presumed to be the precursor of the Westie. According to a family legend, a Laird once accidentally shot one of his darker-coated dogs, because he mistook it for the prey he was chasing. That is the reason why, Edward Donald MacCallum started to breed for a whiter coated breed, so this mistake will never be made again.

In the 17th century, other white-coated terrier breeds were bred in the area, including the Pittenweem Terrier by Dr. Americ Edwin Flaxman, the Roseneath Terrier by the Dukes of Argyll, and the white-colored Aberdeen (Scottish) Terrier from the east coast. Presumably, these breeds also contributed to the development of the Westie, but there are no records backing this theory up. Due to the contribution of these other Terrier breeds, the West Highland White Terrier was known under a lot of names throughout the centuries, like the Poltalloch Terrier and the Roseneath Terrier. By 1896, the West Highland White Terrier was shown in the first Scottish dog show, and the dogs’ popularity became to increase.

The breed became completely established between 1904 and 1909 when it was given the name West Highland White Terrier. The breed gained recognition from the Kennel Club of the United Kingdom in 1907, and from the AKC (American Kennel Club) a year later, in 1908. Nowadays the West Highland White Terrier is a cheerful, intelligent, and fun companion animal and family pet. The breed is also considered to be the most popular among the Terrier breeds.

Latest West Highland White Terrier Compares

Rate The West Highland White Terrier Breed

West Highland White Terrier Comments, Reviews and Questions

  • Anja

    Oct 19, 2019, 7:00:31 PM: