Skye terrier - Origin, Characteristics and Behavior

Skye terrier: find out what this animal is like, its physical characteristics, character, behavior, etc. There's no denying it, the Skye terrier is an attention-grabbing dog....

Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!

There's no denying it, the Skye terrier is a dog that commands attention. Short on leg, with an elongated body and long, luxuriant coat, this dog is one of the rarest terriers, but it is also one of the most elegant. Its long ears covered with a long, straight and hard coat, are the most notable characteristic of this breed. In the past, these dogs were used to hunt burrowing animals, but today this practice has fallen into disuse and Skye terriers, due to their low need for physical activity, have become ideal pets for small apartments. .In addition, these dogs are excellent companions for the elderly, as they need a lot of company and cannot be left alone for long periods of time, otherwise they can become aggressive or end up suffering from separation anxiety.

If you want to adopt a Skye terrier and you want to know everything about it, don't miss this breed sheet from PlanèteAnimal in which we give you all the information that will allow you to know everything about these dogs!


  • Europe
  • United Kingdom

FCI Nomenclature

  • Group III

Physical Characteristics

  • Lying


  • Little


  • 15-35

Adult Weight

  • 10-25

Life expectancy

  • 12-14

Recommended physical activity

  • Low


  • Very loyal
  • Quiet

Ideal for

  • Apartment
  • House
  • The hunt
  • Elderly people

Recommended climate

  • Temperate

Hair type

  • Long
  • Smooth
  • Hard

Origin of the Skye terrier

This breed is one of the oldest of all terrier breeds and dogs of this type have been described as early as the 16th century.Bred to hunt burrowing animals, the Skye terrier is, along with the Afghan hound, one of the most beautiful and elegant hunting dogs in existence. The breed's name comes from its place of origin, the Isle of Skye, off the coast of Scotland.

Due to Queen Victoria's affection for these dogs, in 1840 the breed gained popularity among the aristocracy of the United Kingdom. This popularity has not stood the test of time, however, and the breed is now one of the least popular.

Characteristics of the Skye terrier

The ideal height at the withers for males is 25 to 26 centimeters. The ideal length for males, from the tip of the nose to the tip of the tail, is 103 centimeters. Females are slightly smaller, but maintain the same proportions.

The FCI breed standard does not indicate an ideal weight, however, the Skye terrier usually weighs 11 kilograms and males are slightly heavier than females.The body of this dog is low and elongated. According to the breed standard, it should be twice as long as it is tall. The deep chest and length of the body could correspond to the measurements of a large dog, and these two characteristics contrast nicely with the short but muscular legs of the Skye terrier.

The head is powerful, long and moderately broad. The strong, symmetrical muzzle ends in a black nose. The medium sized eyes are brown, preferably dark, and very expressive. The ears can be erect or pendulous, but in both cases they are covered with the breed's characteristic profuse long hair.

The Skye terrier's tail is feathered, which gives it an elegant appearance in harmony with the rest of the body. When the dog is active, its tail is raised, but never higher than the horizontal.

The coat of the Skye terrier is perhaps one of its most remarkable characteristics and the one that gives the breed its greatest elegance.Its coat is made up of a double coat consisting of a short, dense, soft, woolly undercoat and a long, harsh, straight, flat, flattened, curl-free outer coat. It can be black, gray, fawn or cream, with dark markings. It can also be any solid color, as long as it has undertones of the same color, the undercoat is lighter, and the ears and nose are black.

Character of Skye terrier

" The elegant and graceful appearance of these dogs hides their true tenacious and courageous character. Skye terriers are very loyal and affectionate with their family, but they tend to be most affectionate with just one person, which is why they are considered single guardian dogs."

It is very important to start the socialization of these dogs very early because, in adulthood, they tend to be reserved with strangers and can even be aggressive.With other dogs and some pets, they tend to be aggressive. However, if well socialized, the Skye terrier can easily accept unfamiliar dogs as well as strangers, but, don't dream, it will never be the friendliest dog with other dogs.

On the other hand, although they tend to be reserved around strangers, these dogs need a lot of company and just seeing them once in a while is not enough. They don't handle long periods of loneliness well and need to be with their family as much as possible.

These dogs can be great pets for the elderly or for young people who don't have children. However, guardians must have plenty of time to devote to their pet or, failing that, be able to take their Skye terrier to work so that he does not spend the day alone. These dogs are not good pets for families with children, as they tend to bite when disturbed or when they feel threatened.

Caring for a Skye terrier

The coat of these terriers does not really require special care, but it does require more time than that of other breeds. It is necessary to brush the coat three or four times a week to avoid tangles and to reduce its amount of hair. These dogs should only be washed when they are really dirty.

Skye terriers don't need a lot of exercise and one or two moderate walks a day can be enough to keep them in good shape. What they really need is company.

Due to their small size and reduced exercise needs, these dogs can live well in a small apartment. Also, unlike other terriers, their calm nature makes them ideal for city living. They can also benefit from a garden where they can play and run freely, but they must live indoors with the rest of the family.

Training and education of the Skye terrier

In addition to good socialization, it must also be well trained. It is ideal to follow an obedience program for dogs that focuses on the essential aspects for a pet and not just on competition exercises. Training must be done with positive methods, because these dogs are very sensitive to punishment and do not support, like any other animal, traditional methods based on correcting bad behavior through punishment.

Common canine behavior problems seen in this breed include aggression (when dogs are not properly socialized) and separation anxiety. Both of these issues are related to improper treatment by both breeder and owner, and can be resolved through dog training, socialization, and proper behavior management.

Skye terrier he alth

This breed has some characteristic he alth issues. Some of these problems are linked to the particular morphology of the Skye terrier, while others are common to several breeds of dogs. Common breed problems include:

  • Spinal problems
  • Bone deformities of the limbs and arthritis
  • Cancer
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Allergies
  • Dysfunctions of the thyroid gland.

Even if he does not suffer from any disease, it is advisable to go to the vet every 6 months to prevent and detect any he alth problem, and to respect the Skye terrier's vaccination schedule.

Pictures of Skye terrier

Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!