Why a Scottie?

When I mention getting another dog, I hear “Don’t get another Scottie” from friends and family alike.

I smile because I know what they consider to be Scottie negative behaviours I consider them the things I love about the breed.

1. “They are so stubborn”

This is always the first comment. I think “Yes, they are stubborn.” But I love that about them. This is a dog that will do everything it can to get its own way. Even trying to use all of its body weight. They can outlast you. The fun is trying to figure out how to win.

2. “They are so independent”

Yes, they are. They do not need to be beside you all the time. Each of my Scotties would go to any room in the house and sleep. The only room they must be beside me in is the kitchen. They are just waiting for a crumb to fall off the cupboard.

Angus was always one to drift off into various parts of a house. When visiting my parents, Angus would disappear around 9pm. We couldn’t figure it out until we found him on the bed in the downstairs bedroom staring at himself in the mirror. In the dark, he looked like a batman silhouette. The only time Angus would insist that you accompany him was to bed. He liked to go to bed at 10pm. If I was working on the computer, he would sit beside and whine. If I ignored him, his whine would get louder and shriller. What he wanted was for me to “tuck” him in. I would have to get up, walk him to bedroom, help him on the bed (which he could easily jump up on any other time) and get him settled. I would then shut the light off and leave him be. I was surprised to find that Abby also loves to be “tucked” in. She likes to go to bed at 11pm.

3. “They are so persistent”

Yep. This is so very true. But I love it. This is a dog that will try everything to get something they want. If their ball rolls under the bookcase or sofa, they will try with all their might to get it. They will use their little legs (which don’t reach past their head) and try to get the ball even though there is no way they can reach it. Once they realize the futility of it all, they will come to you and bark. Their eyes will point to the spot where the ball is. If you don’t react fast enough the bark will get louder. They will keep this up until you respond and get that ball! Unfortunately, this usually occurs when you are really busy or have company.

4. “They have no expression”
This one puzzled me. But I figured it out. The Scotties’ eyes do not go soft and emotive like a lab. In fact, I have heard their eyes described as “stuffed moose” eyes. But they are total terrier eyes. Watchful, waiting, alert. A Scottie owner can read the expressions in their dogs eyes. They know what their dogs are feeling. I see on the web lots of pictures of guilty looking dogs. I have yet to see a guilty looking Scottie.

Scotties are one of the most interesting breeds of dogs. I don’t recommend them for everyone but do recommend them to people who love a challenge. Which I suspect is everyone reading the Scottish Terrier News.

13 thoughts on “Why a Scottie?

  1. Oh, this is sooooo true! We’ve had our Colin McDuff for 7 months now and find a new reason each day to love scotties. We have an 11 yo cairn, so we’re “terrier” people to start with. But now I only want scotties. I don’t understand the “no expression” remark either. Colin will roll on the floor and cut his beautiful eyes at me and I melt! Maybe people think they don’t have expressive ayes because of the huge eyebrows. But to me that just is the final touch God put on the scottie to make him the best.

    1. For me they are the only dog. They have silly personalities and are very loyal. Just got a new Scottie. She is the mother of one of my dogs. She is still a little skittish, but is so happy to have joined our family that now counts 5. We love Jade, Barkley, Gus, Gracie, and Maizie!

  2. Reading the above post I thought WOW…that is exactly like our Scottie…Mr. Willy (Sir William Angus McDougal O’Kelly)! My husband and I are both in our sixties, married 41 years and just recently adopted Willy. He came from a hoarding situation and was abused terribly…he came to us so fearful of everything…noise, movement and our cats (well…I’m afraid of our cats too).

    We’ve only had him about 6 months and he has really started to loosen up and doesn’t duck low every time you go to pet him. He must have either been hit or something and tries to make himself small when people pay attention to him. This behaviour though is lessening every day and he is really coming out of his shell and behaving more like a happy Scottie every day.

    He has some pretty peculiar habits, which I thought were brought about because of the abuse but after reading up about Scotties, I can see that those peculiarities are just a Scotty being a Scotty! We are so thankful that Willy came into our lives and he brightens every single day.

    My husband’s mother turned 100 in January and is housebound, but when we bring Willy over she can’t stop smiling…he is a true therapy dog. Good grief…I have certainly blathered on and on about Willy but when I get my Scottie Newsletter it just makes me want to tell everyone about our Scottie (and he is always the “star” at the dog park because in our area Scotties are seldom, if ever…seen)!!

    1. I am so happy that Willy found his way to you. He will know what love and trust are now that you are in his life.

      1. Thank you Sandra!! He is truly a joy to us and our kids and grandkids…now if only I had an automatic robot pooper scooper! We’re off to the dog park for the first time this spring and hopefully Willy will meet a few new friends and make no enemies (once other dogs see that huge head and huge mouth and huge teeth they usually decide it’s better to be friends with Willy than foes)…HA!!

  3. People normally expect your dog to go to them and make a fuss, wag their tails at them and beg for a belly rub. That is something a Scottie will rarely do, so they consider them dull or indifferent. We scottie lovers regard those characteristics as independence and a strong character. My 1 year old Fiona is a playful scottie who loves children, she is soooooo expressive, she is ALWAYS alert at whatever thing is going on around the house, always keeping that “Regal” pose. I LOVE HER SO MUCH…and I love kissing her beard, and hugging her, and she looks at me like “Oh, OK, I will bear all these displays of affection but please…I have my limits”
    She will not object being stroked by strangers, but her attitude is like, “Oh well, if you want to pet me, do it, whatever”. SCOTTIES RULE

    1. I have five scotties and they all demand attention. Barkley wants the ball and rubs, Maizie just wants rubs and our rescue baby loves hugs almost as much as she loves (wants to eat) squirrels!

  4. I have to let you know about Mic our Scotty. My husband of 38 years passed a few months ago and I didn’t realize how much a dog could miss his master. He tolerates me, the female species but really misses my husband. We have had Mic since a pup and he is only 4 years old now but has now adopted one of my sons as his replacement. He has had a malady with sores and sore feet that bleed for two years now and he is on prednisone daily now. Otherwise, his feet got so bad he couldn’t walk. I am not sure if this is a Scotty trait or not. The vet is not very informative on this either. Of course the pednisone makes him gain weight but it is an alternative for his sore feet where he doesn’t even want to go for a walk. He also makes sure that when bedtime rolls around he goes into my bedroom and I lift him onto the bed. There he stays until morning. He detests the word ‘BATH” but there are times when his feet have to be soaked. He is so much company for me and loves to go for a ride in the car when I go to the store and run errands.

    1. Hi Jeanne…I am so sorry to hear that your husband passed away and know that such a sad event is not only hard for the remaining spouse but also for beloved pets. Our Scottie…Mr. Willy…is so much like your little Mic I did have to smile through my sadness for you and your Scotty. I was the one who wanted to adopt a dog and was lucky enough to find our Willy, though my husband was less enthusiastic about adopting a dog when we are nearing retirement. Now he adores Willy (who is about the same age as your Mic) and Willy worships the ground he walks on and tolerates me. Go figure!! Willy also has had some problems with his feet though not as severe as your Mic. He was limping around quite a bit about a month ago and we thought he had injured his leg or something but the Vet told us his paws were very tender and a bit cracked (though we couldn’t even see that ourselves) and he was put on a painkiller and stopped limping a few days later. This has not happened since but as soon as we start hitting the pavement for our walks I am concerned it will return. So perhaps this IS a Scotty trait? Willy also likes to be lifted onto our bed, though I am sure it’s not because of sore feet. He just thinks that is his just due for being so wonderful! He’s quite a chunk and my back is suffering because of this but I do it anyway because he looks so pathetic when I leave him on the floor. I KNOW he can get up there even with his short legs because on several occasions when I have been busy somewhere else in our home I find him resting most comfortably on our bed. I guess we must have been put on this earth to serve our Scottish Terriers and not the other way around…HA!!

      I wish you better days a head and am sending thoughts of sympathy your way because of the great loss of your husband. It makes me happy though that you do have your Mic with you during the mourning and recovery process as he sounds like a comfort to you. Tell him Willy sends him a “Woof, woof”!! Hug…cathy

      1. Thank you so much for your insight into Scotties and your Willy sounds exactly like Mic. He does love it when the Grandkids come over for a visit and seems to perk up. They are so much more active together. Thank you for your caring thoughts. There are bad times but also still some good times. If I keep busy, it seems to help. I am so glad I have Mic. Thank you again for your caring thoughts. They do help. Hugs and Woof woof back to you and Willy. Jeanne

  5. Teddy is my 9 year old Wheat Scottie~ As I always tell my friends, “who needs a husband when you have Teddy” He will let me know when his dinner is 5 minutes late, or if I have overslept, He has his gentleman schedule and it must be upheld! He is a no muss, no fuss kind of dog, and will tolerate an occasional hug and kiss. He will not “stoop” to lowly dog behavior and would sooner die then get into the garbage or engage in a dog fight. But, just try and mess with his Mom, and he is a force to reckon with! It is a special love one has for a Scottie! They are contagious! Last night Teddy caught his first gopher! I heard a very distinct “roo, roo roo, roo” when I went outside to investigate there was Teddy with a stunned gopher lying in front of him and Ted looking up at me as to say, “well, I caught the darn thing you figure out what to do with It”. He is a champion! :)

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