The 7 Brightest Scottish Small Dog Breeds


Scotland has a rich collection of dog breeds, each with its distinctive origin. Among these, the small-sized Scottish dogs hold a special place, captivating hearts with endearing personalities. They exhibit a unique blend of agility and intelligence, reflecting Scotland’s rich culture. Here’s a list of some of these delightful companions and a few fascinating facts about them.

Cairn Terrier

Natalia Kovel/Getty

Distinguished by their shaggy fur and bushy eyebrows, Cairn Terriers exude an alert and lively demeanor. They are fearless and possess a keen sense of smell, making them adept at flushing out rodents and other vermin from rugged terrains. Often displaying a curious and adventurous nature, the Cairns’ brilliance and independent streak can make them hard to train.

Scottish Terrier


The Scottish Terrier is known for its impressive appearance and spirited personality. The Scots initially bred these dogs to hunt vermin like rats and mice on farms and in households. Scottish Terrier’s compact, muscular build, keen hunting instinct, and intelligence made them excellent hunters and loyal companions. Despite their miniature stature, they are independent, aggressive, and assertive personalities.

West Highland White Terrier


The West Highland White Terrier, or Westie, is easily recognizable with its distinctive white fur and perky ears. Beneath its charming exterior lies confidence and tenacity, often displayed in boldness. Once bred for hunting small games, the Westie’s West Highland White Terrier’s compact size and fearless demeanor make it an excellent watchdog.

Shetland Sheepdog

Nora Cute Sheltie/Getty

The Shetland Sheepdog, celebrated for its intelligence, agility, and loyalty, excels in various roles, including herding, agility, obedience, and therapy work. It enjoys mental stimulation and performs well in obedience training, often mastering complex commands. With a striking double coat with weather-resistant outer fur and a soft, insulating undercoat, it is well-suited for harsh weather conditions.

Skye Terrier


The Skye Terrier is a petite Scottish breed distinguished by its long, flowing coat. Coming from the Isle of Skye in Scotland, these dogs are fearless and sturdy. Their ears, set high on the head, add to their endearing appearance. While they can be reserved with strangers, they are devoted and protective of their loved ones.

Dandie Dinmont Terrier

Sonya Kate Wilson/Getty

These small-sized Scottish terriers are named after a character in Sir Walter Scott’s novel Guy Mannering. They have a long body, short legs, and a distinctive topknot of hair on their heads. The expressive eyes and velvety ears add to their fascinating appeal. Although they retain their instincts as avid hunters, Dandies are affectionate and loyal to their families.

Border Terrier

Sue Thatcher/Getty

The Border Terrier is a sturdy, medium-sized dog with a wiry coat and an endearing expression. Originating from the border of Scotland and England, these playful dogs love outdoor activities and make great companions for active individuals or families. Border Terriers are also intelligent and trainable, although they may sometimes be stubborn.


Leave a Comment