Miniature Scottish terriers, also known as Scotties, are loyal, intelligent, alert, sensitive, protective, personable, courageous and independent. They are excellent family dogs that need a moderate amount of exercise, but because they are independent, obedience training needs to start early. They make excellent watch dogs because they are aloof to strangers. Scotties have retained their strong hunting instincts and are not very friendly towards other dogs.
Scotties stand at a height of 9 to 11 inches, weigh between 18 lbs and 22 lbs and live to be between 12 and 15 years old. The Scottie's coat is wiry with a soft undercoat and ranges in color from white to brindle to black. The Scottie's classic profile is a result of the fur on its legs and under body being long and shaggy. Because of this long shaggy fur, Scotties need regular grooming with a brush and comb and an occasional trim.
Scotties are an ancient and hardy hunting breed. Some health problems commonly appear in Scotties, include Cushing's disease, cerebellar abiotrophy, hypothyroidism, epilepsy, craniomandibular osteopathy, liver shunts, Scottie cramp, patellar luxation, eye problems including juvenile cataracts and von Willebrand's disease, which is a serious blood disorder. Reputable breeders screen out Scotties that carry any genetic disorders.