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Show an uninformed dog lover a photo of a Westie, and they'd identify a Westie as a white Scottie. This mistake is perfectly understandable, since they do have similar physical attributes and both originated from Scotland.
There are a lot of postulated theories about these similarities. However, one valid assumption is that centuries ago, a generic terrier was once a native to Scotland.
Over the years, different breeds came about from interbreeding, locations, the conditions and human requirements, which resulted in the different breeds. So when you compare the modern Westie to its' two closest relatives, the Scottie and the Cairn, you'll see more similarities than differences.
Here are just some of the differences between a Scottie & Westie.
A Westie is usually between 12-15 inches tall terrier with a straight and erect tail, about 5 - 6 inches. This breed has a two inch white double coat, while the outer coat is hard straight hair the under coat is soft.
They possess a black button nose and pointed erect ears. Their deep chests and muscular limbs give the westies the agility and power that was required in the original line of work for their breed. They were originally developed to hunt for vermin in the mountains of West Scotland.
The shorter Scottish Terrier is about at 10-11 inches tall. The coat of a typical Scottie is hard, wiry, weather-resistant and a thick-set, cobby body which is hung between short, heavy legs. Unlike the westie, they come in different colors; black, brown and bindle.
Another difference is that their noses are larger compared to the westie, although sometimes, you'll come across a Scottie that has a button like nose. The Scottie's ears and tail are pointy and erect.
How does the American Kennel Club (AKC) describe the standard gait of both breeds? The Westie's movement is free, straight and easy, and it's a distinctive gait, not stilted, but powerful, with reach and drive. Their overall ability to move is usually best evaluated from the side, and topline remains level.
The gait of the Scottish Terrier isn't the square trot or walk desirable in the long-legged breeds. Their forelegs incline slightly inward because of the deep broad forechest. Movement should be free, agile and coordinated with a powerful drive from the rear and good reach in front. When the dog is in motion, the back should remain firm and level.
You won't make a mistake of choosing a pet from either breed, for they are popular not only for their looks but also because they're loving, intelligent, affectionate and loyal dogs.
(Disclaimer: Any information contained in this site relating to various medical, health and fitness conditions of Westies or other animals and their treatments is for informational purposes only and is not meant to be a substitute for the advice provided by your own veterinarian. You should not use the information contained herein for diagnosing the health of any animal. You should always consult and check with your own vet or veterinarian.)
I do hope that you have found the article of use to you.
Good health and happiness
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