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I haven't really been posting very much lately I just broke my ankle pretty badly on valentines day and just had surgery to repair it {like a week ago}. I have been away from my dogs for several weeks trying to recover at my mother's house some what before I go home. When I do go home I know I will have some difficulties with the dogs and the stairs. But I have been reading post on here while I have been healing. Reading some of the posts and new topics on here I was reminded of this article written by CP volunteer and it might help some other cairn owners.

here is the link http://www.cairnresc...neral/index.htm

TOTO: The Other Side of the Story

Written by Michele Stadnick So, "The Wizard of Oz" is your favorite movie, you just LOVE Toto, and have always wanted a dog just like him? A dog who's small, cute, lovable, and doesn't shed all over your couch? You've done your research and learned that Cairn Terriers are (take your pick):

  • Good with children
  • Friendly
  • Loving family dogs
  • Adaptable to living in small apartments as well as large homes
Well, YES and NO.
Probably NO ONE ever told you that Cairns will almost INVARIABLY:
  • Chase squirrels
  • Chase bunnies
  • Chase bugs
  • Chase bikes
  • Chase paper fluttering down the street
  • Chase anything that moves
  • Chase things that aren't moving, just to GET them moving so they'll have something to chase
  • Bark at cars
  • Bark at bikes
  • Bark at birds
  • Bark at trikes
  • Bark at trucks
  • Bark at the phone
  • Bark at fireworks
  • Bark at thunder
  • Bark at the doorbell
  • Bark at the doorbell on TV
  • Bark to hear themselves bark
  • Bark just to get your goat -- or your attention
  • Or both
  • Bark sometimes just cause it feels so darn GREAT
  • Dig up that mouse hole
  • Dig up your tulips
  • Dig up your roses
  • Dig up your lawn
  • Dig under your fence
  • Dig under your shed
  • Dig up your linoleum
  • Dig up your carpeting
  • Nip at people's feet if you haven't redirected their intense prey drive
  • Nip at your hands too, if not trained properly
  • Try to control their universe and everything in it -- INCLUDING YOU
  • Will succeed at this unless YOU intervene. And even then, they'll try again. And again. And again and again and again and again.
  • Lunge at other dogs on leash
  • Lunge at people, unless trained not to
  • Lunge cause it feels good and they're in a hurry to get where they're going, and you're the only thing holding them back from experiencing the next exciting adventure around the corner or around the world.
  • Bolt out any open door in the blink of an eye
  • And won't return until they're good and ready.
  • Sometimes not even then
  • Refuse to come -- unless they want to
  • Refuse to sit -- unless they want to
  • Refuse to stay -- unless they're bored silly, and if so, that's the BEST time to move around to stir up the action anyway
  • Refuse to stop barking -- unless there's something in it for them...like a fabulous treat
  • Refuse to do what you want at the PRECISE moment that it's most important that they do...like when you're trying to show off how obedient and well-trained they are (which is, of course, a grand delusion on your part).

Nor, it seems, has anyone told you:

  • A Cairn can never, ever, ever be trusted off-leash, EVER.
  • Not even for a second. Regardless of how well-trained you have deluded yourself into believing he is
  • That all the dogs you've had before and have trained so well don't matter...if they weren't Cairns.
  • Because Cairns are different.
  • Very different
  • That they're generally NOT the best breed for a home with small children.
  • That one bears repeating: Cairns are generally NOT the best breed for a home with small children.
  • That Cairns WILL shed a little (or a lot) if you don't groom them properly.
  • That they're relatively resistant to housebreaking (don't expect them to be housebroken in a week, or even a month)!
  • And even when you think they're housebroken, if they've got something else on their agenda at the moment, they're likely to conveniently "forget."
  • That they are affectionate -- on their terms, not yours.
  • That they are stubborn and hardheaded, not to mention incredibly independent
  • That obedience training is a necessity, not a luxury. And that it's just the FIRST step in the process.
  • That you should read the previous sentence again, and forget everything you think you know. If you haven't owned a Cairn, it doesn't apply.
  • That they were bred to hunt and kill, and their intense prey drive can NEVER be trained out of them. Toto may not have KILLED those flying monkeys, but that's only because Toto KNEW they were fakes. Otherwise, they'd have been dead, not merely outwitted.
What they SHOULD have told you is:
  • They're wonderful for THE RIGHT OWNER
  • They're smart -- PROBABLY SMARTER THAN YOU
  • They're sweet -- WHEN THEY WANT TO BE
  • They're good with GOOD, WELL-BEHAVED CHILDREN WHO HAVE GOOD, RESPONSIBLE PARENTS. And if they haven't had a bad experience previously with ill-behaved kids. Otherwise, it's a recipe for disaster.
  • They're strong
  • They're hearty
  • They're brave
  • They're relentless
  • They're devious
  • They're insightful
  • They're indomitable
  • They're energetic beyond description
  • They're intelligent beyond belief
  • They're the BEST dog you'll ever own
  • BUT...they just may be the WORST dog you can imagine.


Oh, and by the way, Toto was actually a GIRL!


Dogs' lives are too short. Their only fault, really." - Carlotta Monterey O'Neill

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Oh this is TOO FUNNY! It should be on the main page of the forum under "WARNING"! :D

I'm so sorry about your ankle. I hope you are feeling much better very soon!

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Sorry to hear about your injury and hope you get better real soon so you can get back to your babies. It must be difficult being away from them.

This article is hilarious! Get better real soon.

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I've never seen this article before...it's fantastic!!!

Hope you are feeling better soon~I'm going to be away from Tanner tonight, for just one night & I already am hating the thought of going that long w/o seeing him, so I can't imagine being away from the dogs as long as you have.

Becky & Tanner
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This is a great article. I was fully prepared--well, mostly prepared ;)--for a Cairn when I got Benny and even more prepared when I got Kimmy, but I bet a lot of people aren't. Sometimes I'm glad Cairns aren't more popular because then there would be a lot more abandoned Cairns, which would be sad. Whenever people ask me about my dogs or tell me they were thinking of getting a Cairn, I make sure to tell them that they aren't your "typical" dog. This article touches on many of the things I warn people about. Sometimes I feel like a Debbie Downer when I warn people, but it really should be done.

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Love the article and sooooooooo! true. But I love this breed and will never own any other. Nena is a joy to have around, even if you always have to be on guard. I agree with an open door and the cairn goes running. at least mine does, so we open doors around here very carefully. The only thing thats gets her to come is a treat or a frizbee. She love them both.

We smile and laugh everyday because of her.

cairn terriers leave pawprints on our lives
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haha love this. i put it on my blog with the most innocent picture of paisley i could find! :thumbsup:

**Ila and Paisley**
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Buffy should have come with a label that includes everything on the list . . . but it was all worth it! :)

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unfortunately for me I don't think I will be able to walk for a few months. I am already getting antsy and it's only been a week since the surgery {about 3 weeks since the break}. I go to the doctor tomorrow so I am sure I will find out more.

I am defintely missing my dogs. I have gotten to see Angel several times. But only seen Scotty once since my break. I am REALLY missing him. My husband says he just waits by the door for me. :crybaby:

I love this article. I think alot of people see Toto and expect a well behaved terrier who loves dogs and kids. That isn't exactly true. Cairns can be like that but not all are. Alot of people new to terriers don't always understand terrier behavior. So I thought I would share it.


Dogs' lives are too short. Their only fault, really." - Carlotta Monterey O'Neill

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I've been looking for this article in old forum posts and couldn't find it, so thank you so much for posting it. It is so true. When people say how adorable Kenna is, I say yes, but she's a devil in disguise, don't let her fool you. I try not to discourage people from getting Cairns, but giving them a realistic picture of life with a Cairn usually does the trick.

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I wish you a speedy recovery! In January '09 I spent 5 days in the hospital and while Tuk-tuk had the kids and my husband, he said Tuk just didn't seem himself. When I got home Tuk was asleep in the living room and when he saw me...his expression was priceless. I remember it to this day like it was yesterday. He was so happy to see me and didn't let me out of his sight for two weeks. Of course I felt the same and it sure did make me feel better to have him watching over me. So funny for all the stubbornness and not listening that the article talks about, there sure is a strong bond between a Cairn and their person...and it's definately mutual. I hope your reunited with your furbabies soon.

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