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Cairn Origins


bradl
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I agree with hheldorfer. Quite interesting. I, too, have never heard of a couple of these breeds. Lola was happy to see her breed on the chart. :)

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Fascinating. I'm impressed that all this can be documented(?) / figured out.

   Just curious - maybe I'm reading the chart wrong: The Yorkshire terrier appears on the right-hand side, headed "Larger Type". Aren't standard, full-size Yorkies only 15 lbs. at most, which would put them in the "Small" category?

   Norwich (and Norfolk?) Terriers are not on the chart, so I assume they descend from a different line/strain and possibly a different locale, yet there is no denying that cairns and Norwiches have virtually the same face! What's up with that? It gets curiouser and curiouser...

     Any thoughts on this?

Edited by sanford
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I suspect that most breed histories contain a very high proportion of "after the fact" storytelling and wishful thinking, and on top of that wikipedia is not all that authoritative, although it at least gives you some sense of the lay of the land on many topics, even if some of the points are disputed (for any given topic). All that disclaimer dispensed with … https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norfolk_Terrier

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In the 1880s, British sportsmen developed a working terrier of East Anglia in eastern England. The Norwich Terrier and later the drop-eared variety now known as the Norfolk Terrier, were believed to have been developed by crossing local terrier-like dogs, small, short-legged Irish Terrier breeds and the small red terriers used by the Gypsy ratters ofNorfolk (the county in which Norwich the city exists).

They were first called the Cantab Terrier when they became fashionable for students to keep in their rooms at Cambridge University in England.[4] Later, they were called the Trumpington Terrier, after Trumpington Street where the breed was further developed at a livery stable.[5] Then, just prior to World War I, a prominent Irish horse rider Frank Jones sold quantities of the short-legged terriers to the USA, so there they were calledJones Terriers.[6] It was Jones who designated the terriers were from Norwich.[6]

In 1932, the Norwich was granted acceptance into the English Kennel Club and the first written standard was created. The American Kennel Club registered the first Norwich Terrier in 1936. In 1964, The Kennel Club reclassified the drop-ear variety as it its own breed, the Norfolk Terrier, and the prick-eared variety retained the name Norwich Terrier. The American Kennel Club and Canadian Kennel Club both recognized the division of the Norwich Terrier breed in 1979. The Norfolk Terrier was recognized by the United Kennel Club in 1979. After many generations, these two breeds have developed as two distinct breeds both in physical looks and in temperament. Of note, there is literature that suggests that the Norfolk and Norwich were always two distinct breeds and the original mistake was classifying them as one.[citation needed]

Yorkies could presumably be bred down in size from  wherever their start.  I also tend to doubt that whatever terriers were common enough in Yorkshire to be identified as such at the time bore much resemblance to the wee things we know as yorkies today. For example the equivalent wikipedia page for Yorkshire Terriers asserts:

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In the early days of the breed, "almost anything in the shape of a Terrier having a long coat with blue on the body and fawn or silver coloured head and legs, with tail docked and ears trimmed, was received and admired as a Yorkshire Terrier".[5] But in the late 1860s, a popular Paisley type Yorkshire Terrier show dog named Huddersfield Ben, owned by a woman living in Yorkshire, Mary Ann Foster, was seen at dog shows throughout Great Britain, and defined the breed type for the Yorkshire Terrier.[10]

 

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I wonder how the Scottie got its bulky body and long face?

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On November 23, 2015 at 8:56:23 PM, Terrier lover said:

I wonder how the Scottie got its bulky body and long face?

Me too... I had the impression that Scotties (and Westies) were descended from cairns. I can see the similarities in cairns and Westies, but Scotties, as you point out, with their long faces, etc., have always looked like an entirely unrelated breed to me, but course, the standard way Scotties are groomed exaggerates the differences.

Edited by sanford

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It would be interesting running  DNA tests on some of these terrier breeds and see what came up! I suspect they are all sharing a lot of the same DNA.

Until one has loved an animal, a part of  one's soul remains unawakened.  - Anatole France

Adventures with Sam &Rosie

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

This was a really interesting read, even if it is a really old book.  I had wondered why Nikki is such an odd Cairn. He's a hefty thirty pounds with a long back like a corgi, short thick legs, little rabbit feet, a short long haired tail, long fringe on his ears that blends into his mane (cheek hair), and a definite stop between his muzzle and eyes.  His fur is silky and shiny and very fine, like a yorkie, but it has some brindled hairs mixed in. Some individual guard hairs are zebra striped: black tip, white, black, white, black, and then a strawberry blonde base. Other guard hairs are solid red, solid wheaten, or solid black. He has a Cairn face and a Cairn personality, and he was not altered until he turned six years old, so I just assumed his food or his testosterone shaped him differently from other cairns.  But even without the extra weight he's put on, he's still twice the size of any other cairn I've seen.  

Odd fact: our Westie that we had thirteen years before our Cairn was built similarly.  25 pounds, with a long back and short legs. He had the long hair, too, but his fur was coarser than Nikki's. I wonder if Nikki has a Skye or Clydesdale terrier in his family history somewhere along the lines. 

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To me, Cairns and Westies look nearly identical, aside from color and ear fringe, and the fact that their outer coat (at least from the ones I've petted) seems to be softer than the Cairn's rougher coat. Lola never develops those long, wispy hairs on her ears, even if she is not groomed for a while, but that just might be her.  Oh - one other slight difference. The eyes of the Cairns I've seen seem to be more hazel in color, while the Westies seem to have more chocolate brown eyes. Again, just my experience.

In fact, I was under the impression that they were at one time the same exact dogs, until they separated the white ones and renamed them.

 

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Ah, one more comment. Regarding the size of Yorkies, I've noticed they seem to be bigger (in general) in England than the ones I've seen in the States. I've often asked people what breed their dog is and been told a Yorkie, and thought to myself, 'Wow, that's a big Yorkie.'

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On December 11, 2015 at 7:52 PM, hheldorfer said:

...How do dogs like the Skye Terrier, with hair covering their eyes, see anything?  

I think many of us have the same question. Don't know about Skye Terriers, but I came across info re Old English Sheepdogs. They can't see well and even bump into things because the hair blocks their vision and they have to repeatedly shake their heads in order to move the hair to one side. Compassionate owners tie the head hair in a topknot. Once again, us humans meddled with nature and selectively bred the sheepdogs to have coats much fuller and longer than was natural, or meant to be.

We just can't seem to keep our hands off anything!

P.S. Re Autumn and Lola's question concerning the size of Yorkies... Here in the city I get the chance to see a large variety of breeds and although tiny  Yorkies seem to predominate, they come in a variety of sizes as well, including very large ones, almost as big as cairns and I must admit, I like that size the best!

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57 minutes ago, sanford said:

P.S. Re Autumn and Lola's question concerning the size of Yorkies... Here in the city I get the chance to see a large variety of breeds and although tiny  Yorkies seem to predominate, they come in a variety of sizes as well, including very large ones, almost as big as cairns and I must admit, I like that size the best!

Are the tiny ones bigger than a teacup poodle?:P

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Good one, heldorfer! ?

I thought about the "Halloween Killer Teacup Poodle Attack" when I posted my comments re tiny Yorkies, but I decided.to just let that fiasco rest!

Note: Autumn and Lola - Your husband is probably smart to steer clear of the little Yorkies... Ruffy and I can tell you - he should be afraid - very afraid!?

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