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Norwich Bulletin - 10/17/2010

The Silky Terrier

The Silky Terrier often gets mistaken for the smaller, lighter Yorkshire Terriers. This breed was developed in Australia about a hundred years ago by crossing the Yorkie with an Australian Terrier. The result was a heavier, hardier dog with a glossy, straight coat that negates the necessity of hand stripping the normally rough terrier type coat.

In fact, their coat should be silky a characteristic that makes them very easy to take care of and maintain. They have no odor and shed very little. You can probably get away with a good brushing once or twice a week.

Most people assume that a Toy dog is very delicate. That is so far from the truth when it comes to a Silky Terrier. They are very active and athletic and they have the typical terrier attitude. Basically their owners need to look out for their safety because they have the personality of a Rottweiler and have no idea how small they are! They think nothing of challenging a Great Dane if need be, and they are confident they will come out on the winning side.

They also need exercise. Without it, and if given the chance, they will bolt off to find new adventures. So if you do not have a fenced in yard, you will need to keep a good eye on your Silky. They are high spirited and endlessly inquisitive to what is going on in and out of their yard. They have retained their ratter instincts so you need to know they will go for that squirrel or snake in the back yard.

But despite their high energy, they are lap dogs with their people. Silkys love and crave human affection and companionship. If you ignore your Silky, you need to know that they are sensitive pups that will be devastated. They want to know you are happy and pleased with them at all times. They hate being left alone for long periods of time so if you are a single person who works ten hours a day and really want a Silky, then you need to consider doggy day care for your pup.

The Silky has very few health problems. They are about nine to ten inches high and weigh from eight to ten pounds. Their life expectancy is upwards of fifteen years, with proper care and diet. They do have a tendency to have luxating patellas (slipping kneecaps) but that is an affliction that most of the toy breeds can have. In later life they can have progressive retinal atrophy.

Silky Terriers make a perfect companion for people who want a lot of dog in a small package. Silkys get along great with children and they are good with other pets when properly socialized as puppies.

Remember that Silkys are not pillow dogs, they are not delicate dogs. They are just dogs. If you live in an apartment or on a country estate and you like small dogs, this might be the perfect family dog for you!

Check out www.geocities.com/silkyterrierclubofamerica for more information on the breed and remember to only go to a reputable breeder when it comes to buying a puppy, even if you have to wait. Please stay out of pet stores that sell puppies. You can also contact http://silkyrescue.tripod.com for information on adopting a rescue Silky.

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