Dandies are incredibly loyal, charming, and great ambassadors. They will greet all your guests, ignoring no-one, but then return to you to sit by your feet. They are tactile, and both male and females love to be cuddled in your arms like a baby. They will follow you all over the house, but are quiet and peaceful dogs to live with. When they bark, (they are good watchdogs) they have a deep loud bark. They are large enough not to be fragile, but although sturdy, are not too large. They are portable. They have the most expressive eyes, and look you right in the eye. Right into your soul.
Dandies are serene and quiet in the house, but full of energy should you want to go for a walk or run or play Frisbee or soccer with them. They are the gentlemen of the Terrier group. They will not start a fight with another dog, but neither will they back down and cower.
Dandies do not shed. This does not mean that they have a single continually growing hair, such as found in the Poodle or Bichon Frise. So you avoid the costly high maintenance of that type of coat. In Dandies, any dead hair remains in the coat (and doesn’t end up on your clothes or rugs) until you brush and comb it out. That being said, although they are suitable for people who are allergic to dogs, remember doctors do not recommend that chronic asthmatics have any type of dog, whether it sheds or not.
Dandies are long lived, hardy and healthy. Most Dandies live a long life, usually 12 or more years. Some live between 14 – 16 years. As a rare breed, they have not succumbed to the genetic problems found in breeds that are overbred or bred commercially. It is rare to find a Dandie with health problems. However, no breed of dog is immune from illness, particularly cancer in this day and age. This is a condition that can affect all breeds of dogs.
Dandies are incredibly patient with children. They love babies and love to play with kids. However, we do not recommend parents of 2 -4 year olds consider a puppy. The puppy will be gentle with the child, but children between 2 – 4 years of age have little understanding that a puppy can be hurt if dropped or fallen on. Also, if one obtains a puppy at this age, the child will probably be in its most vulnerable teenage years when they lose their best friend - which is a very traumatic event for a teenager. Waiting until the child is, say, 6 years of age means that the child will probably be out of the home and in University when they lose their first dog.
Dandies should be thoroughly brushed and combed every other day. Twice a year (once if one is less inclined) their dead hair is removed by “stripping” the coat, in other words, by pulling out all the dead hair. Dandies should never be shaved at a poodle parlour. The new coat only grows in once the dead hair is removed. Clipping or shaving ruins the Dandie coat. However, the Dandie Dinmont Terrier Club of Canada has regular grooming clinics and qualified members who can strip out the dead hair for the new Dandie owner, or show them how to do it themselves.
A fenced backyard is all a Dandie requires. They will run around (outside and in) and get the exercise they need. They do enjoy a brisk walk, but this is unnecessary for their exercise needs.
All purebred, Canadian Kennel Club registered breeds will come with CKC registration papers, and microchipping. These are additional expenses that breeders of mongrels and hybrids (the so-called “designer” breeds) do not incur. Mongrels, mixed breeds and designer breeds are bred for profit by commercial breeders. Most purebreds are bred by committed breeders who are interested in the perpetuation of quality in their chosen breed. Any responsible breeder will not let their puppies leave the home until all the veterinary protocols (worming, shots and microchipping) are completed. Thus most Dandie puppies will have about $250 invested in veterinary protocols before they leave their breeder.
Dandies are not bred by profit minded, commercial breeders. Hobby breeders merely try to recoup their expenses. Dandies are thus priced approximately the same as most small Terriers.
Expect to pay in the range of $1200 - $1600 for household pets and more, of course, for show quality Dandies.
Hardy, healthy, loving, loyal, long lived, non shedding, charming, portable, the Dandie Dinmont is the ideal house pet. But they are not for everyone, and not always appropriate in a home with several other dogs. Dandies like to be number one in the household. They don’t always get along with dogs of the same sex. We do not recommend purchasing a male Dandie if you already own a male dog, or (to a lesser degree) a female Dandie if you already own a female dog. Their loyalty to you can develop into jealousy, if vying for their owner’s individual attention.