|Height:||9 – 12 inches|
|Weight:||12 – 25 pounds|
|Lifespan:||12 – 15 years|
|Suitable for:||First-time dog owners; those looking for a tiny, low-maintenance dog|
|Temperament:||Calm, quiet, loving, devoted, obedient, aloof|
While it may not be as well-known as other Terriers, the Cesky Terrier is a truly special little dog. These animals boast many of the biggest selling points that other small dogs can offer, with few of the downsides that usually accompany them.
This is a fairly new breed, dating back to only 1948 when a Czech breeder named Frantisek Horak brought them into existence by crossing a Sealyham Terrier and a Scottish Terrier, and then breeding the offsprings. They were originally developed to hunt rodents, as Horak needed a dog small enough to navigate dense forests without getting stuck while in pursuit of their prey.
Not many people know about the Cesky Terrier, so if this is your introduction to the breed, the guide below should fill you in on everything you need to know.
Cesky Terrier Puppy — Before You Get One…
As you can probably imagine, given that these dogs weigh barely 10 pounds when fully grown, Cesky Terrier puppies are extremely tiny. They can fit easily into the palm of your hand, and they’re almost completely irresistible.
As a result, most people who come across Cesky Terrier puppies end up bringing one home. Unlike many other breeds, though, making such a rash decision with a Cesky Terrier rarely comes back to haunt you. These dogs are low-maintenance, so few people end up feeling like they made a disastrous choice to adopt one.
3 Little-Known Facts About Cesky Terriers
1. They’re considered one of the six rarest breeds in the world.
There’s a reason that it’s so hard to get your hands on a Cesky Terrier puppy: There just aren’t that many of them. They’re considered one of the six rarest breeds in the world, and the AKC estimates that there are only about 600 currently living in the United States.
Part of this is because they aren’t well-known, but it’s also due in part to their small litter size. On average, Cesky Terriers have two to four puppies per litter, so it would take a long time to boost their numbers substantially.
2. Aggression was not tolerated in developing the breed.
If you’re worried about owning a dog with aggressive tendencies, the Cesky Terrier should put those fears to rest. These dogs are rarely aggressive, as that particular trait was weeded out during their development.
That’s not to say that there’s no chance that one of these dogs could turn aggressive; all dogs can turn violent if pushed too far. However, you’re much less likely to run into that particular issue with these little guys.
3. They’re natural-born diggers.
As part of their hunting duties, Cesky Terriers will dig holes in pursuit of rats and other vermin. There’s truly nowhere for their prey to hide. That’s the kind of behavior that’s impossible to turn off just because they’re not used for hunting anymore. If you’re the type of homeowner who takes immense pride in the state of their lawn, you may want to skip this breed. They’ll be more than happy to turn your backyard into “hole-y ground.”
Temperament & Intelligence of the Cesky Terrier 🧠
Unlike many dogs their size, Cesky Terriers are calm, laidback animals. The “yappy little dog” stereotype doesn’t apply to these pups.
As a result, they’re fantastic for apartment dwellers. They don’t have sizable exercise needs, so a little bit of playtime and a long walk or two should be all they need to burn off any excess energy.
They’re quiet dogs too. You shouldn’t have to deal with much barking or other vocalizations, which should go over well with the neighbors. Don’t expect them to alert you to the presence of a burglar, though.
These pups are intelligent as well. They’re easy to train and pick up new commands easily, although they do have a strong stubborn streak. As long as you socialize them early and stay consistent with the training, you shouldn’t have much in the way of behavioral problems to deal with.
All in all, Cesky Terriers provide many of the qualities you’d expect from a laidback giant breed like a Great Dane, but in a small package.
Are These Dogs Good for Families? 🏡
Cesky Terriers are excellent family pets. They’re patient with children, and they’re not big enough to knock them over accidentally. Also, they’re not prone to aggressiveness, so you shouldn’t have to worry about biting unless they’re threatened or abused.
That doesn’t mean you should leave your kids alone with them, though. Any dog can turn violent, so always supervise children with your pets. Also, these dogs don’t usually make noise, which means they don’t give much warning before snapping.
They’re loving and loyal toward their families, but they can be aloof toward strangers. Don’t expect them to run up and greet your guests, but they shouldn’t be a threat to them either.
They’re also good pets for individuals, especially older ones. They won’t make many demands on your time, and owners with mobility issues should be able to keep them without much issue. They’re the perfect starter dog for first-time owners as well.
While they can function on their own for long stretches of time, they’re at their best when around their families. Given their size and docile nature, though, they make excellent companion animals in public, and can often be made into wonderful therapy dogs.
Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets? 🐶 😽
These pups usually get along rather well with other dogs, but that’s no guarantee; you’ll still want to supervise play between the two animals at first. Also, since Cesky Terriers are laidback by nature, they may have difficulty tolerating extremely hyperactive dogs.
If they’re raised with cats and other small pets, they should get along fine with them as well; again, this breed is not prone to aggression. However, they have an extremely high prey drive, so they’ll have a hard time resisting the urge to chase after anything that runs away from them.
The good news is that due to their small stature, they’re not likely to be able to hurt anything they catch. Still, you’ll want to train them not to chase after the family gerbil.
While they’re generally welcoming toward other animals in their families, don’t expect them to roll out the red carpet for strangers. They’re not the most sociable of animals, so the dog park might not be a good place for them.
They likely won’t be aggressive — they just won’t see the need to say hi to every other dog in the place.
Things to Know When Owning a Cesky Terrier
Given this breed’s rarity, most people have no idea what to expect when bringing one home. While owning a Cesky Terrier isn’t all that different from keeping a dog of any other breed, there are a few things you should know before you get one.
Food & Diet Requirements 🦴
These dogs are small but they’re incredibly well-muscled. As a result, you should feed them a high-protein kibble, preferably one that has small bits so there’s little risk of choking.
When shopping for a kibble, look for one that uses high-quality ingredients, and avoid any that include foods like wheat, corn, soy, or animal by-products. These ingredients can be harmful to your dog, as they can cause digestive issues and are filled with empty calories.
You’re probably going to need to shell out for a premium dog food if you adopt a Cesky Terrier, as they need the kind of elite nutrition that you simply won’t find in bargain-basement brands. However, if you’re going to spend several thousand dollars just to bring one of these puppies home, you can probably afford to feed them properly.
Be careful not to overfeed your Cesky Terrier, as obesity is awful for a small dog like this. It doesn’t take much for them to pack on excess pounds, and if you’re not exercising them much, it won’t take long for the flab to start showing up.
You’ll find that it’s easier to get them to drop a few pounds by restricting their rations rather than trying to exercise it off of them. However, it’s best to sidestep the issue entirely, so practice strict portion control at feeding time, and go easy on the snacks and scraps.
Have you ever known someone who doesn’t spend much time at the gym but can get off the couch and immediately dominate whatever sport you’re playing? Cesky Terriers are like that.
These dogs don’t require a great deal of exercise to keep them from becoming destructive or depressed, but due to their intelligence and muscular physique, they’re often incredible at things like agility competitions.
If you’re not interested in pushing your Cesky Terrier to their limits, don’t worry — these dogs are more than happy to take things slow with you. A long, relaxed walk will do wonders for them, especially if they’re given the opportunity to sniff around along the way.
Another activity that these dogs love is tracking. If you can put their nose to work, it will quickly exhaust their mind as well, creating a tired dog without requiring much work on your part. One easy way to do this is to hide smelly treats around the house and let them search them out.
They’ll also be happy playing fetch or tug-of-war, so you won’t need a big backyard to tucker them out.
Cesky Terriers are fairly easy to train, as they’re incredibly smart. They should pick up on whatever you’re trying to teach them quickly, so you shouldn’t have any issue conveying the point of the exercise to them.
However, they do have a strong stubborn streak, so you may have a few moments where you have to convince them to do something that they’ve decided that they really don’t want to do. Fortunately, those moments are few and far between.
Whatever you do, don’t use negative training techniques on them, as these dogs are more likely to shut down than respond the way you like. Instead, lure them with praise or treats, rewarding them for a job well done (use praise if you can — again, we don’t want these pups becoming overweight).
If you’re struggling to properly train your dog, then you can consult a professional trainer. Cesky Terriers do best when taking orders from trusted family members, though, so try to handle everything yourself if you can.
The breed often fares well in obedience competitions, so if you’d like to put your pooch to the test, you stand a good chance of performing well.
Cesky Terriers typically have the fur on their bodies clipped close to the skin, while the hair on their legs and beard is allowed to grow longer. Unlike many other Terriers, you never want to strip their fur; instead, trim it as desired. A haircut every six weeks or so should do it.
The fur around their eyes needs special attention as well. If not trimmed regularly, it can grow into their eyes, potentially causing an infection or other issues.
In addition to clipping, you’ll also need to brush and comb them regularly — preferably every day, but weekly at a minimum.
They need to be bathed every 6-8 weeks, generally around the same time that they get clipped. You can do it more if they get visibly dirty, but don’t overdo it, as it can strip their skin and fur of important oils.
You should also brush their teeth every day if you can, and trim their nails as necessary.
Health Conditions ❤️
Overall, Cesky Terriers are a healthy breed so long as they’re properly cared for. However, that doesn’t mean that they aren’t prone to a few problems
Male vs Female
Male and female Cesky Terriers are similar in terms of both size and temperament. Females may mature a bit faster, which can make them easier to train, but the difference shouldn’t be that noticeable.
Final Thoughts: Cesky Terrier
You may have trouble tracking one down, but if you can find one (and you can afford it), a Cesky Terrier is one of the best dogs that you can bring home to your family. Laidback and low-maintenance, they’re ideal for big families, apartment dwellers, and older owners alike.
These dogs are excessively rare, but we imagine that will change as word of their wonderful traits starts to spread. There’s no better time than now to be an early adopter.
Featured Image Credit: Sevostyanova Tatyana, Shutterstock