The Westie is a very lively and confident dog. It cannot be influenced too easily because it trusts its own capabilities very much: it is brave, knows no fear, and is persevering. It is aware of everything that happens around it, and when it senses danger, it signals by barking. The West Highland White Terrier very rarely has a bad nature; it is usually a very playful and cheerful dog, but we should never underestimate its shrewdness and inventiveness. Its presence makes the life the family much more colorful.
As opposed to other dogs, it is relatively peaceful but has difficulties in the street resisting challenges from dogs of the same sex. This “deficiency” can be reduced significantly with proper training and socialization. The Westie should be taught already as a puppy that cats and other animals are not supposed to be chased, given that it is very much inclined to act so.
The hair of the Westie that is kept as a family pet should be trimmed by a professional dog groomer every three months. In the meantime, it is sufficient to thoroughly brush its coat once or twice a week. When necessary, we should also have the extra hair trimmed between the paw pads. Its beard must be combed every day. Its outer coat is supposed to be rough, therefore it is not advisable to bathe our dog too often.
The owner should not allow him or herself to be “mesmerised” so much by the Westie’s honest and cheerful nature that he or she lets it get away with anything. The Westie cannot get rid of its bad habits easily and it tends to bark more than necessary. It needs an assertive owner who provides it with consistent training and does not let him or herself be manipulated.
The Westie deserves more than just a few short walks a day. It is a very active breed that loves fetching balls, running around for fun, and just playing in general. Digging is another one of its favourite pastimes, which potential owners who are proud of their gardening skills should always keep in mind.