All About the Silky Terrier Dog Breed

Silky Terriers, also known as Australian Silky Terriers, are small dogs that are primarily kept for companionship. They have a vibrant and playful personality that is matched by their adorably silky coat. In this article, we will take an in-depth look into everything you need to know about the Silky Terrier breed.

History of the Silky Terrier

The history of the Silky Terrier is one rooted in Australia, where the breed was developed from a mix of various terrier breeds in the late 19th century. This section will explore the origins of the Silky Terrier as well as the process of the breed’s development and recognition by kennel clubs.

Origins in Australia

The Silky Terrier was born in Australia in the late 1800s, where they were bred to serve as efficient vermin hunters. The breed was developed to be small in size, but big in personality and energy, making them perfect for the task at hand. They were also bred to be adaptable and versatile, able to navigate the rugged terrain of the Australian outback with ease.

The Silky Terrier was created by crossing Yorkshire Terriers with Australian Terriers and other small terriers to create a unique and beautiful breed. The Australian Terrier brought with it a scrappy and tough nature, while the Yorkshire Terrier contributed its silky coat and charming personality.

Development of the Breed

Over time, the Silky Terrier’s popularity continued to flourish, and breeders eventually locked in the specific traits that make the breed distinct. They were bred to have a small, yet sturdy build, with a silky coat that is blue and tan in color. The breed is also known for its high energy and intelligence, making them great companions for active families.

As the breed developed, breeders also worked to ensure that the Silky Terrier was a healthy breed. They focused on breeding out any genetic health issues that were present in the breed’s ancestors, and today the Silky Terrier is known for its long life expectancy and overall good health.

Recognition by Kennel Clubs

The Silky Terrier was first recognized by the Australian Kennel Club in 1955, which was a huge milestone for the breed. This recognition was followed by the certification of the breed by other international kennel clubs including the American Kennel Club and the United Kennel Club.

Today, the Silky Terrier is a beloved breed around the world, known for its loyalty, intelligence, and charming personality. They continue to be popular as both family pets and show dogs, and their unique history and development make them a fascinating breed to learn about.

Physical Characteristics

What are the physical features of the Silky Terrier? This section of the article takes an in-depth look at the breed’s size and weight, coat types and colors and other distinctive visual features.

The Silky Terrier, also known as the Australian Silky Terrier, is a small dog breed that was originally developed in Australia. They are a beloved breed, known for their affectionate and loyal personalities, as well as their striking physical features.

Size and Weight

Silky Terriers are small dogs that grow to an average height of 9-10 inches (23-25 cm) and weigh between 8 – 10 pounds (3-5 kg). Despite their small size, they are a sturdy and robust breed that can keep up with their owners on long walks or hikes.

One interesting fact about the Silky Terrier is that they were originally bred to be larger than they are today. In the early 20th century, breeders worked to reduce their size to make them more suitable for city living.

Coat and Colors

The coat of the Silky Terrier is one of the breed’s most distinct features. They have a long, silky coat that lies flat against their body. This coat type needs regular maintenance and grooming to prevent matting and tangling. Silky Terriers come in a range of colors, including blue and tan, black and tan, and cream.

It’s important to note that while the Silky Terrier’s coat may be beautiful, it also serves a practical purpose. Their coat helps to protect them from the harsh Australian sun and keeps them warm in cooler weather.

Distinctive Features

Other distinctive features of the Silky Terrier include their triangular-shaped ears, almond-shaped eyes, and a sturdy and elongated body. They also have slim legs, and their tails are usually docked.

One interesting fact about the Silky Terrier’s ears is that they are set high on their head and are meant to help the dog hear better. Their almond-shaped eyes are also an important feature, as they allow the Silky Terrier to see well in low light conditions.

Overall, the Silky Terrier is a unique and beautiful breed that is sure to turn heads wherever they go. Their physical characteristics, combined with their loving personalities, make them a popular choice for dog owners around the world.

Personality and Temperament

This section of the article explores the unique personality and temperament of a Silky Terrier, from their general disposition to their intelligence and trainability and socialization needs.

General Disposition

Silky Terriers are known for their vibrant and playful personalities. They are a lively and active breed that loves to play and make new friends. They are also highly intelligent and make excellent companions for families with children and other pets around the house.

Despite their small size, Silky Terriers are known for their bold and confident personalities. They are not afraid to stand up to larger dogs and can be quite territorial, especially when it comes to their owners. This makes them excellent watchdogs, as they will not hesitate to bark and alert their owners to any potential danger.

Intelligence and Trainability

The Silky Terrier is a highly intelligent breed that is easy to train in basic obedience and other essential skills. They respond well to positive training techniques and thrive in an environment where they get plenty of praise and encouragement. They learn well and enjoy doing so, so they love to make their owners happy.

Because of their intelligence and eagerness to please, Silky Terriers excel in a variety of activities, including agility, obedience, and even therapy work. They are quick learners and enjoy the mental stimulation that comes with learning new skills and tricks.

Socialization and Interaction

Silky Terriers are social dogs that require plenty of interaction with their owner and other pets to remain mentally and emotionally healthy. They thrive in environments where they get to play and interact with other dogs, which not only helps them stay happy but also helps limit boredom and destructive tendencies.

It is important to socialize Silky Terriers from a young age to ensure that they are comfortable around other dogs and people. This can help prevent any potential aggression or fearfulness that may arise later in life. Silky Terriers also benefit from regular exercise and playtime, as they have a lot of energy and need an outlet to burn it off.

Overall, Silky Terriers are a fun-loving and intelligent breed that make excellent companions for families and individuals alike. With proper training and socialization, they can thrive in a variety of environments and activities, bringing joy and companionship to their owners for many years to come.

Health and Lifespan

The health and lifespan of a Silky Terrier should be a significant concern for any potential owner. In this segment of the article, we look at the common health issues faced by the breed, preventative care measures, and expected lifespan.

Common Health Issues

Like any other breed, Silky Terriers are susceptible to certain health issues. The breed’s most common issues are patellar luxation, Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, and tracheal collapse. Their lifespan can be significantly influenced by proper preventative care, including regular vet visits and hygiene maintenance to prevent dental issues.

Preventative Care

Silky Terriers require regular vet visits, dental cleanings, and grooming to maintain good health, hygiene, and physical appearance. It is also crucial to feed them with a balanced and quality diet, paired with regular exercise to keep them physically active and healthy.

Expected Lifespan

On average, Silky Terriers have an expected lifespan of 12 to 15 years. However, with proper care and attention, the breed can live up to 20 years, which makes them a great option for families looking for a long-term companion.


In conclusion, Silky Terriers are lively, intelligent, and playful dogs that make excellent companions for both individuals and families. As with any other breed, proper care and attention will go a long way in ensuring that your furry friend remains healthy, happy, and actively engaged for many years to come.

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