The Skye Terrier is a small but long dog from Scotland that’s nicknamed after the Isle of Skye. A loyal pet since before the 1840s, the sweetness of the Skye Terrier makes this dog one that’s worth having.
Are Skye Terriers prone to shedding?
Skye Terriers shed moderately but not excessively. As a double-coated breed with long fur, seasonal shedding is likely, as is regular shedding during the rest of the year.
Grooming the Skye Terrier requires weekly brushing (or more often during shedding periods) to maintain that long facial and body fur.
If you want to learn even more about the Skye Terrier, you’ve come to the right place. Ahead, I’ll talk about its shedding patterns, how to groom this dog, and whether the Skye Terrier is considered a hypoallergenic breed.
Skye Terrier Shedding
The Skye Terrier might not look it, but it sheds in moderation.
According to the American Kennel Club’s breed standards, the Skye Terrier is double coated. Its undercoat, which provides insulation, is described as wooly, soft, and cropped close to the body. The outer coat is long and flat, often growing to lengths of five and a half inches!
Like many double-coated breeds, the Skye Terrier can shed seasonally. When the autumn days get colder and you start digging around for your winter clothes, your Skye Terrier’s fur will shed to grow a fuzzier coat that provides more insulation.
Before spring gives way to summer, the Skye Terrier should shed once more. This time, they’re relinquishing their insulating coat so they’re nice and comfy during the summer.
Those aren’t the only periods the Skye Terrier can shed though.
Throughout the rest of the year, normal hair cell turnover will cause this breed to lose fur as well. That’s why regular grooming is such an important facet of this breed’s care, as it will keep those long shed locks from floating all over the house.
Since the Skye Terrier’s fur is longer than most dog breeds, it’s not a bad idea to invest in a good vacuum cleaner that can handle pet hair. You’ll probably have to run the vacuum through the house at least weekly.
Compared to other Terriers, I’d say the Skye Terrier sheds more. That’s because many Terriers, the Lakeland Terrier among them, have wiry fur while the Skye Terrier doesn’t. Wiry, coarse fur tends to shed less frequently.
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Grooming Your Skye Terrier
Maintaining the long, luxurious coat of the Skye Terrier is time-consuming but not necessarily difficult.
Let’s start by discussing its brushing needs.
At least once a week, brush your Skye Terrier. Skip the slicker brush and use a pin brush instead, which is often recommended for medium-haired and long-haired canines.
Increase brushing during shedding to several times per week.
If you don’t have a pin brush handy, a comb with long teeth can add shine to your Skye Terrier’s long fur.
Speaking of its fur, at what length do you keep a Skye Terrier’s coat? Breed standards dictate that the fur on its body grows long until it can hang. You should part the hair on either side of the dog’s body.
The fur on its head makes an apron over the eyes and forehead. The Skye Terrier also sort of looks like it has a beard, although its chin hair should not be as long as the fur on the rest of its head.
The straight fur on the ears, especially on the edges and tips, makes a fringe. This fur should grow so long that it’s nearly down to the Skye Terrier’s neck.
Do you have to trim the Skye Terrier’s fur to maintain its length? Occasionally, yes. If this is a job you don’t feel comfortable doing yourself, you can always bring your Skye Terrier to a groomer.
Bathing this breed is an important part of its grooming. About once per month, you’ll have to plunk your Skye Terrier into the tub and wash them.
It’s important to brush this breed before bathing them too.
If you don’t, then fur mats can develop. Removing mats from the long fur of the Skye Terrier is very difficult. Many dog owners are forced to cut away the mat, which can make your dog look lopsided with shorter fur on one side.
Inspect your Skye Terrier’s ears about once a week for wax. Remove any wax you find. Keep this breed’s nails trimmed, which is another service you can utilize a groomer for.
Are Skye Terriers Hypoallergenic?
No dog is 100% hypoallergenic, and the Skye Terrier is no exception.
Reason being, pet dander is mostly dead skin and all dogs have skin, any dog breed could exacerbate your allergies. Yet some dogs are less likely to lead to allergic symptoms, and these are often referred to as being hypoallergenic, even though technically no dog is.
In any case, Sky Terriers probably aren’t the best choice if you’re looking for a dog that’s least likely to cause some sort of allergic reaction.
Why is that? Well, the rate at which a dog sheds plays a big role in whether it’s more hypoallergenic or less so. You already know that the Skye Terrier sheds all year.
Its fur is also quite long, which means dander can catch a free ride and then float all over your house, worsening your allergies.
The size of a dog can make it more hypoallergenic too. The Skye Terrier might not be a large dog, but it is a long one. From its nose to the tip of its tail, the Skye Terrier can measure 10 inches! In other words, its body length is about half that of a Dachshund.
Putting those traits altogether, you can see why the Skye Terrier isn’t hypoallergenic.
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Is a Skye Terrier Right for You?
Maybe you’re still unsure if the Skye Terrier is the best choice for your next family dog. This section will help you decide.
The Skye Terrier, as I mentioned before, originates from the Isle of Skye, which explains its name. Although there existed several Skye Terriers around the 1800s, the one that was with Mary, Queen of Scots when she was executed is believed to be the Skye Terrier we know and love today.
At one point, the Skye Terrier was a hugely popular dog. These days, the UK’s Kennel Club declares it endangered, with just 30 new Skye Terriers born in 2005 in the UK.
The AKC has called the Skye Terrier good-tempered, self-willed, canny, and courageous. This dog would certainly liven up your days, that’s for sure!
Here’s a YouTube video courtesy of the AKC that can introduce you to this fun Terrier breed.
The average height of a Skye Terrier is 10 inches, but remember these are long dogs, so being cooped up in a small apartment might not be best. If your apartment is a bit bigger, then this breed should be able to settle in comfortably.
Skye Terriers don’t need a lot of exercise. Short walks should suffice and playing with your dog will stimulate them mentally as well as physically.
If you intend to bring a Skye Terrier home, socialize them to your other dogs and cats while the Terrier is young. Otherwise, this breed can get aggressive around animals it doesn’t know. The dog park might not be the best place to play for that very reason.
Socializing your Skye Terrier will also help him be a better companion to your children. Older children over the age of six do best with this dog, as they’re usually better-behaved and won’t bring out the feisty side of the Skye Terrier.
The Skye Terrier is a small, long dog from Scotland with flowing fur, especially around its ears and over its face. This lap dog has a friendly personality when it’s socialized, and it isn’t known to shed uncontrollably. That said, you will have to be ready to clean up after the Skye Terrier’s loose fur.
Grooming can control how much fur this breed sheds and is a must for maintaining the long coat of a Skye Terrier. Although its grooming can take a while, all the work can be well worth it in the end, as this dog is sweet, fun, and loyal!