Description: The Cesky Terrier is a small but sturdy, rectangular terrier with short legs, drop-ears, long coat and a big heart. They are muscular dogs, slightly longer than they are tall. They have long heads that have a blunt nose and deep set eyes. Its feet are large and its coat is thick and silky. This breed can be either bluish grey or chocolate brown in color. Cesky Terriers carry the fading gene, found in few other breeds, such as the Bearded Collie. The fading gene is a gene that causes the dog’s hair to fade as it grows, much like the graying of people hair as they get older. On blue dogs, the skin is grey and on brown dogs the skin is tan. As the blue dogs get older their fur will turn more grayish, while as the brown terriers will turn a light brown coffee color. The face is a forest of hair, and in some places is curly. Facial hair on this breed is not clipped, and gives the terrier the look for long bushy eyebrows and beard. Calm, responsive and devoted, the Cesky Terrier makes a wonderful family pet in a wide range of living situations. Cesky Terriers get along well with people of all ages and are usually good with other pets as well. They are often easy going and easy to take care of. The Cesky is less aggressive and independent, and more eager to please than the typical terrier. They are said to be much more mild than regular terriers. They are usually patient, gentle, and good with anyone. They are also very adaptable.
Other Names: Czech Terrier, Bohemian Terrier, Ceskỳ Teri�r
Height: 10 – 14 inches, approximately.
Weight: 13 – 23 lbs.
Colors: Blue-gray (ranging from silver to dark charcoal). Some are a uniform color, while others have lighter markings (pale gray, yellow or cream) on the face and extremities. Some white markings are permissible, but the basic color must predominate. Ceskys contain the fading gene, which lightens their fur color as the years go by. Puppies born black will lighten over time, turning blue to gray. This process can take up to 3 years. Light coffee-brown (with puppies born chocolate brown) is possible, but this color is extremely rare.
Coat: Soft, slightly wavy, with a silky gloss and not overly thick. The Cesky Terrier is always clipped (with clippers), never hand stripped as many terriers are. A fall of hair largely covers the eyes and the Cesky sports a beard. The cheeks, ears, upper body and tail are clipped close, while the hair is left long on the lower sides, belly and legs.
Temperament: Cesky Terriers are a balanced, non-aggressive, pleasant and cheerful companion, who is anxious to please and easy to train. The Cesky can be somewhat reserved towards strangers, but is devoted and loving with their family and those they know. The Cesky is calm and has a kind disposition. With hunting animals low to the ground they can be feisty, persistent and stubborn. They are fearless towards bigger animals. They make good family pets as they are good with children and most other animals. They are patient, mild and gentle.
With Children: Yes. Cesky Terriers seem to have a natural affinity for children, especially if raised with them, and make playful and loving companions. As with any animal, supervision is important when young children and dogs interact.
With Pets: Yes. Unlike many terriers, Cesky’s were bred to hunt in groups and tend to enjoy the company of other dogs. Most also get along well with cats and other pets.
Special Skills: Originally bred to “go to ground” after the usual fare (vermin, fox, badger, etc.), the Cesky today retains its hunting instincts, but is most commonly a loving and devoted family companion.
Watch-dog: Very High. Like any terrier, Ceskys are very alert of their surroundings and will let you know.
Guard-dog: Low. Being alert does not make one a guardian, though. Czesky Terriers are usually friendly and will not attack.
Care and Exercise: Brushing/combing two times a week. Clipping every 6-8 weeks. Cesky Terriers are non-shedding, so regular grooming is required to keep the coat mat-free. Clean the corner of the eyes frequently and remove excess hair from the ear canal during bi-monthly grooming/clipping session. Trim hair between foot pads and keep nails clipped regularly. Ceskys regularly have their fur clipped on the upper body, while the lower and chest is left as it is. The eyebrows and beard are also left as they are. Because they love food, exercise is helpful to maintain a healthy weight. However exercise requirements are easily met with a daily walk or game of fetch.
Training: The Cesky is a very responsive dog that is sensitive and anxious to please. Many are naturally obedient. Most are far too soft-tempered for harsh training methods. Positive, consistent training is much more effective. Because they love to eat, food stealing is often the most difficult behavior problem to correct.
Special Needs: Grooming.
Learning Rate: Medium. They are willing to please, but not always the quickest at picking things up.
Activity: Medium. Active and playful outdoors, mellow and quiet in the house.
Living Environment: A rugged dog in a small package, the Cesky can thrive in an apartment or in the country, as long as they are close to the people they love. Because of their strong desire to be with their family, the Cesky should always be a house dog (i.e., not kept outside or kenneled excessively). Ceskys adapt to most areas, and the best owner for this breed would be a family living in an apartment or rural environment, either is fine.
Health Issues: Usually very healthy and robust. Because of the Scottie in it’s background, a condition known as Scottie Cramp is possible, but not prevalent in the breed.
Life Span: 10 – 14 years.
Litter Size: 2 – 6 puppies.
Country of Origin: Czech Republic
History: The Cesky Terrier has a relatively short and well-documented history. The breed was developed by Frantisek Hor�k, a geneticist in the Czech Republic, by crossing a Sealyham Terrier and Scottish Terrier. Their aim was to develop a light, short-legged, drop eared, hunting terrier that was easy to groom and train, could hunt fox and badgers in groups, and could “go to ground” and fit in burrows too small for it�s parent breeds. While it still retains these abilities, today the Cesky is primarily a companion dog. In 1949 Mr. Hor�k began to fix the breed�s characteristics, in 1959 they were shown for the first time, and the breed was finally recognized by the FCI in 1963. The breed may have been mixed with the Dandie Dinmont Terrier, as many of its characteristics do not resemble the Scottie or Sealyham. The tail is carried low, uncommon to many terriers. The fading gene is prevalent, but not in the Scottie or the Sealyham. The chocolate color is not common to either species, as well as the long body and long silky hair. All of these traits except the fading gene, however, are common in the Dandie.
The Cesky is a beloved treasure in its country of origin and has been portrayed on postage stamps, in art and is even featured on several hand painted buses in the Czech Republic. The breed is quickly gaining popularity in Europe, the UK, Australia, Canada and the U.S. for it’s versatility, easy going ways and delightful, loving personality.
AKC Status: The Cesky Terrier is currently registered with the AKC Foundation Stock Service. It is still considered a rare breed in the U.S., and has not yet achieved AKC recognition. The Cesky was recently given full recognition in the Terrier Group by the Canadian Kennel Club, and it is expected to achieve AKC Miscellaneous Class status in the U.S. in the near future.
Class: Terrier, Gun Dog
Registries: CKC, FCI, UKC, KCGB, AKC (1/2004)