Westies are surprisingly energetic and really enjoy lots of playtime with their owners. They can be very mischievous so enjoy anything that will keep their curious minds active. A secure fence is a must – Westies like to explore and if they find a weakness they’ll try their best to go beyond it.
Your Westie will need an hour exercise every day. This should be split into a couple of walks with lots of time for sniffing and exploring along the way. On top of this, your Westie will need plenty of time off-lead in a secure area to run around. They’ll also need training sessions to keep their minds active and plenty of playtime with you.
Westies have quite thick fur which can quickly get matted particularly around their face and legs. They’ll need brushing a few times a week to keep the coat in good condition. While they shed throughout the year, what makes them really high maintenance is definitely the grooming! Your Westie will likely need to see a professional groomer as often as every six weeks for a trim.
As their fur can get matted, you may need to bath your Westie if they’ve rolled in something while out walking. Westies are known to suffer from skin allergies, so speak to your vet before buying a shampoo.
Westies and children
Westies are affectionate and playful pets which makes them ideal for families with children of any age. This said, you should always supervise your dog with children and vulnerable adults and make sure to put a stop to playtime if it starts getting too boisterous.
Westies and other pets
If socialised with lots of other dogs from a young age, your Westie should get along fine. Try to take them along to puppy socialisation groups as often as possible to make sure they’re comfortable with dogs of all sizes.
Westies have quite a high prey drive, so we wouldn’t recommend keeping them with smaller pets. If they have grown up with a cat in the home, they’ll be fine with that cat, but you should always supervise your dog around other pets.
Your Westie’s diet will vary depending on their age. You’ll need to feed them a complete, balanced dog food to keep them slim and healthy.
Your vet will be able to tell you how much your Westie should be eating. You should feed them a good quality, commercially available, complete dog food. We usually recommend splitting their daily allowance into two meals. If you give your dog the occasional treat or use treats for training, remember to take this into account and reduce their daily allowance. Treats shouldn’t make up more than 10% of their daily calorie intake as this can unbalance their diet.
Try to feed your dog at similar times every day as they like routine. Remember to leave a gap between eating and exercising.
The cost of owning a West Highland White Terrier