It took a year to find my first Westie, but I took my time until I found a responsible breeder and a fabulous dog. The Internet makes it easy to find information and breeders, but also makes it easy for puppy mill breeders to mass market puppies. Many of those Westies can have a variety of temperament and health problems. Responsible breeders have an in-depth knowledge of the breed, are usually members of the WHWTCA and active in a local club. They proudly show their dogs in conformation, and may also compete in other dog events such as Obedience, Rally Obedience, Agility, Earthdog and Tracking. Wins and show ribbons are great, but a responsible breeder puts temperament and soundness (health) first. Westies are not the right breed for everyone. They're tough little terriers with large teeth, strong bodies and they can have an equally strong determination to have their own way. Westies can be stubborn, but I've found Westies to be highly trainable, intelligent and eager to please. In training Westies for serious obedience competition I always say "If it ain't fun, a Westie won't do it!"
Lynn Reagan-Hull Raleigh, NC (919) 676-0983 lrhull@mindspring.com
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