Border Terriers commonly get along easily with other dogs. Nevertheless, whenever they disfavor a different dog, they don't hesitate to initiate a fight and, equally with almost all terriers, it can be challenging to stop them.
They'll also get along easily with cats they've been raised with, but will chase after other cats and small animals like mice, rabbits, rats, and guinea pigs.
Border Terriers adjust to the activity levels of their people. They don't demand physical exercise, but do enjoy it when they do get it. With adequate length of leg to attain fairly good speed, a Border Terrier will hike, bike, and run with its owner but be every bit as happy to laze around in the sun all day. A Border Terrier doesn't mind being left behind, however, since it is quite smart and enjoys company, it's not suited to homes where people are absent all day long.
Having been bred to work “paw in hand” with people, Border Terriers fare well in task-oriented activities. They're intelligent and anxious to please; however they retain the capability for independent thinking and initiative that had been bred into them for hunting rats and fox below ground. They take on training for tasks just fine, but seem less responsive if being taught simple tricks.
The breed has stood out in agility training, but they're faster to learn jumps and teeter-boards than threading poles. Their love of people and steady temperament make them good therapy dogs, particularly for kids and the aged, and they're at times used to assist the visually challenged or hearing impaired.
Border Terriers have attained more AKC “earthdog” championships than any other terrier. An AKC Earthdog test is not genuine hunting, but a contrived, non-competitive, drill in which terriers run into smooth woody burrows, buried below ground, with one or several turns in order to bark or scratch at caged in rats that are safely put up behind wooden barricades. The trials are carried on to ascertain that natural traits are maintained and developed, as the breed originators intended.
Since Border Terriers are “basically working terriers”, most Border Terrier owners believe it crucial to screen and develop their dogs' instincts. These trials also allow for keen gratification for the dogs.
The American Working Terrier Association carries on trials; where the dogs inherent aptitudes are proven, and so judged to ascertain a “Best of Breed” Earthdog. These tests are like the ones depicted above.
BORDER TERRIER (Pet Owner's Guide) by Betty Judge
The Border Terrier: Pure Bred Series (Pure Breds) by David Kline
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