Cairn Terrier vs German Shepherd - Breed Comparison

German Shepherd is originated from Germany but Cairn Terrier is originated from United Kingdom. German Shepherd may grow 34 cm / 14 inches higher than Cairn Terrier. German Shepherd may weigh 36 kg / 80 pounds more than Cairn Terrier. Both German Shepherd and Cairn Terrier has almost same life span. German Shepherd may have more litter size than Cairn Terrier. Both German Shepherd and Cairn Terrier requires Low Maintenance.

Basic Information

Group:
Herding dogs
Terrier dogs
Origin:
Germany
United Kingdom
Height Male:
61 - 67 cm
24 - 27 inches
25 - 33 cm
9 - 13 inches
Height Female:
55 - 61 cm
21 - 25 inches
23 - 33 cm
9 - 13 inches
Weight Male:
34 - 44 kg
74 - 98 pounds
5 - 8 kg
11 - 18 pounds
Weight Female:
34 - 44 kg
74 - 98 pounds
5 - 8 kg
11 - 18 pounds
Life Span:
9 - 13 Years
12 - 15 Years
Litter Size:
1 - 15
2 - 10
Size:
Large
Small
Other Names:
Alsatian, Alsatian wolf dog, Berger Allemand, Deutscher Schaferhund, Schaferhund
Cairn, Toto Dog
Colors Available:
Black and Tan, Sable, Bicolor, Black and White
Black, Brindle, Cream, Wheaten, Red, Grey
Coat:
dense and thick, short, medium thick, thick and fluffy, long, furry around their chest, ears, tail or backs of their legs
Medium length and wiry
Shedding:
Constant, Seasonal
Minimal
Temperament:
Aggressive, Alert, Gentle, Intelligent, Loyal, Outgoing, Protective, Quiet
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Responsive, Social, Stubborn, Territorial
Grooming:
Low Maintenance
Low Maintenance
Trainability:
Easy
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
Yes
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
Yes
Yes

History

​​

german shepherdIn 1882 german shepherd was introduced in a show at Hanover. They were created by the cross breeding of the rural sheep dogs by a man named Max. In 1906 they were first exported to America. After that the breed became very popular in UK.

The Cairn Terrier originates in the Scottish Highlands. This feisty little dog was given the name Cairn, as he used to hunt prey between the Scottish cairns. At first the dog was grouped as a ‘Skye Terrier’way back in the 1900s with the Scottish and West Highland White Terrier. Then the different breeds began to be bred separately.

The name Cairn Terrier didn’t appear in print till 1887. It was in 1912 that the Kennel Club of the United Kingdom recognized the Cairn Terrier.

Description

german shepherd puppyThe GSD is very good for being a watchdog and hence it do not welcome guests to home. But when trained from a puppy it will suit itself for making new friends. GSD like to be always with somebody and they can be its master or his family members or else its partner. The GSD is very intelligent and active hence they should be always kept busy, exercised and playing. Nowadays many of them are trained well and made as four legged stars.

When we see all around the world many of them are involved in helping the physically challenged people. Also they are very important personnels in working with police and military for finding the criminals. Their excellent sniffing power works very good when given proper training for finding illegal smuggling. But basically the breed was set in to herd the sheep and protect them from predators.

Based on the popularity they are ranked 2nd in US and 4th in UK.

Temperament:

The small sturdily built working Terrier is intelligent and courageous. Bright-eyed, he is small and active and he just loves to work- and party hard with his human family. You’ll see if you’ve got a ball you want to throw for him, his tail is quivering in anticipation and his ears are erect and alert to any noise. He is smart, independent and courageous.

Coat of Many Colors:

The Cairn Terrier has a tough, weather-resistant coat that can be any color but not white. He has a waterproof double coat – the outer one being wiry while the undercoat is soft. You’ll find the coat in man colours such as grey, black, red and brindle with dark points on the ears and muzzle.

The interesting thing with a Cairn is that when you get a puppy, you can’t be sure what color he will end up being as it changes over the years. The ears are fox-like, small and erect, and the natural medium-to-short tail is held straight out.

Health Problems

german shepherd dogThe GSD has the chances for getting orthopaedic diseases such as hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia. Other common orthopaedic problems which affects GSD are Panosteitis, Osteochondritis and cruciate ligament rupture.They also get some skin problems such as allergies and pyoderma. Digestive problems such as chronic diarrhea and colitis are also seen in GSD.

Hair fall

GSD is a continuous shedder. They are having a two layer coat. They should be brushed daily as it will remove the dead fur and thus prevents shedding.

The Cairn Terrier is a robust little dog, and with good care can reach 14 years of age and even older. However, with every dog breed there are some health concerns particular to that breed. With your Cairn Terrier look out for a disease known as Globoid cell leukodystrophy (GCL).

Globoid cell leukodystrophy (GCL)

Known also as Krabbe Disease, Globoid cell leukodystrophy (GLD) is a rare but fatal disease. It is caused by a mutation on the dog’s DNA. There is abnormal processing of an enzyme needed for the production of myelin, a substance that protects the nerves in the brain and spinal cord. The dog is weak, it has tremors and isn’t co-ordinated. The Cairn Terrier is a breed of dog more susceptible to GCL.

Bone and joint diseases

Your Cairn Terrier may well suffer with joint diseases. These diseases, such as luxating patella which is about loose knee joints, and hip dysplasia which is a degenerative hip disease, can cause plenty of pain and discomfort for your pet.

Eye Diseases

Glaucoma is an eye disease where there is pressure on the eye, causing inadequate fluid drainage. Without treatment, there can be damage to the optic nerve which can lead to blindness.

Caring The Pet

german shepherd puppiesThe GSD should be given an cool environment which they will enjoy a lot.

Feeding the puppy

The GSD puppy should be fed small quantities of food but several times per day as it needs to gain 2 gms weight per day. The preferred food for them is dry food along with raw liver pieces which would provide them excellent energy. The protein food given to puppy should contain 25 to 30% calories. Puppies consume more food when compared with adults.

Feeding the adult

The GSD needs a food which has a considerable amount of protein. They are carnivores in the nature. The protein can be given from cooked meat. The artificial food products will not be suitable for them. When are provided with protein food they will gain fat from itself. The recommended fat content for GSD is 5% to 8%.

Points for Good Health

The GSD should be provided with a nutritional food for their good health.

Games and Exercises

Physical exercises are very much needed for GSD since they are very energetic and power packed. It is highly recommended to make them play and run daily as they don't need to get bored. They can be made to climb in hilly areas as they want to explore their surroundings. They can be made to swim or play hide and seek and find the missing objects. Regular morning walk will be very good for them.

Grooming:

The Cairn Terrier sheds very little and the coat is easy to groom. Give him a thorough brushing twice a week to rid him of loose hairs. Some trimming will be needed as the coat can become shaggy and unruly.

Brush his teeth at least 2 or 3 times a week to prevent tartar build up that can lead to bacteria, gum disease and possible tooth loss.

Diet:

The Cairn Terrier is small but he is an active dog and therefore needs to be on a high-quality dog food. If you feed him a commercially manufactured food, make sure its appropriate to his age, size and activity levels.

He is a small dog so you want to be careful about not letting him become overweight. Try and alternate his commercially manufactured food with some home-made rice, vegetables and meat and also include some raw meat in from time to time. This is of particular importance as chronic skin allergies are common in all terrier breeds. Make sure that there is always a clean bowl of fresh water available to him day and night.

Characteristics

Children friendliness

german shepherd dogsThe GSD is a very good child friendly dog, they love to play with kids.

Adaptability

They adopts both hot and cold climates, but they like cold weather very much and also their body is suitable for cold than hot.

Learning ability

The GSD has high ability to learn tricks and also they are interested in learning. As they have very high intelligence they learn very easily and quickly.

The Cairn Terrier is a fearless, jaunty little dog, known for his courageous spirit and inquisitive nature. He may be small, but he is stubborn. He will respond well to training and socialization which will turn him into the most awesome pet for families. He can make a wonderful friend and playmate for children too. Socialization and training ensures he gets on well with other pets in the household too.

He is small and energetic, and therefore not the kind of dog you can ignore in terms of exercise. He’ll need a good walk every day and he just loves to chase a ball as it takes him back to the days when he was used to chasing- and catching mice.

He isn’t your typical lap-dog at all and with the right care he becomes a devoted, loyal and loving companion.

Comparison with other breeds

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