The Breed with a “Pelt”

A Border Terrier’s skin is referred to as her “pelt,” or “hide,” while coat refers to her hair. She has the only breed standard among terriers that requires loose fitting skin and a thick hide. Why? Because a loose pelt is immensely helpful in avoiding the grip of the dog’s quarry while allowing the dog to wriggle through tight, underground tunnels. Some old terrier men have said that the breed is less sensitive to pain than other dogs, but we suspect that this is because loose skin keeps a badger, otter, etc. from grabbing the dog’s underlying muscles, or penetrating much more than skin if a vicious bite should grab hold.  

Border Terriers Near Wall by Gill Evans

John Stanbridge
Permission granted by Amanda McLaren
Canine Fine Arts

3 thoughts on “The Breed with a “Pelt””

  1. Thanks for all of the great info you post about terriers. As if I could love them any more!

    • We appreciate the kind words, Melissa! It’s not secret that we are Puli owners – but our formative years were spent growing up with Cairn Terriers. You never stop loving terriers if you’ve known them, we think.

  2. An exceptional picture and great discription of what makes the Border a breed apart from other terriers. Many thanks!!

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