Heart Like a Wheel

We are big fans of Linda Ronstadt, and the album she released in 1974, “Heart Like a Wheel,”  became her first number one album in the United States.  It was nominated for Album Of The Year at the 18th Annual Grammy Awards, and her cover of Dee Dee Warwick’s “You’re No Good” peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100.  Because we need very little excuse to share a good song, we remind you below of how good Ronstadt was in 1975. Sadly, the 77 year old legend has a Parkinson’s-like disorder called “Progressive Supranuclear Palsy” which has robbed her of the ability to sing;


This post, however, isn’t about Linda Ronstadt. We borrow the name of her album as a launching pad to discuss the Scottish Terrier, and more specifically, a line from its AKC breed standard that reads, “The ribs should be well sprung out from the spine, forming a broad, strong back, then curving down and inward to form a deep body that would be nearly heart-shaped if viewed in cross-section.” 

Scottish Terrier, chest, structure

Another way of framing this is that the Scottie has a heart-shaped chest (which is to say not slab-sided or barrel-shaped) chest. Wider at the top it tapers to a point and then drop below the elbow.  The standard makes it clear: the “lowest point of the brisket should be such that an average man’s fist would fit under it with little or no overhead clearance.” 

The Scottie may not have a heart like a wheel, but it has a chest like a heart. Please do click on this link which shows a diagram from the breed’s Illustrated Guide, it does a much better job of illustrating this than our clumsy outline above.

Top photo by Dall-e

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