Cesky Terrier

Cesky Terrier looking forward

Quick Facts


14 to 24 pounds


10 to 13 inches at the shoulder

Average Lifespan:

12-15 years

Known For:

National dog of the Czech Republic, clever, playful and great family friend.


The Cesky Terrier, a gem from the heart of Europe, is a breed that perfectly encapsulates charm, tenacity, and a touch of whimsy. Originating from the Czech Republic, this delightful little dog has captured the hearts of many with its distinctive appearance and amiable nature. 


While they might not be as universally recognized as some other breeds, their popularity among discerning pet lovers is undeniable. This guide will take you on a journey through the history, appearance, and unique characteristics of the Cesky Terrier, a true testament to canine craftsmanship.

History and Origin

The story of the Cesky Terrier is one of passion and purpose. The breed was developed in the 20th century in Czechoslovakia by a dedicated breeder named František Horák. His goal? To create a terrier suitable for hunting in the dense forests of Bohemia, yet gentle enough to be a loving family companion.


Starting in the 1940s, Horák began his breeding program by crossing the Scottish Terrier with the Sealyham Terrier. The result was the Cesky Terrier, a dog that combined the best of both worlds: the sturdiness and drive of a hunting dog with the gentleness and affection of a family pet.


The breed was officially recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) in 1963. Since then, the Cesky Terrier has slowly but surely made its mark in various parts of the world. While they might not have the same celebrity status as some other breeds, they have been featured in various dog shows and have a dedicated following of enthusiasts.

Breed Characteristics


Barking Tendency

Dog Friendly

Health Issues

Shedding Level









Cat Friendly

Exercise Needs


Social Needs








App. Friendly

Child Friendly


Energy Level

Stranger Friendly

Watchdog Instincts







Appearance and Size

The Cesky Terrier is a small but sturdy dog, exuding both elegance and robustness. Typically, they stand between 10 to 13 inches at the shoulder and weigh between 13 to 22 pounds.


One of the most distinctive features of the Cesky Terrier is its silky, wavy coat. While not overly long, it has a fine texture and can come in various shades, including gray-blue and light coffee brown. Some may also have a white, yellow, or grey mask, and white markings on the neck, chest, and limbs.


Their body is moderately long, with a slightly arched topline and a robust build, designed for agility and endurance. The head is long, with a pronounced stop and a slightly rounded skull. Their eyes, medium-sized and of an almond shape, often carry a gentle and intelligent expression.


The ears are set high, medium in size, and drop down close to the cheeks.

The Cesky’s overall appearance is one of grace and power, a perfect blend that makes them stand out in any crowd.

Personality and Temperament

The Cesky Terrier is a delightful blend of spirited energy and gentle affection. Known for their calm demeanor, they are less aggressive than many other terrier breeds, making them a joy to have around the home. Their history as hunting dogs means they have a natural curiosity and alertness, but they’re equally content lounging by your side or playing a game of fetch.


These terriers are known for their loyalty and can form strong bonds with their families. They’re often described as “shadow dogs” because of their tendency to follow their owners around. While they can be a bit reserved with strangers, they warm up quickly once they sense no threat.


Despite their calm nature, Cesky Terriers still possess that quintessential terrier tenacity. They’re determined, brave, and can be a tad stubborn at times. But with their intelligence and eagerness to please, they’re also highly trainable.

Health and Lifespan

Cesky Terriers are generally healthy dogs, with a lifespan ranging from 12 to 15 years. However, like all breeds, they can be prone to certain health conditions.


  • Scottie Cramp: This is a hereditary condition that affects the dog’s ability to move. It’s not painful but can be distressing to watch. It’s caused by a metabolic disorder that affects the neurotransmitters in the dog’s brain.
  • Hip Dysplasia: This is a condition where the thigh bone doesn’t fit snugly into the hip joint. While it can occur in Cesky Terriers, it’s less common than in larger breeds.
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA): This is an eye disorder that eventually causes blindness. Fortunately, dogs can use their other senses to compensate for blindness, and a blind dog can live a full and happy life.


Regular check-ups and a balanced diet can help ensure your Cesky Terrier lives a long, healthy life. It’s also beneficial to be aware of the symptoms of these conditions so you can seek veterinary care if needed.

Care and Maintenance

Cesky Terrier grooming

Caring for a Cesky Terrier is a rewarding experience, filled with moments of fun and bonding. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Grooming: Their silky coat requires regular brushing to prevent matting and tangling. A trim every few months will keep them looking their best. Don’t forget to check their ears, teeth, and nails regularly!
  • Exercise: Cesky Terriers have moderate energy levels. A daily walk, combined with some playtime, will keep them happy and fit. They love games that challenge their intelligence, like puzzle toys.
  • Diet: A balanced diet is crucial. Whether you choose commercial dog food or a home-cooked meal, ensure it meets all their nutritional needs. Always have fresh water available.
  • Socialization: Early socialization is essential for Cesky Terriers. Exposure to different people, pets, and environments will ensure they grow up to be well-rounded dogs.

Remember, the key to a happy Cesky Terrier is a mix of love, care, and consistent training.

Training and Behavior

Training a Cesky Terrier can be a delightful experience, thanks to their intelligence and eagerness to please. However, remember that they’re terriers at heart, which means they can sometimes display a stubborn streak.

  • Positive Reinforcement: Cesky Terriers respond best to positive reinforcement techniques. Praise, treats, and play can be effective motivators.
  • Consistency: It’s essential to be consistent with your commands and expectations. This helps the dog understand what’s expected of them.
  • Socialization: Early socialization can help prevent any aggressive or overly shy behaviors. Expose them to various environments, people, and other animals.
  • Behavioral Quirks: Cesky Terriers have a strong prey drive, so they might chase after smaller animals. It’s essential to have a secure yard and always keep them on a leash during walks.

Cesky Terrier and Families

Cesky Terrier with people

Cesky Terriers are wonderful family pets. Their gentle and affectionate nature makes them great companions for both adults and children. However, as with all dogs, it’s essential to teach children how to approach and touch the Cesky to ensure positive interactions.


They generally get along well with other dogs, especially if they’ve been raised together. Their hunting background might make them chase smaller pets, so it’s essential to supervise interactions with animals like cats or rabbits.


In a family setting, the Cesky Terrier shines, offering joy, companionship, and endless moments of fun.

Adopting a Cesky Terrier

If you’re considering adopting a Cesky Terrier, congratulations! You’re about to embark on a journey filled with love and companionship. Here are some things to consider:

  • Research: Ensure you’re familiar with the breed’s needs and characteristics. This will help you provide the best home possible.
  • Adoption Centers: Consider adopting from a reputable rescue organization or shelter. They often have dogs looking for their forever homes.
  • Breeders: If you’re buying from a breeder, ensure they’re reputable and prioritize the health and well-being of their dogs.
  • Preparation: Before bringing your Cesky Terrier home, ensure you have all the essentials: food, bedding, toys, and a secure yard.

Remember, adopting a dog is a long-term commitment. Ensure you’re ready to provide a loving home for the duration of your Cesky Terrier’s life.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the temperament of a Cesky Terrier?

Cesky Terriers are known for being calm, friendly, and sociable. They are less aggressive than other terrier breeds, making them great companions for both adults and children.

How much grooming does a Cesky Terrier require?

Their long, silky coat requires regular grooming to prevent matting. It’s recommended to brush them several times a week and trim their coat every few months.

Are Cesky Terriers good with other pets?

Yes, when socialized from a young age, Cesky Terriers can get along well with other dogs and pets. Their friendly nature makes them adaptable to households with multiple pets.

What health issues are common in Cesky Terriers?

They are a relatively healthy breed, but like all dogs, they can be prone to certain conditions like Scottie Cramp (a movement disorder), patellar luxation, and cardiac issues.

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