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Australian Silky Terrier

Australian Silky Terrier Books

Group: Toy || Breed Standard


The Australian Silky Terrier was developed in Australia in the nineteenth century. In the beginning they were cross-breeds of different British terriers, and originally known as rough or broken coated terrier. Later they were additionally crossed with breed such as the Dandie Dinmont, skye Terrier and Yorkshire Terrier, the later which contributed the skily coat and size that is known today. The name "Australian Silky Terrier" was finally accepted in 1956.


Weight: about 4 kgs (8-10 lbs)
Height: approximately 23 cms (9 ins), bitches may be slightly less

The Silky is a compact dog that is moderately low-set, slightly longer than height with a refined bone structure, but sufficient substance to be able to hunt and kill domestic rodents. Their head is of moderate length, with small pricked, high set ears and small, round and dark eyes which give an intelligent expression. Their tail is customarily docked and should be carried erect and be free from long feathering. Their coat is straight, find and glossy, with a silky texture and parted in the middle along the back. Colours can be blue and tan, grey-blue and tan, the richer these colours the better. Blue on the tail should be very dark. Distribution of blue and tan as follows: Silver-blue or fawn top-knot, tan around base of ears, muzzle and on side of cheeks; blue from base of skull to tip of tail, running down forelegs to near knees and down thighs to hocks; tan line showing down stifles, and tan from knees and hocks to toes and around vent. The blue colour must be established by 18 months of age.


A terrier by nature, Silkies are keen, alert and active. A friendly breed which is intelligent and responsive. They love attention and company, and if left alone for too long may find their own entertainment, which may not be to your liking! They can be jealous and revengeful as well as loving and affectionate.

Breed Health

As a breed, the Silky is a very healthy one and does not have much in the way of inherited illnesses or problems. Things to check for are eye problems and patella luxation. They have a life-span of up to 15 years.

Breed Care

Despite their long silky coat, Silkies require very little grooming. A brush a couple of times a week using a natural bristle brush, pin brush and metal comb, should keep their coat tangle free and flowing, and a bath when they are really dirty. The Silky's ears should be free of long hair and will require occasional trimming. The feet should also be free of excessively long hair and will want to be trimmed up to about 'ankle' high and between the pads. The coat should not drag along the floor and can be trimmed so that it falls just above the foot. The tail is another area that needs tidying up by trimming, and should be trimmed to a length of about one inch.


A Silky isn't hyperactive but they do have tons of energy and love to play fetch, go for long walks and in to be involved in whatever the family is doing! A daily walk of about 20 minutes should be enough to keep your Aussie in good condition.


A Silky has a strong character. You must tell him and show him what it is you wish to do and be FIRM about it. They are intelligent and should learn quickly, but being wilful and stubborn they do not always obey! See our books on training

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Last link added: 11 Mar, 2008