This section is from the book "The Terriers. A History And Description Of The Modern Dogs Of Great Britain And Ireland", by Rawdon B. Lee. Also available from Amazon: A History and Description of the Modern Dogs of Great Britain and Ireland: The Terriers.
What the above favourite dog of mine was as a companion, no doubt any ordinary Dandie Dinmont would prove to be under proper training, and, even at the risk of being considered egotistical, I have ventured to give the above particulars of a dog once well known on the show-bench, and the mention of whose name to some people would have much the same effect as a red rag is said to have upon a bull.
Although it is always very much a matter of opinion as to what are or have been the best Dandies of modern and of recent times, it may be as well to give a list of a few I have known, as such might perhaps come in useful for future reference. There was Capt. Lindoe's Dandie (who won at Cremorne in 1864), Mr. W. Dorchester's Cloudie and Jock, Mr. J. H. Murchison's Melrose, Mr. Macdona's Kilt, Mr. P. Scott's Peachem and Nettle, Rev. T. Mosse's Shamrock and Vixen, Mr. Bradshaw Smith's Dirk, Mr. J. Locke's Sporran and Doctor, Mr. J. A. Mather's Warlock, Mr. W. F. A. B. Coupland's Border Prince, Mr. D. Bailie's Border King, the mustards Mr. Steel's Edenside and Mr. Clark's Heather Sandy; Mr. G. Graham's Maud II., Mr. Leatham's Heather Peggy, his Little Pepper II. and Ainsty Belle, Mr. J. T. Gray's Philabeg, Mr. W. T. Barton's May Queen, Mr. Stordy's Rab, Mr. T. F. Slater's Tweed-mouth, and an excellent bitch which came out at Manchester in 1894, Mr. J. Brough's Belle Coota.
A club to look after the interests of the Dandie Dinmont terriers in England was formed in 1875, only a year after the Kennel Club was established In 1885 came a Scottish club, and in 1889 the South of Scotland Dandie Dinmont Terrier Club was duly formulated, and at once took a leading position. The points and description of their special terrier appear to have been most carefully drawn up, its members and committee are thoroughly representative, and because such is the case I give their description here. This is as follows:
Strongly made and large, not out of proportion to the dog's size, the muscles showing extraordinary development, more especially the maxillary. Skull broad between the ears, getting gradually less towards the eyes, and measuring about the same from the inner corner of the eye to back of skull as it does from ear to ear. The forehead well domed. The head is covered with very soft, silky hair, which should not be confined to a mere topknot, and the lighter in colour and silkier it is the better. The cheeks, starting from the ears proportionately with the skull, have a gradual taper towards the muzzle, which is deep and strongly made, and measures about 3m. in length, or in proportion to skull as three is to five. The muzzle is covered with hair of a little darker shade than the topknot, and of the same texture as the feather of the fore legs. The top of the muzzle is generally bare for about an inch from the back part of the nose, the bareness coming to a point towards the eye, and being about 1in. broad at the nose. The nose and inside of mouth black or dark-coloured. The teeth very strong, especially the canine, which are of extraordinary size for such a small dog. The canines fit well into each other, so as to give the greatest available holding and punishing power, and the teeth are level in front, the upper ones very slightly overlapping the under ones. [All undershot and overshot specimens will not be recognised by the society].
Set wide apart, large, full, round, bright, expressive of great determination, intelligence, and dignity; set low and prominent in front of the head; colour, a rich, dark hazel.
Large and pendulous, set well back, wide apart and low on the skull, hanging close to the cheeks, with a very slight projection at the base, broad at the junction of the head, and tapering almost to a point, the fore part of the ear tapering very little - the taper being mostly on the back part, the fore part of the ear coming almost straight down from its junction with the head to the tip. They are covered with a soft, straight, brown hair (in some cases almost black), and have a thin feather of light hair starting about two inches from the tip, and of nearly the same colour and texture as the topknot, which gives the ear the appearance of a distinct point. The animal is often one or two years old before the feather is shown. The cartilage and skin of the ear should not be thick, but rather thin. Length of ear, from 3m. to 4in.
Very muscular, well-developed and strong, showing great power of resistance, being well set into the shoulders.
Long, strong, and flexible, ribs well sprung and round, chest well developed and let well down between the fore legs; the back rather low at the shoulder, having a slight downward curve and a corresponding arch over the loins, with a very slight gradual drop from top of loins to root of tail; both sides of backbone well supplied with muscle.
Rather short, say from 8in. to 10in., and covered on the upper side with wiry hair of darker colour than that of the body, the hair on the under side being lighter in colour, and not so wiry, with a nice feather about 2in. long, getting shorter as it nears the tip; rather thick at the root, getting thicker for about 4m., then tapering off to a point. It should not be twisted or curled in any way, but should come up with a regular curve like a scimitar, the tip, when excited, being in a perpendicular line with the root of the tail. It should neither be set on too high or too low. When not excited it is carried gaily, and a little above the level of the body.
The fore legs short, with immense muscular development and bone, set wide apart, the chest coming well down between them. The feet well formed, and not flat, with very strong brown or dark-coloured claws. Bandy legs and flat feet are objectionable, but may be avoided - the bandy legs by the use of splints when first noticed, and the flat feet by exercise, and a dry bed and floor to kennel. The hair on the fore legs and feet of a blue dog should be tan, varying according to the body colour, from a rich tan to a pale fawn; of a mustard dog they are of a darker shade than its head, which is a creamy white. In both colours there is a nice feather, about 2in. long, rather lighter in colour than the hair on the fore part of the leg. The hind legs are a little longer than the fore ones, and are set rather wide apart, but not spread out in an unnatural manner, while the feet are much smaller; the thighs are well developed, and the hair of the same colour and texture as the fore ones, but having no feather or dewclaws; the whole claws should be dark, but the claws of all vary in shade according to the colour of the dog's body.