Russian toy terriers are miniature slender dogs with large eyes, long legs, and thin bones. Thanks to their energetic temperament and playful, curious disposition, they inevitably find themselves in the epicenter of everyone’s attention, and their tiny size makes them suitable for living quarters.
We will find out what the Russian Toy breed is and what features are hidden behind their fragile appearance.
A Brief History of Russian Toy Terriers
The breed comes from the English Toy, who enjoyed a reputation as unsurpassed rat catchers. Toy Terrier dogs were brought to Russia during the reign of Peter I and by the middle of the 19th century managed to gain popularity among the local bourgeoisie. Animals lived in the imperial palaces and chambers of rich ladies, accompanied them to balls and social events.
After the revolution, decorative toys were considered “bourgeois excess”. For a long time, saloon dogs remained in the shadow of their larger brothers of the service and guard breeds. For almost half a century, they gradually died out and degenerated, interbreeding with local mongrels.
The modern history of the breed began in the USSR in the middle of the 20th century. In the 1950s, Soviet breeders decided to revive the stock of decorative toys. True, at that time there were no purebred individuals left on the territory of the country. Therefore, enthusiastic breeders had to work with undocumented dogs and animals exported from Germany as war trophies.
Due to the fact that at that time the country pursued a policy of the “Iron Curtain”, Soviet breeders did not have the opportunity to compare the livestock received with the English Toy and did not realize for a long time that they had bred a new breed.
In 1957, from a pair of Russian Toys, one of whom was not purebred, an unusual male puppy with furry ears and feathers on its paws was born. He really liked the breeders and later became the ancestor of the long-haired Toy branch. Despite its popularity, the Russian Terrier did not receive recognition from world associations for a long time and was registered in conditional status only in 2006.
Standards and Appearance
Russian toy terriers are miniature, high-legged animals with expressive eyes and fragile bones. They are tiny in size and belong to the group of companion breeds. Toys grow up to the age of 6-9 months. The breed standard strictly regulates the height and weight of an adult dog.
The upper limit of the bodyweight of the Russian toy terrier should not exceed 7 pounds, and the size of the toy terrier varies between 7-11 inches.
Interesting! The minimum weight of a toy terrier was only 681 g. Its owner got into the pages of the Guinness Book of Records.
The full characteristics of the breed are presented in the official standard of the Toy Terrier, registered in the FCI under number 352. According to this document, the dog must comply with the following description:
- The head is small, wedge-shaped, with a well-defined foot, a dry pointed muzzle, and not expressed cheekbones. The nose is small and shiny. The jaws are strong with a full complement of teeth, covered with thin, dry, tight-fitting lips. The breed standard of the Russian Toy Terrier allows for a lack of 2 upper and lower incisors. Scissor bite.
- The eyes are round, set wide apart, slightly protruding. Painted dark and framed by tight-fitting eyelids.
- The ears are thin, set high, large, triangular with a well-open shell.
- The body is of a square format with a pronounced nape, a strong straight back, a short convex loin, a rounded sloping croup, and a taut belly. The neck is long, slightly curved, and free from dewlap. The chest is deep, oval.
- The limbs are straight, thin, long. Feet are small, oval, with tightly knit toes, firm pads, and dark nails.
- The tail is sickle-shaped. In a calm state, it is held at the level of the backline. In motion, it rises high up. Can be docked short.
The breed standard provides for several color options for the toy terrier. Acceptable colors include:
- all red color options;
- black and tan;
- blue and tan;
- brown and tan;
- red with chocolate tan;
- red with lilac;
- red with blue;
- pale yellow;
The following colors are acceptable but very undesirable:
- blue (gray);
- brown (chocolate);
- the black.
Important! Dogs of the Russian Toy breed of white, marble, piebald, spotted or brindle color are subject to disqualification and are not allowed for breeding.
Varieties of toy terriers
Depending on the length and type of coat, there are 2 intra-breed species of toy terriers:
- long-haired terrier.
The Russian smooth-haired toy terrier has a very short, tight-fitting coat with a glossy sheen. There should be no bald patches and bald patches on his body. Dogs of this type do not have an undercoat and look like fawn.
Long-haired toy terriers have a straight or slightly wavy awn. Their fur is close to the body but does not hide its natural shape. The undercoat of long-haired toy terriers is poorly expressed or absent.
Dogs attract attention with their shaggy ears, the contours of which are thickly overgrown with wool. In long-haired toy terriers, after three years of age, the fringe completely covers the tips and outer edges of the ear canal.
A short, tight spine grows on the head and front of the limbs of such dogs. The back of the limbs of long-haired toy terriers is decorated with feathers. The paws of the dogs are covered with elongated, silky hair that completely covers the claws. Long-haired toy terriers have a plume on the tail.
Character and Behavior
Dogs of the Russian Toy Terrier breed have an energetic temperament and a benevolent disposition. They quickly get used to their owners and demonstrate boundless dedication. Dogs of this breed are very fond of attention and suffer if left alone for a long time.
Despite the fact that the Russian Toy Terrier looks like a toy, they endowed with a fearless character and is always ready to warn of danger with his loud barking bark. A brave and loyal dog of this breed is ready to protect its owner at any time, although it cannot be a full-fledged guard because of its dwarf size.
On a note. An important and unpleasant feature of the Toy Terrier breed is the psychoemotional instability of its representatives. It manifests itself in increased excitability with a long barking bark. Dogs of this breed are easily “turned on” and calm down slowly.
The friendly nature of the Toy Terrier allows him to get along well with older school children. But in families with kids it is undesirable to take dogs of this breed. Russian Toy has a fragile constitution and is easily injured from careless handling.
Care and Maintenance
Small dogs, the Russian Toy Terrier, do not have an undercoat and do not tolerate cold weather well. Therefore, representatives of the breed cannot be lodged on the street, even if there is an insulated booth. Caring for them is simple and comes down to basic hygiene, adequate feeding, and timely veterinary assistance.
You can feed the Russian Toy with both industrial and natural food. With the first option, the owners have less trouble, and the fear that the pet will not receive any nutrients disappears.
The main thing is to choose a high-quality super-premium or holistic class food for miniature breeds, in which there are no dubious ingredients like soy, corn or dyes.
Products of the following brands meet the stated requirements best of all:
- Brit Care;
- Royal Canin;
With a natural type of feeding, 60-70% of the total diet should be lean meats such as chicken, beef, or turkey. Before giving the meat to the dog, it is kept in the freezer for several days, cut into pieces, and scalded with boiling water.
Also, the following is introduced into the diet of the Russian Toy Terrier:
- dairy products.
So that the dog of this breed is not fat and remains healthy and active longer, pickles, smoked meats, river fish, tubular bones, sausages and pastries, mushrooms, legumes, onions, and any food from the master’s table are forever excluded from its menu.
Walking and physical activity
Despite its fragile build and diminutive size, the little Russian Toy Terrier needs regular exposure to the fresh air. An active lifestyle and moderate exercise will help this breed to maintain muscle tone and prevent the development of obesity.
On a note. The Russian Toy Terrier breed of dogs is prone to injury. Therefore, during walks, pets must be protected from jumps, falls and contact with larger brethren.
Due to the lack of an undercoat, the Russian Toy Terrier is susceptible to sudden temperature changes and does not tolerate dampness. Therefore, in cold or rainy weather, walking the dog should be minimized. And before leaving the house, the Russian Toy Terrier should be dressed up in a warm, waterproof overall.
Training and education
The Russian Toy Terrier lends itself well to training. But, like other small breeds of dogs, it skillfully uses its cuteness, and if the owner gives a slack, it can feel permissiveness and turn into a real tyrant. Therefore, raising a pet should be dealt with from the first days of its appearance in the house. As soon as a toy terrier puppy adapts to new conditions, they begin to accustom him to a certain routine and adherence to established rules.
In order not to spoil the baby, it’s forbidden from the very beginning:
- bark for no reason;
- jump on people;
- damage property;
- sleep on upholstered furniture.
In order for an adult Russian Toy Terrier to adequately react to various stimuli, it’s socialized from puppyhood. For this, the baby is often walked in busy places, introduced to strangers and other animals.
For comfortable living together, the Russian Toy Terrier should be taught basic commands. It is desirable that by the age of 12 months the dog be able to:
- walk side by side on a leash;
- return to the owner at the first call;
- execute the commands “Sit!”, “Place!”, “go” and “Stop!”
To keep the Russian toy looking neat, it’s provided with proper care:
- The eyes and ears of the dog are regularly wiped with a cotton swab moistened with herbal decoction or boiled water. They are also examined for uncharacteristic discharge. If pus or redness is found, the animal is shown to the veterinarian.
- The claws of the Russian Toy are shortened twice a month with a claw cutter, trying not to touch living tissues.
- The dog’s teeth are cleaned 2-3 times a week with a special paste applied to a soft brush or silicone nozzle.
- Short-haired and shaggy toy terriers require different grooming. A smooth-haired dog is bathed once a month and combed out weekly with a special glove. A fluffy toy terrier is more demanding on grooming. The shaggy dog is combed out daily and bathed twice a month. Also, a hairy toy terrier needs a regular haircut.
Vaccinations and disease propensity
The Russian toy has good heredity and relatively good health. But due to the structural features of the skeleton and eyes in the breed, there is a predisposition to such pathologies:
- instability of the cervical vertebra;
- necrosis of the femoral head;
- dislocated knee;
- retinal atrophy;
To protect the dog from viral and infectious diseases, it is regularly vaccinated against rabies, distemper, leptospirosis, and enteritis. The first vaccination is carried out at the age of 8-9 weeks and is repeated after 21 days. Subsequently, a large toy terrier is vaccinated once a year.
Important! Before routine vaccination, the dog must be subjected to antiparasitic treatment.
The Toy Terrier breed belongs to the category of long-livers. The average lifespan of these dogs is 12-15 years.
Caring for a Russian Toy Terrier puppy
Russian Toy Terrier puppies are born blind and deaf. At first, they feed on breast milk and do not need additional care. When toy terrier puppies open their eyes and begin to crawl out of the nest, the breeder is connected to look after them.
Newborn toy terrier puppies should weigh 70-80 g. Their further growth is uneven. And in order to control this process, you need to know the approximate norms.
The height of a Russian toy terrier at 1 month should be within 2-4 inches. A puppy of a toy terrier at 2 months grows up to 4-6 inches. The growth of a Russian toy terrier at 4 months averages 7-9 inches.
How to Choose the Right Toy Terrier Puppy?
Russian Toy Terrier puppies are not rare. Russian specialized nurseries are successfully operating in Moscow and other large cities. Therefore, the search for a dog should not stretch out for an indefinite period.
To choose a toy terrier puppy, find out in advance if the breeder can present documents that confirm the origin of the baby and allow you to accurately determine the age. A thoroughbred dog must have a metric that can later be exchanged for a pedigree.
When choosing a puppy, it is recommended to pay attention to the appearance of the baby. A purebred toy puppy has certain qualities. It must have:
- thin paws;
- round, slightly protruding eyes;
- clean mucous membranes;
- soft belly;
- smooth skin without wounds and scratches.
Whom to choose, a toy terrier Make or a Female?
When choosing between opposite-sex puppies, you need to analyze all the advantages and disadvantages of each of them:
- A toy terrier male looks larger and more respectable than a female. It has a more assertive and energetic character. During puberty, it begins to mark the territory and acquires a tendency to shoot.
- The toy terrier female is distinguished by a graceful physique and has a soft, docile character. It’s easier to train and is more loyal to its owners.
Conclusion: Russian Toy Terrier – pros and cons of the breed
When planning to buy a puppy, you need to study in advance all the pros and cons of the Toy Terrier breed.
|Miniature dimensions||Exposure to injury|
|Friendly and outgoing disposition||A tendency to be empty|
|High intelligence||Intolerance to cold weather and dampness|
Russian Toy – small decorative dogs with a touching appearance and stubborn character. They are undemanding to care for and will become excellent companions for those who are ready to turn a blind eye to their minor flaws.