This section is from the book "Sporting Dogs. Their Points And Management In Health, And Disease", by Frank Townend Barton. Also available from Amazon: Sporting Dogs; Their Points and Management in Health and Disease.
1. The General Appearance of the White West Highland Terrier is that of a small, game, hardy-looking Terrier, possessed with no small amount of self-esteem, with a varminty appearance, strongly built, deep in chest and back ribs, straight back and powerful quarters, on muscular legs, and exhibiting in a marked degree a great combination of strength and activity. The Coat should be about in. long, white in colour, hard, with plenty of soft under coat, and no tendency to wave or curl. The Tail should be as straight as possible, and carried gaily, and covered with hard hair, but not bushy. The Skull should not be too narrow, being in proportion to the terribly powerful jaw, but must be narrow between the ears. The Ears should be as small and sharp-pointed as possible, and carried tightly up, but must be either erect or semi-erect, and both ears must be exactly alike. The Eyes of moderate size, dark hazel in colour, widely placed, rather sunk or deep-set, with a sharp, bright, intelligent expression. The Muzzle should be proportionately long and powerful, gradually tapering towards the nose. The Nose, Roof of Mouth, and Pads of Feet distinctly black in colour.
Very important and seldom seen to perfection : must be double-coated. The outer coat consists of hard hair, about 2 1/2 ins. long, and free from any curl. The under coat, which resembles fur, is short, soft, and close. Open coats are objectionable.
Dogs to weigh from 14 lbs. to 18 lbs., and bitches from 12 lbs. to 16 lbs., and measure from 8 ins. to 12 ins. at the shoulder.
Should not be too narrow, being in proportion to his powerful jaw, proportionally long, slightly domed, and gradually tapering to the eyes, between which there should be a slight indentation or stop. Eyebrows heavy. The hair on the skull to be from 3/4 in. to 1 in. long, fairly hard.
Widely set apart, medium size, dark hazel in colour, slightly sunk in the head, sharp and intelligent, which, looking from under the heavy eyebrows, give a piercing look. Full eyes and also light-coloured eyes are very objectionable.
Should be powerful. The jaws level and powerful, and teeth square or evenly met, well set, and large for the size of the dog.
Small, carried erect or semi-erect, but never drop, and should be carried tightly up. The semi-erect ear should drop nicely over at the tips, the break being about three-quarters up the ear, and both forms of ears should terminate in a sharp point. The hair on them should be short, smooth (velvety), and they should not be cut. The ears should be free from any fringe at the top. Round-pointed, broad, and large ears are objectionable, also ears too heavily covered with hair.
Muscular, and nicely set on sloping shoulders.
Very deep, with breadth in comparison to the size of the dog.
Compact, straight back, ribs deep and well arched in the upper half of rib, presenting a flattish side appearance. Loins broad and strong. Hindquarters strong, muscular, and wide across the top.
Both fore and-hind-legs should be short and muscular. The shoulder-blades should be comparatively broad, and well sloped backwards. The points of the shoulder-blades should be closely knit into the backbone, so that very little movement of them should be noticeable when the dog is walking. The elbow should be close in to the body, both when moving or standing, thus causing the fore-leg to be well placed in under the shoulder. The fore-legs should be straight and thickly covered with short, hard hair. The hind-legs should be short and sinewy. The thighs very muscular, and not too wide apart. The hocks bent and well set in under the body, so as to be fairly close to each other, either when standing, walking, or running (trotting), and, when standing, the hind-legs, from the point of the hock down to the fetlock joint, should be straight or perpendicular, and not far apart. The fore feet are larger than the hind ones, are round, proportionate in size, strong, thickly padded, and covered with short, hard hair. The foot must point straight forward. The hind feet are smaller, not quite as round as fore feet, and thickly padded. The under surface of the pads of feet, and all the nails, should be distinctly black in colour. Hocks too much bent (cow hocks) detracts from the general appearance. Straight hocks are weak : both kinds are undesirable, and should be guarded against.
6 ins. or 7 ins. long, covered with hard hair (no feather), as straight as possible, carried gaily, but not curled over back. A long tail is objectionable.
Should be free, straight, and easy all round. In front, the leg should be freely extended forward by the shoulder. The hind movement should be free, strong, and close. The hocks should be freely flexed and drawn close in under the body, so that, when moving off the foot, the body is thrown or pushed forward with some force. Stiff, stilty movement behind is very objectionable.
Any silkiness, wave, or tendency to curl is a serious blemish, as is also an open coat.
Any specimens under the minimum weight, or above the maximum weight, are objectionable.
Full or light-coloured.
Round-pointed, drop, broad, and large ears, also ears too heavily covered with hair.
Either under, or overshot and defective teeth.
Legs and Feet