It was created in Australia at the end of the 19th century, its ancestors being the native dogs Sidney Silky, Dandie Dinmond Terrier, Yorkshire Terrier and the Cairn Terrier. The breed was acknowledged in 1933. It is found all over the world, especially in Australia. It is famous mainly for catching poisonous snakes, by grabbing them by the neck.
It is a small-sized dog, with a rather longer than taller body. The head is long, strong, with the skull equal in length with the muzzle, with a fine stop. The eyes are small and dark. The ears are small, with pointed tips, kept vertical, wide apart and with little hair on them but with a tuft of hair between them, on the forehead. The tail is docked at half its length and is kept high, almost vertical. The fur is double-layered, with a soft, fluffy first layer and an outer layer with long, rough, straight hair. Around its neck the hair forms a mane and it has furry legs.
It is a lively, active, clever, brave, alert, confident and curious dog by nature. Devoted and friendly to its family, it has trouble accepting strangers. It gets along well with children if they do not bother it. It must be taught to live with other household animals from an early age, to avoid future conflicts.
This dog's fur must be brushed weekly and trimmed two-three times a year.
These dogs can easily adapt to different living conditions, but they should have the possibility of running and playing together with a loving family. They need socialization and training.
It needs a firm, consistent training, that doesn't let it have its way. It likes activity, walking, running and playing.
It is a very good pest hunter and a cheerful companion.