Origins of the American Hairless Terrier On August 12, 1972 a litter of mid-sized Rat Terriers was born. Among the puppies was Josephine, a healthy little girl, except that she was totally hairless! She had silky pink skin with black spots.
Josephine was given to Edwin and Willie Scott in Louisiana. They fell in love with her and wanted to produce more dogs with this hairless trait. She had a wonderful personality and was very clean -- no shedding, no doggy odor, and no fleas. The Scotts were told that this could not be done, but they were persistent and decided to breed her anyway.
In her first litter, she had four puppies and one of them was hairless! This hairless pup was named Gypsy. Later, she was bred several additional times, but she had only coated litters. What a disappointment. When Josephine was nine years old and still in good health, she was bred for the last time. This litter had four puppies and two of them were hairless. The hairless female was named Jemima and the hairless male was named Snoopy. The two coated pups were Petunia and Queenie.
All pups from Josephine's last litter were later bred and that was the beginning of a carefully planned breeding program at Trout Creek Kennel. With the help and support from veterinarians, the Scotts established this new hairless dog breed, which they named the "American Hairless Terrier".
This information is available across the web on a variety of sites. Additional information can be found on the Scott's Trout Creek Kennel web-site.
What is an American Hairless Terrier (AHT) Being terriers, AHT's are loving, playful, lively, alert and intelligent dogs. They are completely hairless except for eyebrows and whiskers. Their skin, which is usually pink with black, gray, brown or red spots of various sizes, is warm and very soft to the touch. This soft skin makes them especially suitable for allergy sufferers. The hairless gene in the AHT's is autosomal recessive and not semi-lethal dominant like in the other hairless dog breeds. The AHT's have a full set of teeth and typically have no skin problems related to the hairlessness. They make loving and delightful companions!
Getting to know an American Hairless Terrier (AHT) AHTs are very personable dogs and they have so many ways to communicate with you. They will wag their tail faster than you ever thought possible as soon as they see you to show their delight at your presence. When frighten they will bark fiercely to bolster their confidence, but you'll know how they truly feel as they are sure to tuck their tail between their legs and visibly shiver! Excitement can be seen in the wrinkles of their face and the positioning of their ears. You'll see their ears laid back when they go into protection mode, but their ears stand straight and tall when they are most excited or when they've heard the slight sound.
The first American Hairless Terrier was born into a litter of Rat Terriers (RT) as the result of a natural gene mutation. There are other RT and AHT sites on the web you might want to visit to learn more about them.
Our American Hairless Terriers (AHT) Hershey and Kisses are our AHTS. They are very smart and have many wonderful characteristics to their personalities. They are very loving and simply love cuddling and snuggling and enjoy your body heat. They are both very playful and very sweet. Hershey especially likes to be a clown. He does a wonderful army crawl and often greets us with a two-paw "High Five"! American Hairless Terriers are full of energy and full of fun. Hershey and Kisses love to go everywhere with us and often do. They love to travel in the car, go camping with us and even enjoy going out on our boat on the lake. They will sleep in our arms or in our bed under the blanket. They are full of spunk and like to play fetch and they can run like a greyhound. They are very protective, but usually love people after the first five minutes of "getting to know you". They like to play with children. They learn commands very easily, but they do know that they have minds of their own. Both of our AHTs have been very easy to housetrain, but sometimes do have accidents when we have forgotten to let them outside. I often tell our children that Hershey and Kisses have been trained, but we have not quite trained ourselves!!
Our AHTs are very devoted companions. They skin is very smooth and is very pleasant to touch and pet. Their skin is easy to care for, but it will burn in the sun without sun protection. We have found this to be a very small price to pay for the enjoyment they bring us. Our AHTs are bathed at least once a weekly. AHTs have no hair and in many locations cannot be outdoor dogs. Except in the very southern most United States, AHTs must be housed indoors to survive. Without the protection of any hair, they would easily succumb if kept outside during the cold winters in northern states. During the summer they require either clothing or suntain location and in the winter they need a sweater to keep them warm when it is cold. You'll enjoy them most in your home and on your lap!