Cesky Terrier

Known as the Cesky, Czech and Bohemian Terrier, this small dog breed is a relatively new breed created in Czechoslovakia. With moderate exercise needs, a loving personality and easy to train, the Cesky Terrier is a perfect fit for first-time dog owners. 


The Czech Republic has a long distinguished history of breeding dogs which dates back to the 14th century. The King of Bohemia Charles IV kept a large kennel that was internationally renowned.

Created in 1948 by a Czech breeder called Frantisek Horak, the Cesky was a cross between a Scottish Terrier and Sealyham Terrier. Horak liked the hunting skills of the Scottish Terriers and the personality and white coat of the Sealyham Terrier. 

Horak’s ambitious breeding program created a terrier that could go to the ground and flush out rats from small spaces while also working in packs as a gentle and obedient retriever. He produced the Cesky that had excellent scenting abilities and a soft grey coat. 

The Cesky breed was introduced to the United States in the late 1980s and registered with the Kennel Club (UK) in 1990 and the American Kennel Club in 2011.

Physical Characteristics

This small muscular dog has short legs, a slightly extended body and a topline that rises somewhat over the rump. The bearded face is on a long wedge-shaped head with drooping ears. 

The dog’s coat is soft, delicate and silky. The hair at the forepart of the head forms a fall and a beard. The fur is also longer under the chest, belly and lower part of the legs. 

Cesky puppies are born chocolate brown or black. Regular coat colors are all shades of gray, including charcoal, platinum gray and light coffee. There might be darker pigmentation on the head, ears, feet and tail. Some Ceskys have white, brown and yellow markings on the beard, cheeks, neck, chest, tail and limbs. 


An adult Cesky Terrier stands 10 to 13 inches (25 to 33cm) at the shoulder with a weight ranging from 13 to

30 pounds (5 to 13kg). 

Character & abilities

Cesky dogs have a mellow personality and are affectionate and playful with their human families. They are considered calmer and more reserved than other terrier breeds. 

They are reserved towards strangers but loyal to their families. They have instincts that keep them keen and alert of their environment. Cesky dogs will bark to raise the alarm, but they don’t typically serve as guard dogs. 

Loving and devoted, these small dogs get along well with children and live harmoniously with other pets, primarily if raised together. 

Early socialization during puppyhood involves taking walks and trip to dog-friendly places so that the Cesky can take in new sights, smells while meeting other dogs and new people. 

Trainability & Intelligence

Cesky dogs are brilliant, feisty and sensible dogs. The instinctual high drive to go after prey will need proper training to be suppressed. 

Although the Cesky can be a little stubborn, the dog is easily trainable than other terrier breeds. This small dog breed is active enough to participate in dog competitions like agility, obedience and tracking. 

A firm hand is required when training but with positive, reward-based approaches. Any hostile or harsh training methods will cause the Cesky to shut down. 

Housetraining might be challenging in the beginning. The Cesky needs to have an established routine with regular access to the outdoors, like in the morning, after meals, after naps and before bedtime.  

Exercise Needs & Nutrition

Cesky dogs can be energetic but only need moderate amounts of exercise. Daily walks and play sessions for around an hour or less will keep the dog happy. 

When walking in open areas that are not fenced, the Cesky needs to be kept on a leash. If the dog catches sight or scent of what is perceived as prey, the Cesky may not be able to keep from running off to catch it. 

This small dog has a hearty appetite and loves to eat. Food intake needs to be monitored instead of leaving food out in the bowl. 


This terrier has a soft coat that doesn’t shed as much as terriers with harder coats. The Cesky’s coat requires weekly brushing and regular baths. Because this dog is not typical, correct grooming practices can be guided by a professional groomer that the breeder refers you to.

Instead of plucking any dead hairs by hand, regular trimming with clippers is the best way to maintain a healthy coat, and this can be done every six to eight weeks. 

The Cesky tends to grow a lot of fur in the ears, which need to be removed during grooming to prevent ear infections. Any excess ear wax and other debris should be cleaned out regularly. 

Living Conditions & Adaptability

The Cesky Terrier’s small size and minimal needs make this small dog adaptable to living in an apartment. The Cesky is happy to cuddle up on the couch or play in the yard with any family member. 

The Cesky doesn’t typically suffer from separation anxiety, but the dog should not be left in the house alone for extended periods. If left to romp around in a fenced yard, the Cesky might dig around. Chasing a ball and retrieving it can help to expend that energy and avoid any destructive behavior. 


All dogs might inherit health problems. This small dog breed has a small gene pool that has the following genetic health concerns:

  • Patellar luxation
  • Cardiac disease
  • Progressive retinal atrophy
  • Cataracts
  • Scotty Cramp – a neurological condition that causes spasms and affects movement
  • Obesity 

The Cesky Terrier has a lifespan of 10 to 15 years.  


The Cesky Terrier was initially bred for hunting but is an excellent companion dog that adapts well to living in any home. This dog has a well-balanced personality that is pleasant and cheerful.

At All The Small Dog Breeds, we have many more small dog descriptions to help you learn more about these beautiful little friends. Whether you’re looking to adopt or learn more about your current breed, our articles have all the current information you need to find the ideal small dog that suits your needs and lifestyle. 


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