The Scottish Terrier has what is perhaps the strongest and boldest personality of any dog among the terriers. Bred to be an aggressive hunter, he can be strikingly loyal or stubbornly independent all at the same time. Their possessive nature and breeding might also lead to aggressive behavior around other animals that will need to be addressed. Indeed, there are many things to know about Scottie temperament that sets them apart from other breeds.
The Scottie is an independent and self-reliant breed. This is because their history often had them performing vital work that usually occurred away from human supervision. As such, they are known to have a great deal of determination and were famously granted their nickname "the Diehard" for this reason. While this can be a positive aspect as it makes them a very interesting breed to own, it also means that a lot of extra care is going to need to be taken with training. Consistent, ever-present discipline is going to have to be a part of the Scottie's early life or else the more willful parts of their personality can become too dominant and make them unsuitable for comfortable domestic life.
The Scottie's independent nature can sometimes make them appear aloof or distant from their owners. This is an unfair appraisal, however. A Scottie that has had sufficient bonding with his or her owner can be very loyal and protective, to the point of defending the owner from perceived danger and sticking by him or her in times of need. This can sometimes be seen as aggressive behavior, but it's important to understand it from the Scottie's perspective. Because they are so loyal and attached to their owners, they can easily become dispirited if suddenly neglected or reprimanded too harshly. The Scottie is definitely a breed whose personality demands respect and attention.
Scotties are known to make good watchdogs because of their hunting dog tendency to be wary and alert. They'll often bark at strangers and even remain somewhat guarded around people they've met before if they don't see them very often. If you want to take the edge off of this behavior, it's going to be necessary to introduce your Scottie to a lot of other animals and people at a very young age.
A Scottie who hasn't been acclimated to human touch can sometimes be disagreeable, especially if his ears or feet are handled. Make sure that anyone who comes into contact with your dog, especially young children, know about this.
The Scottie's independent and willful temperament should ultimately not be viewed as a fault but rather as an opportunity to enjoy a pet with a truly unique and rewarding personality.