This is worse than adopting a baby - getting a puppy. My oldest calls with a list, "We will need a carrier, a collar, a leash, and dog toys. Oh, and I've already called the breeder to see about what kind of food the puppy is on so we will have some of that. And, I've called the airline and made her a reservation to fly with me, so that's taken care of." "What if you don't get her?" "The ticket is refundable. Don't worry. I made sure of that." She had made sure of everything.
I had not gotten past how much this was going to cost and was I making the right decision and my daughter, who always has her senses about her, is moving on to the practical matters at hand. How did I ever raise rear a child. It's amazing my children survived if I was this way when they were little. The idea of a leash, collar, or food had not crossed my mind.
"I'm still worried about making sure it is a Norwich Terrier you are bringing home, not a Cairn." "Well, I'll make that decision when I see the puppies. What is the difference?" "I know Norwich's tails are docked, but then they can easily dock the tails of a Cairn to pass them off. I'll get you the breed standards." "You know me. I'm not afraid to walk away if I see that something is not right."
So I do my research. Norwichs have a wiry coat, prick ears, foxy expression, stand 10 inches tall, weigh 10-12 pounds, and come in colors of red, wheaton, tan and black or grizzle. The Cairns on the other hand, have a wiry coat, prick ears, foxy expression, stand 10 inches tall, weigh 13-14 pounds, and come in colors: any color but white, with dark ears, muzzle and tail tip desirable.
The only distinct difference every site refers to is their disposition. Norwichs tend to be very loving, affectionate, and friendly both as puppies and adults. While Cairns tend to be friendly and playful but not truly affectionate dogs. Could this be more difficult? Why dear God, have I chosen the one breed that is hard to find, has difficult breeders, is not cheap, and easy to counterfeit.