Dog Breeds

Shetland Sheepdog

We elaborate about Shetland Sheepdog breed with Shetland Sheepdog temperament, training, appearance, weight, life spam and much more information about this breed.

Shetland Sheepdog Other Names:


Shetland Sheepdog Weight

14-16 lbs.

A typical dog weighs about 14-16 pounds, but a large one can as much as 35 or 40 pounds.

Shetland Sheepdog Size

This dog stands between 13 and 16 inches tall at the shoulder. but it’s not unusual for them to be over- or undersize.

Average life span

12 – 14 years.

Shetland Sheepdog Appearance

The Sheltie is a small dog and a separate breed in its own right, although in appearance it is similar to the Large Rough-Haired Collie.

Shetland Sheepdog Temperament

The Sheltie is a small, strong, agile breed and a fast runner. Likes to please and craves human attention. They are intensely loyal, loving, intelligent, fast learners, easy to train, and highly obedient. They are good with children and other pets, making them ideal companions for the family. They distrust strangers so they make good watchdogs.


It can be very barking, so proper training at an early age is highly recommended to prevent barking from becoming a behavior problem.


The Sheltie is a breed that requires a thorough brushing at least once a week due to having a double coat of hair. In the period of hair loss, brushing is needed daily. Grooming must begin as a puppy so that it is part of their routine and thus avoid difficulties. The earlier you start, the easier it will be for both of you.


Exercise needs are moderate, a good daily walk is sufficient.


Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA): The disorder occurs commonly in Collie breeds, including the Border Collie, Rough Collie, Smooth Collie, and Shetland Sheepdog, but has been found in Australian Shepherds. This disorder causes “blind spots” in the dog’s eyes. This condition is not a life-threatening disease and animals are capable of a normal and full life. It is only through screening and selective breeding that this problem can be eliminated. The best way to avoid this problem is to buy a puppy from parents who have been registered in the Canine Eyes Foundation (CERF) Registry, and have never produced affected pups.

Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)

It is a group of diseases in dogs that involve all the gradual deterioration of the retina. It is diagnosed by retinoscopic examination using an electroretinogram (ERG). Early in the disease, affected dogs begin to suffer from night blindness and lack the ability to see in low light and later day vision also fails. As their vision deteriorates, affected dogs can adjust to their disability very well, as long as their environment remains constant. Some breeds are affected early in life, while in other breeds, PRA develops much later.

Hip malformation or dysplasia

results in a poor fit between the head of the femur bone and the acetabulum of the hip. This condition can be alleviated by surgery, although with consequences for dogs and owners since dogs with dysplasia usually produce puppies with the same condition. Buyers should ask if both the sire and dam of the puppy they are interested in have been recently tested and are free of hip dysplasia. Don’t take yes for an answer without seeing a certificate and ask for a copy to take to your vet.


It is an endocrine disease that results in the abnormally low production of thyroid hormones. Symptoms include lethargy, mental depression, weight gain, and a tendency to seek warm places, it can affect the coat and skin, causing hair loss and excessive dandruff.


It is a seizure disorder that can appear in this breed. The seizures range from a distant gaze or contractions in one part of the face to the pet falling on its side, barking, grinding its teeth, urinating, defecating and moving its limbs. Seizures usually come on suddenly and end in the same way, and can last from seconds to minutes. The disorder has no known cause, however a veterinarian’s examination is important to determine the general health of the pet and to ensure that there is no underlying disease that may be causing the seizures. Treatment may include anti-seizure medications. Always seek the advice of a veterinarian.

shetland sheepdogHistory

The Shetland Sheepdog originated in the Shetland Islands, off the North East Coast of Scotland. The job of this breed was to take care of the small flocks of sheep. The living conditions on this small island were very harsh and the shepherds needed a dog that was intelligent, brave, strong, loyal, obedient and docile, with a coat that would allow it to work in extreme conditions, whether it was rain or snow.

Shelties are believed to be descended from an Icelandic breed called the Yakkie, (which was brought to the Shetland Islands by whaling fleets), the Norwegian Buhund, and the Little Collie. Some theories also include the breed of the King Charles Spaniel. The original of this breed is known as the Shetland Collie and is not supposed to exceed 12 inches or 14 pounds according to the Shetland Origin Book created in 1908. As Shelties were bred in Scotland and England, breeders of Collie objected to the name and was changed to Shetland Sheepdog and it remains so today.

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