Description: These dogs are thought to be the smartest herders around. They’re equally adept at herding sheep or cattle. A Shetland Sheepdog’s herding instinct is very strong. Because of its small size, the beautiful Sheltie can be happy in the city or the country.
These intelligent, loving, and sensitive dogs become deeply attached to their families. Shelties are famous for their learning ability. Besides being smart, they want to please. Training is a pleasure; a light hand is all that is required. Don’t be tempted to toughen up so much when the stubbornness shows. They usually get along well with gentle and thoughtful children.
Shelties startle easy, so keep things calm. These dogs are lively and love to play. They may bark a lot and are prone to chase anything that moves.
Height: 13 - 16 inches
Weight: 14 - 16 lbs.
Colors: Sable, tricolor, blue merle, black and white and black and tan.
Coat: Outer coat of long, straight, harsh-textured hair; soft, short-haired close undercoat.
Temperament: Active, intelligent, loyal, affectionate.
With Children: Yes, as long as children are not too rowdy.
With Pets: Yes, gets along well with other dogs, cats and small animals.
Special Skills: Sheepdog or family pet.
Watch-dog: High Very Low
Guard-dog: Very Low
Care and Exercise: Regular brushing is important. Mist the coat lightly with water before you begin and tease out mates. Check behind the ears, hindquarters and beneath the shoulders for tangles. Use a comb sparingly. Shedding is twice a year. Bathe or dry shampoo when necessary. Needs plenty of active exercise.
Training: The Sheltie is not difficult to train but he will enjoy time spent in obedience or agility classes.
Learning Rate: Very High, Obedience - Very High, Problem Solving - Very High
Activity: Indoors - High, Outdoors - Very High
Living Environment: He will adapt to small living quarters if given daily sufficient exercise making him good in a suburban home or an apartment. An owner of a Sheltie must be able to give him a considerable amount of grooming.
Health Issues: Generally healthy, may suffer from cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy.
Life Span: 12 - 14 Years
Litter Size: 4 - 6
Country of Origin: Great Britain
History: Claiming ancestry from the Collies of Scotland the Shetland Sheepdog arrived from the Shetland Islands to mainland England before World War I. The Sheltie has been bred true in the Shetland Islands off the north coast of Scotland for more than 135 years.
First Registered by the AKC: 1911
AKC Group: Herding Group