Shetland Sheepdog

Shetland Sheepdog​ - Small Dog Breed

Quick Facts

OriginScotland

Height: 13”-16”

Weight: 14-27 lbs

Color: Black & white, Black, White & tan, Blue merle & white, Blue merle, White & tan, Sable & white, Sable, merle & tan

Lifespan12-14 years

Temperament: Spirited, intelligent, playful, loyal

 

Overview

Shetland Sheepdogs always look like they just left the salon. Their flowing double coat and happy gait make them a sight to behold. They are sweet, funny and make excellent family dogs. Sometimes they get so excited to see the puppy friends they spin and spin and spin.

Shelties started as farmer’s helpers. They scared away hungry birds and sheep out of the farmer’s garden. They are loving and devoted. They are intelligent and eager to please, making them excellent at training.

Celebrity Owners

Miley Cyrus

Fun Facts

  1. Shelties are the 6th smartest dog

Health

Shelties are overall healthy dogs. Some health issues you should be mindful of include:

  • Hip dysplasia: This condition is when the socket joint in the hip isn’t large enough, or more often too shallow, for the femoral head.
  • Hypothyroidism: The thyroid gland, sitting at the top of the windpipe in the back of the neck, is controlled by the pituitary gland at the base of the brand. Hypothyroidism would cause the metabolism to slow down.
  • Von Willebrand disease: Caused by a deficiency of von Willebrand factor, a protein in the blood that helps platelets, this disease is a bleeding disorder.
  • Dermatomyositis: Otherwise known as NORD, this inflammatory, red skin rash is caused by muscle weakness.
  • Collie eye anomaly: Also known as Choroidal Hypoplasia, CEA is a genetic condition typically found amond Collies and other herding dogs.
  • Progressive retinal atrophy: Atrophy is a wearing or wasting away of a body part. In this case, it is the retina in the eye, which eventually leads to blindness.
  • Gallbladder mucocele: Caused by a backed up cyst duct, this condition is where mucin-laden bile accumulates, which can lead to bile duct obstruction.
  • Epilepsy: The most common neurological disease in dogs, seizures affect about 1% of dogs.

While you always hope your pet will live a long and healthy life, it is always a good idea to invest in pet health insurance.

Keeping your dog’s mouth clean and problem free goes a long way to your pup’s overall health. Dental hygiene can be the cause or can be the byproduct of other serious health issues.

Visual inspections can be performed to keep track of the signs of potentially waning oral health. These signs can be anything from bad breath to abnormal chewing to loss of appetite.

Keeping ahead of these warning signs can pay dividends. A preventative approach can delay and stop many of the common dental problems from arising.

Oral health can be tackled in five basic steps:

  1. Brushing your dog’s teeth to prevent an undesirable buildup of plaque
  2. Feed your dog a diet where the high quality dog food has dental benefits
  3. Regularly give your dog dental toys and treats
  4. Use mouthwash, to help where brushing misses
  5. At the sign of any abnormalities, consult a vet. You can even do it virtually, from the convenience of your home.

Dogs are just like humans in that they can experience anxiety. The degree to which they are susceptible to anxiety and how they deal with anxiety is breed specific. Left unchecked, initial signs of anxiety could give way to an anxiety disorder. The symptoms of anxiety disorders can lead to a myriad of behavior issues.

Knowing the signs and symptoms will best equip you to keep ahead of it and to nip it in the bud at the earliest signs. There are options available to help with anxiety.

Are You Covered When Your Pup Gets Sick?

Grooming

Shelties have a long thick double coat. You will need to thoroughly brush your pup several times a week to prevent matts and tangles. While your pup will shed moderately all year, during seasonal shedding periods increase brushing to daily to help control the mess around your house.

Do not shave your pup as you will ruin your pup’s natural insulation from heat and cold. Wash your pup every 6-8 weeks. Keep their eyes and ears clean and clear of debris. Clip your pup’s nails regularly and brush their teeth several times per week.

Cost

$850 – $2,000

Exercise

Shelties need up to an hour of exercise per day. Your pup will enjoy accompanying you on long walks, easy jogs or at the park for fetch.

Nutrition

Your Shelties will eat around 2 cups of food per day. The exact requirements for your dog will vary with age and activity level. Be mindful that little dogs that receive lots of treats and or table scraps end up overweight. A little dog that is overweight is significantly more likely to develop other health issues.

We’ve taken a look at some premium dog foods, high in nutrition here.

Are You Feeding Your Dog The Best Food?

Training

As with all pups, early socialization with humans and other pups is essential. Shelties tend to nip, an old herding instinct, so early training is key to start weeding out this habit. Always keep training fun and full of positive feedback. Shelties are sensitive to your tone and will shut down when you are being harsh. This breed also tends to bark, be sure to dissuade this during early training. 

Proper training is essential to ensuring the safety of your dog and those around you. Having your dog come when they should, and in general having them listen is something you want to address early in your pup’s life, as it will pay dividends down the line. There are many tried and true training programs to accomplish this training – faster and better than you might think!

Unless you’re living on a farm, or have the space, a yipping dog, or one that barks all day when you are gone could be an issue with the neighbors and/or landlord. Historically, dogs would bark to communicate with the rest of the pack when hunting and bark as a warning shot to predators eyeing up their flock. Barking is deep rooted in dogs and manifests itself in many ways and for a variety of reasons.

Just like any habit or instinct, there are effective ways you can train this issue away.

The Best Dog Vitamins and Supplements To Keep Your Pup Healthy. Period.

Supplements

A solid Glucosamine Supplement for hips and joints will go a long way to helping your furry friend.

Other helpful supplements include full-spectrum hemp oil or CBD oil. Fish oil skin and coat supplement.

Ensuring a comprehensive preventative vitamin and mineral plan is essential to keeping your dog healthy. Truth is, there are vitamins and minerals that your dog needs, but doesn’t produce naturally. While many of these vitamins and minerals can be found in your dog’s current diet and dog food, the question becomes, are there enough vitamins to ensure they aren’t deficient.

Poor nutrition can lead to some of the most common health issues, such as weak joints, compromised immunity, increased allergies, and low energy.

Vitamins play a vital role in your pet’s health and overall life expectancy. Here are some multivitamin and joint relief options.

As regulations around marijuana have eased, the emergence of CBD oils for humans and dogs have sprung up.

Just to begin to dispel the negative stigma, CBD extract comes from Hemp, marijuana’s cousin. Unlike its cousin, there are no psychoactive qualities in CBD oil. An emerging number of clinical and institutional studies have shown the wide variety of healing qualities in CBD, including pain management, and the containment of seizures and epileptic episodes.

Explore this remedy further to see all the health benefits that have transformed the lives of so many dogs to date.

Have You Tried CBD For You Dog's Health?

The Good

  • Good with kids
  • Highly intelligent

The "Ruff"

  • Prone to barking
  • Needs lots of exercise