Shetland Sheepdog

Sheltie, Shelties

The Shetland Sheepdog is a beautiful dog with very gentle and quiet characteristics. He is of great beauty and has an excellent character, which makes him a wonderful life companion for all.

Height 35 to 42 cm
Weight 7 to 11 kg
Life expectancy 12 to 13 years
Hair Loss High
Excercise Need High
Home country United Kingdom (UK)

Quick Overview of the Shetland Sheepdog


  • Very friendly
  • Great intelligence
  • Loves children
  • Adaptability


  • Great beauty with harmonious shapes
  • Exceptional dress
  • Dense and long hair on the body
  • Elongated and dark muzzle


  • Rustic and robust
  • No particular problem
  • Excellent health

Temperament of the Shetland Sheepdog

This very nice dog is endowed with great intelligence. His ancestors have passed on amazing qualities to him. Like most shepherds, he loves children and likes to please his entire family.

The Shetland Sheepdog is a very affectionate and family oriented dog. He loves play, attention and praise. He is very gentle and calm, but enjoys family walks and excursions.

He is highly adaptable and has great aptitude for learning. He is therefore very easy to train, but with gentleness, never with aggressiveness or violence. He can't stand it, either verbally or physically, otherwise he becomes depressed and unhappy.

He needs contact with humans and nature to be happy as well as softness, tenderness, affection and sporting activities. The Shetland Sheepdog is a dog with a stable and consistent character, males as well as females are very easy to train. He is loyal, obedient, affectionate, a little wary of strangers but never shy or aggressive.

berger des shetland personnalité

Breed Appearance

Shetland shepherd

Despite his miniature Collie look, there are some differences between the two of them, especially the shape of the head and the physical proportions. The Shetland Sheepdog is a beautiful, harmoniously shaped dog with a very exceptional coat.


Between 37 and 42 cm (14.57 to 16.54 inches) for the male
Between 35 and 39 cm (13.78 to 15.35 inches) for the female


Between 7 and 11 kg (15.43 to 24.25 pounds) for the male
Between 7 and 11 kg (15.43 to 24.25 pounds) for the female


The coat of the Shetland Sheepdog can be bicolour (black and white, black and tan or blue and white), tricolour (black, white and tan), fawn, coal fawn and white or blue blackbird.


His hair is dense and long on the body but short on the limbs and head. His chest and collar are very marked.


His head has a flat forehead and is very sculpted, slimming towards the muzzle. His eyes are almond shaped and can be blue or dark brown depending on the colour of the dog. His ears, large at the base, are small and have a nice natural fold at about a third of the ear. His muzzle is elongated and dark. His tail, slightly curved, is very long and bushy.

According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group 1, section 1 and is #88

Characteristics of the Shetland Sheepdog

Does this dog suit your lifestyle?

Every dog breed has its own characteristics. However, the actual character of a dog can vary from one to another within the same breed.

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Life in an apartment
Good first dog
Tolerates solitude
Tolerates cold weather
Tolerates hot weather
Friendly with children
Friendly with strangers
Friendly with other animals
Hair loss
Drooling level
Easy to care for
Robust health
Easy to train
Tendency to bark
Tendency to nibble
Instinct to hunt
Adventurous spirit
Energy level
Level of intensity
Need for exercise

Price and monthly budget

Price you can expect to pay for a Shetland Sheepdog puppy: between and
These prices are indicative and may vary from breeder to breeder

Shetland Sheepdog puppies near me

Shetland Sheepdog pictures

Tips About this breed

This gentle dog with a very sociable nature adapts to almost any situation. He does not require particular training as he is a loving, obedient, intelligent and very sociable dog. However, his master should be ready to devote time for his grooming.

Be prepared to hear him bark frequently. He is an excellent guardian and will warn of any danger or intrusion. He is very brave, but hates conflict. He will warn but will retreat immediately if there is a physical conflict.

Whether the owner lives in the city or the country, in a house or an apartment, the dog will be just as happy as long as he is in the presence of his family. No matter what his environment, he will make an excellent companion.

Health of the Shetland Sheepdog

This very hardy and robust little dog has no particular health problems. He really has an excellent health at all times.


Of course, the Shetland Sheepdog's very pretty dress requires extra special care. It is therefore preferable to accustom the puppy, from a young age, to the weekly grooming exercise because it will be so for the rest of his life.

Since the puppy has a shorter coat, it is easy to brush him and two to three times per week will make an excellent training. Once adult, the dog must be combed once a week. However, it is important to make sure to brush thoroughly in order to air the undercoat with each brushing.

It is also necessary to allow more time for grooming during the moulting period to avoid hair accumulation in the coat and reduce hair loss on the floor.

History of this breed

This small dog is native to the Shetland Islands, hence the name Shetland Sheepdog. Contrary to popular belief, he is not a miniature Collie. He has his own breed and is a cross between a Collie and a Shetland Sheepdog, he is only distant cousin of the Miniature Collie.

The harsh environment of the Shetland Archipelago led the inhabitants to create the Shetland Sheepdog. There is little vegetation, the soil is stony and rocky, grass is very thin or scarce, daylight is almost constant, winds sweep the islands continuously, the salty air and the cold add to this already harsh local climate.

The animal species created in the archipelago were all reduced in size in order to facilitate the survival of all species in the region.

The town of Lerwick, the capital of the archipelago, is said to be the place of origin of the breed. Crossbreeding between small long-haired dogs from the archipelago and small specimens of the Great Collie took place in the late 19th century, on Scottish mainland.

The marriage of these two breeds on Scottish soil would have created the blue blackbird color so popular today. In the beginning, lovers of the Great Collie did not want to tarnish the breed in any way with the arrival of these new little dogs.

However, the Lerwick Shetland Colley Club was then founded and the first breed standards were created. In 1914, the name Shetland Sheepdog was adopted.

Popularity rapidly increased and standards nowadays vary from one country to another, especially in terms of size.

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