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I fostered a Shetland Sheepdog once for a long weekend. Maggie was so calm compared to my Silkys, I almost forgot she was around. But every time I sat down, Maggie was right there. I could feel her saying, “What do you want? What can I do?”
Not only smart, Shelties deeply want to serve their owners. But their rough, outstanding coat sheds copiously and they can be noisy. They need plenty of exercise but do well with children; if you are looking for a brilliant, sweet dog, a Sheltie may be right for you.
Shetland Sheepdogs have a strong herding background and they do well in herding trials to this day. They may also want to herd their human family.
Like their big cousin the Collie, the Sheltie traces its history to the Border Collie. This tough little breed was then formed and miniaturized in the harsh climate and rocky terrain of the Shetland Islands, working as farm helpers, home and flock protectors.
Shetland Sheepdogs By the Numbers
Size: They should be 13 - 16 inches at the shoulder.
Coat Care: 10: High; needs frequent brushing.
Trainability: 10: Shelties are incredibly trainable.
Energy level: 8: Shelties are energetic; they need exercise and a job to do well.
Good with Children: 7 -- They easy going around children, though they sometimes want to herd them.
Noise level: high – 8; they have an opinion and aren’t shy to let you know.
Low Shedding/hypoallergenic: 10 Shelties shed copiously.
If you are interested in a puppy, first read
What is a Responsible Breeder.
Then start your puppy search at the
American Shetland Sheepdog Association of America.
If you live in the Delaware area, an excellent and quality kennel can be found at
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People come to About Small Dogs to find a good dog, one that matches their lifestyle, their family and what they yearn for.
The best people to explain the finer points of what a breed is like are the people who own and are owned by them.
If you own this breed, this means YOU. What is your dog like? What stories can you tell? What would you like to say to someone who is considering your breed? What is your dog's sterling qualities? How about some of his or her not so great characteristics? Tell us a bit about the ideal owner for your breed as well.
People become good dog owners because they are educated. You know your breed better than any others. Share what you know!
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