TheShetland : Orgin & Descripition
Originated in the Shetland Islands off the northeast coast of Scotland bred as a working dog, to herd
and protect the livestock. It is believed that the Shetland Sheepdog and the larger herding Collie have a
common ancestor, a herding dog the Border Collie. Dogs that stayed on the Scottish mainland
developed into the Rough Collie & those taken to the Shetland Isles were downsized and developed
into the Shetland Sheepdog. Shetland Sheepdogs have the same appearance to the Rough Collie.The
Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1914, & became a completely separate breed known as the
The Sheltie may be reserved toward strangers and is protective of his family, making him a good watch
dog who will alert to any intrusion with enthusiastic barking. Shyness, timidity, or nervousness, however,
are not characteristic of the breed. An are known to be barkers
TRAINABILITY: shelties are extremely inteligent and easy to train. But also sensittive and should
not be trained in a harsh manner
COAT: has a double coat, consisting of a long, straight and harsh outer coat and a short, furry and very
Sable: Colour ranges from golden through red, to deep mahogany with an overlay of black.
Tri-colour: Is black with tan points on the eyes, cheeks, and usually on the legs.
Blue merle: Range from silver to steel-blue with varying amounts of black and tan
patches throughout. Blue merles also have the tan markings on the face and legs.
HEIGHT: 13 to16 inches (33 to 41 cm) WEIGHT: 16-24 lbs. LIFESPAN: 12-15 yrs.
Other links of intreast
The head should be refined and its shape, when viewed from top or side, be a long, blunt wedge tapering
slightly from ears to nose, which must be black. Top of scull should be flat, showing no prominence at
nauchal crest (the top of the occiput). Cheeks should be flat and should merge smoothly into a
well-rounded muzzle. Skull and muzzle should be of equal length, balance point being the inner corner of
eye. In profile, the topline of skull should parallel the topline of muzzle, but on a higher plane due to the
presence of a slight but definite stop. JAWS clean and powerful. The deep, well-developed underjaw,
rounded at the chin, should extend to base of nostril. Lips tight. Upper and lower lips must meet and fit
smoothly together all the way around. Teeth level and evenly spaced. Scissors bite. EYES medium size
with dark, almond-shaped rims, set somewhat obliquely in skull. Colour must be dark with blue or merle
eyes permissible in blue merles only. EARS small and flexible, placed high, carried three-fourths erect,
with tips breaking forward. When in repose the ears fold lengthwise and are thrown back into the frill.
Contours and chiselling of the head, the shape, set and use of ears, the placement, shape and colour of
the eyes, combine to produce expression. Normally the expression should be alert, gentle, intelligent and
questioning. Towards strangers the eyes should show watchfulness and reserve, but no fear.
Neck should be muscular, arched, and of sufficient length to carry the head proudly.
From the withers the shoulder blades should slope at a 45-degree angle forward and downward to the
shoulder joint. At the withers, they are separated only by the vertebra, but they must slope outward
sufficiently to accommodate the desired spring of rib. The upper arm should join the shoulder blade as
nearly as possible at a right angle. Elbow joint should be equidistant from the ground or from the withers.
Forelegs straight viewed from all angles, muscular and clean, and of strong bone. Pasterns very strong,
sinewy and flexible.
In over-all appearance the body should appear moderately long as measured from shoulder joint to ischium
(rearmost extremity of the pelvic bone), but much of this length is actually due to the proper angulation and
breadth of the shoulder and hindquarter, as the back itself should be comparatively short. Back should be
level and strongly muscled. Chest should be deep, the brisket reaching to point of elbow. The ribs should
be well sprung, but flattened at their lower half to allow free play of the foreleg and shoulder. There should
be a slight arch at the hip bone (pelvis) should be set at a 30-degree angle to the spine. Abdomen
moderately tucked up.
The thigh should be broad and muscular. The thighbone should be set into the pelvis at a right angle
corresponding to the angle of the shoulder blade and upper arm. Stifle bones join the thighbone and should
be distinctly angled at the stifle joint. The over-all length of the stifle should at least equal the length of the
thighbone, and preferably, should slightly exceed it. Hock joint should be clean-cut, angular, sinewy, with
good bone and strong ligamentation. The hock (metatarsus) should be short and straight viewed from all
angles. Dewclaws should be removed. Feet should be oval and compact with the toes well arched and
fitting tightly together. Pads deep and tough, nails hard and strong.
The tail should be sufficiently long so that when it is laid along the back edge of the hind legs the last
vertebra will reach the hock joint. Carriage of the tail at rest is straight down or in a slight upward curve.
The trotting gait of the Shetland Sheepdog should denote effortless speed and smoothness. There should be
no jerkiness, nor stiff, stilted, up-and-down movement. The drive should be from the rear, true and straight,
dependent upon correct angulation, musculature, and ligamentation of the entire hindquarter, thus allowing
the dog to reach well under his body with his hind foot and propel himself forward. Reach of stride of the
foreleg is dependant upon correct angulation, musculature and ligamentation of the forequarters, together
with correct width of chest and construction of rib cage. The foot should be lifted only enough to clear the
ground as the leg swings forward. Viewed from the front, both forelegs and hind legs should move forward
almost perpendicular to ground at the walk, slanting a little inward at a slow trot, until at a swift trot the feet
are brought so far inward towards centre line of body that the tracks left show two parallel lines of
footprints actually touching a centre line at their inner edges. There should be no crossing of the feet or
throwing of the weight from side to side.
Excerpts relating to Shetland Sheepdog standard quoated from the CKC
Like all breeds, the Shetland Sheepdog is susceptible to some health problems, including: Progressive
Retinal Atrophy (PRA), Central PRA, Collie Eye Anomaly (also known as Sheltie Eye Syndrome),
Corneal Dystrophy, Hip Dysplasia, Thyroid problems, and von Willebrand's Disease.
If you are considering the adoption of a Shetland Sheepdog puppy, or any breed, it is very important to
be selective in choosing a responsible and reputable breeder. Ensure that the prospective puppy's parents
have all health clearances.( reference links below)