Temperament: Although they can be a
bit reserved with
strangers, Shelties possess an intense desire to please their owners.
They are highly trainable and very responsive, making them one of the
top choices for many types of activities, such as obedience, herding,
and agility. Shelties raised as pets develop a lasting loyalty to their
families. Their propensity to guard their home make them highly
protective, and most will bark when all is not right within their
realm. Unlike some breeds, there is very little difference between male
and female Shelties; either sex will make an exceptional pet.
According to the breed standard, the ideal Sheltie should stand between
13" and 16" at the shoulder.
There are three basic colors, all set off by varying amounts of white
and or tan. The sable, ranging from golden brown to mahogany, with
touches of black. Tri-color (black), Blue Merle (blue-gray, black),
others are Bi-blue (blue-grey and black) and Bi-black (black and
The Sheltie's double coat consists of long straight outer coat with a
short, dense undercoat. The amount of grooming your dog will need will
depend on the amount and type of coat it has, but as a general rule a
weekly brushing should keep your dog in tip-top shape. You will need a
slicker brush, pin brush, comb, nail trimmers and a scissors. A Sheltie
coat should always be brushed or combed and should never be clipped
down to the skin! Sharp nail tips should be trimmed frequently on a
puppy; less often on an adult. Long hair may be trimmed on feet, ears
and legs. Cleaning your Sheltie's ears and brushing its teeth should
also be part of its regular grooming routine.
Feeding and Exercise:
With proper nutrition , exercise
and regular vet care, Shelties can have good longevity. Many dog food
labels, both dry and canned suggest feeding far too much food for the
average pet. Doggy treats can also pack on the weight and often contain
high amounts of sugar, salt, dyes and chemical preservatives. Like
people, an overly fat Sheltie can experience joint problems, diabetes
and a myriad of other health issues. Shelties need a fair amount of
exercise. Daily walks and active play sessions are encouraged to keep
your dog fit and happy.
Invisible (Electric) Fencing
Invisible or electric fencing is a very
popular fencing option that many of today's
homeowners are choosing. While there may
be some aesthetic and cost benefits to this
type of fencing, we in Rescue have
discovered a great deal of problems related to safety,
security, and humane treatment of the dog
with this type of fencing, particularly with its
use with a rescued Sheltie.
Because the Sheltie's coat is extremely
thick around the neck, in order for the electronic
shock collar to be effective on a Sheltie,
the shock level must be turned up very high and
the length of the prongs must be very
long. The high shock level and length of the prongs
can cause pain and injury to the dog. Some
dogs we have known have tried to scratch the
shock collar off, catching their foot in
the collar and getting burned and receiving
puncture wounds from the prongs.
Another problem with the use of this style
of fencing is that a dog will still run through
the "fence”, accepting the first shock but
refusing to return to the yard for a second shock.
Shelties are very intelligent creatures.
They CAN think and seem to understand causeand-
effect processes as it relates to their
behavior. It does not take long for the average
Sheltie to learn that if he received a
shock leaving the yard, he'll get another shock going
back into the yard. The result is a
Sheltie loose in the neighborhood, likely a new,
unfamiliar neighborhood. The dangers of
further injury and possible death are enormous.
This leads us to yet another reason that
the use of these fences with Shelties are a great
concern. Rescued Shelties have lived in
many different environments by the time they
arrive into the Rescue program. Many have
lived with several families during their lives,
then find themselves either living by
their wits alone on the streets or dumped in shelters.
When they go to a new home, it will take
quite a long adjustment period (several months,
maybe longer) for them to realize and
accept that this is finally their home. During that
adjustment period, the risk of the rescued
Sheltie trying to "escape" is great. An invisible
fence will NOT prevent this.
Not only will an invisible fence NOT keep
a dog in the yard, it will not keep another
animal from coming into your yard and
injuring or killing your dog. Nor will it stop a
human from coming into the yard and
stealing your pet, which happens every day.
These are just some, but not all, of the
reasons why we will not adopt a rescued Sheltie
into a home in which the intent is to use
an invisible fence.
Shaving a Sheltie
Often, people think a long haired dog
should be shaved during warm weather. While on
level that may seem logical, but in reality, it is not wise to do so
with a Sheltie. The
coat not only acts as protection against cold in the winter, it serves
in the summer, protecting the Sheltie from the heat.
Sheltie coat also protects against parasites such as fleas, ticks,
mosquitoes. That's not
a Sheltie never encounters these parasites, but that thick coat does
down. Another advantage to the Sheltie coat is that it repels dirt. Get
rid of that
and you're inviting dirt to attack your Sheltie and cling to its skin.
the Sheltie coat helps to prevent that "doggie odor" that so many
don't typically have a "doggie odor," partially because of the coat.
Take that coat
the Sheltie may begin to smell like a dog.
shaving may be necessary for medical purposes, such as in preparation
just for convenient coat care should be avoided. Shaving too close can
conditions from something as common as razor burn (which hurts like the
to more serious damage. Some damage can be permanent, such as damage to
follicles. The fur may grow back in patches, leaving the Sheltie bald
all over its body, or the fur may not grow back at all. If the care of
or too difficult, reconsider if the Sheltie is the right breed for you.
luxurious coat is what makes a Sheltie a Sheltie. They know they are
gorgeous coat. Most Shelties have actually acted embarrassed after
being shaved. So,
health, beauty, and pride of your Sheltie, please don't shave.