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Welcome to sheltie information page. You will find below. Color,  SHETLAND SHEEPDOG alias "The Sheltie"; EYE DEFECTS;  AKC Shetland sheepdog Standard

Let us know if you would like to see some more info listed below. As we find some we might ad it also. So please check back.

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.  Kim

SHETLAND SHEEPDOG  alias "The Sheltie"

       Shelties were
the farm dog whose work place was the unfriendly terrain of the Shetland Islands of Scotland.  To this day, the Sheltie displays a strong sense of boundary, a legacy no doubt from these early working days when to overstep the line meant a fall from a rocky cliff into the cruel frigid sea. 
In 1906 the Sheltie made it's debute at the Crufts Dog Show
under the name "
Shetland Collie".  But Collie Breeders objected (although Collies ARE an ancestor of the breed), and the name was changed to "Shetland Sheepdog".  The breed has become very popular as a family pet, suited to almost any size home.  It's exercise needs are easily satisfied with a daily walk, and a regular thorough brushing satisfies grooming needs.   The breed measures 13 to 16 inches at the shoulder; the double coat is dense, and may be Black, Blue Merle or Sable marked with white and/or tan highlights and points.  Bi-colored dogs do not have the tan highlights. There are several more color combinations...ask your Breeder for more information about this.
The Sheltie has a strong desire to please, and excels in obedience work.

So you want to own a Shetland Sheepdog?
The Sheltie is a "watch" dog, not a guard dog; nor is it visually frightening. It will bark at intruders, but after giving warning, may either retreat or escort them though your house. 

Suggested reference "Sheltie Talk" by Betty Jo McKinney& Barbara Rieseberg, published by  Alpine Publications.

 "The Color"
I am putting up some colors like the "Sheltie Talk" book shows
And of course using my own dogs to show coat colors.

Sable

Misunderstandings of the color tri. I have had so many folks ask for a Tri but what they really wanted was  a "Mahogany" Otherwise know as a Tri factored Sable.

Mahogany Pup left side of picture or shaded Sable. remember Sables can be many shade or colors

Tri
 
Pups pictured left is example of a true Tri pup 
Bi-Black only 2 colors Black and white.
Bi-Blue Merle - Equal to Bi-Black but merle in black coat.
Blue Merle Equal to a Tri, but with merle in black coat.

 

Cryptic Blue merle- Blue Merle but with limited grey in coat for merle showing.
Sable/ Merle or some say Red Merle

Color headed White

This is different then a double dilute. They do not have to worry about deafness or blindness sound in everyway just like Blue Merles.

   
Colors
 
Description Type Code
 
Black & White S 019
Black White & Tan S 034
Blue Merle & White S 051
Blue Merle White & Tan S 052
Sable & White S 165
Sable Merle & White S 277
Black & Tan A 018
White A 199
White & Black A 202
White & Sable A 215
White & Sable Merle A 296
White Black & Tan A 219
White Blue Merle A 266
White Blue Merle & Tan A 265
 
    DID YOU KNOW?

The first Shetland Sheepdog registered by the American Kennel Club (1911) was Lord Scott, a sable imported from Shetland, Scotland by John G. Shermand, Jr. of NewYork.

The American Shetland Sheepdog Association, parent club of the breed, was organized at the Westminster Kennel Club show in 1929, and held its first specialty in 1933.
 
   

AKC MEET THE BREEDS®: Shetland Sheepdog

The Shetland Sheepdog, or "Sheltie" as it is commonly called, is essentially a working Collie in miniature. A rough-coated, longhaired working dog, he is alert, intensely loyal and highly trainable and is known as a devoted, docile dog with a keen sense of intelligence and understanding. Agile and sturdy, the Sheltie is one of the most successful obedience breeds, but also excels in agility, herding and conformation. The coat can be black, blue merle or sable, marked with varying amounts of white and/or tan.

 

A Look Back
Like the Collie, the Sheltie’s history traces back to the Border Collie of Scotland, which, after being transported to the Shetland Islands and crossed with small, intelligent, longhaired breeds, was eventually reduced to miniature proportions. Over time, subsequent crosses were made with Collies. The breed worked as farm helpers and home protectors, watching over crofters’ cottages, flocks and herds from invaders of all kinds.

Right Breed for You?
Shelties love their families, but may be reserved at first with strangers. As a herding dog, they can be inclined to bark at and herd people. Shelties thrive on the farm, but adapt to many living situations if given proper exercise. The breed’s dense double coat requires regular maintenance.

 

 

EYE DEFECTS
Eye defects, which have plagued Collie breeders for years, are also present in Shetland Sheepdogs.  Although veterinarians  report that the incidence of eye anomalies in Shelties effects only a small percent of the total Sheltie population, there is always reason to be sure of what you are breeding.

Sheltie Eye Syndrome
SES describes condition in which there is no reflective material on the fundus, or material is partially damaged, or optic nerve is underdeveloped.
SES can usually be detected in a five to six week old puppy.
SES  is not progressive , so a dog certifies normal at eight weeks can be expected to remain free of this defect.
SES  and Inheritance
It is usually believed to be controlled by a single recessive gene. So it can be carried by 2 normal eye parents and if both have this gene it can produce pups with the SES.  So Sheltie breeders need to look hard at what is being bred and need to have an Ophthamologist check parents, but also need to have a eye checkup done on pups to know if parents carry the SES recessive gene.
Being recessive means both parents have to have the gene to produce SES.
When eye checks are done the eye needs to be dialated by an Ophthamologist, which is not a  regular vet. Ask your breeder to show your their eye check papers done on their dogs. This is a special paper that just has information on the Sheltie Eye, either normal eye or effected eye.  A puppy check-up by a Veterinarian can tell if a retina is detatched but cannot tell SES. The dogs eye needs to be dialated and examined by an Ophthamologist.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy
Two hereditary retinal atrophohies have been identified, One is Progressive Retinal Atrophy or referred to as PRA, and the other is Central Progressive Retinal Atrophy or CPRA, Both diseases are progressive and eventually result in blindness. PRA usually comes on between 3 to 6 years of age. CPRA is the more common form seen in Shelties. The first sign is the dog has difficulty picking out objects right in front of him, but still have good peripheral vision.  Total blindness may or may not  result. 
CPRA is thought to be inherited as a genetic dominant, thus at least one parent would have to have it to be affected. PRA is seen more in Collies than Shelties.
Diagnosis. There is only one positive diagnotic method capable of detecting PRA in puppies and is not widely available --that is the electroretinograph or ERG. The puppy must be anesthetized and a special contact lens fitted over each eye  connected to an electrical recording device. The test is certainly recommended if you know that CPRA or PRA has occurred in the ancestors of your puppy, or if either parent has produced an affected Sheltie.
I must add, I have not seen any Shelties with either of these 3 conditions, but this information is the reason why, as breeders we count on our puppy buyers to keep in touch to KNOW  what we are truely breeding.
Distichiasis Congenital eyelash disease affects many breeds, including Shelties. The eyelashes grow around the tear duct or on the inside of the eyelid where they touch and irritate the cornea, Surgery can remove lashes. Any sheltie producing this or having this condition should not be bred with.

More information on eye problems in Sheltie Talk book.

Shetland Sheepdog Breed Standard

Herding Group

General Appearance
Preamble-- The Shetland Sheepdog, like the Collie, traces to the Border Collie of Scotland, which, transported to the Shetland Islands and crossed with small, intelligent, longhaired breeds, was reduced to miniature proportions. Subsequently crosses were made from time to time with Collies. This breed now bears the same relationship in size and general appearance to the Rough Collie as the Shetland Pony does to some of the larger breeds of horses. Although the resemblance between the Shetland Sheepdog and the Rough Collie is marked, there are differences which may be noted. The Shetland Sheepdog is a small, alert, rough-coated, longhaired working dog. He must be sound, agile and sturdy. The outline should be so symmetrical that no part appears out of proportion to the whole. Dogs should appear masculine; bitches feminine.

Size, Proportion, Substance
The Shetland Sheepdog should stand between 13 and 16 inches at the shoulder. Note: Height is determined by a line perpendicular to the ground from the top of the shoulder blades, the dog standing naturally, with forelegs parallel to line of measurement.

Disqualifications-- Heights below or above the desired size range are to be disqualified from the show ring.

In overall 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.

Head
The head should be refined and its shape, when viewed from top or side, should be a long, blunt wedge tapering slightly from ears to nose.

Expression-- Contours and chiseling of the head, the shape, set and use of ears, the placement, shape and color of the eyes combine to produce expression. Normally the expression should be alert, gentle, intelligent and questioning. Toward strangers the eyes should show watchfulness and reserve, but no fear.

Eyes medium size with dark, almond-shaped rims, set somewhat obliquely in skull. Color must be dark, with blue or merle eyes permissible in blue merles only. Faults-- Light, round, large or too small. Prominent haws. 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. Faults-- Set too low. Hound, prick, bat, twisted ears. Leather too thick or too thin.

Skull and Muzzle Top of skull should be flat, showing no prominence at nuchal 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 inner corner of eye. In profile the top line of skull should parallel the top line 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 chin, should extend to base of nostril. Nose must be black. Lips tight. Upper and lower lips must meet and fit smoothly together all the way around. Teeth level and evenly spaced. Scissors bite.

Faults-- Two-angled head. Too prominent stop, or no stop. Overfill below, between, or above eyes. Prominent nuchal crest. Domed skull. Prominent cheekbones. Snipy muzzle. Short, receding, or shallow underjaw, lacking breadth and depth. Overshot or undershot, missing or crooked teeth. Teeth visible when mouth is closed.

Neck, Topline, Body
Neck should be muscular, arched, and of sufficient length to carry the head proudly. Faults-- Too short and thick.

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. Abdomen moderately tucked up. Faults-- Back too long, too short, swayed or roached. Barrel ribs. Slab-side. Chest narrow and/or too shallow. There should be a slight arch at the loins, and the croup should slope gradually to the rear. The hipbone (pelvis) should be set at a 30-degree angle to the spine. Faults-- Croup higher than withers. Croup too straight or too steep.

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 tail at rest is straight down or in a slight upward curve. When the dog is alert the tail is normally lifted, but it should not be curved forward over the back. Faults-- Too short. Twisted at end.

Forequarters
From the withers, the shoulder blades should slope at a 45-degree angle forward and downward to the shoulder joints. 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 at as nearly as possible a right angle. Elbow joint should be equidistant from the ground and from the withers. Forelegs straight viewed from all angles, muscular and clean, and of strong bone. Pasterns very strong, sinewy and flexible. Dewclaws may be removed. Faults-- Insufficient angulation between shoulder and upper arm. Upper arm too short. Lack of outward slope of shoulders. Loose shoulders. Turning in or out of elbows. Crooked legs. Light bone. Feet should be oval and compact with the toes well arched and fitting tightly together. Pads deep and tough, nails hard and strong. Faults-- Feet turning in or out. Splay feet. Hare feet. Cat feet.

Hindquarters
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 overall 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. Faults-- Narrow thighs. Cow-hocks. Hocks turning out. Poorly defined hock joint. Feet as in forequarters.

Coat
The coat should be double, the outer coat consisting of long, straight, harsh hair; the undercoat short, furry, and so dense as to give the entire coat its "standoff" quality. The hair on face, tips of ears and feet should be smooth. Mane and frill should be abundant, and particularly impressive in males. The forelegs well feathered, the hind legs heavily so, but smooth below the hock joint. Hair on tail profuse. Note: Excess-hair on ears, feet, and on hocks may be trimmed for the show ring. Faults-- Coat short or flat, in whole or in part; wavy, curly, soft or silky. Lack of undercoat. Smooth-coated specimens.

Color
Black, blue merle, and sable (ranging from golden through mahogany); marked with varying amounts of white and/or tan. Faults-- Rustiness in a black or a blue coat. Washed-out or degenerate colors, such as pale sable and faded blue. Self-color in the case of blue merle, that is, without any merling or mottling and generally appearing as a faded or dilute tri-color. Conspicuous white body spots. Specimens with more than 50 percent white shall be so severely penalized as to effectively eliminate them from competition. Disqualification-- Brindle.

Gait
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, musculation, 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 dependent upon correct angulation, musculation 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 hindlegs 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 toward center line of body that the tracks left show two parallel lines of footprints actually touching a center line at their inner edges. There should be no crossing of the feet nor throwing of the weight from side to side.

Faults-- Stiff, short steps, with a choppy, jerky movement. Mincing steps, with a hopping up and down, or a balancing of weight from side to side (often erroneously admired as a "dancing gait" but permissible in young puppies). Lifting of front feet in hackney-like action, resulting in loss of speed and energy. Pacing gait.

Temperament
The Shetland Sheepdog is intensely loyal, affectionate, and responsive to his owner. However, he may be reserved toward strangers but not to the point of showing fear or cringing in the ring. Faults-- Shyness, timidity, or nervousness. Stubbornness, snappiness, or ill temper.

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