Review Shetland Sheepdog – A loyal and loving friend

You probably decided to share your home with Shetland Sheepdog. Shetland Sheepdog because you expected that she would possess certain traits which would be compatible with your life:

  • A loyal and loving friend
  • Excellent with children and other pets.
  • The watchdog that is vigilant and has a ready bark
  • Soft, sweet, and sensitive
  • Above-average ability to train and intelligence whenever positive reinforcement methods of training are utilized
  • Sturdy, agile, and strong

Make sure you be on the lookout for:

  • Unsuspecting of strangers
  • easily bored when not provided with an activity to engage in, this could cause chewing and barking
  • Herding instincts that are strong can result in chasing cars as well as small animals
  • Needs daily exercise
  • Prone to quite a few health problems
  • Prone to anxiety over separation

There’s plenty happening behind those almond eyes. It’s intuitive and vibrant, Shelties are excellent pets for the family!

Shetland Sheepdogs originate from Scotland and are a descendant of their ancestor, the Collie. Shelties have held numerous jobs, such as herding, guarding, and even monitoring. They are renowned for their intelligence as well as their apparent human-like ability to understand their fellow dogs. Shelties thrive in competition and enjoy being useful. The Shelties’ double coat needs an extensive amount of grooming, however, her beauty is well worth the effort.

Your Shetland Sheepdog’s Health

We are aware that because you are so attached to your dog, you’d prefer to ensure the best care for her. That’s why we’ve compiled the health issues we’ll be discussing with you during the lifetime of your Sheltie. If we know about the health issues particular to Shetland Sheepdogs and their owners, we are able to develop a preventive program to look out for and possibly avoid certain known risk factors.

Many health issues and diseases are genetic, which means they’re related to the breed of your pet. There is a broad consensus among researchers in the field of canine genetics and veterinary specialists that the ailments we’ve mentioned in this article have a significant amount of incidence or impact in this breed. This doesn’t mean that your dog is prone to the same issues; it simply indicates that she’s more vulnerable as compared to other dogs. We’ll discuss the most frequent issues that are seen in Shetland Sheepdogs in order to provide you with some idea about what might be in the future. Of obviously, we aren’t able to be able to cover all possibilities here So, always consult the staff in the office of Seven Hills Veterinary Hospital, Inc in the event that you observe unusual symptoms or signs.

This guide includes general health information that is important to all dogs in addition to the most crucial genetic predispositions to Shetland Sheepdogs. This information will help both of us to determine your pet’s specific medical requirements. At the conclusion of this article, we’ve also provided a list of things that could be done at home to maintain the health of your Sheltie appearing and feeling at her most at her best. You will be aware of what to look for, and we’ll be more relaxed knowing that we’re taking the most effective care of our pet.

General Health Information for your Shetland Sheepdog

Dental Disease

Dental disease is the most frequent chronic pet disease and affects around 80percent of all dogs before the age of two. Unfortunately, your Shetland Sheepdog will be more likely than all other breeds to experience issues in her dental. Dental disease begins with tartar accumulation on teeth and can lead to gum inflammation and teeth roots. If we do not stop or treat dental problems your dog’s owner could lose teeth and face the risk of injury to her liver, kidneys, and heart as well as joints. In reality, the lifespan of your Sheltie could be cut by up to 3 years! be cleaning your dog’s teeth frequently and inform you of how you can take care in your home, to help keep your teeth sparkling clean.


Shetland Sheepdogs are prone to viral and bacterial illnesses the same ones that dogs of all breeds can be afflicted with, such as parvo, rabies, and distemper. Many of these illnesses can be avoided with vaccination that we suggest based on age and the types of diseases we observe in our area, as well as other factors.


Obesity is a significant health problem for Shetland Sheepdogs. It’s a serious illness that could cause or worsen joint issues metabolic and digestive issues as well as back pain and heart disease. Although it’s tempting to feed your dog when she gazes at you with her beautiful eyes, you don’t have to “love you to death” by feeding her leftover food and treats for dogs. Instead, you should give her a hug, stroke her teeth or fur or play alongside her or go for a walk. You’ll be happier and so will you!


Many kinds of bugs and worms can infest your pet’s body, both in and out. All kinds of bugs, from fleas and ticks to ear mites, may be a problem for her ears and skin. Roundworms and hookworms as well as whipworms, and heartworms could enter her body in many ways: by drinking water that is not clean or walking on soil that is contaminated or getting bit by an infected mosquito. These parasites could be passed on to the person in your family and are a concern for all. For your pet, they can cause discomfort, pain as well as death which is why it’s crucial to check for the presence of these parasites on a regular basis. We’ll also suggest precautionary medication to maintain her health.

Spay, or Neuter

One of the most beneficial ways to take care of the health of your Sheltie is to get your pet spayed (neutered in males). For females, this is when we surgically remove the ovaries, and generally the uterus. for males, this means that we remove the testicles surgically. Spaying or neutering reduces the chance of developing certain kinds of cancer and also eliminates the chance of your pet becoming pregnant or having unwanted pups. The procedure can also allow us to examine your pet while in anesthesia to determine and treat some of the illnesses your dog is most likely to contract. For instance, should your dog require hip X-rays or has a tooth extraction for a puppy it’s an ideal time to do it. It’s easier for you and less stressful on your pet’s friend as well. Regular blood tests prior to surgery can help us recognize and avoid issues that can increase the anesthetic or risk of surgery. We’ll be discussing the specific issues that we’ll be looking out for once the time comes.

Genetic Predispositions of Shetland Sheepdogs

Multidrug Resistance

Multidrug resistance is a genetic flaw in a gene known as MDR1. If your Shetland Sheepdog is affected by the mutation above, it could influence the way the body process various drugs, including those that are commonly used to treat diarrhea, parasites as well as the development of cancer. For years vets have generally kept ivermectin out of breeds that herd, but today there’s a DNA test that can identify breeds that are susceptible to adverse reactions to certain drugs. Testing your pet at an early age can help to prevent toxicity from drugs.

Heart Disease

Shelties can be affected by an illness known as patent ductus arteriosus or PDA in which tiny vessels that carry blood between two regions of the heart fail to shut as tightly after birth. This causes excess blood to flow into the lungs, which causes an accumulation of fluid, and strain on the heart. Signs of PDA can be severe or mild such as fatigue, coughing when exercising and weight loss, breath shortness, and weakness in the hind legs. We look for a specific kind of heart murmur to identify the problem in the examination of your pet. If your pet suffers from the condition, we could suggest surgery to repair the affected vessel.

Bleeding Disorders

There are many types of bleeding disorders that are inherited and can be found among canines. They range in severity from extremely moderate to extremely extreme. Many times the pet appears normal until an injury is sustained or surgery is carried out and severe bleeding may result. Shelties are especially susceptible to certain rare blood-related diseases.

  • Hemolytic anemia as well as thrombocytopenia are the result as the body’s immune system becomes haywire and begins attacking your pet’s own platelets or red blood cells. When the immune system is unable to destroy the red blood cells the dog rapidly becomes weak, anemic, and fatigued. The gums of your dog will appear yellow or whitish instead of the usual bright pink. In the event that the system is unable to destroy platelets, blood doesn’t be able to clot as it should and you may see bleeding abnormally or bruises. The diagnostic tests we perform for blood clotting in order to test for problems prior to deciding to undergo any surgical procedures. To slow down or stop the destruction of immune system cells as well as to treat autoimmune diseases, we’ll prescribe steroids and other immunosuppressive medications. Sometimes, an emergency transfusion of platelets or red blood cells is required.
  • Von Willebrand’s Disease is a blood-clotting disorder that is often seen among Shetland sheepdogs. We’ll conduct screening tests for the time it takes for blood clotting or a particular Blood test using DNA for the Von Willebrand’s Disease as well as other disorders similar to determine if this is the case before performing surgery.

Eye Problems

It is rare to can have such a profound impact on the quality of your dog’s living as the working of the eyes. Unfortunately, Shetland Sheepdogs may be born with or develop a variety of eye disorders that could result in blindness if not addressed promptly, and the majority of them are extremely uncomfortable! We will examine his eyes at every check-up to identify any warning signs.

  • Cataracts are the most common reason for blindness among older Shelties. We’ll look for the lenses in the eyes to become opaque, which means they appear like they are cloudy rather than clear when we check his eyes. Many dogs are able to adjust to losing vision and do just well. Surgery to eliminate cataracts and restore vision could also be an alternative.
  • Distichiasis can be described as a disorder caused by excessive hairs that develop inside the eyelids, and then rub the outer surface of your eyelid. This is one of the most frequently diagnosed diseases that dogs inherit which means that your Sheltie will be more likely to suffer from the difficult problem. If untreated this condition, the hairs that are abnormal can cause corneal ulcers as well as chronic eye discomfort. Several treatment options are available, and the outlook is excellent when the hairs are removed permanently.
  • Collie Eye anomalies is a genetically-linked condition that causes abnormal eye development for shetland sheepdogs. In severe instances, the condition can cause vision loss. Unfortunately, there is no cure. It is vital to conduct your pet’s complete eye exams ahead of breeding.


Systemic lupus erythematosus can be described as an extremely rare autoimmune disorder that causes dogs’ immune system fights themselves. This condition causes chronic inflammation of joints, skin as well as internal organs occasionally creating death in some instances. The Shelties tend to be more frequently suffering than any other breed. The signs typically start at around 3-7 years old. The treatment for Lupus isn’t available at the moment however, medication can alleviate symptoms. It is possible for the sunlight to trigger flare-ups. Avoiding sun exposure and applying a dog-safe sunscreen on delicate parts such as noses and ears can aid.


There are three kinds of seizures that dog experience that is reactive, secondary, or secondary. Reactive seizures result from the brain’s response to a metabolic issue such as the presence of low blood sugar, organ dysfunction, or Toxin. Secondary seizures can be the result of a stroke, brain tumor, or trauma. If no other reason is found and the condition is classified as epilepsy primary or idiopathic. The condition is usually an acquired condition, and Shetland Sheepdogs can be affected. If you have a friend who suffers from seizures, the episodes usually start between the ages of six and three old. age. A diagnostic test could help determine the reason. A lifelong dose of medication is typically required to manage seizures. It is possible to do regular blood tests to check for the effects of medication and their efficacy. When your pet is suffering from seizures, be sure to keep the dog from injuring himself however, don’t attempt to control your dog’s tongue or mouth. It will not aid him, and he could be able to bite you in the wrong way! Keep track of the duration of the seizures and then call us or visit an emergency facility.

Bone and Joint Problems

A wide variety of muscle and joint problems have been observed by Shetland Sheepdogs. While it can appear overwhelming, each issue is treatable and diagnosed to alleviate unnecessary discomfort and suffering. With diligent surveillance at home, and knowing about the ailments that can be affecting your pet’s bones muscles, and joints or joints you’ll be able to provide him with the best care throughout his entire life.

  • The elbows and hips are at risk of developing dysplasia, a genetic disease that causes joints to become inefficient and causes arthritis. The stiffness of your dog’s hips or elbows can be a problem for him, particularly when he gets older. You might notice that your dog is beginning to exhibit weakness in his legs or is having difficulty getting up from a position. The treatment options are to deal with arthritis as soon as we can — the earlier the better to minimize discomfort and discomfort. We’ll examine X-rays and scans of your dog’s bones in order to detect issues as soon as is possible. Surgery can be an option for severe and life-threatening situations. Be aware that overweight dogs can be diagnosed with arthritis ahead of those with normal weight, leading to unnecessary suffering and pain!
  • Sometimes, your pet’s kneecap (patella) might be displaced. This is known as patellar luxation. It is possible that your pet, when running, suddenly takes up an unassisted leg, or skips and hops several steps. It could be that he kicks his leg sideways to put the kneecap back into position. These are typical signs that patellar luxation. If the issue is minor and only affects one leg, the person might not require any treatment other than medication for arthritis. If the symptoms are serious, surgery might be necessary to correct the kneecap and prevent it from expanding further.


Humans are prone to allergies to mold, pollen or dust can cause people to cough. For dogs, rather than sneezing the skin is itchy. The term used to describe this type of itchy skin is “atopy” and shelties frequently suffer from it. The belly, feet, and skin folds, and ears are typically affected. The symptoms typically begin around the age between one or three and get worse with each year. The paws are rubbed or rubbing their face or frequent and persistent ear inflammations are among the most frequent signs that indicate allergies. The positive side is the fact that there are numerous solutions to treat these issues.


Dermatomyositis is an inflammation of the muscles and skin that is seen in Shetland Sheepdogs who are young. It’s thought to be caused due to a deficiency within the body’s immune system. It is, which is passed through genetic inheritance through an autosomal-dominant trait which means that if one mother is affected, the rest of the puppies are susceptible to the condition However, certain breeds may be more susceptible than others. Treatments can alleviate symptoms, but affected animals shouldn’t be used to breed.


Cancer is the most common cause of death among older canines. Your Sheltie is more susceptible to certain types of cancers that appear earlier in life. A lot of cancers can be treated through surgical removal and certain cancers can be treated using chemotherapy. However, for all cancers, it is crucial to detect them early to be able to detect the disease. We’ll perform regular checks of your blood and look for bumps or lumps in your pet’s body at every examination.

Thyroid Problems

Shelties are susceptible to a common ailment called hypothyroidism, in which the body isn’t producing sufficient thyroid hormone. Signs can include dry skin and hair and hair loss, vulnerability to skin conditions and weight gain, fear or aggression, as well as other changes in behavior. We’ll conduct an annual blood test to check for the presence of this illness. Treatment is generally as simple as replacement hormones as pills.

Kidney Disorder

Fanconi syndrome refers to a disease of the kidneys which allows essential blood-borne nutrients to go through the urine. Because these nutrients are essential for the body, those with affected Shelties are prone to excessive thirst and urination as well as weight loss and weakness as a result of abnormal electrolyte levels. The signs typically appear between the ages of two and six years old. It is the severity, as well as the severity of the condition, can vary from dog to dog. Some pets can be healthy for many years, while others can be diagnosed with kidney failure that causes death. A routine urine test will help in identifying Fanconi syndrome at its earliest stages. Getting it treated promptly can significantly extend the lifespan of your pet and its quality of life.

Hemorrhagic Gastroenteritis

Most often found in smaller and toy breeds such as your Sheltie hemorrhagic gastroenteritis or HGE is a severe and often fatal illness in dogs, which is characterized by vomiting, bloody diarrhea, and dehydration severe. Extensive treatment is often required for those suffering from hemorrhagic gastroenteritis and certain dogs might not be able to overcome the illness in the event that they are not properly treated. There are numerous causes of gastrointestinal diseases in dogs, however, anyone suffering from the symptoms should be evaluated by a veterinarian as quickly as it is possible.

Looking After the needs of Shetland Sheepdogs at Home

The majority of the things to do to make sure your animal is healthy and well is a standard sense, as it is for us. Be aware of your diet, ensure that she is getting ample exercise, and regularly clean her coat and brush her teeth call us or go to an emergency vet if you notice something unusual (see “What to Watch For” below). Make certain to follow the prescribed schedule of exams and vaccinations we suggest for her. We’ll perform the needed “check-ups” and will test her for illnesses and conditions that are typical in Shelties. A crucial step to take in taking care of your pet is to sign up to get pet health insurance. There are certain to be medical procedures and tests she’ll need throughout her lifetime and the insurance for pets will assist you in covering those expenses.

Diet, Routine Care, and Exercise

Include routine maintenance in your routine to aid your Sheltie remain longer, healthier, and happier throughout her life. We cannot undervalue the importance of having an effective diet and routine exercise.

  • Watch your pet like you would with a toddler. Keep doors shut, clean up your own mess, and block off areas as needed. This will ensure that she stays out of trouble and safe from things she shouldn’t be putting in her mouth.
  • Cleanse her coat as required, at a minimum every week.
  • Shetland Sheepdogs typically have significant issues with their teeth and therefore you’ll have to clean them at least 3 times per week!
  • Cleanse her ears regularly even as puppies. Don’t worry–we’ll teach you how!
  • She’s well-suited to the apartment lifestyle so long as she’s provided with a regular walk every day and regular playtime.
  • She is a dog with athleticism that excels in dog sports such as agility, obedience as well as herding.
  • The dog has a powerful hunter instinct, therefore she should be on a leash, and a yard that is fenced is an absolute requirement.
  • Make sure that your dog’s diet is regular and avoid giving your pet food.
  • Feed her a nutritious and high-quality diet that is suitable to her size and age.
  • Do your dog exercise regularly However, don’t do too much initially.

What to Watch Out For

Atypical symptoms could be an indication of a serious illness or it may be a minor or temporary issue. The important factor is to recognize when you should seek help from a veterinarian and when to seek it. Many diseases can cause dogs to exhibit characteristic symptoms. They can signal the Shetland sheepdog is in need of assistance.


Seek medical attention immediately when you observe any of these symptoms:

  • Shaking or scrubbing the head painful ears, or discharge from the ear
  • Unable or straining to urinate; urine that is discolored
  • Cloudiness, redness itching or any other problem that affects the eyes.
  • Fatigue after exercise, coughing or breathlessness
  • Gums that do have not bright pink
  • Unusual shaking, trembling or excessive tremors involuntary
  • Stiffness in the legs; inability to stand, sit or use stairs, walk or leap “bunny jumping”