Meet the Breed Monday ~ May 2020

ElsaIt’s time for our monthly column “Meet the Breed.”  It’s me, Elsa, stepping up again this month ready to feature our latest installment of “Meet the Breed.”  So without further delay, let’s meet…the Shetland Sheepdog, more commonly known as “Shelties.”

When mom first started blogging, she became a follower and then friend with Dakota and his mom, Caren Gittleman who was especially helpful in showing her the ropes. Caren suggested loads of tips and tricks that would develop a readership for which she will always be grateful. And Caren was very inspiring to mom when she launched the e-shop. And she has one of the cutest guys in Blogville. I mean, just look at this handsome boy…hubba bubba, dude!


Dakota’s mom, is a free-lance professional blogger who writes blogs Dakota’s Den (about her cute boy) and Cat Chat With Caren and Cody (a blog about cats)  residing in Michigan with her husband, Sheltie Dakota and Cody the cat. While Caren isn’t blogging as much these days, she’s a powerhouse and accomplished blogger in mom’s eyes with Dakota, her beautiful and sweet Sheltie and his fur-brother, Cody the cat. Many thanks to Caren for providing  breed background info on these adorably cute dogs.

Dakota the Sheltie

Now pay attention, Norman and let’s get started by meeting this adorable breed. Often confused with the larger ‘Collie,’ The Shetland Sheepdog, or “Sheltie,” is actually NOT a “mini-Collie” as some people think, they are in fact a completely separate breed. 

Shelties were originally bred on the rocky Shetland Islands, on the northernmost point of the UK. They were employed by farmers to herd sheep, ponies, and poultry (the “Toonie dog” was an old slang name for Shelties, “toon” being a Shetland word for farm). Shelties’ long coat is harsh and straight, with a dense undercoat, and comes in black, blue merle, and sable colors, with white markings. That coat, along with a long, wedge-shaped head; small, three-quarter erect ears; and deep-chested, level-backed torso, give Shelties the look of a rough-coated Collie in miniature but there are significant differences. Shelties weigh about between 14-27 lbs.while Collies weigh 60-75 lbs. Shelties can be prone to  chubbiness, so their weight should be closely watched. There are height differences between the breeds as well:  Shelties run 13-16 inches tall; Collies are between 24-26 inches tall

Shelties do quite well in a large yard but also thrive nicely in an apartment or condo setting because of their much smaller size. Shelties are “alert, active and playful” and like to bark but tend to be reserved toward strangers. They make excellent watchdogs. Shelties will alert the household when strangers show up.  Shelties are high-energy and rank 25th of 195 breeds in popularity according to the AKC and are members of the herding group.

 “Dakota” recently celebrated his 13th barkday and is a brilliant, funny little clown on four legs. His mom tells us that he is a bit of a “thief” (watch your shoes, slippers, anything you don’t want him to have), is sensitive and intensely loyal to “his pack,” which includes mom, dad and tabby cat brother.

That trademark “Sheltie Smile” is quite compelling so if you are interested in an intelligent, active, playful, great family dog who will love you “to the moon and back” then  the Shetland Sheepdog could be just the breed for you.

Have you ever owned one or have stories to share? Next month we’ll showcase another breed. Who could it be? While I’m not giving any clues away, Norman tells me it’s definitely another favorite breed. We hope all you dog-moms had a Happy Mother’s Day and wish everyone a great Monday and ‘wagnificent’ week.

Live, love, bark! 🐾

72 thoughts on “Meet the Breed Monday ~ May 2020

    1. Dixie’s may come and go but they’re all special, aren’t they? 💖

  1. Thank you for that rundown on the Breed. Found it interesting and very informative.Another good post Elsa. Just a thought though, would the “Shetland Islands on the Northernmost Part of the UK ” be anywhere near Scotland?

    1. Indeed, one in the same lying around a 100 miles from mainland Scotland (if I’m reading the map correctly).

  2. Charlee: “Thank you for this profile of the Shelties!”
    Chaplin: “Dennis used to tell us stories about Ludwig van Pup, or Ludo, a Sheltie from England, who was one of his oldest blog friends.”
    Charlee: “Ludo went to the Rainbow Bridge several years before Dennis did. Ludo’s brother Arran, also a Sheltie, is still around, but doesn’t blog much anymore.”
    Chaplin: “Still, it’s always nice to read about things like this, because any friend of Dennis was a friend of ours!”

  3. Awe we love Caren, Dakota & Cody. Thanks for this post and all the info on Dakota’s special breed 🙂 Mama has always loved the breed & wanted one but with the Florida heat and their thick coats she doesn’t think it would be fair cause it would be way too hot down here for them to be exercised regularly in the summers :/

    Matt & Matilda

    1. Thank you for swinging by-we love new visitors. Shelties are such sweet little dogs with proverbial smiles on their faces all the time. And we’re huge fans of Caren and her crew.

  4. We’ve been a Dakota fan (OK, also a Cody & Caren fan) for years, but happy to learn more on the breed.
    A “Dakota” look a like walks up/down our street every day now so guess what? Makes us think of
    Dakota and family Every Day now!

    1. Thank you for swinging by the “Ranch” to leave a message. We’re big fans of Dakota, Caren and Cody for a long time and so love Dakota’s smiling bright face.

    1. Yay! We hope you feel we did your breed proud with our post. They are adorably cute pups; there’s one who walks by our garden all the time and he’s such a sweetie.

  5. Many years ago before Mom was married, her family had a Shetland Sheepdog/Sheltie. Shane was a handsome sable boy. He had a very sweet personality, but he could really bark too!!! Thanks for sharing this info about this breed.

    Woos, Lightning and Timber

    1. They do tend to express themselves from the top of their lungs. 😊 But they seem like sweet little dogs.

  6. Thanks Elsa for a great recap of this very cool breed. I agree Dakota must be quite the ladies man. And thanks to the editorial staff for all the informative, interesting, and humorous content over the years.

    1. Thanks, Michael. I do try to provide interesting info that peeps will enjoy. Yeah, that Dakota boy is some kind of hunka, hunka, isn’t he?
      Your fur-iend,
      Elsa 🐾

    1. 😆They do kind of look like they’re shrunken collies. So when are we getting info on Malts? The 4-legged variety that is.

        1. I’m sure peeps here would love to hear about furry white dogs who endure, I mean, enjoy dressing up. 🤣

  7. If I was inclined toward a herding breed, a sheltie would definitely be my choice. They are not just beautiful, but sweet and smart. (Yes, I have groomed a few). Thanks for continuing your Meet the Breed series – so interesting and enjoyable.

    1. We all love our own pets but it’s a nice way to see why others love theirs so much too. 💖

  8. We love shelties, and if we could have a doggie, we sure could go for a Sheltie Smile😺We love Caren, Cody and Dakota too, they’re very special to us💗Thank you for the meet-the-breed, Elsa, it’s nice to learn about the different breeds. Clean Pawkisses for a Happy Week ahead. Stay Safe Healty and Yourselfie🙏🐾😽💞

    1. Many thanks, Binky. We’re so glad to be able to feature such a cutie like Dakota.

  9. Furabuluss post ’bout Sheltiess Elsa! Mee leerned alot! LadyMew told mee shee was guud frendss with a Sheltie named Ali Baba for 7 yeerss. Hee was her Land Lady’ss doggie an hee was furry clevurr an had a sweet smile…..
    **purrss** BellaDharma
    Pee S: Elsa you are ‘rockin’ THE sunglassess an bandana!!

    1. Thanks BellaDharma. I’m working extra hard to give that dolt of a brother a run for his money. 🤣We sure love Mr. Dakota. He’s a real sweetheart.

  10. We all love Caren and Dakota. Okay Cody too. What a wonderful post, Elsa.

    Have a woof woof day and week. My best to your wonderful mom. ♥

    1. Caren and her precious boy are great fur-iends. Here’s hoping you have a wagnificent week.

  11. Good job Elsa, in introducing the Sheltie. Information like this is important for us humans to know, so we can be sure to adopt a breed that is going to mesh with our lifestyle.

  12. Monika….oh my goodness!!!! First, the parts about ME…I’m DEFINITELY NOT WORTHY!!! You in KNOW WAY needed ME to show you any ropes! Hell, it’s ME who should have YOU show ME the ropes!! Your blog is beautifully written, it’s on a MUCH higher level intellectually than I could EVER, EVER hope to attain……….seriously, you do NOT need me………but….I will say as far as Cody’s blog goes…yeah…I can be pretty damned funny BOL BOL BOL!!! THANK YOU for your EXTREMELY kind words……I seriously have tears in my eyes. And….on to the “Meet the Breed”………you featured the beloved Shetland Sheepdog breed (at least to me they are beloved) superbly! Just like EVERYTHING you do! I also LOVE the photos you chose of Dakota…..those were from when he was younger….he’s still handsome (but right now in dire need of grooming…ugh…darned coronavirus)…….but those photos are some of his better ones. This post is highly informative (as many, many of your posts are)….just wonderful! Thank you for featuring this breed that I adore and for the shout out and for the wonderful things you said about my precious boy!! Will be sharing this far and wide!!!! Sending MUCH LOVE !!!

    1. 😊 You short sell yourself. You’re were enormously helpful when I first started out and I have always valued you. And we were happy to feature your ever so handsome fella who always makes me smile. Hugs and tails wags.

  13. What a wonderful introduction to Shelties! Thank you, Elsa.
    Hmmm… maybe my mom should stop being so lazy and introduce me? I dunno that a long-haired German Shepherd is any different from a short-haired one, except in good looks (ok, maybe I am biased) ~Zeke

    1. We’d love to be able to introduce peeps to Zeke and his breed. Hint, hint.

  14. We’ve followed Caren and her boys for years now. She’s kind, helpful, and LOVES to help people. She’s definitely one of a kind. She has a whole lot of great info at hand about blogging AND her dog Dakota and sweetie cat Cody. I have always thought Shelties were adorable – and I love that Dakota and Cody have a really close relationship.

    Hugs, Pam (and Teddy)

  15. we love caren and her husband and dakota and cody!!! I always remember the meaning of his name and I often think about this name when I meet a sheltie ;O)

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