About the Sheltie Inu
The Sheltie Inu is a hybrid dog that is made up of a combination of two different purebreeds. It's a cross between the Shetland Sheepdog and the Shiba Inu. We've found the best method for understanding the characteristics of the Sheltie Inu is to read both of its ancestors descriptions taking note of their temperaments, size and general look.
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Sheltie Inus are the best of both the Sheltie and Shiba Inu breeds. They are proud, handsome, and fox-like in appearance with a bright, alert, and discerning expression. Their tails curl up over their backs and coats tend toward the shorter course side. Colors vary as much as their origin breeds but the more common colors are the Sheltie's sable and white with a hint of sesame red or the Shiba's black and tan. They are not commonly seen dogs, and they get plenty of attention and inquiries from strangers. Sheltie Inu dogs and their owners tend to make lots of friends!
The general mindset of a Sheltie Inu is: 'Whats mine is mine and whats yours is mine, but I suppose I can share because I like you.'ť They are a fun combination of the two breeds that have seemingly polar personalities. If the front door opens unchecked, they might bolt outside like a Shiba, but the Sheltie's loyal side will temper that impulse to run very far (unless they are chasing something.) They still try to retain the Shiba's famous cat-like aloofness by facing away from their humans but can't help but drape their tail on their human's foot. The more socialized they are as puppies, the more they are apt to get along with a wider range of dogs, humans, and other similarly sized animals such as cats. They need supervision with younger children and definitely need to be kept apart from smaller pets such as rodents and birds. They make terrific watchdogs as the Sheltie's bark goes well with the Shiba's quiet alertness. They do need firm, consistent training with a confident human pack leader and they will constantly test their boundaries whenever they see an opportunity.
The typical size range is 13 - 16 inches.
The typical weight range is 15 - 25 pounds tending towards the heavier weight range of the Sheltie.
These dogs are very hardy and healthy, but may have genetic problems such as kneecap displacement from both Shiba and Sheltie breeds. It is a good idea to be mindful of the other genetic issues the individual breeds have a tendency to suffer such as hip dysplasia and eye disease.
These dogs require a thorough brushing at least twice a week. Their shorter coats do not mat up, but their undercoat tends to build up and fall out in clumps, particularly during the spring and the fall. They are naturally fastidious about self-grooming and staying clean, so housebreaking is generally easy and bathing should be kept to a minimum in order to keep the coatâ€™s natural waterproofing. Their diet should be carefully monitored, as they have the Sheltie tendency to gain weight easily. There are certain medications that Shelties cannot tolerate, and this precaution should be followed with the Sheltie Inu. Because of this sensitivity, cheaper topically applied flea medications should be avoided and a veterinarian should be consulted.
The ideal home for a Sheltie Inu is indoors with access to a decent sized fenced yard and plenty of interaction with their humans. They consider themselves a part of the family, so they will be much happier and well adjusted indoors. They will do fine in an apartment as long as they get a daily walk/run or two but they can and really enjoy walking for miles which make them great agile hiking buddies. If they are bored and have pent up energy, they will dig up the yard or chew up shoes so adequate exercise and mental stimulation are required. They should not be allowed to run free near a road or where there are small animals such as squirrels or cats as they have a fairly strong Shiba prey drive and Sheltie herding instinct.
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