The Shetland Sheepdog originated in the 1800s and its ancestors were from Scotland, which worked as herding dogs. These early dogs were fairly small, about 20 inches in height, which further developed into the current Shetland Sheepdog. It is said that other dogs came into the mix as well. This helped produce this breed, namely the early Collie, the Iceland dog, and the King Charles Spaniel (black and tan version).
Shetland Sheepdog History of the Breed
Because they got isolated from the rest of the world, the Shetland Sheepdog was able to breed to its original form. This occurred in a fast amount of time compared to other dog breeds. This would have taken decades, or even centuries of mixed breeding to form their current AKC recognition. England became fond of these animals when the British naval fleet used to take puppies back after visiting the islands.
Their name, in the beginning, were referred to as “Toonie dogs” which made reference to their local Shetland farming area. Sometime in the early 1900s, the name was termed “Shetland Collies”. Yet, Collie enthusiasts were not very fond of his name so they changed it to the Shetland Sheepdog.