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Exploring the Icelandic Sheepdog: A Unique and Hardy Nordic Breed

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By Anna Grace

This breed is as unique as its country, with a fascinating history and a charming personality that will win over any dog lover. 

With its distinctive appearance and lively nature, the Icelandic Sheepdog is a most extraordinary breed. Therefore, icelandic Sheepdog puppies will capture your heart and entertain you for years.

About the Breed

grey icelandic sheepdog

The Icelandic Sheepdog is a dog native to Iceland and is believed to be one of the oldest dog breeds in the world. The Icelandic was initially bred to work as a farm dog, herding sheep, and other livestock. Icelandic puppy was also used as watchdogs and as hunting dogs.

However, they were highly valued by the people of Iceland for their intelligence, loyalty, and hardworking nature. They have a thick, double coat that comes in various colors. One of their most distinctive features is their curled tail, which gives them a unique and endearing appearance.

In terms of temperament, the Icelandic Sheepdog is famous for being friendly, outgoing, and energetic. They are knowledgeable and trainable and love to be around people. However, iceland sheepdog is also great with children, making them a popular family choice.

Historical Figure of Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdog size

According to this Adventures The Sheepdog likely descended from dogs brought over from Denmark and Sweden. The history of the Icelandic Sheepdog is shrouded in mystery, but what is known is that this breed is one of the oldest in the world, with a history dating back over 1,000 years. 

The iceland sheepdog is believed to be descended from dogs brought to Iceland by Viking settlers. Therefore, which used sheepdogs for herding sheep, guarding their homes, and hunting small game. Over time, the iceland sheepdog became a vital part of Icelandic culture.

However, it was highly valued for its ability to survive in the harsh, rugged terrain of the country. The breed also played a significant role in Icelandic folklore, with many stories and legends featuring the loyal and hardworking Sheepdog. 

Unfortunately, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the Icelandic Sheepdog began to decline in numbers and the increasing popularity of other breeds. By the mid-20th century, the breed was almost extinct, with only a handful of dogs remaining in Iceland.

According to this WorldAnimalFoundation Icelandic Sheepdogs are considered ancient canines since both the documented and archeological evidence have proved this dog’s ancient origin. In the 1960s, a concerted effort was made to save the breed. 

However, a breeding program was established to help the iceland sheepdog back from the brink of extinction. The breed is still rare, with only a few thousand dogs worldwide. However, thanks to the efforts of dedicated breeders and enthusiasts, the Icelandic is once again thriving. 

The history of the Icelandic Sheepdog is a testament to the resilience and essential role that dogs have played in Icelandic culture and society for centuries.

Traits of Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdog puppies for sale


The Icelandic Sheepdog has a thick, waterproof double coat in various colors.


Sheepdog is a friendly, outgoing breed that loves to be around people. Similarly, the grey icelandic Sheepdog is also known for being very intelligent and quick to learn.

Energy level

 This breed is recognized for its high energy levels and needs plenty of exercise and playtime to stay healthy and happy.


The Iakc icelandic Sheepdog is an intelligent breed eager to please and responds well to positive reinforcement training methods.


This breed is generally healthy but prone to specific health issues.


 The Icelandic Sheepdog is a versatile breed that can adapt to various living situations, from apartments to large houses with yards.

Watchdog ability

This breed is known for its keen sense of hearing and can be a good watchdog, alerting its owners to unusual sounds or activity.


Sheepdogs are affectionate and love to cuddle with their owners. Cute Icelandic puppies are also good with children and make great family pets.

Icelandic Sheepdog Fun Facts

icelandic sheepdog temperament

Sure, here are some fun facts about Icelandic Sheepdogs:

  • Sheepdogs are one of the oldest dog breeds in the world and are believed to have been brought to Iceland by the Vikings over 1,100 years ago.
  • They were initially bred to help farmers herd and protect sheep and serve as loyal companions.
  • Border collie icelandic Sheepdog is famous for their intelligence and trainability. They excel in obedience and agility competitions and make excellent therapy dogs.
  • Despite their friendly nature, iceland sheepdog are also protective of their families and will bark to alert them of any potential danger.
  • Icelandic are a rare breed, with only a few thousand in existence today. They were even on the verge of extinction in the 20th century, but dedicated breeders have helped to revive the breed’s numbers.
  • In Iceland, the dog iceland sheepdog is known as the “Icelandic Spitz” due to its pointe ears and fox-like appearance.
  • Icelandic Sheepdogs have a unique trait where they have a sixth toe on their hind legs called the “spur.” This is believed to help them stabilize the rugged Icelandic terrain.

Appearance of Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdog colors

The Iceland Sheepdog is a small to medium-sized spitz-type dog breed with a strong and muscular build. They have a double coat, which is thick and water-resistant, making them well-suited for their native Icelandic climate. Haustlita icelandic sheepdogs head is triangular, with erect ears that are slightly round at the tips. 

The eyes are medium-sized and almond-shaped, ranging in color from brown to amber, with a friendly and intelligent expression. The Iceland Sheepdog’s body is well-proportioned, with a straight back, broad chest, and powerful legs covered in thick fur. 

The tail is bushy and curls over the back. They come in a variety of colors. Some fox meadow icelandic sheepdogs also have white markings on their face, chest, and feet.


The Icelandic has a thick, double-layered coat that provides excellent protection from the cold and wet Icelandic weather. 

The outer coat is long and coarse, while the undercoat is soft and dense. Icelandic Sheepdog michigan coat comes in various colors and requires regular brushing to maintain health and appearance.


The Iceland Sheepdog can come in various colors: cream, gray, black, brown, and tan. Icelandic sheepdog oregon may also have white markings on their face, chest, and feet. Their coat color can vary between individuals and can be a mix of different shades.


Icelandic Sheepdog is a small to medium-sized breed, with males standing 12-18 inches (30-45 cm) tall at the shoulder and females slightly smaller at 10-16 inches (25-40 cm). 

Icelandic puppies have a sturdy and muscular build, well-suited for their role as a herding and watchdog breed.


Sheepdogs typically weighs between 20-30 pounds (9-14 kg), with males being slightly larger and heavier than females. Proper weight maintenance is essential for this breed to prevent health issues and maintain their agility and active lifestyle. 

Therefore, a well-balanced diet and regular exercise are essential for keeping the iceland sheepdog settle healthy and happy.

Temperament & Personality

icelandic sheepdog puppy

The Icelandic Sheepdog is known for a cheerful, friendly, and outgoing breed. Icelandic sheepdog shedding is lively and very affectionate towards their owners. They love to be with their family and are happiest when they are included in all family activities. 

Therefore, luke-haven icelandic sheepdogs are also very playful and enjoy playing games, especially outdoors. They have a strong herding instinct, and their intelligence and loyalty make puppy sheepdog excellent watchdogs.

Regarding personality, the Iceland Sheepdog is a confident and independent breed. They’re not overly submissive or dominant and are generally easy to train. The iceland Sheepdogs are eager to please their owners and are quick learners, making them suitable for various tasks. 

Similarly, they thrive on social interaction and require plenty of exercise and mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy. 

Icelandic Sheepdog Food & Nutration

icelandic sheepdog adoption

As with any breed, proper nutrition is essential for the health and well-being of Icelandic Sheepdogs. A balanced and nutritious diet is essential for maintaining energy levels, muscle mass, and overall health. 

Feeding your iceland sheepdog Alberta high-quality dog food that meets their specific nutritional needs is essential. Sheepdogs have a high metabolism and require a diet rich in protein and fat. This breed is also prone to developing allergies and sensitivities, so choosing a food free from common allergens is essential. 

However, because they are a medium-sized breed, monitoring valhalla iceland sheepdogs portion sizes are vital to prevent overfeeding. When selecting a portion of dog food for your Iceland Sheepdog, look for a brand that contains high-quality animal proteins such as chicken, lamb, or fish. 

Avoid foods that contain fillers or artificial preservatives. A diet that contains a balance of carbohydrates, protein, and fat will help your Iceland Sheepdog maintain a healthy weight.

Care & Grooming of Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdog price

Proper care and grooming are essential for the health and well-being of Icelandic Sheepdogs. Their thick, double coats require regular brushing and grooming to prevent matting and keep their coat looking healthy and shiny. 

Here are some tips for caring for and grooming your Icelandic Sheepdog:

  • Iceland sheepdog dogs have a thick, double coat that sheds seasonally. Brushing their coat at least once a week can help remove loose hair and prevent matting. During shedding season, daily brushing may be necessary.
  • Iceland Sheepdogs don’t require frequent baths but should be bathed as needed. Use a mild dog shampoo and rinse thoroughly to avoid leaving any residue on their coat.
  • Regular ear cleaning can help prevent ear infections. Use a gentle ear-cleaning solution and cotton balls to clean the outer ear. Avoid inserting anything into the iceland Sheepdog iceland ear canal.
  • Dental hygiene is vital for your dog’s overall health. Brush their teeth regularly with a dog-specific toothbrush and toothpaste.
  • Keep an eye on your Icelandic Sheepdog’s eyes for signs of redness, discharge, or irritation.
  • Regular exercise and socialization are essential for your Icelandic Sheepdog’s mental and physical health. However, take iceland Sheepdog for daily walks and provide opportunities for playtime and interaction with other dogs and people.

Health issues of Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdog for sale

Hip Dysplasia

This is common in many dog breeds, including the Icelandic Sheepdog. It is a genetic condition where the hip joint doesn’t develop properly, leading to arthritis and lameness.

Eye Problems

The Icelandic Sheepdog is prone to several eye problems, including cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), and distichiasis. Cataracts and PRA can lead to blindness, while distichiasis causes eyelashes to grow abnormally, causing irritation and discomfort.


Some Iceland Sheepdogs may develop allergies to certain foods or environmental factors such as pollen, dust, or mold. Therefore, symptoms of allergies include itching, skin irritation, and ear infections.


This is a condition where the thyroid gland doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormones, leading to weight gain, lethargy, and hair loss.

Heart Diseases

Some icelandic sheepdog info may develop heart diseases such as dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), which can cause heart failure and death.

Lifespan of Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdog breeders

The Icelandic Sheepdog is a dog recognized for its friendly personality, intelligence, and agility. Therefore, the average lifespan of an iceland sheepdog puppies is around 12 to 14 years.

However, with proper care and attention, some dogs of this breed are known to live up to 16 years or more. It’s important to note that the lifespan of any dog can be affected by several factors, such as genetics, diet, exercise, and overall health care. 

Regular veterinary check-ups, proper nutrition, and plenty of exercise can help ensure that your Iceland Sheepdog lives a long and healthy life.

Training of Icelandic Sheepdog

iceland sheepdog

Training an Icelandic Sheepdog requires patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement techniques. It is essential to start training at a young age, as early socialization and obedience training will help to prevent behavioral problems later. 

Moreover, the first step in training iceland sheepdog puppies is establishing yourself as the pack leader. This means setting rules and boundaries and rewarding good behavior while correcting bad behavior. 

Positive reinforcement techniques such as treats, praise, and playtime are effective in training this breed, as they respond well to rewards and positive attention. During training, you must provide plenty of exercise and mental stimulation for your iceland sheepdogs. This breed is intelligent and active and needs plenty of opportunities to exercise their minds and bodies.

Activities such as obedience training, agility, and hiking are great ways to provide this stimulation while strengthening the bond between you and your dog.

Cost Of Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdog.

The cost of an Icelandic Sheepdog can vary depending on various factors such as breeder reputation, location, and lineage. On average, you can expect to pay anywhere from $1,500 to $3,000 for a puppy from a reputable breeder. 

However, some breeders may charge depending on their breeding program and the demand for their puppies. It’s important to note that purchasing an iceland sheepdog is just the beginning of the expenses you’ll incur.

You’ll also need to budget for ongoing expenses such as food, veterinary care, grooming, and training. Similarly, researching and finding a reputable breeder who health tests their dogs and ensures them is crucial. 

Cutting corners on the initial cost of purchasing a puppy can lead to significant expenses if your iceland sheepdog puppy develops health or behavioral issues due to poor breeding practices.

Pros & Cons of Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdogs


  • Friendly and affectionate breed, known for being great with children and other pets.
  • Intelligent and trainable, making them good candidates for obedience and agility competitions.
  • Iceland sheepdog puppy good watchdogs, alerting their owners to any potential danger or visitors.
  • Hardy and resilient, able to withstand harsh weather conditions and rough terrain.
  • Low-maintenance grooming, with a double coat that only requires occasional brushing.


  • Can be stubborn and independent-minded, requiring a firm and consistent hand in training.
  • They can be prone to barking and digging if they are adequately trained and socialized.
  • Black icelandic Sheepdog may have a high prey drive, making them unsuitable for homes with small animals such as cats or rabbits.
  • They can be challenging to find and may be relatively expensive due to their rarity outside of Iceland.

Frequently Asked Question

icelandic sheepdog puppies

Yes, Icelandic Sheepdogs make great pets for those who are active and enjoy spending time outdoors. They are friendly, loyal, and love to play. However, Iceland sheepdogs require a lot of exercises and mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy.

Icelandic Sheepdogs can be vocal and may bark to alert their owners of anything they perceive as a potential threat. However, with proper training and socialization, excessive barking can be managed.

Yes, Icelandic Sheepdogs are considered a rare breed. They are the only breed of dog native to Iceland, and their population is relatively small.

Yes, Icelandic Sheepdogs have a thick double coat and shed moderately year-round. During the shedding season, which occurs twice a year, they will shed more heavily.

Yes, Icelandic Sheepdogs are great family dogs. They are friendly and affectionate and enjoy spending time with their owners. Icelandic sheepdogs are also good with children and other pets.

Icelandic Sheepdogs were initially bred to help Icelandic farmers herd and protect their livestock. They are known for their excellent sense of hearing and have been used as watchdogs. Icelandic Sheepdogs are one of the oldest breeds of dog in the world, dating back to the Viking Age. Icelandic Sheepdogs are the only breed of dog native to Iceland.

Like all dogs, Icelandic Sheepdogs should supervise for long periods of time. They thrive on human interaction and can become anxious or destructive if left alone for too long. However, with proper training and socialization, they can learn to tolerate short periods of alone time.

Icelandic Sheepdogs can make good pets for first-time owners who are committed to providing them with proper training, exercise, and socialization. However, they are an active breed that requires a lot of attention.

Yes, Icelandic Sheepdogs are affectionate and love to cuddle with their owners. Icelandic sheepdog puppies are recognized for their friendly and loving personalities and enjoy being close to their human family members.

Icelandic Sheepdogs can develop separation anxiety if they are not adequately trained and socialized. They are social animals and thrive on human interaction, so it’s important to gradually get them used to being left alone for short periods.


In conclusion, the Icelandic Sheepdog is a delightful and intelligent breed of dog that has become increasingly popular in recent years. Known for their friendly nature and loyal personalities, these dogs make excellent companions for individuals and families.

However, fox meadow sheepdogs are energetic and playful and require a lot of exercises to stay happy and healthy. 

icelandic sheepdog

Icelandic Sheepdogs are adaptable and thrive in various living situations, from city apartments to rural farms. While they do have some health concerns to be aware of, they are a hardy and resilient breed. An icelandic sheepdog puppy with proper care and training can be an excellent addition to any household.