|By Becky Turner||Visit The Sheltie Forums|
Shelties are basically a healthy dog breed, so don't let this article about health problems scare you. These are just potential illnesses to look out for.
One of the most important things you can do for your Sheltie's health is prevent him from becoming overweight. Some experts warn that commercial dog foods suggest larger portions than are actually needed, and this alone can make your dog fat, putting extra strain on his heart, joints and bones.
If you can't easily feel your Sheltie's ribs at the sides then he is likely overweight, so immediately cut down on his food and ensure he gets more vigorous exercise - at least 30 minutes brisk walking per day. A healthy Shetland Sheepdog that receives the right diet and exercise regime will usually live for 12-15 years.
If you bought your Shetland Sheepdog from a professional breeder, his parents will have been genetically tested to avoid passing on any hereditary health problems. Responsible breeders also get their Sheltie puppies vet checked before selling them, so that any foreseeable abnormalities can be identified. Buying a Sheltie from a reputable breeder gives you the best assurance of having a healthy dog for life.