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208 Breeds, 422 Health Conditions  |  Find a Vet

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Icelandic Sheepdog


Icelandic Sheepdog Facts

  • Group
  • Working
  • Affiliations
  • CKC, UKC
  • Height
  • 16.5" - 18"
  • Weight
  • 25-35 lbs.
  • Lifespan
  • 14 years | Add yours

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  • Exercise Requirement
  • High - This breed requires vigorous daily activity
  • Training Requirement
  • Average Training Time
  • Grooming Requirement
  • Moderate
  • Colors
    • Black
    • Tan
    • Brown
    • Silver / Grey
  • Breed Characteristics
    • Can be trained as a watch dog or guard dog
    • Good with children
    • Ok outdoors
    • Should sleep indoors

True Cost Of Ownership

Alternate Names

Icelandic dog, Islandsk Farehond, Friaar dog, Iceland spitz


This breed was developed in Iceland.

Date Of Origin

The Icelandic Sheepdog originated in the 800's.


The Iceland dog is Iceland's only native breed. It is believed to have been brought to the island by viking settlers. It was used to herd livestock and was considered a vital tool for farmers and ranchers. Although it has been on the brink of extinction several times, its numbers have increased during the past few decades.


The Iceland dog is a small to medium size dog that is longer than it is tall, with a deep chest. It has a strong, triangular-shaped head with a muzzle that is shorter than the skull. The medium size, prick ears are triangular with slightly rounded tips. The tail is carried over its back. There is a medium length and a longer coat type. Both coats are dense and weather resistant with a thick undercoat. The coat is longest at the neck, back of the legs and tail. It may be tan, gray, brown or black with white markings.


This is a gentle and cheerful dog that gets along well with people, including children. It is confident and enthusiastic about its work and playful and gentle at home.


The Iceland dog is an all around dog that performs a variety of tasks well. It may be used as a sheepdog, watchdog or companion.

Health Concerns

Hip dysplasia

Additional Information

This dog will need, exercise, grooming, training and a job to keep busy.

Show Sources & Contributors +


The Howell Book Of Dogs

Publisher: Wiley Publishing Inc, 2007

Website: http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/

Author: Liz Palika

Dog Bible

Publisher: BowTie Press, 2005

Website: http://www.bowtiepress.com/bowtie/

Authors: Kristin Meuh-Roe, Jarelle S. Stein

Simon & Schusters Guide to Dogs

Publisher: Simon & Schuster inc, 1980

Website: http://www.simonandschuster.com

Author: Elizabeth Meriwether Schuler

The New Encyclopedia of the Dog

Publisher: Dorling Kindersley Publishing, 2000

Website: http://www.dk.com

Author: Bruce Fogle

1 Comment For "Icelandic Sheepdog"



Icelandic Sheepdogs are the best!

June 2, 2013 at 4:47AM  Sign In or Join to Comment