Keeping a Sheltie indoors

Shelties are considered ideal family dogs. Their good mood and friendly nature speak for themselves. If you want to keep a Sheltie in your home, we’ll show you what to look out for.

Your loyal dog is very intelligent and can adapt effortlessly. Shelties can be kept indoors, but you will need to provide plenty of variety.

Shelties can become cheeky or boisterous if they don’t get enough exercise, making it difficult for you to live with them. They are not quiet lapdogs who want to sleep in their basket all day.

Sheltie need a lot of movement and exercise.

In this blog post, we want to show you how you can give your Sheltie enough training, exercise and excitement, but also rest time should not be neglected.

Is flat living suitable for a Sheltie?

As long as you are renting, you should first check whether your landlord agrees to keeping a dog in his flat. Some landlords do not tolerate dogs, some only accept small dogs and some are enthusiastic dog owners themselves and therefore agree to dog ownership.

Normally, the Sheltie is a friendly companion who could also adapt to life in a flat.

However, there are some reasons why you should not keep a Sheltie in a flat. First of all, you must be aware that your Sheltie must always be exercised before you go out to work, for example. Read also here: Where to take your dog during work. Especially with a Sheltie, it is absolutely necessary to meet his needs.

Let’s look at factors that play a role if the Sheltie is to live indoors:

  •     Hair change
  •     Watchdog
  •     Space
  •     Freedom of movement

You should not underestimate these four factors. First of all, you need to be aware that a Sheltie likes to shed a lot of hair. Of course, it is easy to vacuum constantly. But if the flat is very small, the constant cleaning of the flat might bother you.

As a born guard dog, the Sheltie is very intelligent and can be temperamental if people approach the flat. As long as you don’t live on the ground floor, the Sheltie might behave differently. He may be more aware of noises in the hallway and his barking may annoy the neighbours.

In a small flat, the Sheltie has little space. He likes to let off steam and needs enough space to do so.

The disadvantage of a flat is also the lack of a garden, unless you live on the ground floor with a terrace. There you could offer your Sheltie some fun and get active with him.

The points already mentioned could have a negative effect. However, it is also up to you to offer your Sheltie a better life in the flat.

Therefore, let’s take a look at the living space a Sheltie would want. Of course, he likes to be with you and is always loyal.

A Sheltie feels at home here

Of course it is possible to provide a Sheltie with a species-appropriate home environment. However, this is connected with enormous efforts. If you live in a house with a garden, your Sheltie will be able to move around more.

A Sheltie always wants to be on the move and is especially interested in you. The bigger the house, the better it is for your Sheltie. The garden lends itself to many exercise sessions or training sessions. For short sessions fetching balls, a garden is ideal.

The advantages of a garden are obvious:

  •     Exercise can be lived out
  •     In addition to the walks, you can romp in the garden.

Your Sheltie can have the opportunity to run around in a sufficiently large garden. Of course, not every garden is suitable for a Sheltie, as the minimum size should extend beyond the classic “towel gardens”.

Basically, the Sheltie wants to have plenty of space and air for his temperament. It is nice if the dog can live this out, rather than not being properly noticed in a flat that is too small.

If all else fails and your own garden unfortunately remains a pipe dream, it helps if there are dog parks, exercise areas and lots of opportunities for exercise nearby. This way you can compensate for your Sheltie’s desire to move.

Exercise is the be-all and end-all.

How can I still keep my Sheltie species-appropriate indoors?

If you are the flat type and any garden is too much work for you to care for, then you will have to find a compromise between Sheltie and flat. Shelties are great dogs, intelligent, loyal and always in a good mood. They make you laugh and you want to be able to give something back.

If you are renting, you must find a flat that is suitable for dog owners. It is not advisable to keep a Sheltie secretly in the rented flat. As long as dog ownership is not desired, you should not ignore it.

We will show you how to keep your Sheltie occupied if you have to keep it in a flat. In any case, consistent training is very important. Your Sheltie should feel comfortable with you and for that you have to give him something to work on.

These points are elementary for Shelties kept indoors:

  •     Sufficient activity
  •     Education
  •     Mental exercise
  •     Other dogs
  •     Care

Sufficient activity

To keep your Sheltie from getting hyper indoors, it’s important to give him exercise outdoors. Taking your Sheltie for 3x daily walks will already help.

It is up to you to offer your Sheltie more incentives for exercise. You can do this by spending time outside with your Sheltie. You can try jogging together. You can also take your Sheltie out on bike rides or keep him busy indoors when the weather is bad.

Without enough exercise and variety, the Sheltie tends to become too temperamental and overbearing. This can show in the fact that he can’t settle down in the flat and starts to test your qualities.

In any case, a varied week can help keep your Sheltie happy and well exercised at the same time.

Dog school or dog trainer

You should take regular lessons with your Sheltie at a dog school. You can learn how to keep your Sheltie calm and how to reduce barking.

Especially if you are in an apartment building, it is an advantage if your Sheltie can stay calm and does not want to bark all the time. Otherwise, the other parties in the house might feel disturbed.

You can also prepare your Sheltie for competitions and practice with him specifically for this. It is important that your Sheltie is encouraged and thus gets a good workout.

For a good appearance, the Sheltie needs appropriate grooming.


Regular grooming of a Sheltie includes coat care. His beautiful coat needs good care.

Brush your Sheltie regularly and you will prevent shaggy patches in the coat. You should brush your Sheltie more often, especially when the coat changes. You can also take your Sheltie to a groomer and have him professionally groomed if the effort is too much for you.

Other dogs

In addition to basic dog training, it is important to bring your Sheltie into contact with other dogs on a regular basis. Whether it’s going for a walk in the dog park, on the free-range area or even out and about.

But make sure your dog listens to you even off-leash! Dog doesn’t listen to his name – check out our blog for more topics.

You can also arrange to meet other dog owners you know. Or go to a Sheltie meeting with like-minded people!

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Conclusion: Keeping a Sheltie indoors

The Sheltie is only conditionally suitable for keeping indoors. If the Sheltie is sufficiently exercised outside the four walls with walks and head work, he can become a relaxed companion.

Only in rented flats, where dogs are not allowed, it is not advisable to simply bring a dog with you.

In any case, if you have a house, your Sheltie will be happy to have a garden where he can romp and play to his heart’s content.