Icelandic Sheepdog is Iceland's only native dog.
The Nordic settlers, who started arriving in 874 AD, brought it
to the country. It soon
adapted to the local terrain, farming methods and the harsh struggle for
survival of the Icelandic people over the centuries, making it
indispensable in the rounding up of livestock.
is a hardy dog, happy and friendly with a gentle disposition.
Its love of working, eagerness to learn and please, and cheerful
bark have eased the shepherd's load and earned its masterís trust and
affection and more often than not, a share of his packed lunch.
The Icelandic Sheepdog is also a very good guard dog, without
being aggressive, although its hunting and retrieving instincts are not
Icelandic Sheepdog is a medium sized dog with pricked ears and a
well-curled tail and double dewclaws on the hind legs.
Its mood is expressed by its constantly moving ears and its
intelligent and lively dark brown eyes.
Its coat can be varied in length, either long or short, but
always thick and extremely weatherproof.
Several colours are permitted, but always having a predominant
single colour. The
permitted colours are various shades of tan, ranging from pale fawn to
reddish brown, wheaten, chocolate brown, grey, and black. White markings always accompany the main colour.
Black dogs must be tri-coloured.
1969, a group of concerned Icelanders founded the Icelandic Kennel Club,
originally for the express purpose of saving the Icelandic Sheepdog,
when it became apparent, that it was in grave danger of extinction.
Since its founding in 1979, the Icelandic Sheepdog Breed Club has
been responsible for upholding and developing the breed.
The Icelandic Sheepdog's popularity has increased over the
decades and despite the fact, the breed is still very small in numbers,
but no longer in danger of extinction.
In 1996, a committee of the Icelandic Sheepdog Breed Clubs of
seven nations was established with the express purpose of standardizing
and improving the breed.
Icelandic Sheepdog is a valuable part of the country's heritage, a
treasure, which must be safeguarded for the future.