GennaYes, Sheltie puppies are super cute. I’m sure many folks have considered breeding their Sheltie for “fun & profit”. But one should really give it serious thought before committing to it. You should also seriously critique your female. Is she close to the breed standard? Is she healthy, of sound mind & of appropriate age?

What it all boils down to is this: do not breed unless you are totally committed to the care and well being of your dog and her puppies. You should have at least $4000 in you bank account and should have a backup plan if the puppies do not sell.


Necessary for the health of the mother and her litter a trip to the veterinarian for the following:

  • Health check., worming, and fresh shots for mom, brucellosis test….$160.00
  • Stud service fee (depending on breeder & quality of dog)…$500 to $1500

After breeding:

  • Top quality food…$48.00
  • Whelping pen…$125

At birth:

  • Vet check & cleanout shot …$65.00
  • Tails and dew claws…$120.00

As puppies grow:

  • Misc. expenses (trash bags, extra heat, papers, paper towels heating pads)…$130.00
  • Vet visit 6 weeks for 1st shots and worming (distemper measles & parvo) …$200.00
  • Vet visit 8 weeks for 2nd shots & worming (DHPP)…$200.00
  • Vet visit 10 weeks for 3rd shots (Parvo)…$150.00
  • Vet visit 12 weeks for 4th shot (DHPP)…$200.00
  • Advertising for min 4 weeks (1 week per pup)…$416.00
  • Puppy food…$48.00
  • Exercise Pen…$90.00
  • Toys…$32.00
  • Breeders license &unaltered fee…$200.00
  • Litter registration…$33.00 AKC
  • Micro chip or Tattoo now required ID on AKC litter record…$200.00


  • You have to be present when your female is in labor and you are out one or two days worth of wages or vacation time. Include your lost wages/vacation in the price of your puppies.
  • If you are going to sell your puppies check with your homeowners insurance to see if you are covered if a person is injured (or heaven forbid, bitten) while looking at you puppies. Most homeowners will not pay the claim as you are conducting a commercial activity. Add fee for additional commercial insurance to the puppy’s selling price.
  • Your puppies don’t sell in four ads. You must continue advertising at $84 per week. (Cheap ads do not work & just eat up valuable selling time.)
  • You must license the puppies at 4 months & if you have more than three dogs you could be in violation of city dog limit laws.


  • C-Section… $600 – $1400+
  • Mastitis eclampsia pymetria…$150 – $500
  • Supplement for puppies if mother dies or cannot nurse…$5.00+ per day.
  • All pups get Parvo…$1200 up

The above does not include time off work to care for orphan or weak pups, cost of your time or genetic screening required in some breeds (OFA CERF etc.).

Still not convinced & want to breed your dog?

Well, note these lovely facts:

  • As a responsible breeder, I am sure that you plan to take back any puppy that doesn’t work out for the life of the dog – because that is what responsible breeders do.
  • If you are breeding to show your children the “miracle of life” they will probably see death also. Pups can be born stillborn, some are deformed, and most litters will have at least one fading puppy. There is a chance the mother may also die.
  • If you are breeding to get a companion for your dog. I am sure she would much rather have you just buy one or adopt one for her. Once she is bred she will have a 40% chance of breast cancer before she is 10 yrs of age. She is also at risk for pymetria, and uterine and cervical cancer.

If you are breeding to get your money back from the purchase of your dog, take the $4000 and go to Vegas and play the slot machines. Your odds are probably just as good and you would have much more fun.

Thanks to Cadie of Acadia Shelties for the uber cute photo of Genna & her little Sheltie puppy bottoms!

2 Responses to “Should I Breed My Sheltie?”

  1. Kelly

    Hi Donna,

    Thanks for your feedback. The article, written by an experienced Champion producing Sheltie breeder is frank, honest and realistic.

    If you wish to be a contentious breeder, you will seek a mentor in Shelties who has the experience and proven performance record to guide you. You will not find enough information here or anywhere else on the internet to learn all you need to know.

    There are far too many backyard or “hobby” breeders who are not producing mentally or physically sound Shelties that exhibit breed type. We are trying to educate and inform people.

  2. Donna

    Love Shelties-Your website “sheltie nation” is very negative on breeding. I understand the importance of what you have to say and message, but my purpose was to find out the right way to go about breeding good, beautiful, and healthy shelties. I love my twins and researching everything I can to represent these amazing dogs. Anything positive and the right way would be more helpful


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