Things to Consider Before Adopting an Icelandic Sheepdog

Adopting an Icelandic Sheepdog is a rewarding and fulfilling experience that brings joy and companionship into your life. However, it is also a significant commitment. Ensuring you have the time, space, and resources to meet their exercise, training, and companionship needs is essential for fostering a healthy, happy relationship with your new furry friend. This page is dedicated to helping you understand what to expect and how to prepare for welcoming an Icelandic Sheepdog into your family.

Loren Dribinsky, NISRA President

Understanding the Breed:

Unique Characteristics: Icelandic Sheepdogs are known for their intelligence, energy, and friendly demeanor. They are a herding breed, which means they have a natural instinct to herd and may display this behavior with children and other animals, even each other. We highly recommend that you meet several Icelandic sheepdogs so that you can understand the breed.

Exercise Needs: These dogs require regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. Daily walks, play sessions, and mental stimulation are crucial. Icelandic Sheepdogs thrive on engagement and benefit greatly from activities that challenge both their minds and bodies. Incorporating tasks that tap into their herding instincts, such as agility training or herding exercises, can be particularly rewarding for them.

Grooming Requirements: Icelandic Sheepdogs have a double coat that requires regular grooming. This includes brushing frequently and more during shedding seasons depending on their coat. The undercoat blows out twice a year.

The Right Environment

Space Considerations: Ideally, these dogs thrive in homes with ample space. A yard for them to run and play is beneficial but not mandatory if you can provide sufficient exercise in other ways. Family Dynamics: They are family-oriented dogs and do well in environments where they can interact and be part of daily activities. Consider how an Icelandic Sheepdog will fit into your current family structure.

Training and Socialization

Early Training: Consistent training is essential for Icelandic Sheepdogs. They respond well to positive reinforcement techniques.  They are highly intelligent and motivated to please. Socialization: Proper socialization from a young age is vital. It helps them become well-adjusted adults, comfortable with various people, environments, and other animals.

Health Consideration

General Health: Like all breeds, Icelandic Sheepdogs may be prone to certain health issues. Regular veterinary check-ups and preventative care are very important. Life Expectancy: Understanding their life expectancy (sometimes living to 18-20 years old) is important to ensure you are prepared for the long-term commitment.

The Adoption Process

  • Volunteer Application: Start by filling out the volunteer application. This puts you on our list of people who would like to consider adopting a rescue. When we have a dog who could meet your requirements, we will contact you to fill out an adoption application for that specific dog.
  • Meet and Greet: We arrange meet and greets to ensure a good match between you and the dog.  Each dog is an individual and we want to make sure you connect with each other.
  • Home Visits: Home visits may be conducted to ensure your home is a suitable environment for an Icelandic Sheepdog.

Post-Adoption Support

  • Resources and Guidance: We provide ongoing support and resources to help you and your new companion adjust.
  • Community Connection: Join our friendly and fun community of Icelandic Sheepdog owners to share experiences and advice.  

Are You Ready?

  • Long-Term Commitment: Adoption is a long-term commitment. Ensure you are ready for the responsibilities of dog ownership.
  • Financial Consideration: Consider the financial implications, including food, grooming, veterinary care, training and other expenses.

Take the Next Step

Adopting an Icelandic Sheepdog is not just about providing a home to a dog in need; it’s about embracing a strong connection with a new family member who will bring love, laughter, and companionship to your life. Are you ready to welcome an Icelandic Sheepdog into your life? Start the process by filling out our volunteer application here, and let’s embark on this wonderful journey together. 🐾

Start the adoption process

Visit our blog to learn more

How you can help Icies

All about NISRA

Scroll to Top