Shetland sheepdog is a small, long haired working dog of great beauty. It is gentle in character, alert, intelligent, strong in body and active. The built is symmetrical and balanced and movements are smooth and graceful. Coat colour can be sable (ranging from light fawn to dark mahogny, clear or shaded), black or blue merle, with white and tan markings. Shelties make very affectionate pets, they are attentive and easily trained, can be vocal and reserved towards strangers, but love their family above all else. In spite of its name and origin, its herding instinct is somewhat deluted, but its working ability is strong and they excell in precision training like agility, obedience and free-style. This small, hardy, intelligent dog is well suited to active family life in the country or in the city, as long as it gets to participate and spend time with its loved ones. Sheltie usually gets along well with other animals, is playful but not rough. The breed is generally healthy and long lived.