Meet Candace

Candescent Shetland Sheepdogs LLC

I have had a passion for dogs my entire life - particuarly for Shelties! I participate reguarly in Conformation dog shows, and have dabbled in agility/rally in the past. I have raised several champions, and many Candescent puppies have gone on to earn titles in various performance sports.

I love Shelties for their loyal, affectionate dispositions, as well as their keen intelligence, trainability, and desire to please.

I am a member and officer of the Greater Charlotte Shetland Sheepdog Club and I am an AKC Breeder of Merit.


How do our dogs live?

Our dogs live in our home with us - alongside myself, my husband, and 2 children (Lucas and Luna). They have regular access to their big back yard, and spend nice days chasing each other (or the kids!) Evenings, and rainy/hot days are spent inside with us - getting lots of attention, treats, dog puzzles, chews, and their favorite - frozen peanut butter Kongs to keep them busy!

Older, trustworthy dogs get house priviliges at night, while younger dogs are crated in our dog room for their safety. All our dogs are fed in crates to make sure everyone gets the proper amount of food and they can feel safe, knowing another dog cannot steal their meal.


Puppies are born in our bedroom, where we can keep a close eye on them - especially in the first few days after birth. We spend many sleepless nights checking on puppies and recording weights to make sure everyone is getting adequate time at the milk bar. Moms whelp their litters in a spacious whelping box with protective rails and soft, dry vet fleece that is changed daily. This bedding provides great traction for the growing puppies.


When puppies are around 3 weeks old, their eyes and ears have opened, and they are ready for more exposure and exploration. This is the age puppies are moved into the living room, and are exposed to the sights, sounds, and smells of everyday living. They are handled daily by the whole family and are started on litter training. This makes clean up much easier later on and helps puppies learn to eliminate away from eating and sleeping areas.


While playing outside often and getting dirty go hand in hand, we do keep up a grooming routine on our dogs to make sure everyone stays comfortable, healthy, and free of parasites. It is a lot of working keeping up with nail trims, brushing, feet trimming, and bathing on a big family of dogs, but good maintenance is a lot easier on both dog and human than cutting and pulling lots of mats out later! Everyone here gets a nail trim every 1-2 weeks, a good brushing once a week, and a bath/blow out once a month. Dental health is very important to us - our dogs even get their teeth brushed on a regular basis.


We breed a few well thought out litters per year, taking into consideration the temperament and attributes of each parent and how they might compliment each other. Our girls get a thorough check up and blood work at reproductive specialty hospital (we joking refer to it as the "doggy OBGYN") prior to breeding, an ultrasound to check for pregnancy (and the health of the puppies), then a term x-ray to get an estimated count and check on the size/positioning of the puppies. We do everything we can to have a safe delivery for mom and puppies.


Shelties come in many colors. They can be Sables of varying shades (light honey colored to dark mahogany), Tri color (Black, white, and tan), Blue merle (Blue, white, and tan), Sable merle (sable with varying darker or silver areas), and bi-colors, which are blacks and blues without the tan points. "Color headed whites" are a possibility when breeding a white factored pair. I primarily raise sable Shelties, but I do occationally have litters with other colors.

Our dogs love visitors! When you come for your puppy visit, or to pick up your puppy, you are welcome to bring the whole family. I encourage families to keep in touch with me. I love photos and updates!

I am happy to support you and give advice should you need it. At any time in my puppies' lives, they have a home here if they must be given up - for any reason.

Genetic Testing

We perform the necessary genetic testing on our breeding stock. Though Shelties are generally a healthy breed, health clearances greatly lessen the chances of offspring inheriting certain genetic defects known to Shelties.

The health tests we perform on our breeding dogs are:

  • Hip/Elbow Exams - at 2 years of age, hips and elbows are x-rayed and sent to the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals to be evaluated. Passing scores are Excellent, Good, and Fair. There are environmental influences that can increase the risk of hip and elbow dysplasia in dogs, but only breeding parents with passing scores is an important part of reducing the risk.

  • Eye Exams - Eyes are checked periodically by a board certified ophthalmologist and the results are recorded with OFA. The ophthalmologist dialates the eyes, does a thorough exam, and any abnormalities are noted.

  • vWD Type 3 (DNA) - vWD is a genetic bleeding disorder. If a puppy inherits the mutation from both its sire and dam, the puppy will be affected with Von Willebrand's Disease. The disease prevents the dog from properly clotting its blood and can be fatal.

  • MDR-1 - A gene found in Shelties and Collies that can affect their response to certain medications such as heart worm preventatives (Ivermectin), certain anesthesia, and cancer treatments.

  • DMS - A risk assessment DNA test for the disease Dermatomyositis, also known as "Sheltie Skin Syndrome". This disease causes scab formations on the face, legs, tail, and other parts of the body. In its more severe forms, the dog's muscles and swallowing ability can be affected. The goal is to pair Shelties who will produce all puppies with a "Low Risk" genotype.

  • DM - Degenerative Myelopathy is a disease of the spine, which causes progressive muscle weakness and incoordination.

  • CEA - Collie Eye Anomoly is a mutation that causes loss of vision, among other eye abnormalities.

  • PRA (BBS2 & CNGA1) - 2 mutations have been found in Shelties that contribute to the development of Progressive Retinal Atrophy. This disease causes loss of vision in Shelties, usually early in life.





Candace Sasser

(828) 222-3733