Dog Profiles - Description of Old English Sheepdog

Old English Sheepdog

Description: Affectionately called the "Bobtail", so named because of his lack of a tail. He is an affectionately loyal dog, protective of those he loves. A natural protector, he was originally the guardian of a flock and this instinct is displayed in his tendency to adopt young animals and children. Known as the "nanny dog" from Peter Pan he does not make a good guard dog.

Height: 22-24 inches

Weight: 66 lbs.

Colors: Shades of gray, grizzle or blue.

Coat: Profuse but not excessive and a good harsh texture.

Temperament: Active, playful, clever. Gets along exceptionally well with children. May be too rambunctious for small children. Enjoys the company of other pets. Good seepdog and family pet. Good watch-dog. Poor guard-dog.

Care and Exercise: Constant care is needed to maintain his longhaired coat. Brush and comb thorough to the dense water proof undercoat at least three times per week. Clip out tangles carefully. Can be professionally machine clipped every two months. Trim around the eyes and rear end. Although not a lazy dog, he does have a casual approach to exercise. A leisurely daily stroll will prove sufficient motivation.

Training: Gentle and consistent handling and training is the best approach. He can be mischievous if he is bored or lonely. Learning Rate: Low, Obedience: Low, Problem Solving: High

Activity: Indoors: High, Outdoors: Very High.

Living Environment: A house with a fenced yard is essential. Old English Sheepdogs need an owner who is strong, confident and patient and who will dedicate time and energy to grooming of his coat.

Health Issues: Hip dysplasia. He is also not suited for hot climates due to the heavy thick coat.

Life Span: 12-13 Years

Litter Size: 5-8

Country of Origin: Great Britain

History: In early times he was known as just "the Shepherd's Dog". His exact origins are unclear but the most popular consensus is that he was crossed with the Bearded Collie. Opinions agree that the breed began to develope in the hands of the farmers in England's West Country probably around 200 years ago where he was used to herd both sheep and cattle.

Registration: ACA, AKC, ANKC, CKC, FCI (Group 1), KC(GB), UKC