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Old English Sheepdog (Bobtail)

The Old English Sheepdog breed profile is sponsored by visit PetWear to custom design your Old English Sheepdog's next designer dog collar, leash or more and then let PetWear hand make it and then ship for free!

The Old English Sheepdog also known as the Bobtail, is not an old breed as breeds of dogs go but he does enjoy a unique position in most dog lovers' hearts.  From cartoons that capture his protective, devoted spirit to his characteristic appearance and amble, the Old English Sheepdog is nearly universally recognized as adorable.  Fortunately this breed's affable nature blends well into a variety of households and lifestyles, active but not particularly intense or hyperactive, a comfortable walk and a bit of play takes care of his exercise requirements.  The OES does have a sense of the guardian when it comes to loved ones and family, so guidance and socialization early on must be implemented to prevent this from potentially getting out of hand.  As his general nature is very agreeable this is rarely an issue but definitely one that warrants the commitment of the family to raise a well mannered, happy and well adjusted OES to call their family companion.

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General Information
Group(s): Herding Height: 22 inches and up
Weight: 55 pounds and up Longevity: low teens
Colors: gray, grizzle or blue with white. Any brown is undesirable. Coat type: Undercoat is waterproof,thick and dense. Top coat is long, harsh and free from any curl.
Recognized Registries: FCI, CKC,TKC, AKC, ANKC, NCA, AKC, UKC and others
Overall Appearance: Strong dog with a square ratio of leg to body length. No legginess. Well balanced. Distinctive trait is heavy white/gray coat.
Personaility - Behavior - Training
Energy Level: moderate
General Nature: bold, faithful, trustworthy, affable
  with Children: generally good but requires proper socialization, handling, well behaved children and supervision
  with other pets: generally good but herding nature can get involved
  with dogs: generally good but some variability
Socialization requirements: moderate
Ideal home characteristics: One that recognizes the significant grooming commitment and personality in this big dog.
Temperament Notes: affectionate, agile, friendly, generally considered good with children,
Training requirement: moderate: socialization and basic manners
Trainer notes: This character would rather play than work so make sure your training sessions are filled with play or they will be fairly short as the OES decides he's gotten a bit to tired for all your tough questions.  For all that they are large dogs, the OES combination of stamina, intelligence and agility makes them great candidates for fast moving dogsport like Agility, Freestyle Obedience and Rally Obedience.  Don't be tricked by all that hair, they love to bounce around.
Background Information
Year range of first recognition: 1800s
Country of Origin: England
Original Function: Herding
History: Developed as a herding dog in the British Isles, much of his history is obscured but the tail was docked to indicate it was a working breed and thus exempt from taxes. Which makes it a bit inexplicable why they continue the trend today.
Adoption Information
Deviations from Standard:
Health Notes: hip and elbow dysplasia, osteochondritis dissecans, PRA (eye issues), cerebral ataxia, hypothyroidism
Health Testing: OFA, CERF, Thyroid panel,
Questions to ask Breeder:  - The Breeder Questions as listed here provided with explanations and answers you will want to be looking for! 
  • How long have you had Old English Sheepdogs?
  • Why do you have Old English Sheepdogs (show, performance, etc.)?
  • What do you consider to be the most important single characteristic of an Old English Sheepdog?
  • What health issues have you seen in the breed?
  • What criteria do you set for your breeding stock?
  • Do you plan to keep a puppy from this litter?
  • How often do you have puppies?
  • Do you have a written contract and puppy guarantee?
  • At what age do you send your pups to their homes?
  • How would you describe the ideal Old English Sheepdog?
  • How would you describe the ideal Old English Sheepdog home?
  • Are your puppies whelped in your home?
  • What advice would you offer someone in raising and training an Old English Sheepdog?
  • How do you assist or help Old English Sheepdogs in need of rescue?
  • Web Sites: - Old English Sheepdog Rescue of Southern California - New England Old English Sheepdog Rescue - Texas Old English Sheepdog Rescue -Florida Old English Sheepdog Rescue


    Other Resources
    Breed standard: - UKC Standard of the Old English Sheepdog - The Kennel Club (UK) Standard of the Old English Sheepdog - FCI Standard of the Old English Sheepdog

    Breeder Ethics: - Old English Sheepdog Club of America Code of Ethics - Old English Sheepdog Club of Central Florida Code of Ethics - Old English Sheepdog Club of Scotland Code of Ethics

    Other: Bloat and heatstroke are both serious threats to the health of the OES.  While not genetic issues per se, the OES is prone to these problems because of their nature.  The heavy coat makes the dog susceptible to heatstroke on hot days and bloat is more often seen in breeds with deep chests and narrow loins.  Be sure you are familiar with both and how to prevent them prior to bringing home a dog of this type.
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