Breed Information

The Old English Sheepdog (aka bobtail) is a big shaggy dog, famous for their profuse coat and peak-a-boo hairdo, a distinctive bear-like gait, and a mellow, agreeable nature.

Many Old English Sheepdogs are good with children, but as with all dogs, they should not be left alone or unsupervised with children.

They are sensible watchdogs known for a loud, pot-casse bark.

Coat: profuse double coat beneath – underneath is a muscular and compact drover, with plenty of bone and a big rump

Height: 22 inches & up (male), 21 inches & up (female)

Weight: 60-100 pounds

Eyes: Their eyes (when you can see them) are dark brown, or blue, or one of each

Exercise Needs: regular exercise is required for these strong, big, agile dogs who enjoy exploring and a good romp. They move with a bear-like shuffle but are famous for their nimbleness afoot.

Life Expectancy: 10-12 years

The breed is famed for their many fine qualities:

watchfulness, courage, kindliness, adaptability, gentleness, and intelligence.

Check out Old English Sheepdog Club of America website.

Read American Kennel Club breed information.

Read Rescue dog behavior problems by The National Animal Interest Alliance.

OFA – The Canine Health Information Center

American Heartworm Society

The Old English Sheepdog (OES) is not for everyone

– by D.R. Segal

Some things are, as they say, not for everybody. One of those things is an Old English Sheepdog, for reasons I will explain.

An Old English Sheepdog requires more attention than any other animal on Earth with the possible exception of a thoroughbred horse. If an Old English Sheepdog does not get the kind of attention he requires, he turns into something that resembles a split bale of cotton. When this occurs, you run for the sheep shears and say your beads. An Old English Sheepdog is not for everybody.

People ask how many minutes per day are required to keep an Old English Sheepdog in respectable repair?

The answer is ” all of them.”

An unkempt Old English Sheepdog is a stinking, miserable slob. An Old English Sheepdog is not for everybody. Most of what they eat winds up in their whiskers. They like to step in their water bowl. If they are not trimmed they can’t see through the hair on their faces. They bump into things and will chew on anything except dog food. Old English Sheepdogs are not for everybody.

Old English Sheepdogs have no tails. Either they are born without them or they are docked at an early age. A dog which has no tail cannot signal his emotions. With nothing to wiggle back there you don’t know if your Old English Sheepdog is happy or in a murderous mood. An Old English Sheepdog’s entire tush wags when he walks in what is said to be a bear-like gait, An Old English Sheepdog is not for everybody.

An Old English Sheepdog seems to inflame other and lesser dogs simply by showing up. Teacup poodles and Itzy-Bitzy Mama’s Darlings always yap their lungs out when they see an Old English Sheepdog. An Old English Sheepdog doesn’t know quite what these small annoyances are and whether to eat one or not. Usually they sniff around and leave. Old English Sheepdogs are not for everybody.

Old English Sheepdogs love people. They will lick a small child like the kid licks a lollipop-until there is nothing let. They drink as much as a small horse and their kiss is like taking a bath. Old English Sheepdogs are not for everybody.

Any Old English Sheepdog I have ever seen would not know what to make of a sheep if he were to meet up with one. Very likely he would lick it and trip over an imaginary hole in the ground. They do, however, like to herd. What they like to herd is people and they have a sneaky way of herding people into little groups without them realizing it. If you don’t move lively they will lick you in the ear.

Old English Sheepdogs are not for everybody; but if you have one and survived him, you get a warm glow of satisfaction. You know you have accomplished something-survival-and it does a service to your self-esteem.


Want an OES puppy?

Know the difference between a reputable breeder and a not so reputable one.

Please follow this checklist by Chris Halvorson before you purchase a puppy!

Backyard Breeder

1.Motive for breeding “fun”, “good for the kids”, to make money.” Doesn’t screen buyers and seldom refuses to sell, even if buyer is unsuitable.

2. Breeds family pet of same breed just to have purebred pups. Has no concern for genetics, bloodlines or breed improvements.

3.Though pet may be well loved, it wasn’t X-rayed for hip dysplasia or checked for other heritable problems.

4. Offers no health guarantees beyond proof of shots, if that. Unqualified to give help if problems develop.

5. Seller has little knowledge of breed history or AKC breed standard. May claim that this doesn’t matter for “just pets.”

6. Pups raised in makeshift accommodations, indicating lack of long-term investment in breeding.

7. Even when selling”just pets,” may produce AKC papers or “champion pedigree” as proof of quality. Yet seller doesn’t increase own knowledge through particpation in national or local breed club. Doesn’t show own dogs to “prove” quality.

8. May be unwilling to show buyer entire litter or to introduce dam of litter. Can’t or won’t compare/critique pups or pup’s ancestors.

9. Prices at low end of local range, since must move pups quickly.

10. No concern for the future of individual pups or breed as a whole. Doesn’t use AKC’s limited registration option or ask for spay/neuter contract to guard against breeding of substandard prts. If you can’t keep pup, tells you to take it to the pound or sell it.

Reputable Hobby Breeder

1. Dedication to producing quality dogs is serious avocation. Has so much invested in dogs that struggles to break even, not make profit. Will sell pups only to approved buyers.

2. Can explain how planned breeding to emphasize qualities through linebreeding, outcrossing or, more rarely, inbreeding.

3.Has breeding stock x-rayed to check for hip dysplasia and tests for other genetic faults. Can produce certification to prove claims.

4. Lifetime commitment to replace a dog with genetic faults or to help owner deal with problems.

5. Loves breed and can talk at any length about its background, uses and ideal type.

6. Has a serious investment in dog equipment such as puppy pens,crates and grooming tables and knows how to use it.

7. Belongs to a local or national dog club, indicating a love for sport of dogs. Exhibits own dogs as an objective test of how stock measures up.

8. Shows litter and dam in a sanitary environment. Helps buyer evaluate and choose pup. Explains criteria for “show picks” versus “pet pick.”

9. Prices will be at high end of local range, not cut-rate. Price won’t reflect all that is invested in pups.

10. After purchase will help with grooming or training problems. Will take back pup you can’t keep rather than see it disposed of inappropriately. Sells pets with spay/neuter agreement or limited AKC registration.

This is a You Tube video of Old English Sheepdog Rescue co-founder Christine Pesche and her showdog “Blue” at the 2018 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, 820 Wilson Place, Santa Monica, CA 90405
310-392-3366  |

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