By Ruth Bird
The Old English Sheepdog comes to us from the west of England. It belongs to a working breed of dogs. This breed was bred because there was a need for a strong dog that was capable of fending off the wolves and protecting the herds. By the middle of the nineteenth century these Sheepdogs were used to herd the flocks to the market. Apparently working breed of dogs did not get taxed, but they had to have their tails docked to prove it. This practice continues in modern times with this breed of dog particularily.
The Old English Sheepdog was already recognized by the AKC in 1905.
AKC Ranking: 69
Family: Livestock, Herding
Date of origin: 1800’s
Function: Sheep Herding
Today: Herding Trials
These dogs could be brown, but today are only recognized in grey and white. This dog has a very compact body. This dog became popular as a pet with the media in the mid 1900’s. It is used mostly as a pet or show dog today, and rarely as a working dog.
This is a gently fun loving dog. It is a marvelous family pet and often entertains its family with loveable and funny antics. It is protective of its family members, looking after the children as it would the sheep herd. It is friendly towards strangers, but can be a little headstrong, because of its intelligence. Dog obedience training is very important with this breed.
This dog needs daily play and exercise, preferably a nice long walk. This breed thrives on company so it does not make a good outside pet. It needs brushing regularly otherwise it tends to mat. It has a lifespan of 10 – 12 years.
It has a bear like shuffle and tends to amble along. It has a very pleasing fun loving intelligent expression.
The Old English Sheepdog is great addition to any family.
Ruth is actively involved with the internet, and she finds it very exciting. Her passions are pet health and dog training. She is a wife, a stepmom a dog owner and a business person. She is married for almost 30 years to Chris who has been, and still is, battling the monster MS. Two of her dogs are Certified Therapy Dogs. She is currently working from her home.
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