Old English sheep dog

Old English Sheepdog

General Description

(Bobtail) (OES) (Bob)The Old English Sheepdog is unique looking breed with one interesting feature: their coat.  The breed’s round head looks like a puff ball.  Also covered with fur are their small, round eyes which are rarely seen, and their square muzzle with a beard hanging off it.  Set low on the side of their head are two floppy ears.  A thick neck which is also covered with their fluffy fur leads to their deep chest.  Long legs, which look like they have boots on thanks to their coat, lead to huge round feet.  That thick coat covering their bodies comes in white with blue, gray, blue merle, or blue gray.

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The Old English Sheepdog is a sweet lovable breed.  Loving to be with their family, this breed does wonderful with all children and their family.  Not only does this dog love their family but they also are sweet with strangers.  However, this is a devoted and protective dog that will do anything for their owners except be aggressive.  Training is vital for the Old English Sheepdog because they are stubborn and will often not listen to their owners.


20 – 24 inches


60 – 100 pounds

General Health

The Old English Sheepdog is prone to a few diseases that rarely occur in the breed, such as cataracts, hip dysplasia, and Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anemia.  This breed’s average life expectancy is 10-12 years.


The origins of the Old English Sheepdog are not well-known, but the general theory is that it was created from the combination of other English or Russian dogs.  The modern version of the breed was created in England and was used for herding cattle and sheep – that much is known.  Some farmers would shear their Old English Sheepdogs and use their plentiful coat to make blankets or clothes as if it were one of the sheep being herded.  The breed was first shown in the UK in 1873.


As most people would expect by looking at the Old English Sheepdog they need lots of grooming.  Brushing should be done three times a week and needs to reach the under coat.  Matting occurs frequently and needs to be taken care of immediately.  Clipping out all the tangles is important to prevent skin problems caused by keeping mats in the fur.  If an Old English Sheepdog is used only as a pet than getting a profession trim is only needed once every two months.  Exercise is essential to a happy and healthy Old English Sheepdog.   This breed mostly enjoys being allowed to run off leash and play in the house.

Ideal Environment

The Old English Sheepdog is a wonderful family that does great with all people.  Training is very important to this breed and should be done consistently with a firm hand.  Living in an apartment is fine for this breed, however, they enjoy having a yard to play in.  The Old English Sheepdog is not for an owner who has little time or money for their extensive grooming.

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