Old English Sheepdog


  • Height: 21 to 22 inches (male), 20 to 21 inches (female)
  • Weight: 65 to 100 pounds (male), 60 to 85 pounds (female)
  • Life Span: 10 to 12 years
  • Diet: A well-balanced diet that meets the nutritional needs of a large, active dog.

Old English Sheepdog Overview:

The Old English Sheepdog, often lovingly referred to as the “Bobtail” due to its unique tail, is a large and affectionate dog breed that originated in England. Bred for herding sheep and cattle, these gentle giants are known for their thick, shaggy coat, intelligent expression, and sociable nature. Their adaptable and easygoing temperament makes them excellent family companions, and their history as herding dogs means they have a strong sense of loyalty and protective instincts.

Old English Sheepdog Highlights:

  • Coat and Appearance: The Old English Sheepdog’s double coat is thick and weather-resistant, covering their entire body, including their eyes. Their coat comes in various colors, including gray, blue, and blue merle.
  • Herding Instinct: Despite being primarily kept as a companion dog today, the Old English Sheepdog still retains strong herding instincts. They may try to herd family members, especially children, and other pets.

Old English Sheepdog Evolution and History:

The Old English Sheepdog’s history dates back to 18th-century England, where they were primarily used as working dogs for herding and driving livestock to market. Their exact ancestry is a subject of speculation, but it is believed they were developed by crossing local herding breeds with other herding dogs like the Bearded Collie and the Deerhound. Over time, they became popular with English sheep farmers, and eventually, their popularity spread beyond working environments to become beloved family pets and show dogs.

Old English Sheepdog Size and Weight:

As a large breed, male Old English Sheepdogs typically stand between 21 to 22 inches at the shoulder, while females are slightly smaller, measuring 20 to 21 inches. Their weight can range from 65 to 100 pounds for males and 60 to 85 pounds for females.

Old English Sheepdog Personality:

Old English Sheepdogs are known for their friendly and gentle nature, making them great companions for families and individuals alike. They are social dogs that enjoy spending time with their human family members and thrive in environments where they receive plenty of attention and love.

The Adaptability of the Old English Sheepdog:

Old English Sheepdogs can adapt well to various living situations, including apartments, as long as they receive enough exercise and mental stimulation.

Old English Sheepdog Temperament:

The Old English Sheepdog is known for its sweet and kind temperament. They are generally good-natured, patient, and great with children, making them an excellent choice for families.

Old English Sheepdog Maintenance and Grooming:

Maintaining an Old English Sheepdog’s coat requires regular grooming to prevent matting and tangles. Daily brushing is essential, especially during shedding seasons, to keep their coat in good condition.

The Trainability of the Old English Sheepdog:

These dogs are intelligent and eager to please, making them relatively easy to train with positive reinforcement methods.

Exercise Needs of the Old English Sheepdog:

Old English Sheepdogs have moderate exercise needs. Daily walks and playtime in a secure yard are generally enough to keep them physically and mentally stimulated.

Old English Sheepdog Health:

Overall, Old English Sheepdogs are a relatively healthy breed. However, they may be prone to certain health issues, including:

  • Hip Dysplasia: A hereditary condition affecting the hip joints, which can lead to mobility issues and arthritis.
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA): A genetic eye disorder that can cause progressive vision loss and eventually blindness.
  • Hypothyroidism: A condition where the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones, leading to various health issues.

Old English Sheepdog Care:

Regular vet check-ups, a balanced diet, proper exercise, and grooming are essential for maintaining the health and well-being of an Old English Sheepdog.

Old English Sheepdog Feeding:

Providing high-quality dog food suitable for their age, size, and activity level is vital for an Old English Sheepdog’s overall health.

Old English Sheepdog Coat Color and Grooming:

Old English Sheepdogs come in various coat colors, including gray, blue, blue merle, and grizzle. Their thick and shaggy double coat requires regular grooming to prevent mats and tangles.

Old English Sheepdog and Children:

Old English Sheepdogs are known for being good with children, thanks to their gentle and patient nature.

Old English Sheepdog and Other Pets:

With proper socialization, Old English Sheepdogs can get along well with other pets, including dogs and cats.

Similar Dogs:

  • Bearded Collie: Like the Old English Sheepdog, the Bearded Collie is a herding breed known for its shaggy coat and friendly temperament. Both breeds have similar energy levels and herding instincts.
  • Briard: The Briard shares a similar shaggy appearance and herding background with the Old English Sheepdog. They are both intelligent and loyal breeds with protective instincts towards their families.