theOld English Sheepdog

Adaptable, Smart, Gentle
Herding Group Herding Group

meet theOld English Sheepdog

Did you know?

In all probability, the Old English Sheepdog was developed in the west of England, in the counties of Devon and Somerset and the Duchy of Cornwall.


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at aGlance

Energy & Size

medium ENERGY &
large size

AKC Dog Ranking

75th
Most Popular Dog Breed

Personality

  • Check Adaptable
  • Check Gentle
  • Check Smart
Adaptable, smart, gentle; Old English Sheepdogs are famous for their sweet, agreeable nature.

theBreed Standard

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  • General Appearance

    A strong, compact, square, balanced dog. Taking him all around, he is profusely, but not excessively coated, thickset, muscular and able-bodied. These qualities, combined with his agility, fit him for the demanding tasks required of a shepherd's or drover's dog. Therefore, soundness is of the greatest importance. His bark is loud with a distinctive "pot-casse" ring in it.

  • Head

    A most intelligent expression. Eyes - Brown, blue or one of each. If brown, very dark is preferred. If blue, a pearl, china or wall-eye is considered typical. An amber or yellow eye is most objectionable. Ears - Medium sized and carried flat to the side of the head. Skull - Capacious and rather squarely formed giving plenty of room for brain power. The parts over the eyes (supra-orbital ridges) are well arched. The whole well covered with hair. Stop - Well defined. Jaw - Fairly long, strong, square and truncated. Attention is particularly called to the above properties as a long, narrow head or snipy muzzle is a deformity. Nose - Always black, large and capacious. Teeth - Strong, large and evenly placed. The bite is level or tight scissors.

  • Body

    Neck - Fairly long and arched gracefully. Topline - Stands lower at the withers than at the loin with no indication of softness or weakness. Attention is particularly called to this topline as it is a distinguishing characteristic of the breed. Body - Rather short and very compact, broader at the rump than at the shoulders, ribs well sprung and brisket deep and capacious. Neither slab-sided nor barrel-chested. The loin is very stout and gently arched.

  • Forequarters

    Shoulders well laid back and narrow at the points. The forelegs dead straight with plenty of bone. The measurements from the withers to the elbow and from the elbow to the ground are practically the same.
     

  • Coat

    Profuse, but not so excessive as to give the impression of the dog being overly fat, and of a good hard texture; not straight, but shaggy and free from curl. Quality and texture of coat to be considered above mere profuseness. Softness or flatness of coat to be considered a fault. The undercoat is a waterproof pile when not removed by grooming or season. Ears coated moderately. The whole skull well covered with hair. The neck well coated with hair. The forelegs well coated all around. The hams densely coated with a thick, long jacket in excess of any other part. Neither the natural outline nor the natural texture of the coat may be changed by any artificial means except that the feet and rear may be trimmed for cleanliness.

  • Hindquarters

    Round and muscular with well let down hocks. When standing, the metatarsus are perpendicular to the ground when viewed from any angle.

A Old English Sheepdog
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theOld English Sheepdog Community

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get involved inClubs & Events

National
Breed Club

theOld English Sheepdog Club of America, Inc.

Local Club

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Meetups

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