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Old English Sheepdog

 Photo of Old English Sheepdog
Photo: Int, UK, Ch Zermatt Aus Dem Elbe Urstromital

Old English Sheepdog Books

Group: Pastoral - Breed Standard


An Old English Sheepdog is a breed of dog formerly used for herding livestock, and now primarily kept as a pet. They are best known for their shaggy grey and white fur which also covers their face, including their eyes, which leads some casual observers to wonder how they can see.

Puppies are born with jet black and white fur further likening them to the panda bear. It is only after the puppy coat has been shed that the more common gray or silver shaggy hair appears. A nickname for the OES is "bobtail" as their tails used to be docked, but they are more often known as a Dulux dog, as a result of their prolonged use in advertising Dulux paint.


Height: dogs: 61 cms (24 ins) and upwards; bitches: 56 cms (22 ins) and upwards.

The Old English Sheepdog's abundant coat is an effective insulator in both hot and cold weather. The undercoat is water resistant. Their long coats can be any shade of gray, grizzle, blue, or blue merle, with optional white markings.


This breed is intelligent, funny, social, and adaptable, although they sometimes seem to not be all that intelligent on first impressions. It generally gets along well with children, other dogs, other pets, and visitors. These dogs are tender and catch on quickly to things like boundaries and little things such as doing a trick for a treat. These animals are gentle with other dogs and are always willing to play.


Like all herding breeds, the Old English Sheepdog requires plenty of exercise, both mental and physical.


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