Also known as the Dulux Dog, the Old English Sheepdog is an intelligent and social breed. But how do you know whether you are ready to purchase a pet and if this breed is right for you? This information is absolutely necessary in making the decision to purchase a pet.
The origin of the Old English Sheepdog can be traced back to 19th century England. Enthusiasts believe these dogs to have descended from such breeds as the Bearded Collie and the Russian Owtchar, though this has never been proven scientifically or otherwise.
Throughout its history, the Old English Sheepdog has been most commonly used for herding, retrieving, and as a companion, proving its superior abilities to work in most any climate while providing friendship.
While the exact history the Old English Sheepdog’s introduction to the United States has not been well documented, the Old English Sheepdog Club of America was established in 1904, and the breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1905.
Today, the Old English Sheepdog has attained an underground popularity as a working and companion dog, yet the breed remains rather rare outside of Europe and the United States.
Best known for its friendly and outgoing nature, the Old English Sheepdog is a very social breeds, making friends with humans and other animals quickly. These dogs are very intelligent and easily trainable. As a pet, the Old English Sheepdog is obedient, loyal, loving, and affectionate. This breed is active and enjoys spending time outdoors and playing games such as fetch.
Due to its eagerness to please and impress its owner, the Old English Sheepdog generally responds well to basic training and commands. These intelligent dogs have the ability to learn to perform most any task their trainer is willing to take the time to teach.
Establishing immediate trust and respect is key to successfully training the Old English Sheepdog. This breed responds best to a stern yet gentle approach and positive reinforcement.
Benefits and Disadvantages of the Breed
There are many benefits to owning an Old English Sheepdog. These active dogs are often quite amusing and entertaining to watch while at play. This breed is highly intelligent, easily trainable, and capable of learning to perform many impressive tricks and tasks. When properly socialized from a young age, the Old English Sheepdog gets along well with children and other pets, known for its gentle approach to small children, and making friends with other animals quite quickly. The Old English Sheepdog is obedient, loyal, loving, and affectionate, making an excellent family pet and companion alike. This breed adapts easily to new environments and situations.
Unfortunately, there are also disadvantages to owning an Old English Sheepdog. This energetic and active breed requires large amounts of daily exercise and room to run and play. Anyone wishing to purchase this breed lacking the adequate amount of time and space to dedicate to the dog is strongly advised against doing so. An Old English Sheepdog not receiving the proper amount of exercise and space will often act out by destroying property, chewing, barking, whining, and ignoring basic training such as housebreaking.
The Old English Sheepdog has a strong instinct to hunt and herd, and will occasionally indulge in a good chase. When on the run, this breed is surprisingly quick, and may pose a threat to other animals, neighborhood pets, and small woodland creatures. The Old English Sheepdog must be leashed or properly secured at all times when outdoors.
This breed’s thick and full coat requires almost constant attention, bathing, brushing, and grooming to prevent tangling and maintain its attractive appearance.
As previously mentioned, the Old English Sheepdog remains rather rare outside of Europe and the United States. Individuals wishing to purchase this breed often encounter such challenges as inability to locate a breeder, high prices, and being placed on long waiting lists.
Common Health Concerns
While the Old English Sheepdog is typically known as a healthy and hearty breed, they do suffer from a few health problems, including: hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, entropian – folding inward of the eye lid, ectropian – folding outward of the eye lid, progressive retinal atrophy, obesity, and bloat.
Now that you know all about the breed, do you think you are ready to own an Old English Sheepdog? Remember, purchasing a pet is a big decision and should be discussed thoroughly and seriously with your entire family.