Old English Sheepdogs, with their shaggy coats and pleasant personalities, are one of the most recognizable breeds in the world. But beyond their iconic looks, there’s a lot more to discover, especially when it comes to their adorable pups. Dive into these 20 fascinating facts about Old English Sheepdog puppies and learn what makes them truly special.
1. Old English Sheepdog puppies are born with a different coat color.
The iconic blue-gray coat of an adult Old English Sheepdog is not something you will see on a newborn. Instead, these puppies are usually born black and white. As they grow, their coat color changes, gradually revealing the characteristic shades we associate with the breed. This transformation is fascinating to watch, providing a changing aesthetic as you grow older.
2. Their iconic bobtail can be unnatural.
Historically, the tail of the Old English Sheepdog was docked, which led to the nickname “bobtail”. This was done for tax reasons; a docked tail meant a working dog that was exempt from taxes in England. Today, many countries have banned tail docking for cosmetic reasons, so you may find Old English Sheepdogs with full tails.
3. They don’t start out as shepherds.
Despite their name, Old English Sheepdog puppies are not born with a natural herding instinct. This ability develops as they grow and is often honed through training and contact with livestock. Their ancestors were excellent drovers, leading cattle and sheep to markets, and with time and guidance, these puppies can show off their herding heritage.
4. Puppies of the Old English Sheepdog learn quickly.
These puppies are known for their intelligence and keen sense of understanding. Training them can be easy if you use positive reinforcement techniques. Their desire to please combined with their cognitive abilities makes them adaptable and easy to train, although they can be stubborn at times.
5. They are extremely playful and violent.
Old English Sheepdog puppies are full of energy and known for their playful antics. They love to play games, fetch and even participate in dog sports. Their cheerful nature means they are great for families, but they also need a lot of playtime to burn off their energy.
6. Socialization is key to their development.
Because Old English Sheepdog puppies have a protective nature, it is vital to expose Old English Sheepdog puppies to different environments, people and other animals. Proper socialization ensures that they grow into well-rounded, confident adults who can distinguish real threats from benign situations.
7. Their thick fur begins to grow early.
While still puppies, they begin to develop a thick, shaggy coat. It requires regular maintenance to prevent matting and tangling. Starting to groom at an early stage helps the puppy to get used to the process, which makes the process easier as they get older.
8. They get along great with children and other pets.
Old English Sheepdogs have a gentle temperament, especially with children. Their protective nature means they will often watch younger family members. They also usually get along with other pets, although early familiarization and supervision are essential.
9. They thrive on human companionship.
Old English Sheepdog puppies form strong bonds with their families. They are not a breed that does well when left alone for long periods of time. They crave interaction and thrive in an environment where they are included in everyday activities.
10. Puppy training classes can be helpful.
Given their size and energy, enrolling an Old English Sheepdog puppy in a training class can be beneficial. This helps them learn basic commands, manners and provides an opportunity for socialization.
11. They have a characteristic bark.
Old English Sheepdogs have a deep, sonorous bark. Even as puppies, their barking can be quite loud and persistent. They often use it to warn their families about something out of the ordinary.
12. Their eyes can be mesmerizing.
Many Old English Sheepdogs have blue eyes, but it is not uncommon to see a Shepherd with one blue eye and one brown eye. This heterochromy adds to their unique appearance and charm.
13. Regular veterinary examinations are necessary.
Like all breeds, these puppies benefit from early and regular vet visits. This ensures that they grow properly, receive the proper vaccinations and stay healthy.
14. They are known to be quite loud.
In addition to barking, Old English Sheepdog puppies can be quite talkative, making various sounds to express their feelings, needs, or simply engage in conversation with their humans.
15. Early training is useful.
Early introduction of moderate exercise can be beneficial for their health and growth. It helps in muscle development, bonding and training.
16. They have a rich history.
Old English Sheepdog puppies come from a long line of herding dogs dating back to the early 19th century in the West of England, giving them a legendary pedigree.
17. Be sure to protect your home from puppies.
Their curiosity knows no bounds. Puppy proofing makes sure they don’t get into things they shouldn’t and keeps them safe.
18. They can be a little clumsy.
Their fast growth and playful nature can sometimes make Old English Sheepdog puppies a bit clumsy, often bumping into things or tripping over their own feet.
19. They love water.
Many Old English Sheepdog puppies love the water and love to splash around, making them great companions for beach walks or days by the pool.
20. They will definitely steal your heart.
With their sweet nature, playful antics, and unique appearance, it’s hard not to fall in love with an Old English Sheepdog puppy.
Old English Sheepdog puppies are not just a bundle of wool, but also a bunch of surprises. Their rich history, unique features, and endearing personalities make them one of the most endearing breeds. Whether you’re looking to add to your family or just a fan, there’s no denying the special charm of these puppies.
Frequently asked questions about the Old English Sheepdog puppies
1. What is the origin of the Old English sheepdog?
The Old English Sheepdog, often called a “bobtail,” originated in the west of England in the early 19th century. They were mainly used as drovers, helping farmers drive cattle and sheep to markets. Their origins are somewhat of a mystery, but they are believed to be descended from various European herding breeds.
2. How much care does an Old English Sheepdog require?
Old English Sheepdogs have thick shaggy coats that require regular grooming. To prevent matting and tangling, they should be combed several times a week. Regular grooming not only keeps their coat healthy, but also reduces the chance of skin problems under their thick fur.
3. Are Old English Sheepdogs good pets?
Absolutely! Old English Sheepdogs are known for their gentle and protective nature, especially with children. They form strong bonds with their families and often watch younger members. Early socialization ensures that they also get along well with other pets.
4. How much exercise do they need?
These dogs are energetic and need regular exercise to be happy and healthy. Daily walks, yard games, and mental stimulation through exercise or games are important. However, excessive exercise should be avoided in puppies to prevent joint problems as they grow.
5. What is their average lifespan?
With proper care, the average lifespan of an Old English Sheepdog ranges from 10 to 12 years. Regular veterinary checkups, a balanced diet, and proper exercise can help these dogs live long, healthy lives.
6. Are Old English Sheepdogs easy to train?
Old English Sheepdogs are intelligent and eager to please, so they are relatively easy to train. However, they can be a bit stubborn at times. Using positive reinforcement methods and establishing consistent routines early on can lead to successful learning outcomes.
7. Do they have common health problems?
Like many large breeds, Old English Sheepdogs can be prone to hip dysplasia. They may also face genetic eye diseases such as progressive retinal atrophy. Regular checkups and getting information about their health can help in early detection and treatment.
8. How do they live in apartments or small living spaces?
Although easily adaptable, Old English Sheepdogs thrive best in homes with plenty of space due to their size and energy levels. If you live in an apartment, it’s important to provide them with enough daily exercise and mental stimulation to compensate for the lack of space.
9. Are Old English Sheepdogs hypoallergenic?
No dog breed is truly hypoallergenic. However, some people with allergies show less of a reaction to certain breeds. Old English Sheepdogs have a lot of wool and can shed, so they may not be the best choice for those with severe allergies.
10. How much should an Old English Sheepdog puppy eat?
The amount of food an Old English Sheepdog puppy should eat depends on age, size, activity level and individual metabolism. It is important to consult with your veterinarian to determine the appropriate diet and feeding schedule for your growing puppy.