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Bobtail (Old English Sheepdog)


Country of origin:
Great Britain

Domestic dog

Various shades of grey, blue. Head, neck, front legs and belly – white   white coat may also cover the rear of the body

Playful, sociable, intelligent, calm, adaptable, patient, loving, sometimes lazy

56-63 cm

27-45 kg

11-13 years

Other names:
Old English Sheepdog, Bobtail


Litter size:
5-8 puppies

Bobtail – a very friendly dog, great family friend. Bobtails are confident, non-aggressive, happy with dogs and other animals, and get along with children. Although Bobtails are typically guarding (barking to announce the arrival of a stranger), they usually greet guests warmly. Bobtails are very patient and forgiving of children’s pranks, and sometimes they are lazy. If you want to have a dog but are not in the mood to run cross-country every day, a Bobtail is the dog for you.

History of the breed

The Bobtail is now around 200 years old, but its origins are still unclear. It is believed that the ancestors of the Bobtail were dogs that lived in Europe and were transported to the British Isles by boat. The Bobtail was bred by shepherds and cattle guards, who valued it highly for its ability to herd. Today’s bobtails are very different from their ancestors. The breed’s name is derived from the English words „Bob Tail“, which means shortened tail. Interestingly, since the 18th century, the United Kingdom has had a dog tax based on the length of the dog’s tail. Dogs without a tail were considered working dogs and were not subject to the tax. In 1873, the Bobtail was first shown at the Birmingham Dog Show, and five years later the first dog club was founded (at that time the breed was named Old English Sheepdog, which means “Old English Sheepdog”). A breed standard recognised by the American Kennel Club, which differs from the English one, was soon adopted. The first Bobtails arrived in Lithuania quite late – only in 1992 .

Bobteil: appearance

Bobtail – a large, well-proportioned dog. Males reach a height of 56 cm or more at the withers, females 51 cm or more. Males weigh 32–45 kg kg, females 27–36 kg. The body of the Bobtail is massive and muscular, with square body lines. The head is proportional to the body, the skull is broad and the muzzle is square. The nose is large, black, the eyes may be brown or blue (or different colours). Bobtail ears are small,   raised on the sides of the head, close-set. Teeth strong, bite scissor-like. If a Bobtail is born with a tail, it is shortened in some countries (banned in the European Union). The Bobtail’s coat is long and dense and the coat is waterproof. The coat on the back of the body is longer than on the front.  Any shade of grey is allowed, including blue. The head, neck, forelegs and belly shall be white, and the back of the body may also be white.

Bobtail: character

Bobtails are calm dogs that are not characterised by aggression. They are very intelligent, adaptable and can accompany their owners to the ends of the earth. Bobtails are sometimes kept in an apartment, but these dogs are most comfortable living in the countryside, where they have the opportunity to spend most of the day outside.

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