The content of the article:
History of the breed
Bobtail in the whole history has never been associated with the aristocracy. The breed was bred in Europe, on the territory of modern Spain, France and Andorra. The purpose of the dogs is to serve the farms: the huge shaggy dogs performed their guard, hunting and herding duties impeccably.
About 2500 BC, bobtails appeared in England, where they quickly spread throughout the territory. The contempt of the aristocracy for the “yard” dog was more than compensated by the attitude of farmers – the universal dog became irreplaceable.
From 476 to 1500, the breed was divided into several types: English, Welsh and French Bobtails. The dog’s responsibilities have become more specific.
- Helping the shepherd manage his flocks.
- Protection of the herd from predators and robbers.
- Home protection.
Shepherds used bobtails as drover dogs, leading the herd in a given direction, and on the sides they were helped by faster collies. It turned out well with not too agile dogs and drive the herd into a tight formation. Strong dogs actively helped drive the sheep into the river, for washing, in order to improve the quality of the wool.
Large predators capable of coping with a huge dog, by this time there were no longer in England, and the vagabonds, who looked after a sheep in the herd, refused to abduct animals at the sight of a bobtail’s grin.
In their free time from grazing, the function of protecting the farm from any intruder – human or animal – fell on the trouble-free dogs. Any intruder was instantly attacked by a powerful dog.
By the 11th century, the bobtail could be seen on almost any farm in England. Due to the lack of constant transport links, in different parts of the country, the dogs were different, representing the local species. Both tailed and tailless bobtails could be found in neighboring areas.
In the south of the country, the breed was not in demand until the 18th century. The author of the 1879 book Dogs, William Yatt, quotes contemporaries as claiming that the dogs of this breed are the result of a mixture with a long-haired water dog. Such dogs are large and muscular, they have an awkward build, coarse hair and no tail.
The first images appeared much later – who would dream of drawing a “dirty farm shepherd”? It is unpleasant for a self-respecting gentleman to stand next to her.
Despite the disdainful attitude of the aristocrats, among the villagers, the demand for unpretentious, powerful dogs only grew. And in the 19th century, Mr. Richard Lloyd Prinz opens a kennel in North Wales, where he begins to breed and improve the breed of “Old English Sheepdogs” – it was under this name that the breed figured until the end of the century.
In England there was a law that stipulated a tax on dogs. Its value depended on the length of the animal’s tail. That is why farmers docked the tails of their helpers. The modern name of the breed indicates this fact. The literal translation is “short cut tail.”
At the dog show in Ismington, in 1865, dogs of this breed were first presented. Two dogs without pedigrees, both named Bob.
In 1888, the first Old English Shepherd Dog Club was established. Unfortunately, the names of the people who determined the direction of development of the breed and its subspecies have not survived. But bobtails acquire a more aristocratic look and receive the prefix “Sir” or “Lady” to their nicknames.
By the end of the century, interest in bobtails increased. They came to be seen as companions and show dogs. Demand creates supply, and enterprising people began to open specialized kennels. Among the owners were both true connoisseurs of the breed, and merchants, focused only on making a profit.
To breed the brightest representatives of the breed of dogs, they began to buy up in the villages, offering small, but significant money for farmers for a quality dog. The swindlers sold not only tailless shepherds, but also tailed ones, having docked the tail beforehand. Experienced breeders easily distinguished the “fake”, technology did not allow to hide the scars in the place of the tail.
Articles about dog breeds in various publications, such as “The Athlete’s Cabinet”, were written mainly by “real” gentlemen, full of arrogance, but not knowing about the described dogs. One such “connoisseur” was Revdon Lee, editor of the dog section of Field magazine. Thanks to his efforts, the description of bobtails of that time is sinful of contradictions and inaccuracies.
Lee, in his book Collie and Shepherd Dogs in 1890, writes that those who like Old English Sheepdogs admire the obedience and rationality of these dogs, “rave” something about the beauty of the eyes and impressive coat, and haters indicate a tendency to cunning, cunning and unattractive breed for an “educated” person, in the house such a misunderstanding has nothing to do – let him wander in the fields. What to talk about, even if the collie club refused to recognize the Old English breed. Some enthusiasts had to organize their own club.
Another gentleman, Edeston, writes that the Old English Sheepdog understands only a shout, and the punishment for it can be a strong blow with the heel.
At the same time, there were those who liked the breed. Since 1873, when the first official show of bobtails at the exhibition took place, they began to be used as companions and as show dogs – both in the Old and New Worlds. The breeders were impressed by the rugged attractiveness and unconventional appearance of the Old English Shepherd.
The first bright representatives of the breed appeared in Wales. Separately, it is worth mentioning Dr. Edward Kera, who invested a lot of effort in obtaining high-quality Old English Shepherd Dogs.
The first known champion dog, Jocky, is described as a smooth-haired dog. The reason for this is the usual haircut for bobtails of that time, for the hygiene and convenience of the owner.
Description of the breed
[expert_review expert_type = “self” qa_type = “popup” score_data = “Molt :: 8 ;; Health :: 6 ;; Intelligence :: 8 ;; Activity :: 6 ;; Maintenance Cost :: 8 ;; Friendliness :: 10 ;; Guardian qualities :: 2 ;; Training :: 8 “score_summary_text =” The characteristics of the breed are based on expert assessments and user opinions. ” score_max = “10” color = “blue-1”]
Bobtails can be safely called one of the oldest breeds in England. A huge, well-built dog, with developed muscles, tailless from birth. Representatives of the breed are covered with shaggy hair with a thick undercoat – to protect against temperature conditions, precipitation, humidity, strong winds. Thanks to this, bobtails easily adapt to any climate.
The wool is dyed in gray-blue shades, as an option – in blue and black. The voice is strong, with a characteristic hoarseness and howl.
Bobtails are taken for hunting – for collecting game, used as a sled dog and as a carrier of goods. They have proven themselves to be excellent companions.
Males are noticeably larger and heavier bitches, have a thicker coat.
- Height at withers in males – about 61 centimeters, in bitches – 56 centimeters.
- Weight – ranges from 32 to 45.5 kilograms.
- Wool – long, thick, fluffy, wavy and oily, without curls and curls, does not adhere to the body. Increased length and density on the thighs, decreased on the ears, on the rest of the body – the same length and thickness. Well developed undercoat.
- Head – massive, ideal for the size of the dog. Convex forehead. The muzzle is long and wide. Powerful jaws, black nose.
- Ears – medium size, hanging.
- Eyes – set wide apart, of medium size. Usually dark, but there may be other shades..
- Teeth – large, white. Scissor bite.
- Neck – rather long, with well-defined muscles and nape.
- Withers – pronounced, muscular. There is a slight high back – the height of the withers of the dog is less than the height of the lower back.
- Back – short, wide, with developed muscles.
- Small of the back – wide, muscular.
- Tail – usually not from birth. In an adult, it is no more than 4-5 centimeters. If a puppy was born with a tail, it is docked in the first days of life..
- Chest – deep, voluminous. Slightly convex in the middle.
- Stomach – fit.
- Front limbs medium length, straight, located under the body. Elbows are pressed, directed back. Heavy forearms, short, wide pasterns.
- Hind limbs – with good muscles. The hock joint is low. Short, massive metatarsus.
- Walking movements – characteristically slow, gait similar to a bear, with shuffling and amble. When trotting – a distant throw of the forelimbs and a strong push from the hind. When galloping – powerful, springy jumps.
The breed was bred for constant work for the benefit of the owner, so animals find things to do everywhere and always – this is their normal behavior. Animals are energetic, busy with something every minute, but grateful for the attention. With a good attitude, they will become full members of the family – gentle and loving.
Shepherd’s skills are in their blood, therefore, in the absence of sheep, skills can be tested on the owners, especially on a child who is not able to resist. Respect for a person is developed in bobtails in puppyhood, when she takes in information as much as possible.
Bobtails usually do not get lost – they try not to move away from their permanent residence and are not prone to wandering.
An energetic, easy-to-train, child-loving dog makes the perfect pet.
Long hair is a bobtail’s pride and problem. Requires constant, careful care.
- Comb – at least three times a week, otherwise dirt will accumulate in the coat. A tendency to skin diseases and matting is another reason to remember to brush. Show copies need a professional groomer.
- Mats cause severe discomfort, so you need to get rid of them immediately after occurrence.
- Every two months the dogs are sheared, their coat is the most attractive – medium length. If the dog is not a show dog, you can use a regular dog clipper.
- Strong molt occurs in April-May.
- Regular nail trimming is highly desirable.
- Bobtail bathtubs should be taught from an early age. Regular bathing is good for a long-haired dog.
- Flea and tick prevention products will definitely not be superfluous..
- Bobtails love to be outside and run. Long runs are the perfect way to stay in shape. A herding dog will prefer to live in the courtyard of a private house; constant physical activity is required when kept in an apartment. Indoors, toys are needed – to keep the energetic animal busy.
- Vigorous walking twice a day is a good exercise..
- The bobtail must have unhindered access to water, otherwise it could overheat, especially in hot weather.
- Great for cold climates – natural protection allows bobtails to run in cold temperatures without problems.
Dog intellectuals really enjoy learning and training. Assimilate new information quickly. The owner can act as a trainer – no special knowledge is needed to educate bobtails. But understanding of the hierarchy is necessary. Respect for a person and the need to obey the puppy must learn immediately.
- The herding instinct requires constant employment and work, new tasks.
- The will and stubbornness inherent in an adult dog is easy to overcome at an early age – the puppy initially needs to be instilled with good habits and obedience.
- Bobtails do not like the routine, so it is better to use a variety of teaching methods.
- Motivational training is best suited for the breed, it will add interest and attention. Development is very fast.
- They respect confidence and firmness, recognize the owner’s right to a tough tone and obey.
- Are loyal and strive for close relationship with the owner.
At a puppy age, raising a Bobtail will take a lot of effort, but as a result, a loving, selflessly loyal pet will grow up..
- Eye diseases: volvulus, cataract, retinal atrophy.
- Distended belly.
- High susceptibility to drugs.
- Vertebral problems in the neck.
- Dysplasia of the pelvis.
- Predisposition to hearing problems and diabetes.
Depending on the purity of the breed and the characteristics of the puppy, its cost varies from 20,000 to 35,000 rubles.
List of nurseries
- Kennel iz White-Blue Angels, Moscow – bobtail-angel.ru/
- Bayline Moscow – www.bobtail2012.narod.ru/
- The Poet’s Dream Smolensk – www.hochusobaku.ru/kennel/525/
- From sunrise, Maykop – www.hochusobaku.ru/kennel/527/
- Bobtail Breeder Sochi – www.hochusobaku.ru/kennel/2046/