Mountain Rose Sheepadoodles
Mountain Rose Sheepadoodles
There are traces of evidence which place this dog's origin in the early nineteenth century, centered in the Southwestern Counties of England. Some maintain that the Scottish Bearded Collie had a large part in its making; others claim the Russian Owtchar as one of the progenitors of the Old English Sheepdog.
Writings of that time refer to a "drovers dog" which was used primarily for driving sheep and cattle to market, and it is speculated that these drover's dogs were exempt from taxes due to their working status. To prove their occupation, their tails were docked...leading to the custom of calling the sheepdog by the nickname "Bob" or "Bobtail". Since this dog has been used more for driving than for herding, the lack of a tail to serve as a rudder, so to speak, has in no way affected its ability to work with heavier kinds of sheep or cattle.
The Old English Sheepdog was first promoted in the U.S. by Pittsburgh industrialist Wm. Wade in the late 1880's, and by the turn of the century, five of the ten wealthiest American families--the Morgans, Vanderbilts, Goulds, Harrisons and Guggenheims--all owned, bred and exhibited the Old English Sheepdog. In fact, the social prominence and importance of the owners and spectators at the Old English ring in the 1904 Westminster Show in New York prompted the show superintendent to discreetly advise the judge to "take plenty of time; the dogs in the ring are the property of some of our leading Americans". It should be noted here, that these prominent families also had kennel managers and staff to care for and groom their OES!!!!!
To the left / top of this page is an illustration of "Elkington Squire" from The Old English Sheep Dog, by Henry Arthur Tilley, Revised Edition 1937.
Champion "Elkington Squire"
As his name appears in so many of the present-day pedigrees, it may interest you to see a photograph of him. This unfortunately does not do him justice as he was out of coat; it shows him with a dark coat, whereas he was a beautiful blue grizzle. Still, it does reveal many of his good points, e.g. spring of ribs, shortness of back, length of neck, beautiful hocks, and length from hip to hock; but far more important was his grand character and strong constitution--which features were transmitted to his offspring
This book is one of the most important ever published about the Old English Sheepdog and is still regarded by many as the definitive work in the breed. Henry Arthur Tilley was a President of the Old English Sheepdog Club (England) and founded the Old English Sheepdog Club of America in 1904. Mr. Tilley and his brother William Steeds Tilley were proprietors of the famous "Shepton" kennels of Shepton Mallet, Somerset, England, and pioneers in raising the standards for the breed, producing many great dogs that can be found in many, many of the pedigrees of today's Old English Sheepdogs all over the world.
The dog pictured is from the early 20th Century--compare this dog to the present Standard for the breed! If you find his duplicate in your ring someday, you will be the envy of all who breed, show, and judge Old English Sheepdogs!
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