History of the Breed

 

The origin of the Old English Sheepdog remains a question of keen interest to Bobtail fanciers, and is still open to new theories and discoveries. However, there are traces of evidence which place its 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".