type first, four good legs, nice layback in shoulders and a muzzle that’s not snipey. It does not come with maturity.
healthy puppies. On the negative side, we feel that some exhibitors are trying to sculpture in structure instead of breeding for it. It makes a pretty picture but it’s not correct. DM: I think movement has improved, but we still have a way to go. Over trimming is one I would like to see stop. The Old English Sheepdog is a shaggy dog. The coat is described as being profuse, therefore should not be body trimmed to two inches or less. It might be a tidy look, but it is not correct. Some body trimming is necessary to avoid looking like a tumbleweed. The standard says profuse, but not to the point of looking fat. JW: The trend that I have seen since the 60s are our rears. We had a lot of cow-hocked dogs back then and we have improved this problem. Now lets start on the fronts.
6. Any trends you see in the breed that you hope con- tinue? Any that you’d like to see stop? DA: Here in America breeders have produced wonderfully sound rears and in general overall soundness. However many OES in the ring today are short on leg and rectan- gular. One of my pet peeves is the excess sculpturing of the coat. The coat needs only to be neatened in a natural shaggy trim. CD: Breeding correct heads. LF: I think people are showing cleaner dogs, good coat care is more prevalent. I’d like to see breeders and judges stop gravitating towards generic dogs that lack type or the dogs with unbalanced gait. The generic flashy dogs with big open side gaits, but lacking in bone, body and substance are not true to our breed. And the unbalanced, wheel barrowing dogs that cross in the middle cannot function as herding dogs. Those aren’t true OES and I wish they weren’t rewarded in the ring because many breeders tend to breed on winning records. Those poor breeding choices are just reducing the size of our gene pool for everyone. CG: The breed appears squarer than it has in the recent past. Dogs are cleaner in their movement com- ing and going. However, in achieving this they have lost the effortless and powerful movement called for in the stan- dard. Exhibitors need to understand structure and learn that a good dog is more than grooming and presentation. AL: Our National Breed Club is establishing
“THE OLD ENGLISH SHEEPDOG IS A SHAGGY DOG.”
strong commitment to breed health by working with the CHF and CHIC. I am proud of the fact that we are actively working to educate members and owners. As health and research advances explode, keeping members informed is an exciting and formidable task for all breed clubs. JM: I am happy that there are tests available for breeders to use in making responsible decisions for breeding, not just picking Tom, Dick or Harry. I would like to see extreme scissoring and sculpting of the OES stop. We are not supposed to be extreme like a Bichon or Poodle. M&KM: The breeders are more concerned over health issues and we testing our breeding stock to produce
218 • S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , A PRIL 2017
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