5-8 puppies are born in the litter. Babies ripen by the age of 2-3 years, but they are sent to a new house already at the age of 8 weeks. The breeder allows future owners to take a closer look at the puppies, which helps with the choice.
How to Choose an Old English Shepherd (Bobtail) Puppy
Representatives of the breed have a tendency to a number of genetic diseases, therefore, before buying a puppy, it is important to ask the breeder about the availability of documents confirming the health of the animal. Of course, it is not possible to determine hip dysplasia in a puppy, but if the parents are healthy, then the likelihood of developing the disease is low. The parents must have no eye defects. It is important to make sure that the baby does not suffer from deafness, is not infected with helminths, and has the necessary vaccinations for a specific age. The eyes and nose should be clean, the coat is clean and shiny, there should be no signs of diarrhea, any diseases, signs of deformity.
In males, by the age of 8 weeks, the ovaries should have completely descended into the scrotum.
When choosing an Old English Shepherd puppy, you should observe his behavior, assessing his temperament. It will not be superfluous to watch the mother, and if possible, the father. Parental temperament is the genetic basis for offspring temperament. It depends on the temperament how easy the training will go, how well the dog will interact with humans and other animals.
The appearance will tell you about the condition of the dog, but you need to pay attention not only to health but also to the exterior. Some breeders tend to breed white-headed dogs with blue eyes, with little regard for temperament and health.
Healthy puppies are playful and curious, they show interest in everything new around them. They do not show aggression, although attempts to bite during the game are possible.
How Much Do Bobtail Puppies Cost?
Old English Shepherd puppy prices are often based on the quality of the dogs. The breeder appreciates all his efforts, which results in healthy pedigree puppies. Careful planning of mating, veterinary care for the bitch and newborn babies, nutrition, and animal care – all of this comes at a cost.
Prices for Old English Shepherd puppies start at $800. High-quality individuals cost about $1600 and more.
In some cases, the price may be intentionally overpriced. Unscrupulous breeders can sell dogs for a high price, citing their rare color.
Feeding Old English Sheepdog (Bobtail) Puppies
At first, the diet should consist of meat – beef, lamb, turkey, chicken, and vegetables. At first, meat, especially poultry, can be boiled. Raw meat is served in small chopped pieces or minced meat. It is permissible to give cartilage only after the change of teeth. Puppies need to consume 25-30 g of meat per day per 1 kg of body weight. Meat products should make up 50-60% of the diet.
The diet should contain fermented milk products, in particular, natural yogurt without additives, kefir, low-fat cottage cheese.
Mineral dressings contribute to the formation of the skeleton, vitamins are also necessary. Vitamin-mineral complexes should be chosen specifically for puppies, but containing calcium.
As you grow older, other foods are introduced into the diet. All new products are introduced into the diet of an Old English Shepherd puppy gradually and in small portions, assessing the condition of the baby after eating the product.
The meat should be alternated with sea fish, necessarily frozen or boiled, without bones and offal. Fish can be included in the diet of an Old English Shepherd puppy from 3 months.
Vegetables are added to meat and fish, but corn, legumes should be avoided, and consumption of beets and carrots should be controlled, which contribute to the coloring of the wool pink. Vegetables are served raw or stewed, in chopped form. It is useful to season vegetables with a teaspoon of vegetable oil. Fruit should not be neglected. The share of vegetables and fruits should not exceed 10% of the diet.
It is useful to give boiled eggs. Enough half an egg 1-2 times a week. An adult baby can be given a whole egg.
Not all cereals are suitable. The best option is rice, barley, buckwheat. Porridge is boiled in water or vegetable broth.
Access to water must be free. The puppy needs 150-180 ml of water per 1 kg of body weight. So, for example, a dog weighing 330 g requires 50-60 ml of water per day.
Food Amount and Frequency of Feeding
The average weight of a newborn puppy is 330 g. Taking into account the increase in body weight, the daily portion of food is determined. At the age of 1.5 months, the portion per meal should be 260-380 g. Food is given at room temperature.
Old English Shepherd puppies are fed 4 times from 2 to 3-3.5 months. From 4 to 6 months they are transferred to three meals a day. From 6 months, the number of feedings is reduced to two times.
Bobtail Puppy Care
Puppies’ coat is darker in color than that of adults. But as it gets older, the coat brightens. The adult coat is finally formed by 2.5-3 years. Baby down is replaced by coarser hair.
It is better to teach a baby to groom from childhood because, in the future, the procedure for grooming wool will take a lot of time. And the puppy should get used to the combing procedure, moreover, in a lying position on its side. It is enough to comb the coat twice a week, spending about 30 minutes on the procedure. The coat is best brushed with a wide, fine-toothed comb and a soft brush.
The education of the kid should begin as early as possible, starting with the study of the main teams, ring training, if participation in exhibitions is planned.
It is recommended to neuter or neuter puppies from 6 months if there is no purpose of obtaining offspring or participating in exhibitions.