OESCA Judges Education welcomes all current and aspiring judges to contact us with any questions regarding Old English Sheepdogs (OES) or your OES judging experiences. For your convenience and reference our Study Guide and our bulleted presentation are available for viewing on the website. We have over 30 mentors listed. Feel free to contact one in your area to discuss the breed and arrange a meeting to do a hands-on examination. The OESCA appreciates judging that maintains the definitive qualities of the Old English Sheepdog and the integrity of the Old English Sheepdog Breed Standard.
Type in an OES comes from his proportions. The picture remains unchanged regardless of the size. The OES is balanced regardless of height, color or markings. He is compact and square with substantial bone. An OES is not low and long bodied or tall and short bodied. Square proportions measured from the withers to the ground, point of shoulder to the ischium. Neck is fairly long and gracefully arched. Shoulders well laid back and narrow at the points. Forelegs dead straight with plenty of bone. Hocks well let down, metatarsus are perpendicular to the ground from any angle. Broader at the rump than at the shoulder. The body is thickset, muscular, able-bodied.
Strong, square truncated muzzle. The nose is always black and large. Definitive stop, well arched over eyes. Large squarely formed skull. Dark brown eyes, one or two blue, pearl, china or walleye is typical. Scissors or level bite. A long narrow head or snippy muzzle is a fault.
The OES topline is a unique characteristic. It is gently arched over a very broad, stout loin. The topline is not to be mistaken for a roach back nor is it a sway back. The correct topline has a gentle rise with the highest point over the loin.
The OES has a thick soft undercoat next to his body and a crisp harsh shaggy coat on the outside. Quality of coat is more important than mere profuseness. Color is any shade of gray, grizzle, blue or blue merle with or without white markings or in reverse.
When trotting the movement is free and powerful seeming effortless, with good reach and drive and covers maximum ground with minimum steps. The OES must maintain balance, proportion and topline in motion as when it stands. An OES is to be judged at a trot. May pace or amble at slower speeds.
It is of utmost importance for judges to feel for the distinct characteristics that define the breed. The mental picture obtained from your hands, combined with the overall visual appearance should simplify the choice. Grooming can hide faults. It is imperative that judges look past the grooming and feel carefully for correct structure.
Please remember that the Old English Sheepdog is not a breed that has a particular outline scissored into it as does a Portuguese Water Dog, a Bichon Frise or a Poodle. "Neither the natural outline nor the natural texture of the coat may be changed by any artificial means…" Should an exhibit lack coat in the locations described in the Standard… "the whole skull well covered with hair", "the neck well coated with hair", "the forelegs well coated all around", and "the hams densely coated with a thick long jacket in excess of any other part", it's grooming does not comply with the OES Standard. OES grooming must represent the "profuse", "shaggy" coat as described in the Old English Sheepdog Breed Standard.
In the OESCA Regions map below, click on an area of the country to view a list for that area.
* AKC Judge
** CKC Judge
Edy Dykstra-Blum *
Anna Jacobson *
Sally Carr *
Mary Anne Brocious *
Dale Meyer *
Marilyn O'Cuilinn *
Joy Meyer Sheffield
Bob Caswell *
Dee Dee Caswell *
Linda Jordan *
Janice McClary *
Colleen Allen Grady
Karen D. Lee
Terry Carter **