The Welsh Sheepdog (Welsh: Ci Defaid Cymreig, pronounced [kiː ˈdɛvaɪd kəmˈrɛɨɡ]) is a landrace of herding dog from Wales. Some people incorrectly call a Welsh Sheepdog a Welsh Collie - usually 'Welsh Collie' is used for a cross between a Welsh Sheepdog and a Border Collie, who is often a milder dog and easier to manage than the pure breed. Like other types of working dog, Welsh Sheepdogs are normally bred for their herding abilities rather than appearance, and so they are generally somewhat variable in build, colour and size. Welsh Sheepdogs are of collie type, usually black-and-white, red-and-white or tricolour, and merle markings may occur over any of these combinations. The coat may be short or fairly long, and the ears are pricked, but usually folded at the tip. They are longer in leg, broader in chest and wider in muzzle than the Border Collie. They are extremely active and intelligent, and therefore need much exercise and mental stimulation, if they are to be kept as pets. Over many decades the Welsh Sheepdog has largely been replaced for working sheep in Wales by the Border Collie, a standardised breed. However, in more recent years, efforts have been made to maintain the indigenous Welsh Sheepdog as a distinct variety. Welsh Sheepdogs are usually of loose-eyed action, not fixing the stock with their gaze like the strong-eyed Border Collie. They are able to work independently without necessarily being under direct human control. Welsh Sheepdogs are most often used for herding sheep, but also readily work cattle, goats, and even horses and pigs. Traditionally they were often used as droving dogs to take cattle and sheep to markets locally or elsewhere in Britain. The Welsh Sheepdog's life span is 12–15 years.
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Also known as
This breed is also called Welsh Collie as well as Welsh Sheepdog.
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