|The Smithfield Sheepdog|
|What is a Smithfield Sheepdog?
The Smithfield is a medium sized, shaggy stockdog traditionally used to herd cattle and sheep. Most modern Smithfields are found in Tasmania and Australia where many are still used as stockyard and farm dogs. The breed is extremely rare and is striving to be recognized by breed associations in Tasmania, Australia and New Zealand.
Where Did They Come From?
Originating in England, the "Smithfield" name was given to these dogs as they were common sights at the Smithfield Market in London. The Smithfield Sheepdogs would drive cattle and sheep from the countryside into the city in order for the stock to be sold at the market. Smithfields are a distinct breed, as shown in this herding dog family tree.
Smithfields have shaggy coats that part down the middle (like a Briard). They come in a variety of colors and most have a collar of white and a white tipped tail. Their fur is like mohair and they shed hair about twice a year - they do not shed like a shepherd or retreiver but more like a long haired cat . Their coats are generally wavy and an adult Smithfield will grow hair that is between 3 to 6 inches in length all around. Smithfields might have a long tail or a short stubby tail - both types are acceptable.
They typically have their tongues hanging out, and trot lightly on their feet instead of plodding along.
Living With a Smithfield
Smithfields are highly intelligent and very athletic. They require daily exercise and ongoing mental stimulation. They are working dogs and thus enjoy having a job to do. They live for their "work," whether this means they are bringing a flock of sheep together or simply retreiving a tennis ball for their handler. They are extremely loyal, biddable and just plain 'ol smart. While not aggressive, the Smithfield will display with barking in order to protect what is theirs.
|Pictures of Smithfields At Work|
|Pictures of Smithfields At Play|
|Smithfield Links & Sites|
|Smithfield Sheepdog Rescue|
|(new) Smithfield Puppy Pictures|
|(new) Working Beardies from UK|
|(new) Smithfield Sheepdog Beginnings|
|This old picture typifies the
|A Smithfield working stock.|