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Pet name:
English Sheepdog, Mixed
We have completed our assessment of Gentle Ben. 

He is a gentle boy with emotions. He loves belly and head rubs enjoys hanging with his human and listens very well…when he wants to. He is a sheepdog after all. 

He does not like humans getting in his face, literally. He will growl and give a warning. If the warning is not heeded he will bite someone sticking their face into his. He has been tested here for this issue twice. The response was the same, dilated pupils, growling, stiffening with an upper lip raise. This is one of the reasons he came to us. An unknown person to Ben was shoving her face in his and pulling on his jaws while her small dog was barking at him. Ben growled at this lady. She growled back….. she got bit!. We consider this a provoked bite caused by severe ignorance.  

He is fearful of small dogs and puppies. After the above bite incident, he was rehomed to a location with five other dogs. A couple were small dogs. While no one was at home a chihuahua was killed by Ben. We observed his fear of small dogs and puppies. He would growl at an approaching small dog/pup. If the dog turned and ran away, so did Ben. If not, he growled at them until they did or we intervened. He has not had one issue with attacking a small dog, or any dog while here for many months. Ben free ranges with 20 to 30 dogs on any given day.  

A dog with good manners will move away from a dog that gives the appropriate communication. One that does not, needs obedience training and/or a stronger leader. 

Ben is also intolerant of children. He has bitten several visiting children at his previous home. They sound like unprovoked attacks. 

He does shy away from large groups (10+) of other dogs but does well with smaller numbers (3 or so). 

Ben will do good in a home with no children, no small dogs, and less than two other adult dogs. The home should be more relaxed than chaotic. He needs a family that accepts he has boundaries and respects those boundaries.  

Do you think Gentle Ben can bring happiness to your family, that you can understand his boundaries and manage him responsibly around small animals and children less than 18 years old? If so, please submit an application for his adoption. Also, please send us an email with your experience with Old English Sheepdogs or dogs with similar behaviors. 

Ben is absolutely an amazing calm, gentle, and loving dog. He loves being with humans, likes snuggling on the couch or with his bed on the floor, will sleep in your bed (if you wish) and you won't even know he is there. Fully housetrained. A good alert dog. He does not have much of a herding instinct. He is loved by all the adult volunteers at our facility.  

All dogs and puppies are fully wormed, receive rabies and core vaccinations, microchipped, behavior assessed with other dogs and humans (sorry, no cat testing is done here), spend a minimum of 3 weeks free-ranging within a pack of 30 dogs to grow confidence and trust and may have DNA results. All dogs receive lifetime behavior support and can be returned anytime without a fee.   

PLEASE NOTE: You MUST complete an adoption application in order to see or adopt a dog from us. The completed adoption application ensures your 'spot' in order of adoption. Emailing/calling with questions will delay your adoption process.  



  1. American Humane Association
  2. Peeva
  3. American Veterinary Medical Association
  4. Veterinary Information Network
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