Welcome to my post about dog breeds with white tipped tails.
Like most physical features in a dog, a white tipped tail is there for a good reason.
And the reason is that a white tipped tail can be more easily spotted when a dog is in thick vegetation or long grass.
These white tips act like a high viz jacket or a geotag, if you will.
All of the breeds in my list are from working breeds of dogs.
When these dogs are working in the “field” following a scent or herding livestock, a white tipped tail means that their owner can more easily find it.
Of course, a white tip is only effective on a tail that is held up high.
These tails are labelled as “gay”.
- 1. Border Collie
- 2. Bernese Mountain Dog
- 3. Beagle
- 4. Basset Hound
- 5. Jack Russell
- 6. Old English Sheepdog
- 7. Bearded Collie
- 8. Smooth Collie
- 9. Cardigan Welsh Corgi
- Photo Credits
1. Border Collie
To identify a purebred Border Collie just look at his tail and make sure it has a white tip. You will want a nice clearly-visible smock of white hair, but even a few white hairs are enough to tell you the dog is purebred. Legend has it that farmers back in the UK where this dog originates from bred this type of dog to have a white-tipped tail to use it as a guiding lantern during the night. Typically, a Collies tail is long, bushy and slightly curved.
Most Border Collies are black with a white collar and chest. They can have a smooth, rough or semi-rough coat, but they are all double-coated. This means they have an undercoat silkier than the topcoat.
You may also find Border Collies with unusual colors like red, chocolate, liliac, blue, but never a completely white one. Male Collies typically stand at 18 – 22 inches (48 – 56 cm) and weigh around 6 – 9 lbs (14 – 20 kg). Another thing to recognize a Border Collie by is the famous ‘eye’, that is the way they stare at the sheep they were bred to herd. To this day, many farmers around the world still use Border Collies for this purpose, but if you’re looking for a family pet be prepared to have the dog stare at you. And demand that you take him out for some action. If there’s one thing you need to know before buying or adopting a Border Collie is that these dogs need a lot, quite a lot of physical exercise. A simple walk around the block won’t do! You’ve been warned!
2. Bernese Mountain Dog
Berners are sturdy working dogs who used to earn their keep droving cattle or guarding farmyards in the Swiss mountains where they originate from.
According to the AKC standards, a purebred Bernese Mountain dog has a tricolored coat in black rust and white or black tan and white.
A Berner typically has some white on the chest, legs and the tip of its long thick tail must also be white.
They have a long silky overcoat and a woolly undercoat, which helps them tolerate cold weather well. They do shed a lot, too.
Bernese Mountain dogs belong in the large dogs category, an adult male reaching 25-28 inches (63 – 71 kg) in height and weighing some 70-115 pounds (31 – 52 kg). They make excellent pets as they are easy to train, but being guard dogs they do have a tendency to bark. This means they are not suitable as apartment dogs and indeed they should not be kept in confined quarters as they have lots of energy and need plenty of daily exercise. However, they are very affectionate and get along well with kids.
The short-haired Beagle is quite similar to a Foxhound and his medium size makes him very popular with dog owners.
These dogs have a medium-length tricolored hard coat, but most puppies are born black and white. The black patches slowly fade to brown, something which might take a year or two.
Beagles have long thin tails with a white tip, but there are some with a full white tail. Male Beagles grow up to 13 – 16 inches (33–41 cm) tall and weigh 22 – 25 lbs (10 – 11 kg)
Beagles are an excellent choice for a family, as they are quite affectionate, playful and kid-friendly. As all hound dogs, they tend to be a little stubborn so you need to train them well. Be suspicious if they’re too quiet while left alone in the backyard, they might be digging a hole or looking for an escape route.
4. Basset Hound
Basset hounds are instantly recognizable by their long droopy ears and their short legs. Add to this those round pleading eyes and you’ll understand why Basset hounds are so popular among dog-lovers everywhere.
Bassets have short smooth hair and are prone to shedding. The typical colors for a Basset are tan and white or black, tan and white. They have long thin slightly-curved tails with a white tip. Bassets were purposefully bred to have a white-tipped tail to help hunters locate their dogs during a hare hunt.
An adult male Basset hound is 12–15 in (30–38 cm) tall and weighs around 50 – 63 lbs (23 – 29 kg). Basset hounds have a reputation for being very strong-willed and require firm training, but, on the other hand they are extremely devoted and fun-loving.
5. Jack Russell
Jack Russell terriers come in many combinations of colors but the predominant shade of the coat is white and this includes the tip of their tails.
This type of terrier can have either a rough or a silky coat or a combination of the two, known as broken coat. In many cases, Jack Russell terriers have slightly longer hairs on their long curved tails.
Male Jack Russell terriers are around 14 inches (35 cm) tall and weigh around 13 – 17 lbs (6 – 8 kg).
These dogs are known for their good health and long lifespans, but keep in mind they are hunting dogs and are very athletic.
If you do not provide enough exercise opportunities, they might find ways to entertain themselves by digging, hunting for rats or slaying your favorite pair of shoes.
6. Old English Sheepdog
If you’re looking for a shaggy dog, the Old English Sheepdog is the real deal. They are covered with a profuse long coat from head to tail and you can barely see their eyes under all that hair.
Their coat comes in two colors – white and blue, blue gray or grizzle. OES are bob tailed by nature and have a smock of white hair on the tip of their tail.
Males of this breed reach 22 inches (55 cm) at maturity and can weigh between 60 and 100 pounds (27 – 45 kg).
Their big coat makes them seem fat and they have a distinctive bear-shuffle gait, but don’t let these characteristics fool you. OES are all muscle and can be quite nimble when they want to. They’re also quite playful and are great around kids.
7. Bearded Collie
Looks a bit like an Old English Sheepdog?
Yes, Bearded Collie’s do look very similar.
Exuberant and energetic, the Bearded Collie is an excellent choice for first-time pet parents as this dog is highly trainable and obedient.
Bearded Collies have a fluffy long coat, usually in two colors, black and white, brown and white or gray and white. Their hair is straight and medium-length all over the body, including the long bushy tail which has a white tip.
An adult Bearded Collie reaches 20 – 22 in (53–56 cm) in height and weighs some 40 – 60 lbs (18–27 kg). Originally, Bearded Collies were bred as herding dogs, an instinct they’re preserved to this day. As pets, they have this tendency of herding all the members of the family to have them take part in group activities. They’re very sociable dogs and insist on being part of the family fun. When they get bored, they’ll let you (and your neighbors) know by their insistent barking.
8. Smooth Collie
Smooth Collies are close relatives to the Rough Collies which gave us the immortal Lassie. As their name says, they have a smooth short coat. Smooth Collies come in various colors from pure white to combinations of white, black, blue merle or sable merle. Purebreds have a white smock of white hair on the tip of their long thin tails. They need regular brushing as they tend to shed a lot.
Smooth Collies are pretty big, with the male reaching 22 – 24 inches (56–61 cm) in height and weighing 44 – 63 lbs (20 – 29 kg). They make excellent pets as they are smart, easy to train and eager to please their owners. Smooth Collies go along well with kids and other family pets and are a great choice as guard dogs as they are very alert and quick to raise the alarm if they sense an intruder.
9. Cardigan Welsh Corgi
Low-set and sturdy, Cardigan Welsh Corgis rarely grow more than 10 inches (25 cm) tall and weigh around 25 – 38 lbs (11 – 17 kg). These short-legged dogs have a medium-length coat which can be a combination of two colors, red, brindle, blue merle or black. Their name comes from the fact that they have long tails, like the sleeves of a cardigan, typically with a white tip. Their paws are also white and some have a white collar, too.
If you’re thinking about the Queen of England’s favorite pets, those are a different breed, Pembroke Welsh Corgi. The easiest way to distinguish between the two breeds is the fact that the Pembroke Corgis have no tails.
Due to their small size, Cardigan Welsh Corgis can adapt well to living in an apartment, but they don’t like to be left on their own for longer periods. Also, they tend to bark every time they sense something unusual, a noise or an unfamiliar scent.
¹ Photo by Corrado Dearco on Flickr
² Photo by StooMathiesen on Flickr
³ Photo by Jaspal Kahlon on Unsplash
⁴ Photo by Patchattack on Flickr
⁵ Photo by Juli Kosolapova on Unsplash
⁶ Photo by Norlando Pobre on Flickr
⁷ Photo by Maja Dumat on Flickr
⁸ Photo by Lil Shepherd on Flickr