|Sensitivity to strangers|
|Affection for family|
|Suitable for first-time owners|
|Ease of grooming|
The Border collie is a tireless dog that also has an exceptional intelligence.
Do you know those sleepy dogs that are happy with a walk and a belly scratch, and then they are happy to go back for a nap? Well, that’s absolutely the opposite of what Border Collies are like!
How is the Border Collie?
First of all, it is a hyperactive dog that would go from one activity to another without stopping if it were up to him. Do you remember the saying “he who stops loses?” Well, Border Collies really live by that. But that’s not all.
This breed is also pretty intelligent. It is said that it has a brain mass equal to that of a 2-year-old child. This allows it to learn very fast. This can be either good or bad news for its owner because if it is not properly trained, it can quickly learn faulty behavior, which will not be an easy task to correct later.
The Border Collie is a dog that can be used in many activities, ranging from a guide dog for the blind to assisting police forces as a search-and-rescue dog or a drug-sniffing dog. It is also widely used in more fun activities, such as Agility, an activity in which it stands out from the rest. And let’s not forget the role it has had in its sheepdog DNA since its origins.
The Border Collie is a loving, cheerful, gentle, and non-aggressive dog. It is the ideal companion for children. It loves swimming and is very fond of its owner. However, it should be noted that it is not a dog suitable for all people. It does not do well in an apartment as it needs to move around a lot.
This is not a breed that takes pleasure in throwing a ball to chase it and bring it back. It needs activities that engage and stimulate it. So, you should think carefully before buying a puppy of this breed. If it is not stimulated enough physically and mentally, it could become a quite difficult dog to control.
Border Collie: Origins
The Border Collie is an English dog breed, recognized by the FCI, under standard No. 297. It was admitted to the English Kennel Club Sheepdog Group in 1976.
This breed of dog originated somewhere between Scotland and England. Part of its name derives from this: “border” means edge or border. The etymology of the word “collie“, however, is uncertain. According to some, it derives from coleius which in Welsh means faithful. According to others, it derives from coley which in Welsh means black. Finally, a third hypothesis states that it derives from colley, a type of Scottish sheep breed.
One theory states that the Border Collie descended from reindeer herding dogs, introduced in Scotland at the time of the Viking invasion.
Because of their strong guarding ability and good livestock control, this dog breed became widespread and established at the booming time of wool production during the 13th century.
The Border Collie has undergone a very strict but natural selection, without any artificial intervention, carried out with great care in order to obtain a dog exclusively suitable for guiding and protecting livestock.
Thanks to the activities assigned to it, this dog breed has developed a great physical build and endurance. Nowadays, the Border Collie is used especially as a companion dog. In the United States and Australia, the first to use this breed were farmers, who found in the Border Collie an exceptional dog to control and guide livestock.
Border Collie: Physical Characteristics
The Border Collie is a well-proportioned dog with a harmonious and athletic appearance. Its body length is slightly greater than its height. It is a medium-sized dog with a rather large skull and a strong muzzle.
The eyes are well spaced, oval, and of medium size. We should clarify that the merle color is interpreted as mottled spots on the coat’s original color.
The ears are of medium size, and the standard defines them as vertical or semi-raised and not necessarily equal.
The tail is moderately long, set low, ending in an upward curve. If the dog is active, it may be held high but never curved over the back.
The coat of the border collie may be:
- Long or,
- Short (which is difficult to be found).
The coat of the border collie may be:
- Black-White tricolor: black-brown-white. This is the most common coat color;
- Brown-White tricolor: brown-white-black;
- Grey (very uncommon);
- Blue, blue tricolor, blue merle and blue merle tricolor;
- Lilac, lilac tricolor, lilac merle, and lilac merle tricolor;
- Sable, sable tricolor, sable merle and sable merle tricolor;
- Chocolate, chocolate tricolor, chocolate merle, and chocolate merle tricolor;
- Red, tricolor red and merle red.
Sometimes Border Collies have only one color.
The Border Collie has a loose, regular and flowing gait. It is one of the medium-sized dogs: The male weighs about 44 lbs (20 kg), while the females weigh a little less. The Border Collie’s height is about 20 inches (50 cm).
Border Collie: Temperament
We know that the Border Collie has been a shepherd dog since the beginning. We also know that it is nowadays widely used as a companion dog. But what is good to know if we are preparing to buy a Border Collie is that this breed is practically tireless.
It needs to do a lot of activity to relieve its hyperactivity, or else it becomes a frustrated dog, difficult to handle, and it could even become aggressive.
It is considered extremely intelligent, indeed the brightest and most attentive dog breed, mainly because it is a fast-learning dog. Therefore, you must be careful not to make mistakes in its training.
The Border Collie will learn everything quickly, including faulty behaviors, which will not be easy to correct later.
This breed is also pretty intelligent. It is said that it has a brain mass equal to that of a 2-year-old child. It needs an owner who has a lot of time to spend and practice with it the many activities at which it excels. For example:
- Agility dog (this breed is particularly chosen for this activity),
- Disc dog,
- Fly ball,
- Dog dance.
Because of its great intelligence, the Border Collie is also used to guide visually-impaired people and be part of the police force as a defense dog, a search-and-rescue dog, and a drug-sniffing dog.
It is a playful and docile dog. It is a bit troublesome if you don’t exercise it enough and don’t entertain it. The Border Collie is a dog breed that needs to be given time and energy.
Border Collie: Relationship With Children
It is perfect for children, especially because it is smart and affectionate. It loves playing and swimming. But when it is working, and it must lead a group, it becomes serious and decisive. Whether the group to lead is sheep or people makes little difference to him.
It is a docile dog that likes to be in company. It is obedient and likes to be useful at work. It is a dog that is very attached to the owner to whom he expresses its great affection. It is also a fearsome adversary to anyone who tries to harm those under its control.
The Border Collie is an intelligent, loving, responsible dog that is generally never nervous or aggressive.
Border Collie: Health
This dog breed has a pleasant and charming appearance. It looks carefree but is not at all clumsy. It is endowed with great endurance and elegant bearing. It is a dog that can easily live up to 15 years of age. Generally, it is a healthy dog that is not very prone to illness.
Diseases to which the Border Collie may be prone include: collie eye anomaly and retinal atrophy, leading to blindness. A genetic test can usually detect these problems.
Another health problem that the Border Collie could suffer from is stomach torsion: to avoid this, it is essential not to overstimulate the dog a few hours before and after a meal. Also, as it is a dog very sensitive to stress, it can be prone to suffer from seizures, although this event is extremely rare.
The Border Collie is a breed that needs a lot of attention from a nutritional perspective to stay healthy.
Border Collie: Price and Puppies
A Border Collie puppy’s price may vary between 600 and 1200 dollars, about 500-1100 English pounds. They are often sold in pairs, especially on the internet. But do not rely on such sales: Always contact certified breeders who will show you the pet’s history.
You can always ask for the pedigree, which is essential: it allows you to check the dog’s breed’s purity. An animal with a pedigree has certain characteristics of its breed that differentiate it from the rest.
Border Collie: Breeders and Puppies For Sale
Under this section, you can find the best-registered breeders in countries such as The United States, England, Ireland, Scotland, Canada, South Africa, India, Australia, among others, from whom you can request all the information you need. It is essential that you buy a dog from a reliable breeder so that you can be sure that your puppy has been:
- Bred for good health and temperament;
- Well-selected (this means that its parents were chosen without genetic diseases);
- Properly socialized, so that it is not too fearful or too aggressive;
- Vaccinated and well-groomed.
If you adopt a puppy, a reliable breeder will provide you with a veterinary certificate that states that the animal has been dewormed and is completely healthy.
Now that we have clarified all the most important aspects, you can go in search of your new 4-legged friend, who is surely waiting for you.
You may be interested in reading another article related to other dog breeds such as:
- Samoyed Dog
- Belgian Shepherd
- Afghan Hound
- Dogo Argentino
- English Cocker Spaniel
- Australian Shepherd
- English Setter