Breed review: Border Collie
Who couldn’t love a Border Collie? These loyal, clever, hard-working and energetic dogs warm the heart of anybody who has chanced upon sheep dog trials broadcast on TV.
These handsome dogs are not just working animals but also make good pets owing to their intelligence and adaptability.
If you are thinking of introducing a Border Collie to your household, the following facts about this breed may help you make a decision about whether this type of dog is ideal.
The Border Collie is a medium-sized dog with a body which is a bit longer than its tail. It has a fairly flat skull with an equally-proportioned snout. Its eyes are set widely apart and are usually brown although they can occasionally be blue. Ears are medium in size and set far apart on its head.
A border collie has a double coat which is waterproof; a feature which enhances its suitability as a working dog. The variety of fur colours is quite extensive; coats are black and white, yellow and white, tri-colour, black and grey, red and white, yellow and pure black.
Long-haired Border Collies have a bushy tale and a little mane although the facial hair on all types is always short.
Not surprisingly for a dog which has traditionally been a farm worker, the Border Collie responds well to praise! This is a sign that it is easily-trained so a perfect dog for anyone who has sights on entering competitions which show off skills like agility and obedience. The fact that it has a great deal of stamina is also a bonus for competing. A Border Collie will not let you down.
If it is a family pet you are looking for, Border Collies can fit in well but a few factors need to be taken into consideration. Firstly, they are bursting with energy so in order to be happy within a home and to get on with other pets and people they need a lot of activity. You need to be sure that you can give them plenty of tiring exercise. They love to serve so you need to be in a position to give them loads of attention.
Secondly, their need for leadership is a key factor to their happiness so make sure that you are prepared to put in the graft to exercise authority. For example, if you have another dog of the same sex, a Border Collie may become aggressive towards it if you haven’t shown them who is boss – you! This goes for other pets as well. A collie will be happier with them if it knows someone is in charge.
A point worth noting is that they have a strong instinct to herd children and people. You could say it’s in their genes but they must be taught that it is not on.
Border Collies generally live an average of 12 to 15 years.
Males usually weigh from 30 to 45 pounds while females are lighter at 27 to 42 pounds.