Border Collie History
The Border Collie a herding dog that originated from the borders of England, Wales and Scotland. The Border Collie is descended from the droving breeds originating on the Scottish, Welsh and English borders, hence the name Border Collie. The are a popular working dog on farms all over the world and the are common regarded as being the smartest dog in the world. In 1982, the Border Collie was recognized at a breed by the AKC, this was however, under protest of the majority of Border Collie groups. Theywere concerned that more emphasis would be put on conformation rather than the dog's working ability.
In the United States, the majority of Border Collies are registered with the American Border Collie Association, which is dedicated to the preservation of the working dog. In Canada, Agriculture Canada has recognized the Canadian Border Collie Association as the registry under the Animal Pedigree Act for any Border Collie that is designated as "Pure Breed" in Canada. The criteria used is based on herding lineage rather than appearance.
Border Collie Temperament
Border Collies are highly intelligent, highly trainable dogs. They have even temperaments and live to work. They do very well in such dog sports such as obedience, agility and frisbee. Border Collies make excellent family pets and forge close bonds with the humans that they work with. If this breed is not stimulated enough with exercise and mental activity they tend to get destuctive or develop unwanted behaviors such as digging or barking. This breed makes a good watch dog and but is usually easy going with strangers. Due to their herding heritage, they can sometimes try to "round up" small children and other pets.
Border Collie Appearance
Border Collies are a medium sized dog and usually weigh between 40 to 60 pounds and stand 18 to 22 inches at the withers. Since the emphasis of these dogs is on working ability, their comformation can greatly vary. They have double coats that vary in length from medium length to short and slick. The colour of the Border Collie vary from Black tricolor (black/tan/white or sable and white), red (chocolate) and white, and red tricolour (red/tan/white) also occur regularly, with other colors such as blue, red merle, blue merle, brindle seen less frequently. The ears of the Border Collie are also highly variable — some have fully erect ears, some fully dropped ears, and others semi-erect ears.
Border Collie Grooming
These dogs are medium shedders, with the long haired varieties needing a little more work that the short haired varieties. A good brushing once a week will keep these dogs looking neat and tidy.
Border Collie Lifespan and Health Problems
The most common diseases in this breed are Elbow and Hip Displaysia, Hypothyroidism, Epilepsy, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Collie Eye Anomaly. CEA is a congenital, inherited eye disease involving the retina, choroid, and sclera, which resembles conjunctivitis. It is generally a mild disease and rarely significantly impairs vision.
Neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis is a disease that is only limited to conformation show Border Collies. NCL results in severe neurological impairment and early death; afflicted dogs rarely survive beyond two years of age. Luckily, this is a rare disease and there is genetic testing now available to determine dogs that are genetic carriers of the dieases.
The average lifespan of this breed is 12 to 14 years.
Famous Border Collies
Border collies are a very intelligent, atheletic dog breed and most gain fame because of that. Rico, the Border collie, was made famous by being able to recognize 200 objects by name. Betsy the Border Collie is famous for understanding 340 english words. Striker, is the current Guinness World Record holder for "Fastest Car Window Opened by a Dog" at 11.34 seconds.
Fly from the movie Babe
Border Collie Pros and Cons
This simplified list may help you decide if a Border Collie may be a good fit for your lifestyle.
Do You Want
- a very smart dog?
- a very atheletic dog?
- a dog that was specifically bred to work?
- a dog that makes a good watchdog?
Do You NOT Want
- a dog that NEEDS a lot of exercise? These dogs will play catch for hours on end without getting tired
- a dog the NEEDS a job to do?
- a dog that has a low threshold for boredom and can get destructive in an attempt to amuse itself?
- a dog that is sometimes suspicious with strangers?
- a dog that is commonly prone to diseases like Epilepsy and Obsessive Compulsive Disorders?
Useful Border Collie Links