Border collie in front of a white background

Border Collie

Breed Characteristics

Hardy, extremely agile. The Border Collie is one of the most brilliant of all breeds. This is one of the hardiest working dogs that thrive on praise. Border Collies are represented among the elites in competitive levels in various sports, excelling in agility skills, obedience, sheepdog trials and Frisbee. Border Collies will often challenge their owners’ authority when they are adolescents. For that reason it is not a dog for everyone, it requires a very experienced owner who can be consistently firm and confident.

Is the Border Collie approved as a pet in a Singapore HDB flat?

No

Origin

Great Britain, 1800s. Originated in Northumberland along the borders of Scotland and England, the Border Collie was originally named the “Scotch Sheep Dog”.

The exact origins of the Border Collie are unknown, but it is believed that the breed was developed by shepherds in the border region over centuries of selective breeding. Shepherds were looking for dogs that were intelligent, athletic, and hardworking, and that could withstand the harsh weather conditions in the border region. The Border Collie proved to be the perfect dog for the job.

Original Purpose

The original purpose of the Border Collie was to herd sheep. They were bred to be intelligent, athletic, and hardworking dogs that could withstand the harsh weather conditions in the border region between England and Scotland. Border Collies are known for their ability to read sheep's body language and anticipate their movements. They are also very trainable and can learn to perform a variety of commands, such as fetching sheep, moving them from one place to another, and keeping them together in a flock.

Border Collies are still used for herding today, but they are also popular as family pets and working dogs. They excel in a variety of activities, including agility training, obedience, and frisbee. Border Collies are also used as search and rescue dogs, therapy dogs, and police dogs.

Behaviour and Temperament

Workaholic, excitable, quick thinking, dependable, alert, intuitive.

What are some Physical Features of the Border Collie?

Border Collies are medium-sized dogs, with males typically standing between 48.5 and 56 cm tall and weighing between 14.5 and 22.5 kg. Females are slightly smaller, standing between 46 and 53 cm tall and weighing between 12 and 20 kg. Border Collies have a double coat, with a thick undercoat and a smooth outer coat. Their coats can be black and white, brown, sable, or merle.

Coat Type and Recommended Grooming

Two types: Both are double and dense. One type has moderately long outer coat and the other has shorter hair. Moderate to high maintenance; the Border Collie needs frequent hard brushing to remove dead hair and keep the coat gleaming. Professional grooming is optional. The Border Collie is an average shedder that requires extra grooming care when shedding.

Life Expectancy of the Border Collie

The life expectancy of the Border Collie is between 11 and 15 years.

Border Collie Puppies in the Community

Have a Border Collie?

Health Concerns

Border Collies are generally healthy dogs, but they are prone to certain health conditions, such as eye problems (PRA, Collie eye), seizures, deafness, and hip dysplasia.

Exercise Needs

Extraordinary; the Border Collie requires an athletic, motivated owner. Physical exercise alone is not sufficient for this very intelligent and highly energetic dog; he has to think and solve problems in order to be happy. Don’t even consider this breed unless you are an obedience or agility enthusiast, or have a large herd of sheep that needs rounding up; otherwise, you will end up with a distressed dog.

Housing

Border Collies need a home with enough space to run around and play. They are not well-suited to living in small apartments or condos. A home with a fenced yard is ideal for a Border Collie. Very active indoors, and will only do well with acreage. The Border Collie will do fine in a kennel provided it has tonnes of activities with its handler.

Sociability

Border Collies are generally good with children but may try to herd small ones and nip them in the process. Very reserved toward strangers. They should not be trusted with small non-canine pets, however there are many Border Collies that live and get along with family cats. May get aggressive with other dogs of the same sex.

Trainability

With the right training, the Border Collie excels in any activity he tries. However, early socialisation is recommended to prevent dominance or shyness that may impede subsequent training.

Recommended Activities

Herding trials, agility, obedience, tracking, flying disc, flyball. Some Border Collies have been fruitfully employed as guide dogs for the blind. In the Netherlands, respectable results have been obtained with them for general assistance to the handicapped.

Border Collie Dog Club / Communities in Singapore

There is a growing community of Border Collie lovers in Singapore. They can be found in the BorderCollie Singapore Facebook group.