FCI GROUP: Sheepdogs and Cattledogs (except Swiss Cattledogs)
FAMILY: Livestock, herding
Are Border Collies allowed as pet in 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”. It is a descendant from the old British droving breeds (with spaniel added) used by the Vikings to herd reindeer.
Original Purpose: Shepherding.
Behaviour and Temperament: Workaholic, excitable, quick thinking, dependable, alert, intuitive.
Breed Characteristics: Hardy, extremely agile. The Border Collie is one of the most brilliant of all breeds. This is one of the hardest 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.
Physical Features: 48.5 to 56 cm; 14.5 to 22.5 kg. Colours are black-and-white, brown, sable, and merle; most have a white blaze; many Border Collies have tan markings.
Coat Type and 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. An average shedder that requires extra grooming care when shedding.
Life Expectancy: The life expectancy of the Border Collie is between 11 and 15 years.
Health Concerns: Eye problems (PRA, Collie eye), seizures, deafness, hip dysplasia.
Exercise: 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 should not be kept in an apartment—he really needs to live where there is plenty of space to run. 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.
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.
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