Adopt a Border Collie
Picture: Robert Dowling/Corbis
Area of origin:
Average size of male:
Ht: 20-23, Wt: 30-45
Average size of female:
Ht: 18-21, Wt: 30-45
Friendliness towards dogs
Friendliness towards other pets
Friendliness towards strangers
Ease of training
Border Collie Dogs Available on Petfinder Right Now
Watch Video About Border Collie Dogs
Dogs 101: Border Collie
Border Collie Dog Temperament
The Border Collie is a bundle of mental and physical energy awaiting its chance to be unleashed on the world. Among the most intelligent and obedient of breeds. Given sufficient exercise, he is a dependable and loyal companion. He is intent on whatever he does and tends to stare, which can be unnerving to other animals. He also likes to chase other animals. He is reserved, even protective, toward strangers.
Border Collie Dog Care
Few dogs are as work-oriented as the Border Collie. This is a dog that needs a job. He needs a lot of physical and mental activity every day to satisfy his quest for work. He enjoys being with his family. Its coat needs brushing or combing twice weekly.
Border Collie Dog Health
Major concerns: CHD
Minor concerns: PRA, lens luxation, CEA, PDA, OCD, PPM
Occasionally seen: cerebellar abiotrophy, ceroid lipofuscinosis, deafness
Suggested tests: hip, eye
Life span: 10-14 years
Interested in the history of the Border Collie dog breed?
The consummate Sheepdog, the Border Collie is the result of over a century of breeding for function above all other criteria. In the 1800s, a variety of sheep-herding dogs with differing herding styles existed in Great Britain. Some were fetching dogs, dogs having an innate tendency to circle stock and bring them back toward the shepherd. Most of these were noisy dogs, tending to nip and bark as they performed their job. Boasts of the superiority of certain dogs were only natural; in 1873 the first actual sheepdog trial was held in order to settle some of these boasts. This contest would indirectly lead to the first border collies, by way of a dog named Hemp, who so distinguished himself in trials that he sired a great number of offspring. He herded not by barking and nipping, but by calmly staring at the sheep (giving) intimidating them into moving. Hemp is considered to be the father of the Border Collie. In 1906, the first standard was drawn up, but unlike the physical standards of most breeds, this was a description of working ability, with no regard to physical appearance. This emphasis has shaped the breed ever since. In fact, the dogs were still referred to simply as Sheepdogs; only in 1915 was the name border collie first recorded, in reference to the dog's origin around the English and Scottish borders. The Border Collie came to America and instantly dazzled serious Shepherds with its quick herding and obedience capabilities. In fact, the latter opened a new door for the breed as one of the top competitive breeds in obedience trials. Having worked hard to gain the reputation of one of the smartest breeds of dogs, a breed unspoiled by cosmetic emphasis, many border collie fanciers actively fought AKC recognition as a show dog. In 1995, however, the AKC recognized the breed and herded it into the show ring.
Copyright © 1998, 2005 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc. based on
ENCYCLOPEDIA OF DOG BREEDS by D. Caroline Coile, Ph.D.
Shelters with Border Collie Dogs
Some animal welfare organizations with Border Collies ready for adoption: