If there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die I want to go where they went. – Unknown
Border Collies are reputed to be the number one most intelligent dogs. They have long been an able and hard-working assistant to man.
Developed in Britain, this breed has a sterling reputation as the finest sheep-herding dog in the world, but he has also been used to herd almost anything, including cattle, goats, geese, chickens, and ducks.
Dogs in this breed are ideally 21 inches (53 cm) high at the shoulder but may be taller. They have a thick, weather resistant, water-repellent double coat that is often black and white but may be a variety of colours including any solid colour (except white), bi-colour, tri-colour, merle or sable. The coat comes in two varieties: Smooth or Moderately Long.
Photos displayed courtesy of Heidi Beckett, Southview Border Collies, Ontario
Their eyes have an alert but almost hypnotic quality that seem to control almost any kind of livestock. Eyes are brown except in the merle dogs who may have blue eyes, or one of each, or even one or both may be partially blue. This dog is bred for his unsurpassed working ability and therefore appearance is less important to this breed than others.
This dog’s mission in life is work, and his natural abilities as a herder can’t be beat. Quick, agile, and highly intelligent, these Collies are happiest when they have something to do. They are working dogs with great natural stamina.
The breed is extremely active and has a very high energy level. As you might expect, he can be demanding. If he is bored, this dog will create work for himself. That “work” may include destructive behaviours such as chewing holes in walls, biting and chewing on chairs, table legs and other furniture, and digging.
It cannot be repeated often enough: these dog thrive on work and games and are eager to please. As they are extremely fast learners, obedience training, flyball, and agility events are very popular with Border Collies. As these dogs require almost constant physical and mental activity, they are not the dog for a couch potato or absentee owner.
They can live amicably with other pets if given proper socialization training.
They must be in a home that can cater to their need for a high level of physical and mental stimulation if they are to remain stable and well-balanced. They are best in a rural environment.
One of the most often cited reasons for getting rid of a Border Collie is their strong, deeply inbred desire to herd – your cats, other dogs in the household, cars, or your children!
Hull’s Haven Border Collie Rescue