Living with a Collie
Temperament: The Collie is a lovely, active, noble, agile, intelligent sheepdog. They are very sweet and sensitive dogs. They can be stubborn and wary of strangers.
Family Dog: The Collie is typically good with other dogs and pets. They are excellent with children due to their gentle and playful nature.
Shedding: The Collie sheds heav0ly twice a year.
Grooming: The Collie's stiff coat repels dirt readily. The Rough-Coated Collie's coat needs grooming weekly to keep it looking good. The Smooth-Coated Collie requires less grooming but should still be brushed at least every couple of weeks. Extra care needs to be taken when the soft undercoat is being shed. The Collie should be bathed or dry shampooed as necessary.
Training: The Collie is relatively easy to train but must be trained gently or may refuse to listen. Collies typically housetrain quickly in a little as a week in some cases.
Weather: The Collie is sensitive to the heat and should have plenty of shade and fresh water in warm weather.
Exercise: The Collie is very energetic dog that needs plenty of exercise including a long daily. They love off leash running in a safe area.
Living Conditions: The Collie can do well in an apartment provided they are exercised sufficiently. They are fairly inactive when inside and should have at an average sized yard.
Appearance: The Collie is a strong and active dog who stands naturally straight and firm. The broad, deep chest and sloping shoulders gives the dog a strong and graceful appearance. The expression portrays intelligence.
Size: Male Collies range from 24 to 26 inches tall at the shoulders with an average weight between 60 to 75 pounds. Females are between 22 to 24 inches tall and weight from 50 to 65 pounds.
Companionship: The Collie is a very loyal, devoted and protective dog.
Head: The size of the Collie's head should be in proportion to the size of the dog with a well-blunted lean wedge shape and smooth and clean outline. The sides taper in gradually from the ears to the tip of the nose. The stop is slightly perceptive. The eyebrows have a very slight prominence. The back of the skull is flat with the occipital bone not peaked.
Nose: The Collie has a black nose which may be sensitive to the sun.
Eyes: The Collie's eyes are placed obliquely giving them a forward look standard for the breed. The medium-sized, almond-shaped, dark-colored eyes should be matching in color except for possibly the Blue Merles where one or both eyes may be merle or china in color. The eyes have a bright, clear appearance giving the dog an inquisitive, intelligent expression.
Ears: The Collie's ears should be proportionate to the overall size of the head. When in repose the Collie's ears are folded along their length and thrown backward into the frill. When the dog is alert they are drawn up and held about 3/4 erect with the top quarter falling forward.
Muzzle: When viewed from the side, the top of the Collie's skull is approximately parallel to the muzzle. The end of the muzzle is blunt but never square in appearance.
Teeth/Bite: The Collie's teeth are moderately sized meeting in a scissors bite.
Neck: The Collie's neck is clean, muscular and heavily frilled. It should be fairly long and carried upward slightly arching at the nape giving the dog a proud appearance.
Body: The body of the Collie is firm and muscular. It is slightly longer than it is tall with a level back, well-rounded ribs, well-sloped shoulders and a deep chest reaching down to the elbows. The hips, thigh and slightly arched loin are very powerful with a slope croup giving a well-rounded finish.
Forequarters: The Collie's forelegs are straight, muscular and well-boned. The forearms should be moderately fleshy with flexible pasterns.
Hindquarters: The Collie's hind legs are less fleshy and muscular in the thighs. The stifles are well bent.
Gait: The Collie has a sound gait. When at a trot, the front legs move close together and do not crossover. At a moderate trot the hind legs propel the dog with smooth, long-reaching strides and a firm, level back. At the highest speeds, the Collie single tracks with the front legs coming together at the center long underneath the body. The Collie's smooth gait appears effortless with the ability to change directions almost instantaneously.
Feet: The Collie's feet are relatively small in proportion to the body and oval in shape with tough pads and close, well-arched toes.
Tail: The tail of the Collie is moderately long with the bone extending to the hock joint or below. When at rest the tail is carried low with a slight upward swirl at the end. When the dog is in motion it is carried gaily but not over the back.
Color: There are 4 recognized colors for a Collie's coat: Sable & White, Tri-color, Blue Merle and White. The Sable & White coat is mostly Sable, varying from a fawn sable to light gold or dark mahogany, with White markings on the feet, legs, chest, neck, tail and possibly on the foreface or back skull or both. The Tri-color Collie is mostly Black with White markings as described above and tan shadings on the head and legs. The Blue Merle Collie is a mottled or marbled Blue-grey color with Black and White markings as described above, usually with the tan shadings of the Tri-colored coat. The White coated Collie is predominantly White with sable, tri-color or blue merle markings.
Coat: The Rough-Coated Collie has a well-fitting, textured, abundant coat except on their head and legs with the outer coat being straight and harsh to the touch with a soft, close, furry undercoat. The coat is the most abundant at the mane and frill. The coat on the face is smooth. The forelegs are covered with a smooth, well feathered coat. The hips and tail have a very long, profuse, bushy coat. The Smooth-Coated Collie is similar to the Rough-Coated variety without the abundant coat. They have a short, dense, flat coat with a thick undercoat.
Category: Herding, AKC Herding
Life Expectancy: The average life expectancy of the Collie About 14 to 16 years.
Characteristics: The Collie is so intelligent that he has been trained for many purposes, as a rescue dog, guide for the blind, movie star, and as a guard dog.
Celebrity Owners: Lassie's Mom in the hit TV Show 'Lassie'.
Health: The Collie is a generally healthy breed. They may be prone to PRA, eye defects and hip problems that can lead to acute lameness and arthritis.
History: The Rough Coated Collie was originally found in Scotland as a descendent of generations of herding dogs. It is believed that the name Collie came from the Scottish black-faced sheep, it used to herd, called the Colley. The early Collies were smaller with broader heads and shorter muzzles. The Collies popularity was helped along by Queen Victoria who kept Collies at Balmoral Castle in Scotland along with J.P. Morgan and other members of the elite upper class. Around this time the Collie was also mixed with the Borzoi and it was required that all show dogs had some of the Borzoi influence in order for them to win. The working, or Scotch collie, and show lines, or what we see today, separated becoming two different breeds. The Smooth-Coated Collie is in Great Britain than in the United States. The Collie was shown in 1860.