Collie is a medium to large sized intelligent and affectionate dog with strong herding instincts. The playful Collie breed dogs love to be around small children. Moreover, these outdoor dogs are highly energetic.
If not provided with sufficient physical and mental stimulation, they tend to become bored. Boredom, in turn, gives rise to destructive behavior in the form of barking and digging.
The exact information regarding the origin and history of Collie dog breed is not clearly known. Still, the breed is believed to have originated in Scotland. However, these dogs are more widespread in Britain. These working dogs were originally used for herding sheep, cattle and other livestock.
Nowadays, they are also being engaged in dog sports and dog shows. The breed is also known as Scottish Collie or Scottish Sheepdog. Depending on the type of hair coat, these dogs are divided into two categories: Rough Coated Coolie and Smooth Coated Collie.
The graceful and agile Collie dog breed has been endowed with a lean yet strong build. The obliquely placed dark brown eyes are moderate in size and almond shaped.
In case of Collies with blue merle hair coat, the eye color tends to be blue. Most of the part of the small ears is erect with only the tips folding forwards. The tail tends to have an upward twist. It is moderately long and carried low.
Color: This breed of dogs is available in white, blue merle, tricolor, and sable and white colors.
Height: These dogs are usually 24 to 26 inches in height. Female Collies are generally a bit shorter, that is, 22 to 24 inches in height.
Weight: The ideal weight of Collie dogs ranges between 60 to 75 pounds. The bitches usually weigh about 50 to 65 pounds.
Coolie dogs have been found susceptible to a number of eye problems like Collie Eye Anomaly, Progressive Retinal Atrophy, Collie Granuloma (Nodular Granulomatous Episclerokeratitis) etc.
These dogs are also prone to other health issues like Hip Dysplasia, Collie Nose, Dermatomyositis and other skin related diseases. Dogs suffering from Collie nose are sensitive to exposure to sunlight and hence require sun blocks for protection.
Life Expectancy: The average lifespan of these loving dogs is 12 to 16 years.
Litter Size: The average litter size of Collie dog breed is 6 to 10 puppies.
As already mentioned, Collie dog breed comes in two varieties. The rough coated variety has a long and full hair coat with coarse hair and requires more grooming to avoid matting as compared to the smooth coated variety with short and dense hair coat. The hair coat should be brushed and combed at least two to three times per week.
They should be bathed about once in every two months. Smooth Coated Collies tend to shed the undercoat moderately. The rough hair coat sheds dirt quite easily. Other grooming activities like nail trimming, ear cleaning, eye cleaning, trimming the hair between paw pads etc should also be carried out on a regular basis.
Collie dog breed is characterized by a smart, intelligent, gentle, playful, friendly, good natured, sensitive, protective, devoted and active but not hyperactive temperament. These quick learners are easy to train.
Plus, they tend to get along well with other pets in the house. Collie puppies should be socialized right from the beginning in order to avoid aggressiveness.
An obedient Collie dog may take to destructive activities when bored excessively. Therefore, it is essential to engage these dogs in some activity or the other. Their naturally suspicious behavior towards strangers points towards the fact that they can be good watchdogs.
The hard working, responsive and sweet Collie dogs are also used as therapy, guide and rescue water dogs. First time dog owners can safely go for Collie dog breed due to its friendly temperament and easy trainability.
They adapt well in apartment situation provided they are allowed sufficient area for play in at least an average sized yard as they are relatively inactive indoors. The yard should be fenced properly or else they tend to jump off and escape easily. In addition, they should also be taken out for regular long walks for sufficient physical as well as mental stimulation.