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Old 06-27-2012, 10:24 AM
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Default Border Collie - specific questions

I know there's been lots of other threads on BC's but... I want to know more.

I know I go through my phases and a second dog won't be for at least 1-2 more years and my biggest debate right now is between another small dog or a larger dog. I've pretty much decided anything bigger than, like, 40-50lbs is out. So, for my "bigger" dog, ideally... 25-35lbs would be PERFECT.

I've always been intrigued by BC's but lately am feeling like it could really be a possibility, however I still want to be around more in person.

1. How are BC's with smaller dogs, in your experiences? Jackson is 16lbs, so not "tiny" but still small. He has no DA/DR and is pretty much chill with almost every dog he meets and highly enjoys playing with other dogs. Running/chase is probably his favorite game.

2. With a BC, is it really as important to give sooo much exercise as people say, or is just dependent on each dog?
- Exercise isn't a problem for me at all. Jackson needs a lot so I am used to the kind of dog who... when you walk in from being gone for a few hours, you can't just come and lay on the couch. He NEEDS some exercise or stimulation. He's a fairly needy dog in general but on the flip side, right now it's 11:09am and he's still passed out next to be on the couch and has been sleeping all morning. But if I were to get up right now and jump in the pool, he would follow me in or if I were going for a 5 mile walk, he'd be up for it. I'd also probably dabble in agility (but no desire to really compete) and do frisbee at home and trick training.

3. I want a dog who is reliable with children and other dogs - would it be better to get a young BC puppy or get a bit older one who you may already know it's personality better? Or would it be better to raise them from the start around lots of dogs, kids, etc? I like doing "doggy things" with my dog(s) - going to dog events in the area, dog park, bringing them with me on vacation and travels, etc.

4. Breeders - can anyone recommend breeders around my area (Maryland). I'd be willing to ship or travel if needed, but I think it'd be nice to have a breeder close by so I could meet/interact with dogs. Also, differences between show lines, working lines, etc? I'm really not interested in having a "show" BC, but I also don't want a dog who is just "omg-never-stop" bred for sports or whatever either. I just want a nice active pet. But I'm really oblivious to the different lines, etc.

5. Random, but I really like prick-eared BC's. Can you tell if a puppy is going to have pricked ears, by it's parents, or is it a guessing game? Is there anything breeders do to make puppies ears stand (like, I know in yorkies, they tape the ears?) or not really?

6. Coat... smooth or rough... and everything in between? What do you think is the easiest to take care of... does one shed less than the other? How often do you brush a BC and how often do they shed in general?

Oh and PICTURES... I know there's soooo many different colors and variations but these are my current ones:

Chocolate!
I love this:


Is this red merle or chocolate merle?

^I also love the coat of this dog... I see some BC's who look REALLY thick, but this looks so thin yet soft and silky. I think with being so specific in my wants, I'm probably looking at getting a young adult.

But thoughts, pictures, anything would be helpful.
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JacksonsMom View Post
1. How are BC's with smaller dogs, in your experiences? Jackson is 16lbs, so not "tiny" but still small. He has no DA/DR and is pretty much chill with almost every dog he meets and highly enjoys playing with other dogs. Running/chase is probably his favorite game.

I haven't had any issues with my dogs when it comes to size. Emma weighs 3lbs and is best friends with Rory. He's pretty gentle with the chihuahuas

2. With a BC, is it really as important to give sooo much exercise as people say, or is just dependent on each dog?

It's really dependent on each dog. Rory requires more mental stimulation than exercise. Ian will take Rory running and Rory will STILL be full of energy... but after 15 minutes of training, he'll settle down. I've found playing frisbee with him for as long as he'll play is the best way to wear him down... he's really working when he plays and thinks it's serious business!

3. I want a dog who is reliable with children and other dogs - would it be better to get a young BC puppy or get a bit older one who you may already know it's personality better? Or would it be better to raise them from the start around lots of dogs, kids, etc? I like doing "doggy things" with my dog(s) - going to dog events in the area, dog park, bringing them with me on vacation and travels, etc.

I've always been one to get my dogs as puppies... we've had Rory since he was 5 months old. I'd only get an adult if I knew how they were for sure with kids and other dogs

4. Breeders - can anyone recommend breeders around my area (Maryland). I'd be willing to ship or travel if needed, but I think it'd be nice to have a breeder close by so I could meet/interact with dogs. Also, differences between show lines, working lines, etc? I'm really not interested in having a "show" BC, but I also don't want a dog who is just "omg-never-stop" bred for sports or whatever either. I just want a nice active pet. But I'm really oblivious to the different lines, etc.

I'd only own a Border Collie from working lines. I find that they have much better off switches. I'm not sure of any breeders in your area, but I know Lizmo got Blaze from Fieldstone in NC

5. Random, but I really like prick-eared BC's. Can you tell if a puppy is going to have pricked ears, by it's parents, or is it a guessing game? Is there anything breeders do to make puppies ears stand (like, I know in yorkies, they tape the ears?) or not really?

Rory's dad has prick ears, and his mom has rose ears. Rory ended up with prick ears. I like prick ears as well, and I'd imagine that you'd have a better chance of ending up with prick ears if the parents have prick ears. I'm pretty sure you can tell if their ears will be prick by 10 weeks of age. They can flop during teething, though. Rory had wonky ears until he was about 10 months old, and they've stood ever since

6. Coat... smooth or rough... and everything in between? What do you think is the easiest to take care of... does one shed less than the other? How often do you brush a BC and how often do they shed in general?

Rory sheds a LOT. I sweep up a "puppy" almost every day. He's rough coated.

Oh and PICTURES... I know there's soooo many different colors and variations but these are my current ones:

Chocolate!
I love this:


Is this red merle or chocolate merle?

^I also love the coat of this dog... I see some BC's who look REALLY thick, but this looks so thin yet soft and silky. I think with being so specific in my wants, I'm probably looking at getting a young adult.

But thoughts, pictures, anything would be helpful.
Obviously you've seen a million pictures of Rory, but here's another one:


20120218-DSC_5899 by Chihuahuaesque, on Flickr

I like the look of him. He's small framed, weighs 35lbs, red and white, with prick ears

ETA: I made this thread a while back, and it may be of interest to you!

http://www.chazhound.com/forums/show...=border+collie
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Last edited by ~Jessie~; 06-27-2012 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 06-27-2012, 11:55 AM
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Rory's awesome. I love his size, easy to pick up if need be.

I really have nothing else to add
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:28 PM
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I didn't know you were in Maryland! I was looking into a Border Collie about 2-4 years ago when I was still using dogs on my livestock (I've since switched over to a fourwheeler), and I do have a list of local breeders that I can send you if you like. I had three or four picked out: two were exclusively working dogs but the third bred showier animals.

MABCR also does some SUPER rescues if you are looking for an adult (and, IMO, your preferences indicate that you will probably be happiest going this route). I have competed with some of their dogs and as a matter of fact I borrowed a pair once to clear geese off the runways last summer. =) The staff there is also super knowledgeable/helpful/just awesome.
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:36 PM
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Quote:
1. How are BC's with smaller dogs, in your experiences? Jackson is 16lbs, so not "tiny" but still small. He has no DA/DR and is pretty much chill with almost every dog he meets and highly enjoys playing with other dogs. Running/chase is probably his favorite game.
My BC is no bueno with other dogs, but I know a LOT of BC owners who have both BCs and a smaller breed like Papillons or small terriers, and they have wonderfully happy, harmonious households.

Quote:
2. With a BC, is it really as important to give sooo much exercise as people say, or is just dependent on each dog?
- Exercise isn't a problem for me at all. Jackson needs a lot so I am used to the kind of dog who... when you walk in from being gone for a few hours, you can't just come and lay on the couch. He NEEDS some exercise or stimulation. He's a fairly needy dog in general but on the flip side, right now it's 11:09am and he's still passed out next to be on the couch and has been sleeping all morning. But if I were to get up right now and jump in the pool, he would follow me in or if I were going for a 5 mile walk, he'd be up for it. I'd also probably dabble in agility (but no desire to really compete) and do frisbee at home and trick training.
No, it's really not bad with an adult BC. A young dog or puppy is going to be a bit more stressful at first while they learn the house rules and learn to hone their off switch.

Teach a very good, solid recall and take the dog somewhere to swim or play fetch with a chuckit. Lately Eve has been getting a couple miles of walking and a lot of running/swimming because I've been on an exercise plan, but it can be a bit much for her and some days she'd rather not exercise at all.

Quote:
3. I want a dog who is reliable with children and other dogs - would it be better to get a young BC puppy or get a bit older one who you may already know it's personality better? Or would it be better to raise them from the start around lots of dogs, kids, etc? I like doing "doggy things" with my dog(s) - going to dog events in the area, dog park, bringing them with me on vacation and travels, etc.
I'd recommend an older dog, a lot of times working breeders will keep puppies and train them on livestock. The price goes up, but they can definitely tell you a lot about the dog, their training, their health and their temperament. Rescue is an option too, though IMO it can be a bit of a crap shoot, just as puppies can.

My dog was perfect with other dogs as a youngster. At about 12 months she started to get a bit less tolerant of BS, and by 2 years of age she pretty much decided she didn't enjoy other dogs at all. You ALWAYS run the risk of getting a dog who won't like other dogs when you get a young dog.

Quote:
4. Breeders - can anyone recommend breeders around my area (Maryland). I'd be willing to ship or travel if needed, but I think it'd be nice to have a breeder close by so I could meet/interact with dogs. Also, differences between show lines, working lines, etc? I'm really not interested in having a "show" BC, but I also don't want a dog who is just "omg-never-stop" bred for sports or whatever either. I just want a nice active pet. But I'm really oblivious to the different lines, etc.
I don't have a breeder recommendation. I've found that my working line dog is actually less "go go go" than the BCs my parents have, which are from mixed show/sport lines. I strongly prefer working line dogs for a myriad of reasons, but everyone has different needs and tolerance levels for certain types of behavior.

Quote:
5. Random, but I really like prick-eared BC's. Can you tell if a puppy is going to have pricked ears, by it's parents, or is it a guessing game? Is there anything breeders do to make puppies ears stand (like, I know in yorkies, they tape the ears?) or not really?
It's a guessing game. Most BCs have relatively erect ears but not all are full-on pricked ears. Unless the breeder is a show breeder, they leave the ears alone entirely and let them do what they want. Show breeders tend to glue down the ear tips so the dog has mostly erect, but slightly tipped collie ears.

Quote:
6. Coat... smooth or rough... and everything in between? What do you think is the easiest to take care of... does one shed less than the other? How often do you brush a BC and how often do they shed in general?
Smooths shed more individual hairs, roughs shed in small clumps. Smooth hairs scatter all over and rough hairs tend to congregate in corners and make dog fur tumbleweeds. You have major variations in coat density/length within the rough variety. Border collies, with the exception of the very heavily coated show dogs, are extremely wash and wear. Very, very little grooming required.

Quote:
Oh and PICTURES... I know there's soooo many different colors and variations but these are my current ones:

Chocolate!
I love this:


Is this red merle or chocolate merle?

^I also love the coat of this dog... I see some BC's who look REALLY thick, but this looks so thin yet soft and silky. I think with being so specific in my wants, I'm probably looking at getting a young adult.

But thoughts, pictures, anything would be helpful.
The second dog is a red merle. I didn't know that there was much differentiating between "chocolate" BCs and "red" BCs. Brown color is red in border collies, unless it's a dilute like lilac. There are also extremely light blonde border collies, I'm not sure what they're called.

That dog that you referenced with the coat type you like, is quite possibly a young dog too. Eve had a perfectly straight, thinner, shorter coat when she was under 2 years old. Once she aged, her coat got full of cowlicks and it got longer and thicker, but by no means did it become higher maintainance. Rough coated BCs get a little wispier in the hair department as they age.
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Old 06-27-2012, 12:40 PM
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Jessie - can you just clone Rory and send him to me? Kthx.

LOL - I seriously love him. If I could find a dog like him, I'd be on it in a heartbeat. I think I'd prefer that age (5 months) too. I would love to find a "puppy" but not like teeny tiny either, I think.

And houlahoops: I'd love for you to PM me any suggestions for breeders you may have.
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Old 06-27-2012, 01:33 PM
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Just for the end point: both dogs you posted are what BC people call "red" which is Bb..also called red in Dobermans, Chocolate in Labd, Liver in Flat-coats, etc. I've never heard it called chocolate in BCs but it's the same gene and in same ways calling it that would be less confusing since "red" can also refer to a clear sable (like my Kim) or an ee red/yellow dog (like Irish setters, golden retrievers, yellow Labs or FCRs, etc). All three "reds" are seen in BCs (though the Bb version seen in your pics is by far the most common red so far as I know)
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Old 06-27-2012, 02:07 PM
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Originally Posted by JacksonsMom View Post
1. How are BC's with smaller dogs, in your experiences? Jackson is 16lbs, so not "tiny" but still small. He has no DA/DR and is pretty much chill with almost every dog he meets and highly enjoys playing with other dogs. Running/chase is probably his favorite game.
We have two Cardigan Corgis, females, that rule the roost here. Including our BC pup - he's only 6.5 months old so I probably am not much help but will give you what I've got. We have all herding breeds and they all play chase and take turns fairly well. Eden is 20 lbs and can definitely hold her own. All the BCs on my flyball team are at least dog tolerant if not outright social.

Quote:
2. With a BC, is it really as important to give sooo much exercise as people say, or is just dependent on each dog?
Finn does better with mental stimulation but gets a fair shot of exercise too of course (with 5, soon to be 6 dogs, we do a lot of exercising!). I think he's "normal" if not lower end for energy and he's working line and LOVES to run. He just does not compare to the handful that is my GSD when he is bored. Regardless, I say dependent on each dog for every breed.

PLUS, I 100% believe that you should teach the puppy to be calm (or crate it) quite a lot when it's young so it doesn't think and become conditioned to a TON of constant exercise/stimulation. I have observed several new owners to "working line" bred dogs (not just BCs) that were obsessive about what they did with the dogs when they were pups and that resulted in adults that were demanding and *needed* that ongoing attention. My dogs are crated and let out on a rotating/you matured/earned it basis. So, when Kastle was young, he got a lot less time than he gets now and now he knows how to lay down and chew on a bone. Same for Finn, he's pretty chill in the house these days. We went through a rough month or so where he was wild but that was during teething.

Quote:
3. I want a dog who is reliable with children and other dogs - would it be better to get a young BC puppy or get a bit older one who you may already know it's personality better? Or would it be better to raise them from the start around lots of dogs, kids, etc? I like doing "doggy things" with my dog(s) - going to dog events in the area, dog park, bringing them with me on vacation and travels, etc.
Finn is SUPER social and sweet and absolutely wonderful with adults/children/other dogs. His parents were too. He's a doll when he wants to be and LOVES to be snuggled/loved on/pet and doesn't care who/what/age of the petter LOL

Quote:
5. Random, but I really like prick-eared BC's. Can you tell if a puppy is going to have pricked ears, by it's parents, or is it a guessing game? Is there anything breeders do to make puppies ears stand (like, I know in yorkies, they tape the ears?) or not really?
We got Finn at 10 weeks and his ears were already up. Perhaps look for pups that have smaller-ish ears or a tad older if that's important. Our breeder could care less about the ears and lets them do what they will. Finn's Dad has rose ears, Mom has prick. All puppies got prick ears in this litter. I've seen show line people glue the tips down inside so they get that really cute little flip at the top but I doubt that helps them stand.

Quote:
6. Coat... smooth or rough... and everything in between? What do you think is the easiest to take care of... does one shed less than the other? How often do you brush a BC and how often do they shed in general?
Finn is medium coated right now. He seems to shed more than the GSDs and slightly less than the Corgis right now. He did just blow his puppy coat and it was in clumps, not singular hairs.

Quote:
Oh and PICTURES...
Happy to oblige! Finn is a red/white and I LOVE his coat - soft and silky and just the right length!


His color looks better in the sun...



When we got him...

Then his ears did this for awhile LOL
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Old 06-27-2012, 02:07 PM
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With my Corgi:
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Old 06-27-2012, 02:19 PM
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^ Thank you all answering!

OMG why have I never seen Finn?!?! Again, can I clone him!? hahah. He's super adorable. I agree, I loooveee his coat. How much does he weigh? He sounds/looks like a very fun guy with a great personality.
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