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History of the breed
Cynologists still cannot come to a consensus about which breeds were the ancestors of the border collie.
Bobtails, bearded collies, Icelandic dogs, Nenets huskies are called. From such a variety of assumptions, it can be concluded that there is no exact information and is not expected.
But there is complete clarity in the question of who served as the basis for the modern border collie. Herding dogs, native to the border of Britain and Scotland.
The name of the breed speaks for itself. Literal translation: “shepherd’s dog from the borderland.”
Silent, unpretentious and absolutely loyal shepherd dogs were engaged in grazing sheep, guarding houses and farms. Dogs for a long time were bred only by representatives of the lower class, and among the aristocracy “farm shepherds” caused only contemptuous grins.
Queen Victoria of Great Britain gave a ticket to the breed. In 1860, several Border Collies took part in one of the first dog shows in Britain, after which, among other participants, were presented to the royal court. The queen was delighted by the intelligent and loyal shepherd dogs, and soon several representatives of the breed found permanent residence in the palace.
Victoria’s reign was long, but border collies were always with the queen. The most famous representative is Sharp, to whom, after his death, a memorial was erected in Windsor.
In 1876, shepherd dogs were tested in London: a herd of hundreds of wild sheep was herded to the far end of the park, and three more sheep were released on different sides of the test site. The task of the shepherd dogs was to collect all the frightened animals in one place – in the very center of the park. Representatives of boarders coped with the assigned mission better and faster than anyone else. In the future, the shepherd’s qualities were carefully preserved by breeders.
In 1881, for the first time, a complete description of the breed was compiled, the criteria for evaluating the working qualities of these dogs.
The breed was officially recognized in 1915, but exterior standards appeared only 60 years later: it was not easy to bring to a common denominator dogs that had been breeding naturally for a long time on farms.
The founder of the modern version of the border collie was a dog named Old Hemp. He was born in 1893, in one of the counties of Britain. He was distinguished by outstanding intelligence and tremendous obedience to the owner. For these qualities he was chosen as the main producer of the breed. His descendants became the first champions of European competitions, took prizes at exhibitions.
Another boarder – Winston – is recognized as a symbol of the breed fan club. Border Collie breeders claim that it is his genes that all modern border collies have.
Borders are a working breed that is still used for its intended purpose – for grazing sheep.
In America, the breed was recognized only in 1995.
Border Collies are considered an English breed, but now these dogs have spread all over the world..
Description of the breed
The last changes to the border collie standard were made in 2009. Representatives of the breed have physical strength, endurance, grace, excellent constitution. Borders are smart, sensitive, dedicated, willing to work tirelessly for a long time. There is not a drop of glamor in them. Rather, you can call them rustic cute. At the same time, researchers at the University of British Columbia recognized this breed as the smartest in the world..
- Height at withers – males: about 53 centimeters, females slightly smaller.
- Weight – about 23 kilograms.
- Life span – 12-15 years old.
- Head – broad, tapering towards the nose, with medium-sized cheekbones, a distinct transition from forehead to muzzle.
- Ears – Medium, set wide apart, erect or semi-erect. Hearing in these dogs is a strong point..
- Eyes – medium in size, oval, set wide apart, brown. In blue-colored boarders, a splash of blue is allowed.
- Nose – straight, with developed nostrils. The color of the lobe depends on the color of the dog: the classic color is black, in brown dogs it can be brown, in individuals of blue color it can be blue-gray.
- Jaws – strong, with the correct scissor bite.
- Body – muscular, developed, its length is slightly greater than the height at the withers. Powerful lower back.
- Chest – wide, deep, with curved ribs.
- Back – with developed muscles, tightly knocked down.
- Front limbs – set parallel, with strong bones and pressed elbows.
- Hind limbs – Athletic, standing tilted towards the base of the tail. The thighs are strong and long. Oval feet with well-developed pads and strong claws.
- Tail – medium, low set, covered with hair, with a curved tip. In the active state – raised, but does not lie on the back.
- Wool – two types: medium and long. Thick, rather tough. Mane, trousers and feathers are observed. On the ears, forelegs and muzzle, the coat is shorter and smoother. Undercoat – thick and soft – for protection from the weather.
- Color – any. The only thing that is unacceptable is the predominance of white.
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The breed is characterized by an inquisitive mind, energy, exactingness and hard work. What to do – the boarders don’t care as long as they do something. They can graze sheep or children, take an active part in competitions, play, wind circles around the house. For them, there is no state of rest – the centuries-old shepherd’s work affects.
Border Collies need tremendous physical activity. If the dog does not receive them, the energy can become destructive for the home: the pet will find something to do, reshaping the environment to its taste: digging a garden in search of bugs, trying furniture on a tooth, scratching the floor.
Do not count on the fact that dogs of this breed will lazily lie next to them: representatives of boarders can be used as companions, but, above all, they remain a working shepherd breed.
One of the few breeds that breeders have not changed. Naturalness, intelligence, activity, endurance, sociability, hard work – the main features of the border collie.
Pets of this breed are not able to live in an apartment: they need space for a constant burst of energy. The best choice would be a private house with a large plot of land. Borders do not care what the weather is like, they can run and jump both in cold and hot weather.
Dogs love games of “catch-up”, they love to run after abandoned objects. They overcome difficulties with great pleasure: to bring a ball by swimming across the stream, jumping over the bushes and finding it at the bottom of a deep hole is much more interesting than just running back and forth across flat terrain. By the way, boarders are very fond of swimming in open reservoirs, but they do not like baths..
It should be noted that the psychological maturation of boarders is rather slow. “Puppy” behavior is also inherent in them at an age when other dogs become serious and authoritative. A mature attitude to the outside world should be expected from representatives of the breed no earlier than 3-4 years old. Before that, the dog will perform dizzying somersaults, manifestations of joy and clown numbers with enviable frequency.
The pastoral past makes itself felt constantly: the boarders are ready to “graze” adults, children, other animals, even interior items.
Border collies can coexist with other pets, but they will insist on a dominant position. It is important for them to exercise authority.
What the breed definitely needs is early socialization. Without it, a pet can be wary of strangers and aggressively towards animals.
Breed standards are very loyal to boarders. Puppies and adults are required to be healthy and breed in order to be considered purebred..
The most important thing: if it is not possible to provide the pet with the required activity, it is better to pay attention to another breed.
When buying a border collie, you should immediately think about purchasing a powerful vacuum cleaner: these dogs have abundant seasonal molting. During the moulting period, you need to comb out the dead wool at least once every two days, otherwise the occurrence of tangles is inevitable. Usually once a week is enough. Before the process, it is better to moisten the dog’s coat with a mixture of water and conditioner – this will greatly simplify the procedure. Additional tools, such as a slicker, are not recommended – they can damage the undercoat.
Cutting your nails is enough once a month. A dog with sufficient activity does not need such a procedure at all – the claws are grinded in a natural way.
Border ears get pretty dirty. Cleaning is needed as needed – with a cotton pad with a special lotion.
To prevent dental problems, it is worth treating the dog with tomato juice from time to time and giving bones – by gnawing them, the pet cleans its teeth.
Borders are unpretentious in food. The main attention should be paid to the balance of the dog’s diet and activity – lack or excess of food will disrupt the harmonious development of the body. The basis of the diet is raw meat, anything except pork.
Border Collies need constant physical and mental stress: the more, the better. Moreover, mental stress will tire the pet much faster than physical stress. There are not many walks, activity, exercises for this breed. And it’s better not to keep them on a chain or in an aviary..
The keen mind of dogs of this breed provides tremendous opportunities for training and training. They are motivated by both increased attention and a large company. Endurance and love for hardships allow for long sessions.
You can start training as early as three to four months of age. The puppies are ready to learn the simplest commands. But the duration of training should be limited: no longer than 15 minutes. Then the kid will get bored and the learning will not be fruitful. By six months, the boarders are ready to expand the range of teams and take longer sessions. It doesn’t hurt to repeat what you’ve learned.
A great desire to understand the owner and please him, combined with a developed mind, allow the pet to successfully complete various training courses.
The only thing that the border collie will never master is the role of the guard. Aggressiveness in these dogs is excluded.
With all the love for the owner, the dog wants to see in him an indisputable authority. If he is already deserved, there will be no difficulties in education and training.
Interestingly, even at the beginning of the 21st century, the Border Collie was considered exclusively as a working breed, and only in recent decades, dogs have taken part in specialized exhibitions and competitions. As a result, their popularity has increased..
Endurance and unpretentiousness provide these shepherd dogs with excellent health. Even in adulthood, the appearance of the representatives of the breed does not change, but, with age, activity decreases.
- In hot weather, you should protect your pet from heat strokes and overheating – a dog keen on activity cannot always stop on time.
- Be careful with the place for walking – from prolonged contact with hard surfaces, pillows can be damaged, and the pet will lame.
- Process involvement sometimes makes it difficult for dogs to notice obstacles, leading to injury. You need to keep an eye on your pet in an urban environment..
- Pelvic dysplasia is a problem of 25% of border collies, whose homeland is the USA.
- Eye diseases.
- Congenital hearing problems.
- Hypersensitivity to barbiturates.
- In proven, official kennels, a border collie puppy will cost from 50,000 to 60,000 rubles – chocolate-colored puppies are more expensive.
- If the puppy’s parents are titled, the price will increase to 70,000 rubles.
- Purebred puppies, but with minor defects, can cost from 25,000 to 35,000 rubles.
- Puppies without metrics, which will not be able to participate in competitions and exhibitions, are sold for a nominal fee or are simply “given into good hands”.
When buying a baby from a private trader, it is better to take with you a specialist who understands the breed – there are often cases when, under the guise of a purebred border collie, they tried to hand over a mestizo or mongrel with a similar appearance.
When choosing a puppy, you need to pay attention to active individuals with a good appetite, weeding out sluggish babies with a dry nose and dirty ears. Be sure to look at the parents: how pronounced their breed characteristics are. Read the documents, veterinary book. If a pet is purchased for the purpose of participating in exhibitions and competitions, it is worth limiting searches to well-known, proven kennels.
Photos Border Collie
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