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Bearded Collie

History

The Bearded Collie or Beardie is thought to have originated in Scotland in the 1500s. Traders had brought Lowland Polish Sheepdogs to the country, and the Scots were impressed with their herding abilities. The Polish dogs were cross bred with Scottish Sheepdogs, an the result was the Bearded Collie. This was a dog bred solely for the purpose of working until the 1920s, when they started becoming popular as pets and show dogs.

Behaviour

The Beardie is a bundle of energy and loves working. This, then, is not a dog that will happily sit around all day in an apartment while its owner is at work. They need plenty to do and easily become bored. Once bored, they can turn destructive, so they need lots of exercise. They need a good walk each day, involving lots of play, such as frisbee, fetch, or just a good run.

Bearded Collies are good family dogs and love being around people. They like to herd, and will not let small children stray - in the gentlest possible way. They are fine with strangers usually, as long as they get plenty of attention. They need to be part of everything the family is doing, and this makes them great for family trips or camping. They are always happy and willing to go.

These dogs are intelligent and eager to learn, and they need plenty of obedience training to prevent them jumping up. They can be a bit 'over enthusiastic' in their greetings, wanting to bounce around you and lick your face whenever they see you. Not everyone appreciates this behavior.

Beardies are good show and competition dogs, happy to work closely with their owner, hoping to please you. They can sometimes be stubborn, but all they really want to do is make you happy. They excel at all forms of obedience training.

Like many breeds, they are prone to greediness and will steal food from the table, work top and bin, given half a chance. They are great fun, though, and provide hours of entertainment for their owners. They also make good therapy dogs, as they thrive on the attention.

Their coat requires a fair amount of grooming, with daily brushing to keep the long fur in good condition and free from tangles. Many owners opt for the 'puppy cut' to keep the coat more manageable. They rarely suffer illness and are classed as a relatively healthy breed.

Temperament

Bearded Collies are playful but independent. Originally bred for herding cattle, they are love being active outdoors on an adventure.

They need a good walk everyday in order to prevent restlessness and they will love playing with children possessing an almost comical personality. Be warned that Bearded Collies need people around them to be happy and will become stressed if left alone for long periods.

Health Problems

Bearded Collies are prone to canine hip dysplasia (CHD), Addisons disease (deficiency in the adrenal glands), and colonic disease.

Breed Details

  • Status: Common
  • Life Expectancy: 12 - 14 years
  • Weight: 40 - 60 lb
  • Height: 20 - 22"
  • Rare: No
  • Coat: Long - Double
  • Grooming Requirements: Everyday
  • Town or Country: Either
  • Minimum Home Size: Large House
  • Minimum Garden Size: Small to Medium Garden
  • Breed Type: Herding
  • Size: Large
  • Energy Level: Medium
  • Exercise Required: Up to 1 hour

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