Even if you’ve never seen or met a Bearded Collie in person, you just have to assume that any dog with such a “great” name has to be a lot of fun to own!
And in this case…
You wouldn’t be wrong. After all, the Bearded Collie dog puppies are just about the cutest little things you’ll ever see! And the good news is that they grow up to be super cute adult dogs as well!
The Beardie, as he is sometimes called…
Is a fun, energetic, noisy and very affectionate dog that is perfect for just about any family. And yes, it’s true that, he is a bit silly sometimes…. But that’s a part of the appeal.
Don’t be fooled…
By his shaggy hair and cuteness. The Bearded Collie is a fast, athletic and incredibly smart dog that was built to withstand the rough and tough Scottish terrain as he was tasked to protect and corral sheep for his owner.
All that and good looks too…
With his long shaggy coat, that comes in blue, black, fawn or brown, with white streaks in between. With a set of keen eyes and a short tail mixed in makes this highly intelligent dog as cute as can be!
You should see him jump in the air. The Beardie can stay in the air for almost as long as Michael Jordan. Ok, this might be a bit of a stretch, but if you ever find yourself chasing after a Bearded Collie, you might think the same way too once you manage to catch him.
All of this combined with…
A great temperament and friendly to a fault makes it difficult for many to say “No” when given an opportunity to own a Bearded Collie. And who could blame them, the problem is that a Beardie may not be the “right” dog for you.
This is why…
In this article, we wanted to take a moment and discuss some of the pros and cons of owning a Bearded Collie so that you might be better prepared to known if choosing a Bearded Collie is going to be the right choice for you. So, without further ado, let’s dive right into it!
Bearded Collie Fast Facts
Country of Origin: Britain
Original Purpose: Companionship, used by farmers as working sheepdogs or shepherd dogs for herding sheep and cattle.
Dog Breed Classification: Herding Dogs
Height: 1 foot, 8 inches to 1 foot, 10 inches tall
Weight: 45 to 55 pounds
Life Span: 12 to 14 years
Dog Breed Classification: Herding Dogs
Origins of the Bearded Collie Dog Breed
The Bearded Collie is a British dog originating out of Scotland, and is believed to be one of the oldest breeds in all of the UK.
As a result, you may often…
Hear folks refer to the Bearded Collie by a variety of different names including:
- The Shetland Sheepdog,
- A Mountain Collie,
- A Highland Collie,
- A Scottish Sheepdog,
- A Scottish Shepherd,
- Or our favorite, a Hairy Mou’ed Collie.
Regardless of what you “choose” to call your Bearded Collie, what will remain the same is that this shaggy haired herding dog was “developed” by farmers for herding sheep and cattle hundreds of years ago, so at it’s “core”, its going to like to chase things.
A descendant of the Polish Lowland Sheepdogs, which were brought to Scotland by a Polish merchant in the 1500s, these dogs were then bred with the local sheepdogs, and the Beardie was born out of this union.
And like we mentioned before…
The Bearded Collie is an old dog breed “for the UK” whose presence is first documented in a portrait by an artist called Gainsborough in 1771, which shows a Shepherd lovingly embracing his “Beardie” in what appears to be a personal portrait.
The breed was then described at length in the 1818 edition of the Live Stock Journal clearly demonstrating how important the breed had become to these farmers at that time.
There were two separate varieties of Bearded Collies that existed. There was the Border strain that brown and white and had a bit of a wavy coat. And there was the Highland strain that was gray and white and had a coat more similar to what we see and know today. Eventually however, these two breeds were merged by shepherds over many generations ultimately creating just one “type” of Bearded Collie which we now know and love.
The modern Bearded Collie…
Owes much of its success to one famous dog breeder by the name of G.O. Willison who is the woman behind the Bearded Collie Club and helped keep this breed around and popular as the need for “herding” dogs diminished over time.
These herding group dogs…
Were first brought to the United States in the late 1950s. And by then they had already been made famous by the Bearded Collie Club in Britain in 1955.
The American Kennel Club (or the AKC) decided to register the breed on February 1, 1977. Today, the Bearded Collie dog breed is famous across the United States. We even have an organization called the Collie Club of America.
Physical Characteristics of the Bearded Collie
- The Beardie is a medium sized dog ranging somewhere between 1 foot, 8 inches to 1 foot, 10 inches tall. And weighing somewhere between 45 to 55 pounds.
- He has a shaggy coat and rectangular body.
- A Beardies coat will be a “double coat” that could be blue, black, fawn or brown. The coat may also have white markings or streaks in it as well.
- And unusual feature about a Bearded Collie is that their eye colors can vary and will usually match the color of their coat. So, If he has a fawn colored coat, his eyes are likely to be light brown in color.
And while we’re discussing…
A Bearded Collie’s coat we should point out that just about every Beardie takes great pride in his coat. And it’s going to be up to you to help him or her take care of it.
So, if you’re seriously thinking about adopting a Bearded Collie puppy be aware that you’re going to need to either brush or comb his coat every day or at least every other day.
The grooming can take a while, though, and brushing the coat is not easy. But it’s something that has to be done if you want to keep your Beardie happy and want to avoid having your house covered in fur!
Bearded Collie Temperament and Training
The Beardie is a smart, boisterous and ebullient dog. He loves being with children, and is loyal to his human family. And because he has been breed for generations to take directions from his Sheep Herder master, they’re really good at taking directions and anticipating what you may or may not want him to do.
Which is great!
The problem is that you’re probably not going to have a dozen or so sheep living in or around your home. This is why some Bearded Collies find themselves in trouble when they begin “Seeing” everything that moves as a “potential” play thing that should be chased, and “herded”.
Now you really can’t…
Blame them, but when one of these potential play things is a small child, well then, we can begin to run into some potential issues. The good news is that with proper obedience training and socialization early on combined with plenty of daily “controlled” exercise your Bearded Collie can over time “control” many of these urges, it’s just up to you if you want to do the work!
Also make very good watchdog, because it is in his nature to watch over his flock. They are also very brave and courageous animals which is another great reason to have one around.
You’ll need to take him out often for exercise, as he gets bored very easily. Take him out on long walks where he can socialize with other dogs.
Are there any health concerns that you should be worried about?
The Bearded Collie is a healthy dog, but like all dogs, he is susceptible to certain hereditary diseases.
Not all Beardies…but it’s hard to say.
- Hip dysplasia,
- follicular dysplasia,
- and elbow dysplasia,
Are three conditions that a Bearded Collie is particularly vulnerable to. And treatment could set you back by anything from $1500 to $4000 depending on the specific condition and its severity.
He could also suffer from
- Eye diseases,
- Autoimmune hypothyroidism,
- Addison’s disease,
We here at IndulgeYourPet advise anyone that is considering purchasing a Bearded Collie puppy or better yet adopting a Bearded Collie rescue dog, first take a moment and see just what it might cost to purchase a pet insurance policy on their new loved one so that if their dog does develop on of these conditions or is just injured at some point in his or her life, you won’t be on the “hook” for 100% of his or her medical bills.
For more information about what it might cost to purchase a pet insurance policy, we would encourage you to take a look at our article Best Pet Insurance Companies.