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Collie (Rough)

Collie (Rough)

Graceful, swift and strong, the Collie has been a favourite of shepherds in Scotland and England for centuries. A highly intelligent and protective breed, the Collie is particularly affectionate with children, making him a loving family dog. There are two varieties: The Rough-Coated Collie has a beautiful, long coat, and the Smooth-Coated Collie has a short, dense coat. Both types need moderate exercise.

DID YOU KNOW? The earliest illustrations of Collies are found in The History of Quadrupeds by Thomas Beswick dated around 1800. Queen Victoria kept Collies at Balmoral Castle in Scotland, sparking interest in the breed among the wealthy elite. The Collie was made famous in the 1950s on the television show “Lassie.”

ALSO KNOWN AS: Rough Collie, Smooth Collie, Border Collie

The need-to-know
  • Dog suitable for experienced owners
  • Some training required
  • Enjoys active walks
  • Enjoys walking one to two hours a day
  • Large dog
  • Some drool
  • Requires grooming daily
  • Non hypoallergenic breed
  • Chatty and vocal dog
  • Guard dog. Barks and alerts
  • May require training to live with other pets
  • May require training to live with kids
Rough Collie

Pet Card

  • Living Considerations: Good with children, not hypoallergenic, suitable for apartment living if adequately exercised
  • Size: Large
  • Height: Males – 60 to 66 centimetres at the shoulders, Females – 55 to 60 centimetres at the shoulders
  • Weight: Males – 25 to 35 kilograms, Females – 20 to 30 kilograms
  • Coat: Rough – Long; Smooth - Short
  • Energy: Medium
  • Colour: Sable and white, tricolour, blue merle, or white
  • Activities: Herding, Tracking, Service/Guide Work, Search and Rescue, Agility, Obedience, Conformation
  • Indoor/Outdoor: Both

Key Facts

Lifespan: 14 – 16 years
Weight:  Males should weigh around 27-34kg and females a little less at 23-30kg
Height:  Males stand 56-61cm tall and 51-56cm for females
Colours:  Sable, sable and white, tricolour and blue merle
Size:  Large
UK Kennel Club Groups: Pastoral

Ratings

Family-friendly: 5/5
Exercise needs: 3/5
Easy to train: 4/5
Tolerates being alone: 2/5
Likes other pets: 4/5
Energy level: 3/5
Grooming needs: 3/5
Shedding: 5/5
Dog looking at sky

Personality

Friendly and affectionate with family and those known or introduced as friends, the Rough Collie bonds closely and is a loyal companion. Inclined to bark to alert to the presence of strangers, the Rough Collie can make a good watch dog, but will back down quickly when asked to do so, as they are not inclined towards aggression.

Rough Collies are quick learners and will thrive when both their bodies and minds are kept exercised and entertained.

Collie standing in the forest

History and Origins

Country of Origin: Scotland

The early ancestors of the Rough Collie are thought to have arrived with the Romans, around 2000 years ago. Originally shorter in both leg and nose, the Rough Collie is thought to have had some influence from the Borzoi, known for its elongated, chiselled head, though exactly when this occurred is unclear.

Queen Victoria was instrumental in popularizing the Collie, however it was the Smooth variant she kept herself. Later, Queen Alexandra kept Rough Collies, and it is likely she who is responsible for the popularity of the breed in the show ring and the development of the more glamorous appearance of the breed today.

did you know?

Did You Know?

  • Almost everyone will recognise the Rough Collie as ‘Lassie’ the famous film character, as played by Pal, owned and trained by Rudd Weatherwax (and in fact all the Lassies in the film franchise were male dogs, descended from Pal), however Pal was not the first film-star Rough Collie.
  • The first Rough Collie to star on film, in fact the first of any breed of dog, was Blair, an English bred Rough Collie belonging to the British Film-maker Cecil Hepworth.
  • Blair first featured in a film (albeit briefly) in 1903 (Alice in Wonderland), and then in 1905 had the lead role in ‘Rescued by Rover’.
  • He featured in 15 films between 1903 and 1912, and was the first British movie star of any species!

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