by Dennis Fisher
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This is a fairly large breed, with males approximately 24 inches at the shoulder and weighing as much as 65 pounds. Bitches are somewhat smaller.
A feature of the Collie – sometimes known as the Scotch Collie – is the beautiful, shaggy, full coat. There is a wide variation of colors within the breed with three, definite recognized colors: “Sable” which varies from light gold to a deep brown; “Tricolors” which are mainly black with deep, brown markings on the had and legs; and “Blue Merles” that are an attractive shade of silver mixed with black in certain areas.
The Collie is very affectionate animals, particularly with immediate members of the family but are sometimes wary of strangers.
With regard to temperament, this is an animal that can be difficult and destructive if not kept constantly busy. It was initially bred as a working animal and it retains the distinctive feature of a working dog in that it enjoys being active.
A good Collie can be a pleasure and a delight. But many specimens of the breed and very noisy indeed – perhaps due to boredom. Also, in spite of the working background, not as easy to train as one would imagine.
Perhaps the fact that some Collies are not as responsive to train as one like is because of indiscriminate breeding. This came about as a result of the popularity that the breed once enjoyed.
I remember, as a child, after seeing the “Lassie” movies, I desperately wanted a Collie. However, none were obtainable in my area. But subsequently the breed became so popular that they were readily available.
The Collie appears to be prone to a number of genetic faults, one of which is defective vision. Knowledgeable breeders are aware of this defect and very judicious in their choice of breeding stock.
Because of its extremely heavy coat – beautiful as it is – grooming of the Collie is something one must attend to very regularly.