Bearded Collie Description
The breed began when the Polish Lowland Sheepdog was mixed with several local Scottish breeds. Considered a working dog, the breed’s ability to withstand some of the worst conditions made it ideal for herding sheep and cattle. The Bearded Collie obtained its longer coat in the 20th Century when the Old English Sheepdog was bred into the line.
Shortly afterward the Bearded Collie, or Beardie, became quite unpopular and was nearly wiped out of existence. Only one kennel continued to breed Beardies, the Bothkennar kennel. The breed began to gain back popularity in the late 20th Century. Today the Beardie has become a well-known and important breed in the dog world, especially since winning Best in Show in 1989.
Also Known As
- Hairy Mou ed Collie
- Highland Collie
- Mountain Collie
The Bearded Collie, due to its background in herding, is an extremely strong and dependable breed. The Beardie is also one of the more intelligent dog breeds. They are known to be wildly independent. They are a dominant breed and will be the boss of the household if let. Beardies are extremely energetic and will chase and nip at anything that comes their way. It is because of this that breeders do not recommend Beardies to households with small children.
Like all dogs, Beardies do have some health problems. Beardies are especially prone to, due to their size, hip dysplasia. Allergies have been known to affect beardies as well. Other problems that are not as common but still known to affect the breed are hypothyroidism, autoimmune disease, and some eye problems.
Being that the Bearded Collie is such an energetic dog, they require a good deal of exercise. They are not a breed meant to be kept indoors at all times. Beardies need to have plenty of room to run. Without proper exercise, a Beardie may become restless and take his aggression out in ways such as barking and chewing. It is recommended by breeders that a Beardie owner set up an obstacle course of some sort in their backyard to give their Beardie the exercise they require and to challenge them mentally.
Special Grooming Needs
The Bearded Collie has long, thick fur that can easily become matted or tangled. They require very frequent brushing, at least two times a week. A common solution for Beardie owners who are not able to keep up with the brushing is to trim the coat shorter. It is necessary to brush or keep the fur-trimmed in order to maintain a healthy coat.