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The Rough Collie is a Scottish dog that descended from ancient herding dogs brought by Romans in 50 BC. It boasts of an elegant appearance thanks to its luxurious coat, which is tedious to maintain. The breed remains a popular choice as a family pet worldwide not just for its beauty but also its easygoing and calm disposition.
Are you thinking of getting a Rough Collie? Here is a brief background of this elegant and well-mannered Scottish dog.
The Rough Collie and its cousin the Smooth Collie are descendants of ancient herding dogs bought by Romans in 50 BC to Scotland and Wales. These old dogs were named after the Scottish black-faced sheep called the Colley. Early Collies, a mixture of short- and long-haired varieties, were bred with the Borzoi during the industrial revolution when owning a dog became a fashion statement. The resulting puppies had a more “noble” head, which is a characteristic of Rough Collies.
Queen Victoria became a fan of the Rough Collie breed and brought some of these attractive and gentle dogs to England. It was first exhibited in a Birmingham Dog Society show in 1860 under the name Scottish Sheepdog. It was brought to the USA in 1879. Rough Collies became popular throughout the world thanks to the American film adaptation of the 1940s book “Lassie Come Home.” The Rough Collie remains to be a popular choice as a family and companion dog worldwide. It is registered with The Kennel Club under the Pastoral group.
The Rough Collie is a beautiful and elegant dog boasting of a long luxurious coat. This medium breed has an average size of 50 to 70 pounds and 51 to 66 centimetres at the withers. Its body is slightly longer than it is tall. It has a well-chiselled and wedge-shaped head that is well proportioned to its body, a flat skull, a strong jaw with a perfect scissor bite, and small ears. It has almond-shaped dark brown eyes with an intelligent, kind and thoughtful expression. Merle-coated dogs have blue or blue-flecked eyes, which can be one or both.
The Rough Collie has an abundant and lush double coat composed of a straight harsh outer coat and a soft, furry and thick undercoat. Hair around its neck is thick, forming a unique mane. The accepted colours according to KC standards are blue merle, sable & white and tricolour.
The Rough Collie has high maintenance grooming needs and would require professional grooming at least two or three times a year so its coat is manageable at home. In between visits, daily brushing is necessary because it sheds heavily all year round, more so during shedding seasons (spring and autumn). Aside from coat care, make sure that its teeth are brushed twice a week, ears cleaned to remove wax build-up and nails trimmed regularly.
The Rough Collie is a well-mannered and even-tempered breed. It is an ideal family pet because of its placid and gentle nature. It is also a great choice for first-time owners. This intuitive breed has an incredible ability to predict its owner’s needs and has an affinity with children of all ages. However, as with any dog breed, adult supervision is important to avoid accidents especially when innocent play becomes too rowdy. Also keep in mind that the breed will have herding instincts so it may herd your kids and nip at their heels. It usually gets along with other pets it grows up with including cats. However, the neighbour’s cats and other small animals are a different story because it usually considers them as fair game.
The Rough Collie is an intelligent breed and a fast learner that is eager to please, making training rather easy. However, it also has a tendency to learn bad habits, which can easily be curbed through consistent and firm yet gentle training with plenty of positive reinforcements. Since this breed easily gets bored, keep trainings short and fun.
It is worth knowing that although the Rough Collie is a placid and gentle dog, it needs to know its place in the pack, which should be below everyone else in the house. It is smart enough to realise that if no rules are set, it can get away with anything and will try to become dominant. It will need direction from its alpha to grow up obedient and well behaved.
A typical serving for an adult Rough Collie is 2 to 3 cups of excellent quality dry dog food per day. Keep in mind that the amount of food you give your dog depends on its size, age, physique, activity level, and metabolism. You may consult a veterinarian to ensure your dog is getting the right nutrients. Typical calorie needs of adult Rough Collie per day:
This medium dog will benefit from a diet rich in protein from animal meat. Whether you feed it fresh home-prepared or commercial dog food is up to you. When you choose the former, ensure that your dog’s diet is nutritionally balanced. Ask your vet for the right supplements to avoid deficiencies. If you choose to go for commercial, read the labels and stay away from those filled with artificial flavours and be wary of by products and the word meal (i.e. chicken meal), which is the dried protein after the water is removed from the meat.
The Rough Collie is a generally healthy dog that can live up to 16 years when properly cared for. However, there are certain hereditary and congenital ailments it can suffer from that are worth knowing such as eye issues like Collie Eye Anomaly, Multifocal Retinal Dysplasia and Progressive Retinal Atrophy. It can also develop deafness, Hip Dysplasia, Multi-drug resistance, Degenerative Myelopathy, and Nasal Solar Dermatitis.
The Rough Collie is an intelligent dog that would need 60 to 80 minutes of exercise every day. Exercise will be a great bonding time for you and your dog so aside from allowing it to romp in a back garden, take it out for a walk and have it perform canine sports like agility, flyball and obedience. If it is not able to release its energy, the Rough Collie can be destructive.
If you are interested in purchasing a well-bred Rough Collie puppy, prepare to spend around £800 for one. Other than the initial purchase, you also need to consider getting a pet insurance, which can cost anywhere from £21 a month for a basic cover up to £42 a month for a lifetime cover. These prices vary depending on your dog’s health, age, size, weight, the type of cover you choose, and whether it has pre-existing conditions.
Food cost is another matter since you need to ensure that your dog stays healthy and well-fed at whatever age. To buy high-quality dog food, you will have to spend around £40–£50 a month. You also need to factor in the initial cost for dog accessories and equipment such as food bowls, leads, collars, and beds, which will likely be about £200 depending on the brand.
Other outgoings to consider are veterinary expenses that may not be included in a pet insurance coverage such as vaccinations, routine checks, neutering or spaying, and annual boosters, which can have a combined cost of £1000 annually. On average, caring for a Rough Collie will cost about £70–£100 a month, depending on the type of insurance. This is exclusive of walking or grooming services that you might want to use at times.
Are you sure the Rough Collie is the best breed for you? Take the Pet Breed Selector Quiz to find your perfect breed match.Dog Breed Selector Quiz
Try taking our Pet Finder to know other breeds suitable for you if you are having doubts about owning a Rough Collie.
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