border collie puppy care

Border Collies are extremely intelligent and alert dogs that make great pets, but their intelligence, extremely high level of energy and their strong herding instincts can make them somewhat difficult to handle for inexperienced owners.

First of all you need to make your home safe for the new puppy. They learn very fast, many people have complained that they just can’t seem to keep their Collie contained; they learn how to open doors and navigate fences. This might be dangerous for a puppy that could get out on the road and possibly be hit by a car. You need to make sure that the dog is securely held somewhere where it can’t get hurt.

You’ll need to have a vet come and administer required vaccinations, do this as soon as possible and make sure that your puppy doesn’t come into contact with other dogs before this is done. Once he is vaccinated, however, you’ll want him to socialize with other dogs and with people as often as possible. Collies are extremely loyal and devoted to their owners, but they can be somewhat suspicious of strangers. Socializing them enough while they are young will prevent them from reacting badly to people that they don’t know.

They have dense coats that offer great protection from cold, so they could and should be kept outside. They are extremely energetic and will need tons of exercise. Apart from walking them daily you should play with them s often as you can and try to really get them tired – play Frisbee with them or give them an activity that will drain them of their insane amounts of energy before they decide to use it to destroy your furniture.

Their intelligence can be a double edged sword when it comes to training them. On one hand they adopt new commands easily, on the other they can notice the slightest shifts in the way that your issuing the command and think that those shifts are intentional and that you are in fact giving them a different command. Be patient and precise and you shouldn’t have any problems.…

Border Collies have a beautiful double coat that offers great protection from cold weather, but that also requires some grooming. If your Border Collie is a working dog and you don’t intend to display him in conformation shows the grooming doesn’t need to be as extensive and detailed, but he would still appreciate an occasional brushing, as this helps him with his seasonal shedding.

Generally, it is good to start grooming your dog while he is still a puppy. He might not actually need the grooming then, but it is much easier to get him used to it while he is young, and he will also be much easier to contain. Trying to get an adult, strong and vital Border Collie accustomed to grooming can be a daunting task indeed.

The first part of the grooming is the brushing of his fur. You should use a pin brush that you’ll gently brush his coat with in a downward motion. Do this softly and slowly, his long hairs can get matted, if you’re not careful you could pull too hard on these entangled hairs and hurt the dog. Untangle, or if you must, cut off the mats when you come across them. As Collies are often kept as working dogs you should also check his skin for parasites. Ticks are often found near sheep and it wouldn’t be surprising if some of them got latched onto your dog. If you do find a tick bite, don’t try to just pull the tick out, instead cover the bite with Vaseline and wait till the tick comes out for air. Once he does remove him and cover the bite with antibiotic ointment.

Every once in while you might want to give your dog a bath. He probably won’t be too happy about it, but after a couple of baths he should (grudgingly) accept it. Slowly soak his fur while making sure that you don’t get any water in his eyes, ears or nose. You can put cotton plugs in his ears, just be careful not to push them too far in. Cover him with a mild shampoo that you should leave in for a while and then thoroughly rinse out. Make sure that there is none left in the fur as it might cause irritation.

Once this is done you’ll want to dry him off. People usually use a towel for initial drying and a blow dryer for finish. Don’t set the dryer to a high temperature though, the dog will not find it too pleasant. Once you’re done you might want to trim his fur and possibly nails. Clipping nails can be a bit risky as you can cause bleeding if you cut it too high. If you’re not experienced at this you might want to skip that part, leave it to a professional or use a file instead. Check the dog’s ears for infections; it might be a god idea to apply antibiotic ear wash as it will prevent them altogether.…

Border Collie General Characteristics

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Border Collies are famous sheep herding dogs that are known for their great skill in the job they were bred for as well as for their intelligence, that many claim, is unmatched in the dog world. Even though they excel as working dogs they also make great pets as their intelligence makes them easy to train and their innate devotion to their owners will make them do anything to protect their owners.

Border Collies are medium sized dogs with compact and well-proportioned bodies that are extremely agile and full of energy and stamina. Males are usually 19 to 22 inches tall, while females are somewhat shorter at 18 to 21 inches. The length of their body from withers to the root of the tail is slightly greater than their height. Their bodies are very strong and graceful.

They usually have an intelligent and alert expression. Their head is well proportioned with regard to their body. They 650_dsc_0472usually have brown eyes, but shades of blue are not uncommon. Border Collies can often have eyes of different colors or even a combination of colors within an eye. Eyes are of medium size and set quite far part. Their rims should be fully pigmented, but that is not always the case. Their ears are wide apart and are usually carried semi or fully erect. They have strong teeth that lock in a scissors bite and a long, well feathered tail that is usually carried low.

They are bred as working dogs so it is no surprise that they have a dense double coat that is great at protecting them from harsh weather conditions. The undercoat is short and soft while the longer overcoat is somewhat coarser and usually straight or wavy. They come in a variety of colors – single colored, with two or three colors, merle or sable.

Even though they are highly intelligent it can be hard to train them properly. They pick up new commands extremely well, but they are really observant, if the trainer issues the same command but in a different tone of voice, or if the command is followed by a different gesture than it was the first time, the dog might think that it is an altogether different command. That is why with inexperienced trainers Collies intelligence can be more of an obstacle to the training than an advantage.

Group of happy dogs

Even though they are friendly and generally great with people they can be dangerous when children are concerned. This is not because they are aggressive or violent, the threat they pose comes from their strong herding instinct. They are used to gathering sheep that are trying to run away. At first they’ll just warn the sheep, but if it proves to be stubborn they will eventually bite it in order to make it comply. When they see a child running their instincts take over and they start regarding the child as a sheep that needs to be controlled. If the child doesn’t stop the dog might deduce that he needs to use force in order to get the child to behave the way that the dog thinks it should. This is why it is very important to warn your child of this if you intend to keep a Border Collie.

 

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