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Bearded Collie Origing, Facts, And Usefull Information

Jun 14, 2008
The Bearded Collie is said to be a direct descendant or the Polish Lowland Sheepdog, when dogs of this breed were shipwrecked off the coast of Scotland. Others believe that the dog is descended from the Hungarian Magyar Komondor. Judging from the coat and the herding abilities of the "Beardie" it is most likely that he has a good deal of the Polish Lowland Sheepdog characteristics in his makeup.

As early as the sixteenth century this dog was represented in art of the day, being pictured as a companion of the Duke of Buccleigh by Gainsborough. The Beardie certainly is very similar in looks to the Polish sheepdog, being tousled and unkempt in appearance and gray and white in color.

Although the Bearded Collie is only about 22 inches at the withers and weight of about 60 pounds, he appears much larger and more powerful because of his heavy coat. A correctly balanced Beardie possesses great agility and speed as he is a herding dog and should exhibit the essential ability to turn and quarter quickly and the desire to "cut" and herd the sheep.

Furthermore there should be strong "reach" and drive from the hindquarters and the entire structure of the Bearded Collie should allow this dog to perform tight turns and long straight runs with equal alacrity and great speed.

As for his droving instincts he has lost none of the qualities that make a great drover...having the endurance to drive the herds of cattle across the moorlands of Scotland and the persistence to protect the animals from attacks by predators. Though he became nearly extinct during World War II the breed has made a remarkable comeback.

Responsible and caring breeders have made an effort to selectively breed from the finest representatives of the genetic pool and now the breed shows increasing numbers being registered in both the United States and Canada.

The coat of the Bearded Collie should be regularly brushed or it will mat rather quickly. It is a double coat, with long hair that should be fairly straight when combed out. Colors are usually white and gray or fawn and gray although blacks and blues mixed with white markings are also common.

The health of the dog is generally good, except for the necessity of hip and elbow x-rays to make sure there is no dysplasia. Also many breeders recommend CERF testing for the eye afflictions which are common with many of the herding breeds.

The Bearded Collie in the show ring nearly always seems to present a character of a sort... a happy go lucky nature, he is vivacious with the crowd and loves the applause. Usually the Beardie is a "barker" and delights in showing off to the judge and the onlookers.

Often he is a favorite with the crowd not only because of his beautiful coat which floats with him as he moves, but because he is such an outstanding character. The Beardie is often even a bit rambunctious and it has become part of the reputation that he presents to the Dog Show world.

His nature should be inquisitive and alert, obedient but with a certain independence as befits a dog that is a helper to a shepherd but must also work "solo" as a flock guard. The owner of a Beardie needs to be the alpha figure from the beginning for the dog will quickly take over that position if he has a chance.
About the Author
For more information on the Bearded Collie or a full list of dog breeds take a look at this Dog Training website.
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