All About the Breed
Border Collie Rescue
All you need to know about the Border Collie breed.
- Energetic with great stamina
- Highly intelligent and trainable
- Strong herding instincts
- A hard working dog that thrives on mental and physical stimulation
- Very alert and aware of its surroundings
- Very sensitive and often responsive to the subtlest command
- Forms a strong bond with its owners but might be wary of strangers
Info about the breed
Border Collie Rescue (BCR) grew out of the need to find adoptive homes for the ever-increasing number of unwanted Border Collies.
Failure to provide a suitable environment has resulted in BCR re-homing over 300 Border Collies a year in Gauteng alone. Invariably they are given up because their herding instinct, left untrained and undiverted, leads to destructive tendencies.
A major reason why they are put up for adoption is that a Border Collie who is not mentally stimulated will most likely turn to his environment for some “action”. “Action” includes some of following behaviours:
· Running paths in your landscaped garden.
· Modifying your irrigation system
· Chewing and digging
· Herding anything that moves, e.g. playing children, cats, cars and the lawnmower.
· Chasing children, nipping them if they won’t stop or move in a certain direction.
· Some Border Collies even display neurotic behaviour.
To compound the problem, more and more Border Collies are being diagnosed with Hip Dysplasia or HD (a term, which encompasses a number of specific developmental, and other abnormalities involving the hip joint.) An unsound joint is usually a painful one and lameness will result. In extreme cases the dog may find movement very difficult and much suffering will be involved. It is known that 2 factors determine whether HD is to occur and, if so, how bad it will be. Inheritance and “environment”, the former relates to the genetic code passed to the offspring and the latter to all outside influences like nutritional needs and exercise. Professional advice is necessary to ensure that the right combination of therapies is applied. Have you noticed stiffness in your dog?
For peace of mind and for the well being of your pet ask your veterinarian’s opinion.
In light of the above we appeal to you to promote:
• Sterilization and neutering.
• Responsible breeding
These are the only ways to start solving these problems.
Think of the more than 10 000 healthy pets that face euthanasia every month in South Africa.
-Please also give a thought to the many wonderful adult dogs looking for permanent, approved homes.
If you think you could give a Border Collie the home it deserves, please contact Julie Morris our rehoming officer on firstname.lastname@example.org or 011-3952259 or 082-887-9668
Info about your Collies’ Health
Border Collies are in general a very healthy breed, but like any other dog breed they are prone to certain health conditions. Not all Border Collies will get any or all of these conditions, but it’s very important to be aware of the conditions and have ample knowledge of the signs and symptoms related to these conditions before considering this breed as a pet. Some conditions include Hip Dysplasia, Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA), Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), Epilepsy, Allergies and Osteochondrosis Dissecans (OCD).
How to Care for Your Collie
If you feel that you still want to take up the responsibility of becoming the owner of one of these special dogs, here are some tips that would assist you:
• Before you decide to get a Border Collie, think whether it will fit in with your lifestyle and whether you are willing to put in the time and effort this breed requires. Think twice if you live in an apartment, townhouse, have small children or have a busy schedule. Talk to owners of Border Collies and learn all you can about the breed.
• Consider adopting a rescue dog. We have a number of wonderful dogs looking for good homes. Past experience has shown that rescued Border Collies bond closely with their adoptive homes. Adopting an adult dog also has some advantages; for example you have a very good idea what the dog will look like and of what its temperament will be. Some of the dogs are still quite young. Although some may have behavioral problems, many are perfectly normal dogs.
• If you buy a puppy make sure it is healthy. Puppies can inherit conditions such as eye disease, hip dysplasia and epilepsy from their parents. A responsible breeder will not breed dogs with inheritable disorders. You should ask the breeder whether an inheritable problem exists in the bloodline of the parents. You can also contact your veterinarian for more information. The puppy should also be free of parasites and appear active and healthy. Look out for puppies with any discharge from the eyes or nose or dirty ears. Puppies should not be fearful or aggressive. It is always a good idea to meet the parents. Puppies are ready to leave their mother at 7-8 weeks of age.
• Dogs should be inoculated against infectious diseases such as distemper, parainfluenza, parvovirus, hepatitis, leptospirosis and rabies. Puppies are inoculated at 6-8 weeks with follow up inoculations at approximately 12 and 16 weeks and thereafter the dog must get an annual booster. Dogs should also be kept free of parasites as ticks in particular can cause fatal illness. There is no vaccine against biliary fever, caused by ticks and therefor it is essential that your Border Collie be kept free of ticks. There are some excellent products available nowadays that do exactly that.
Feed your dog a high quality dog food recommended by your veterinarian. It is best to buy your dog food from your vet; supermarkets stock cheaper food, but remember that you get what you pay for.
• Provide your Border Collie with lots of exercise and mental stimulation. It is certainly not good enough to keep a Border Collie in a yard all day, even if it is a spacious yard. Border Collies enjoy chasing a ball, jogging, swimming, long walks and your company. Border Collies need a job to do, even if it is only chasing a ball. You can get involved in all sorts of interesting activities with your Border Collie, e.g. herding, agility, obedience, flyball and search and rescue. Your vet will be able to tell how to get in touch with some of these clubs.
Helpful knowledge for your Collie
Give us a call or mail us if you are a Border Collie owner looking for help and advice. These calls can be of a minor nature or some urgency due to a serious behavioural problem. Based on our experience with our rescue dogs and of course owning collies ourselves, we will always try to help in any way we can, whether by suggesting simple things to try or usually by pointing you to the person and professional help needed which can be given by our qualified animal behaviourists.
There are many individuals and organisations offering training and/or behavioural advice and a search of the internet will find a confusing array of advice. Do take care before committing to any type this advice as they might not be in the best interests of your dog.
If you any have problems with a Border Collie that you adopted form BCR please contact us and we guide you. If you need help or advice about a collie you adopted from elsewhere we can point you towards somebody that can help from behavioural to Training needs.