Aggression: Aggression is a serious problem with potentially serious consequences. Getting or giving advice over the internet is risky. See your vet to rule out physical causes and, if necessary, for referral to a qualified applied animal behaviorist. You may also want to look at information on dog bites or nipping and rough play.
Choosing a Responsible Breeder: You've decided a border collie is right for you. Now you need to decide which breeder & which dog? The starred website provides a nice overview of what you should look for in a border collie breeder; read it before you read the more general pages.
Color and Looks: Border collies exhibit a wide variety of looks related to a tradition of breeding almost exclusively for behavioral characteristics. Figuring out what genes your dog might possess is a fun mental exercise.
HEALTH PLEASE NOTE: We've outgrown our "britches." The links listed below will take to you to a seperate "health page."
This section addresses both general and breed-specific health problems. The information presented in the links is NOT a substitute for professional veterinary care. Likewise, the volume of articles listed for a particular disease doesn't necessarily correlate with its prevalence in border collies; rather, a long list of links probably indicates that one of my dogs had this problem or there are a lot of good articles written about the condition.
Tweedhope Sheepdogs (Viv Billingham Parkes, St Mary's Loch,Borders, Scotland) Author and International team member in both the Singles and the Brace, Viv has judged at home and abroad and now trains dogs and their owners to work sheep.
Meeker Classic Sheepdog Championship Trials (CO, held annually in September) Five days of sheepdog herding competition for the largest purse in the North American trials, totaling $10,000. This event is sanctioned by the USBCHA and is a Purina Points Trial.
OTHER HERDING BREEDS I do not and cannot personally check out all the breeders and organizations listed below. A listing, therefore, does not constitute advocacy of a site. By all means, if you are purchasing a working breed, ask for references, watch the parents work, talk to owners of working livestock dogs, do your research!
Border Collie Rescue Organizations and Rescuers: Black Dog Farm strongly supports rescue and salutes the many dedicated rescuers! However, we do not have personal experience with all of the organizations listed nor their rescue and adoption policies. Please ask questions & request references before relinquishing or adopting a dog.
Training is by far the most important determinant of whether or not this breed makes a good pet (its importance in making a good working dog is second only to breeding). This section includes a range of information from training philosophies - there are many - to actual "hands on" advice.