Breeds 101

Rough Collie


The Rough Collie's elegant good looks firs attracted the attention of breeders and then the public.

Originating in its present form in the cold regions of northern Scotland, the working Rough Collie was shorter in leg and nose than today’s elegant breed.

After Queen Victoria acquired the breed as a companion, its popularity increased, but it was not until Hollywood discovered it and produced the Lassie films that international recognition and popularity were assured.
The breeds success in the show ring has tended to override its original herding abilities.

Rough Collie is an excellent companion and good watchdog.

Medium to large sized dogs. females 22 to 24 inches, 50 to 65 pounds; males 24 to 26 inches, 60 to 75 pounds.

Sable and white, where the “sable” ranges from pale tan to a mahogany; tricolor, which is primarily black edged in tan; blue merle, which is mottled gray. All have white coat areas, in the collar, parts of the leg and usually the tail tip. Some may have white blazes on their faces.

Medium energy level.

Rough collies should show no nervousness or aggression, and are generally good with children and other animals. However, they must be well socialized to prevent shyness. They can be well suited to live in small apartments because of their calm disposition. Like many herding dogs, collies can be fairly vocal, and some are difficult to train not to bark. The amount of herding instinct varies, with some dogs being quite drivey and others calmer.

Best owner:
Rough Collies are very loyal and may be one-family dog. Rarely aggressive or protective beyond barking and providing a visual deterrent. They are excellent with children as long as they have been well-socialized and trained. They are eager to learn and respond best to a gentle hand.

Needs: Daily exercise (herding is an excellent choice), close bonding with family, gentle handling, weekly brushing. Its coat mats easily and needs daily grooming.

Life expectancy: 10 to 13 years.