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The Bearded Collie

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The Bearded Collie, often affectionately referred to as the “Beardie,” is a remarkable and versatile dog breed that has captured the hearts of dog enthusiasts worldwide. Known for its distinctive appearance and herding abilities, this intelligent and friendly canine has a rich history deeply rooted in the rugged landscapes of Scotland. 

In this article, we will delve into the fascinating world of the Bearded Collie, exploring its origins, physical characteristics, temperament, training and care requirements, and the role it plays as a loyal and cherished family member.

History and Origins

Bearded Collie
By marbla123 –, CC BY 2.0,

The Bearded Collie’s history can be traced back to the early 16th century in Scotland, where they were primarily used as herding dogs. 

These dogs were particularly prized for their ability to work in challenging terrains, such as the Highlands and the Western Isles of Scotland. They excelled at herding and driving sheep and cattle, making them invaluable to Scottish shepherds and farmers.

Physical Characteristics

Bearded Collie
By John Haslam – Flickr, CC BY 2.0,

The Bearded Collie is a medium-sized dog, with males typically standing between 20 to 22 inches (51 to 56 cm) tall at the shoulder and females slightly smaller at 19 to 21 inches (48 to 53 cm). Their weight usually ranges from 45 to 60 pounds.

One of the most striking features of the Bearded Collie is its long, shaggy double coat, which is water-resistant and helps protect them from harsh weather conditions. The outer coat is thick and coarse, while the undercoat is soft. 

Their expressive eyes, which can be brown or blue, are one of their most endearing qualities. The Bearded Collie’s ears hang down, adding to their charming and whimsical appearance because they have high set ears. Their tail typically rests low but can rise when the dog is alert or excited.

Temperament and Personality

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Bearded Collies are renowned for their friendly, affectionate, and good-natured temperament. Due to their herding instincts, Bearded Collies may occasionally attempt to “herd” family members, especially small children, by nudging or circling them. While this behavior is endearing, early training is essential to ensure it doesn’t become excessive.

They excel in obedience training and agility activities, and their versatility allows them to participate in various dog sports. However, using positive reinforcement methods during training is important, as they can be sensitive to harsh corrections.

Exercise and Training

Bearded Collies
By McBeard Man – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

Due to their herding heritage, Bearded Collies possess high energy levels, necessitating consistent exercise for their physical and mental well-being. Daily walks, playtime in a secure yard, and interactive games will help satisfy their activity needs. 

Training a Bearded Collie is an enjoyable experience, thanks to their intelligence and eagerness to learn. Early socialization and consistent, positive reinforcement-based training are crucial to ensure they develop into well-mannered and well-adjusted adults. 

Health Considerations

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The Bearded Collie is generally considered a robust and healthy breed with a life expectancy of around 12 to 14 years. 

  1. Hip Dysplasia: Responsible breeders conduct hip screenings to reduce the risk of passing this condition on to offspring. 
  2. Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA): PRA is a group of inherited eye diseases that lead to progressive vision loss and eventual blindness. Regular eye check-ups by a veterinary ophthalmologist are essential to identify PRA in its early stages. Although PRA cannot be cured, early detection can enable us to manage the condition and adapt the dog’s environment to support its impaired vision.
  3. Hypothyroidism: Regular thyroid function tests can aid in early detection and effective management of this condition in Bearded Collies, who may be predisposed to it, through medication and dietary adjustments.
  4. Allergies: Identifying and eliminating potential allergens from their environment and working with a veterinarian to determine suitable dietary options can help manage allergies and improve the dog’s overall well-being.
  5. Autoimmune Conditions: While these conditions can be challenging to diagnose and manage, early detection and proper veterinary care can significantly improve the dog’s quality of life.
  6. Canine Hip and Elbow Dysplasia: This is another common orthopedic issue in the breed that affects the hip and elbow joints, leading to lameness and discomfort. Regular screening and appropriate management are crucial to minimize pain and maintain mobility.

Early detection of health issues can lead to prompt treatment and better outcomes for the dog’s overall health and happiness.

Check out more about Bearded Collie health considerations !

The Beardie As A Family Pet

Bearded Collie
By UniqueAndreas – Self-photographed, Public Domain,

The Bearded Collie’s playful and gentle nature makes it an excellent choice for families with children. They are patient and tolerant, making them ideal companions for kids of all ages. However, it is essential to supervise interactions between young children and dogs to ensure both parties are safe and comfortable.

As with any breed, early socialization is essential for the Bearded Collie to develop into a well-rounded and sociable adult.

Frequently Asked Questions

Bearded Collie
By PierreSelim – Own work, CC BY 3.0,

What is the history of the Bearded Collie?

They derive their name, “Bearded Collie,” from their distinctive facial hair, which lends them an endearing and charismatic appearance.

What are the common coat colors of the bearded collie?

Common coat colors include black, brown, blue, and fawn, often with white markings on the legs, chest, and tail tip.

What is the personality of the bearded collie like?

They are social animals and are especially fond of children, making them excellent family pets. Their gentle and patient nature also extends to other animals, making them ideal for multi-pet households.


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The Bearded Collie is a remarkable and cherished breed with a rich history and a loving temperament. Their herding background has shaped them into intelligent and trainable companions, while their affectionate nature makes them excellent family pets. 

Proper training, socialization, and regular exercise are crucial to unlocking the full potential of this extraordinary breed. The Bearded Collie is undoubtedly a top choice for those seeking a loyal, fun-loving, and versatile canine companion.

In conclusion, the Bearded Collie is more than just a pretty face.

Check out other interesting doggies: American Pit Bull TerriersAmerican BulldogAbyssinian Dog, The Boggle Dog, and Blue Lacy Dog -Unleashing Texas Charm And Boundless Energy!

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