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Border Collie basic information

A Border Collie is a hard-working, extremely intelligent breed of herding dog that originated in the border country of England and Scotland. Like most working dogs, they have a tendency towards neurotic or destructive behavior if not given enough to do. They are still frequently used on farms all over the world for assisting with the handling of livestock. Though known to be reserved with strangers, these dogs can also be protective of a human family member and affectionate to those they know.
Because Border Collies have historically been selected for working ability, and not looks, they vary widely in appearance. In general, they are medium-sized dogs without extreme physical characteristics and a moderate amount of coat. Their double coats can be anywhere from slick to lush, and can come in many colors, although black and white is by far the most often seen at conformation shows and herding trials and therefore the most common in public perception; tricolor (black/tan/white) and red and white also occurs regularly, with other colors such as, blue and white, red merle, blue merle, or sable seen less frequently. Eye color varies from deep brown to amber or blue with occasionally one eye of each color. The ears of the Border Collie are also highly variable -- some have fully erect ears, some fully dropped and other are semi-erect (similar to that of the Rough Collie). Although working Border Collie handlers sometimes have superstitions about the appearance of their dogs (many handlers do not prefer red dogs, or mostly white dogs), in general a dog's appearance is considered to be irrelevant. It is much more useful to identify a working Border Collie by its attitude and ability, not its looks.

Those dogs bred for the conformation ring are much more uniform in appearance than working Border Collies, since to be successful show dogs they must conform to kennel club standards that are specific on many points of the anatomy and furnishings. Kennel clubs specify that the Border Collie must have a keen and intelligent expression; the preferred eye colour is generally brown. In deference to the dog's working origin, scars and broken teeth received in the line of duty are not to be counted against a Border Collie in the show ring.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Border_Collie".
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