Physical characteristicsThe Bearded Collie, also known as the Beardie, is a medium size dog with a shaggy coat and ever-wagging tail. The long body is slightly longer than high; it is lean, strong and powerful but doesn't look heavy. The legs are straight and vertical, with good boning. The wide head is well-proportioned to the body. The muzzle is relatively short and full. The large eyes are set wide; they are neither round nor protruding. A bright inquiring expression is one of the breed's distinctive features. Eye colour generally match the coat colour. The pendent ears are medium size and covered with long hair. The eyebrows are arched to the sides to frame the eyes. They are long enough to blend smoothly into the coat on the sides of the head. The teeth meet in a scissor bite. The gait and movements are free, supple and powerful.
Bearded Collies weigh 35 to 60 pounds and are 20 to 22 inches tall.
TemperamentThe perfect companion for children. Enthusiastic, good-natured, stable, humorous, and self-confident. This breed is famous for the "Beardie Bounce" that represents its happy, playful, and carefree attitude to the world. Remember that Bearded Collies need constructive activities (herding, hiking, agility, pet therapy, watching over other pets) to occupy their inquisitive mind. Also, Beardies are very sociable dogs that can become unhappy and destructive if left alone for too long periods of time. If you have no choice but to work a lot, consider getting a companion pet for your Beardie.
Male Beardies tend to be more bold and outgoing; females tend to be calmer and more submissive. Obedience training is a must, as these dogs are very independent thinkers and can be really willful at times. If you're confident enough, training should never be a problem. Intelligent Berdies are extremely trainable for a lot of activities. Be sure to remain a pack leader at all times.
Bearder Collies are famous for the "Beardie Bounce" that represents their happy, playful, and carefree attitude to the world.
Photo by Arild Andersen
Coat and groomingThe coat is double. The outer coat is weather-resistant, the undercoat is very soft, thick and close-lying. The hair follows the natural lines of the body. From the cheeks, the lower lips and under the chin, the coat gets longer towards the chest, forming the typical beard. Frequent and thorough grooming is recommended.
Bearded Collies come in black, brown, blue or fawn colours with or without white markings. Born in one of the mentioned colors, puppies then lighten to light grey or cream. With age, the color becomes darker again.
HealthThe Bearded Collie is a healthy breed that lives a long and loving life. An average lifespan is about 12 years. Given enough care and love, they can live up to 18 years. Even though this breed has no breed-specific health issues, be aware of some common health conditions that all medium and large dogs are prone to. These include hip dysplasia and hypothyroidism.
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