Curious about the Welsh Collie? Learn all about their personality traits and prospective health issues in our guide.
The Welsh Border Collie is renowned for its agility, strength, and intelligence, and if you are considering getting one, then it is a good idea to read our comprehensive guide on how to properly care for it.
We will take you through a range of information that will make your decision much easier to make.
Height: Male dogs reach nearly 56cm, Females 53.5cm
Weight: Both males and females weigh between 13-18kg
Lifespan: 12-15 years
Pedigree Breed: No, this breed is not recognized as a KC pedigree
Positives and Negatives
With any dog ownership, you can expect a range of positives as well as negatives. These need to be considered carefully before you choose to go ahead and become an owner.
Check out the main positives and negatives when it comes to owning a Welsh Collie dog.
- Welsh Collies (or Welsh Sheepdogs) are one of the most intelligent breeds and are super easy to train, making them the perfect working dogs.
- This breed is naturally alert and will be the first to notice any strangers or differences in the environment.
- They tend to be some of the healthiest dogs around and live for around 15 years.
- Collies are known for their loyalty, and Welsh Collies are no different, this breed once in your life will remain loyal to you forever.
- Welsh Collies are not typical pets, preferring to be bred for work.
- The breed requires significant exercise throughout the day, both for their mind and body, this means you will need to spend a lot of time outside with them.
- Welsh Collie’s are medium haired dogs, and so it is noticeable when they shed their excess hair.
- The breed needs a lot of grooming to get rid of excess hair each month.
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The Welsh Collie is a breed that has been around for hundreds of years and began life helping shepherds to keep their sheep in check across the rugged Welsh landscape.
This breed is renowned for their work ethic, and they love nothing more than spending their time earning their keep.
However, more of these dogs are now being kept as pets because they are affectional and loyal as well as intelligent and easy to train.
If you are considering getting a Welsh Collie, then you will need to have enough open space for them to roam plus a ton of spare time to dedicate to exercising and training as they will not be a happy companion if you plan to just keep them in the house.
Welsh history is steeped in myth and folklore, and the Welsh sheepdog has featured heavily in stories that have been passed on through the generations.
It is thought that they first appeared in the 1800s when different Collie breeds were growing in popularity.
However, like many dogs, the history of the Welsh Collie remains a mystery leaving us to be content with the fact that they have been popular for some time and show no sign of losing their appeal.
Welsh shepherds were renowned for herding their flock with a pack of dogs before modern farming methods came to take over.
When new methods were introduced, there was a steep decline in the general Collie population until The Welsh Sheepdog Society was founded in a bid to preserve the traditions set by shepherds.
The Welsh Collie is renowned for it’s loyal and affectionate nature, proving themselves as a worthy companion both when working and when at home.
We’ve answered a few of the most discussed questions about this breed to help you decide if they are a wise match for you.
Are Welsh Collies Good With Strangers?
Because Welsh Collie’s are so intelligent and willing to accept training, it is very rare that they would ever show aggression to a stranger. The only time you could expect this would be if the stranger in question was acting negatively to their beloved owner.
However, the breed is naturally wary of strangers and tend to keep a watchful eye from a distance, ready to sound the alert should it be needed.
Are Welsh Collies Good With Other Dogs?
Welsh Collies are used to being part of a pack and are generally great with other dogs that they know. However, if you are introducing a new dog into the fold or they meet a dog on a walk, then you will notice they can appear to be a bit shy and reserved. This will soon disappear when they know the situation is safe, and they relish the opportunity to make new friends.
Can I Trust A Welsh Collie With Children?
Welsh Collies are incredibly trustworthy, but their overriding instincts encourage them to herd everything around them that moves. This makes them a poor choice if you have small children in the home as it can cause distress for them and the Collie if they are nipped from being herded.
If you have older children who understand dogs and know how to behave around them, then this breed will thrive. No matter how old a child is, it is never sensible to leave them alone with a dog, irrespective of how loyal the dog is.
Welsh Collie vs Border Collie?
Collie’s are an exceptional breed and will impress you with their loyalty and intellect, but when it comes to picking between a Welsh and Border Collie, you need to know what you are looking for.
Border Collies make fantastic pets and love the warmth of family life as much as they love running around and working outside.
Welsh Collie’s much prefer to work all day long and will not be happy when they are kept with the sole purpose of being a family pet.
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This breed is not pedigree registered and so knowing the extent of any hereditary health defects is not an easy task.
However, the are some health issues that are regarded as common in the breed, and as such, you should always ask to see evidence of the sire’s health check before purchasing a puppy.
The most common health problems include:
- Fading puppy syndrome – affects puppies up to 12 weeks old
- Cancer – typically in older dogs only
- Cataracts – typically in older dogs only
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When it comes to exercise you will find it is nearly impossible to wear a Collie out!
The minimum expectation is that you will exercise your dog for a minimum of two hours every day, but this guideline is set for those dogs that are used for work, and if you have a Welsh Collie as a pet, then this will need to be increased dramatically.
Welsh Collie pups are adventurous and boisterous, but you must be careful with how much exercise you give them as their joints are still growing and are at risk of developing life-limiting conditions if you allow them to jump around too much or take them out for too long.
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Because Welsh Collies are so exceptionally intelligent, they require training from a very young age.
You will find that this breed enjoys being trained as long as you keep the sessions fun and rewarding. It is imperative that you use positive reinforcement as Collie’s love to be praised.
If you use negative reinforcement, you will find that your dog becomes despondent and unwilling to partake in the sessions.
Once you have completed your basic training, you can move on to more fun and adventurous training. Many Collie’s enjoy agility course training as well as activities such as fly ball.
They love to impress their owners and so it is a good idea to let them take part in activities that will show off their natural abilities.
You must remember that Welsh Collie’s are clever and can be manipulative if you don’t teach them who the pack leader is from a young age.
If you start out as you mean to go on, you will be rewarded with a dog that will remain loyal to you for their entire life.
Because the coat of a Welsh Collie is not as long as a Border Collie, you will find them easier to groom. They need a weekly brush to keep their coat in the best condition and to remove any debris from being outside all day long.
They shed their coats all year round, and the weekly grooming should help keep stray hairs at bay, but in the Spring and Autumn, you will need to groom them more frequently due to their reaction to seasonal changes.
It’s important to keep this breed treated for fleas at all times as many Collies have an allergic reaction to fleas that can make them unwell.
As with all dogs, you need to keep on top of their ear health as this is a common complaint otherwise; check the ears for any build-up and wipe the parts you can reach easily.
If you have any concerns about your Welsh Collie’s health, then it is always wise to consult with a vet straight away.
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Image Source: By en: Richard New Forest – CC BY-SA 3.0, Wikipedia