Border Collie Standard

The Border Collie

General Description

Developed by British shepherds for work with sheep, the Border Collie is today the most used dog in the world for work on all types of herds. The main characteristic of a Border Collie is its particular attitude in the presence of the herd.

Intelligent, independent, responsive and fast, he owes his excellent performance in many disciplines to a rigorous and unique selection in France based on his shepherding skills. Due to this particular mode of selection, this exceptional dog is to be reserved for knowledgeable and very available masters.

Today, its formidable qualities also allow it to achieve brilliant results in many utilitarian, recreational or sporting disciplines.

Origin and history

The Border Collie originates from Scotland and, like most breeds of sheepdogs, descends from the Persian sheepdog, the different breeds entering its blood are mainly shepherd strains (bobtail, bearded…) but also hunting dogs like the pointer and especially the setter. The breed dates from the 18th century but has only had its current name since 1915. It owes its name to the Borders region, on the Anglo-Scottish border

The Collie has worked with shepherds on the border between Scotland and England for several hundred years. He was selected for his work efficiency. The first significant border collie imports to France date from the 1970s.


The Border Collie is a medium-sized dog, in adulthood, the male and the female measure between 47cm and 53cm.

It weighs between 14 and 20 kg. The ears are half-broken or erect and the tail is carried low.


There are two varieties of hair: moderately long and short haired. In both cases, the outer coat is dense and the undercoat thick and soft. In the long-haired variety, a characteristic mane appears around the neck and shoulders.

The coat is easy to care for if brushed regularly.

All colors are allowed black, brown, blue merle, red and tricolor but white must not dominate.

Personality and behaviour

The Border Collie is always ready to work, he is intelligent, quick, attentive, active, lively and constantly alert. He is very close to his master and his family but, if we are not available enough to take care of him and take him out, he will do stupid things because his mind needs to be occupied. He absolutely needs exercise and work as well as an education commensurate with his predispositions.

It absolutely must be channeled, otherwise the shepherd instinct will generally express itself in embarrassing ways.


The Border Collie is a very robust dog, which generally does not have health problems. However, like many breeds, he can suffer from hereditary eye disorders and hip dysplasia (a disease that can affect mobility). Eye tests and X-ray evaluation of the hips are therefore essential before having him bred. Epilepsy is also relatively common in this breed.


This dog, who loves to be busy and loves to please, educates himself particularly well. It is a godsend for those who wish to involve their dog in canine sports, such as cani-cross, obedience, agility, obedience, flyball, freestyle and herding.


He must receive a well-balanced and quality food. It is important to regularly check that his body condition is ideal. Give him two meals a day following the recommendations given by the food manufacturer.

Industrial food companies have developed kibbles adapted to age, size and physical activity which allow the Border Collie to keep his weight in shape. I invite you to take a look at our “food” section.

He should always have fresh water available.

fci Classification

Group 1: Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs (except Swiss Cattle Dogs).
Section 1: Sheepdogs. With work trial.

The standard was registered with the FCI in 1976 by the Kennel Club:

Standard F.C.I. N°297 / 24.08.1988 / F
(Translation: Pr . R. Triquet.)

Origin: Great Britain

Useful Links