7 Interesting Facts About the Border Collie

7 Interesting Facts About the Border Collie

Author WDF Staff


The Border Collie is one of the most famous working dog breeds in the world. These lovely dogs are known for their unparalleled herding ability and their tremendous energy. If you encounter a working Border Collie that is about to herd the flock, make sure you stand and watch. These dogs have developed a special technique of herding called “the eye” where they stare at the animal they want to herd until it moves in the direction they want them to move. If the animal starts going in the wrong direction, this dog runs around them and repeats the stare. It sounds rather unbelievable, but trust us, these dogs are impressive herders.

The Border Collie is known as the world’s smartest dog breed. They are highly trainable and can learn a command after as little as 3 repetitions. These dogs are unbelievable and are certainly one of the most impressive dog breeds out there. They also make excellent family companions and pets that require a lot of activity to remain happy and fulfil their potential. It seems as these dogs never run out of energy or lose interest in anything.

We already believe that the Border Collie is an awesome dog breed and to top that off, we bring you a list of the top 7 interesting Border Collie facts.

1. Herding champions

The Border Collie, as we already mentioned, is a herding breed and was developed specifically for that task. They have won many titles and awards over the years in herding championships. One of the earliest records of these dogs herding abilities goes as far as 1873 when a herding trial was held at Bala, Wales and the crowd witnessed these dogs at full action.

There was a written document that described the “eye” technique and its effectiveness. That was the first time that people saw how effective this dog was in herding sheep in a small pen. It was said that the vast crowd that visited the herding trials stood in shock and disbelief.

border collie

2. Queen Victoria’s Border Collies

The famous British monarch Queen Victoria owned a couple of Border Collies. It is said that these dogs never left her side and followed her everywhere she went. Queen Victoria was known for her love of dogs and she even started a royal kennel where she had many dogs of different breeds.

She even received many foreign dog breeds that were brought to her and other royals and nobles in England. Most of these foreign dogs were brought as spoils of war and war trophies. The Border Collies she owned were called Sharp, Roy, and Noble.

3. Guinness World Records

This is an intelligent breed, that is a fact that is known around the world. Something that is less known is that these dogs hold many world records that are still recorded in the Guinness book of world records.

There is a Border Collie called Chaser that is known as the smartest dog in the world and she knows over a thousand objects by their name. A Border Collie by the name Jumpy holds the world record for dog skateboarding and that dog managed to skateboard a 100 meter in under 20 seconds!

4. Hollywood acting

This dog can be easily taught many things and big movie studios in Hollywood have noticed that. This breed was featured as the breed of choice for many TV shows as well as big-budget, Hollywood movies.

Border Collies played many parts and some of the most famous ones are in movies such as “Babe”, “Mad about you”, and “Down and out”. A Border by the name of Bandit was featured in the famous TV show “Little House on the Prairie”.

5. Herding Geese

One of the most surprising things about these dogs is that they are one of the few breeds that are able to herd geese!

The Border Collie can easily work in pairs or even in larger numbers and they have great coordination between them. They are also extremely successful when herding geese. One Florida-based company even offers services for controlling the geese population in crowded areas, golf courses, or beaches. They do it of course, with the help of this lovely and intelligent breed.

border collie and ducks

6. Songs have been written about the Border Collie

These dogs have inspired one of the biggest poetry names in the world - a Scottish poet Robert Burns. He had a Border Collie by the name of Luath. It is said that the poet loved his dog so much that he was extremely heartbroken after the dog’s death and even wrote him a song. The song is called “The Twa Dogs”.

This song is considered to be one of his best works and it is believed that this song best described the relationship a man can have with his dog. It is a song that described the current life problems of Scottish farmers through a dialogue between two dogs.

7. Father of all Border Collies

We cannot talk about these dogs without mentioning a Border Collie by the name of Old Hemp. Old Hemp was not only a beautiful dog, but it was also the first dog that developed the unique Border Collie herding technique. Old Hemp was born in 1893 and most of the working Collies had an aggressive herding style that they have been using for centuries.

Old Hemp developed a less aggressive technique which meant less stress and damage to livestock it was herding and Scottish farmers were so impressed that they all wanted to get puppies that were produced by this doggy innovator. Old Hemp’s owner decided to breed his dog and started to actively look for his partners. Throughout his life, Old Hemp sired over 200 puppies and most of the modern Border Collies’ lineage can be traced to him.

If you decide to get a Border Collie, we are sure you will get the best possible dog and companion in the world. They are friendly, playful, and extremely energetic so make sure you are able to provide them with an active lifestyle so that your dog can enjoy and be happy as much as it can possibly be.

World Dog Finder team