Rough Collie


A medium sized Rough Collie
Rough Collie Quick Summary
Also Known AsLong-Haired Collie
Height (at withers)20-26in (51-66cm)
Weight40-75lbs (18-34kg)
Hair Colour(s)
Lifespan12-14 years
Energy LevelHigh
Litter size6-10
Barking TendencyHigh
Exercise requirementsHigh
Ease of trainingHigh
Suitability for kidsHigh
Animal compatabilityMedium
Aggression levelsLow
Distress if leftHigh

The Rough Collie is a medium-sized robust dog. The body has a slightly sloping topline, straight and muscular forelegs and a long tail carried high but not curled over the back. The head is wedge-shaped with a well-rounded muzzle, a black nose, black, oval eyes with erect ears that fold forward at the tips. The double coat consist of a downy undercoat and a long and thick coarse outer coat, with a ruff around the neck and feathering to the legs. The colouring tends to include sable, white and mahogany. A famous example of a Rough Collie is Lassie from the television series and novels.


Rough Collies are gentle-natured dogs with calm dispositions. They make protective and devoted companions and family pets, and are fearless in the face of danger. These dogs often show no nervousness or aggressiveness but may require early socialisation in order to prevent shyness. They are intelligent and eager to learn, and they train relatively easily, and so are suited to both novice dog owners and the more experienced. Training should be carried out in a positive manner as these dogs can be sensitive. Rough Collies get along well with older, more considerate children and also with other pets too. Around strangers they tend to be wary, and this makes them good watch dogs.

History & Skills

Rough Collies originate from Scotland but may have roots also in England and Wales, although their exact origins are lost to history. Even the term Collie is obscure, with the most accepted theory being it comes from the Coll, the Anglo-Saxon word for black. By the 1800s they were used in the Scottish highlands as sheepdogs, and were bred carefully to assist their masters in the herding and guarding of flocks. These days they are still used as sheepdogs and also make fine family pets and companions.

Breed Specific Ailments

Rough Collies tend to live between 12-14 years and are generally a pretty resilient and healthy breed on the whole. Some of the health concerns that have been noted include Collie eye anomaly (CEA), Canine cyclic neutropenia and hip dysplasia.


Rough Collies are medium shedders that also shed more heavily on a seasonal basis, and so may not be suitable for those suffering from allergies. Their grooming requirements are moderate though and the double coat will beed brushing once a week or so.

Exercise & Environment

Rough Collies tend to live indoors and are also suitable for small homes, such as apartments, thanks to their calm dispositions. As they were bred as sheepdogs they do need a fair amount of exercise. They will need access to a secure outside area or garden for play plus a good daily walk.


FCIFCI - Federation Cynologique Internationale
KCThe Kennel Club (UK)
AKCAKC - American Kennel Club

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