Dogs were the first animals to be domesticated, providing early man with a reliable hunting companion. Beyond this use, it’s thought that guarding the flock was the next most important task of domesticated dogs, and the border collie comes from this long lineage of sheep dogs. In fact, in Scotland where the border collie originated, the breed was known as the Scotch sheep dog. As far back as the 1700s, a Scottish poet laureate noted that border collies were honest and faithful, two traits that describe the breed well still today. These earlier dogs learned to respond to a variety of hand and hat signals from long distances, further evidence of their intelligence. Today’s border collies often respond to whistle commands, and the commands are more often standardized.
The Border Collie is a very popular dog and is great for families with children and those who lead an active lifestyle. This dog typically has a life span of 13 to 16 years on average, but older dogs are common.