The energetic and tough Border collie can be mixed with the loyal and powerful German shepherd to form a new breed of dogs forming the Collie mix. These are not pure breed dogs and are designed by making several multi- generation crosses. As a result, these dogs share phenotypic and genotypic characteristics of both their parents. This designer breed is also known as the Duke and has boundless energy. They are very intelligent and clever. The Duke or the Collie mix designer dog has been given recognition by the Designer Dogs Kennel Club, American Canine Hybrid Club, International Designer Canine Registry and other organizations. These dogs are also known by the name Border – Aussie or Shollie.
The following are general and physical characteristic of the Collie mix breed:-
• These dogs are recognized and registered and have defined characteristics. They share parental lineage of both Border collie and the German shepherd.
• The average lifespan of a collie mix breed is 9 to 13 years.
• They come in various coat colors, most common being a mixture of tan and black. Other colors comprises of white, brown, beige and complete black.
• The average litter size is 9 to 12.
• They have double coats. Outer coat is tough and rugged, inner coat is much softer.
These dogs have been used for therapy and service works and they are good guarding dogs – for security purposes. They are extremely loyal to their masters and will even give their life to protect and save you.
Collie mix breed dogs are highly energetic and a small house won’t do for them. Although they can live in apartments, they need sufficient area for playing. These dogs socialize well and greet people with utter pleasure. Collies and children do not get along together. While these dogs are otherwise silent and playful in nature, they can be aggressive if they are annoyed or teased.
These dogs can easily grasp things that are taught to them because of their superior intelligence. Start their training session right from puppy hood and hold a rewarding type of training method for your collies. Never hurt or beat your puppies during trainings, if you get harsh with them, they will fight back and bite or harm you.
These dogs are not sweet looking dogs; instead they give a tough look to whoever they come across.
For a Collie mix puppy that is 8 to 12 weeks old and weighs about 15 to 20 pounds, feed him with ¼ th to ¾ th cup of dry dog food 3 times a day. You can get dry dog foods from brands such as – Taste of the Wild, Purina, and Acana, Dr. Tim, Hills and other premium dog foods for your Collie mix.
Food for an adult Collie Mix shall contain at least 28% Carbohydrate, 18% Fat content and 18% protein content in their packed dry dog food.
You can feed your dog with a small amount of snacks like kibbles and chews during the mid- periods. Never try to feed them with human food, even if your dog craves for such food. These dogs are prone to stomach ailments and diarrhea and therefore should be kept away from such stuffs. Avocado, chocolate, resins, almonds, cashews, apple core shall be kept far away from the reach of these dogs.
Health and Immunization
Collies are known to have several eye defects. In fact, 85% of all mix and pure species from the Collie breed line will definitely suffer from eye issues. Several breeders have made attempts to specially make crosses that will give rise to normal eyes, throughout their life time. Several eye anomalies include Choroidal hypoplasia, Estasia, Coloboma, Staphyloma and Collie eye anomaly.
Other common health problems in these dogs are hip and elbow dysplasia, neuro-muscular abnormalities, arthritis and allergies.
Puppies are prone to hypoglycemia and low glucose level may make them lethargic, restlessness and may even undergo coma and death if not checked at the right time. Hence, they should be fed with a teaspoon of honey syrup as a daily routine.
Collies are sensitive towards Ivermectin Wormers – they can be highly toxic to you and your dogs. You can use Pyrantel Pamoate instead (for large worms). Always consult a good vet before applying these medicines.
Collie mix breeds should be immunized at regular intervals so that they are protected from various diseases caused by dangerous viruses. Some mandatory vaccines for this purpose includes: – Parvovirus, Rabies, Distemper, Coronavirus, Hepatitis A and B, Influenza and Parainfluenza vaccines. Inject annual booster shots from an experienced and registered vet.
Following measures should be taken to make your dog live long:-
• Diet – Feed your Collie mix with a proper diet and keep him away from all junk foods. You should never feed him with human food.
• Exercise – This breed involves himself in highly energetic activity. You should train your dog, right from puppy hood, to walk for at least 30 minutes daily and play with toys.
• Give him the attention he needs. These dogs can be a good companion.
• Dental Care: – Brush his teeth daily with a teeth sensitive brush and gentle toothpaste.
• Grooming – Brush his coat once in two weeks and give him bath once in every three week. If he has come across dust and dirt, make sure his coat is cleaned before he goes to sleep. Give special attention to the undercoats and brush gently – the underside and the hocks.
• Ear and Nail care: – Cut his toe nails once a month and clean his ears with a gentle pH balanced ear cleaner soaked in a cotton ball.
• Vaccinations: – Ensure that your dog has received all the vaccines prescribed for him and feed entries in your calendar for annual booster shots that he will require.
The Collie mix is a wonderful breed and a great companion to be with. You can adopt or rescue these pets from the Designer Dogs Kennel Club (DDKC), American Canine Hybrid Club (ACHC), International Designer Canine Registry (ICR) and other organizations.