Border Collie Health Issues

Border Collie is a breed of highly energetic, sensitive, trainable, and obedient dogs. They were originally used for herding livestock in the Anglo-Scottish border area. That is actually from where the breed’s name originates.

Border Collies are considered one of the most intelligent dogs in the world. As for the physical appearance, Border Collies are athletic, medium-sized dogs that can be found in two versions of the double coat: rough and smooth. They are mostly black coated with a white blaze on the extremities, head, chest, and tail.

Border Collies have a strong urge to work because just then they are most focused, productive, and satisfied. They are very shrewd and quick-thinking so sometimes it seems like they are able to anticipate the owner’s wishes. Since they are highly active dogs, Border Collies require early socialization and training that will positively direct their energy.

The average life expectancy of the Border Collies is 10 – 15 years.

Do Border Collies Have Health Issues?

Although they are generally healthy dogs, Border Collies can have certain health problems. Below you can see a list of health issues that are common in this breed. This doesn’t mean they will certainly occur in every Collie, but it’s good to be aware of them.

The health issues that have been reported in this breed over the years are the following:

  • Skin problems: demodectic mange
  • Orthopedic issues: hip dysplasia, osteochondritis dissecans (OCD), elbow dysplasia
  • Eye problems: Collie eye anomaly (CEA), lens luxation, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)
  • Ear problems: ear infection, ear mites
  • Heart problems: patent ductus arteriosus (PDA)
  • Bleeding disorders: von Willebrand’s disease, thrombophilia
  • Compulsive behavior
  • Cerebellar abiotrophy
  • Ceroid lipofuscinosis (CL)
  • Sensory Neuropathy (SN)
  • Multidrug resistance (MDR -1)
  • Imerslund-Gräsbeck Syndrome (IGS)/cobalamin malabsorption
  • Trapped Neutrophil Syndrome (TNS)
  • Goniodysgenesis
  • Seizures
  • Allergies
  • Hypothyroidism

Please note that the health problems in this list aren’t ranked according to any special criteria, which means that diseases from the top of the list do not occur more often in this breed than those from the bottom of the list and vice versa.

When it comes to maintenance, Collies are not demanding. They require brushing once a week and bathing not more than three times a year, except in cases where they get really dirty. It is advisable to brush their teeth every day to prevent bad breath and bacteria to multiply.

If you are considering getting a Border Collie puppy, do so from responsible breeders who will provide you with DNA, CEA, hip, and eye exams. All puppies should also have a record of veterinary care they have recieved.