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Sport breeder suggestions (Border Collies)

If you are wondering what is the right dog for you, this is the place to be. In this introductory forum we talk about topics such as breed vs. mix, size, age, grooming, breeders, shelters, rescues as well as requirements for exercise, space and care. No question is too silly here. This particular forum is for getting and giving helpful, nice advice. It is definitely not a forum for criticizing someone else's opinion, knowledge or advice. This forum is all about tail wagging and learning.

  
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Calamity- Jane

1139619
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 23, '13 12:06pm PST 
So, if I do decide on a Border Collie (and I'm strongly leaning towards it), it sounds like a sport bred Border may be my best choice in fitting with my wants and needs. But, I'm very new to finding breeders (I've always done rescue in the past), so how would I find a good sport breeder? Anyone have any suggestions on some reputable breeders?
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Cohen CD RE- ADC SGDC- FDCh CGN

The Monster
 
 
Barked: Wed Jan 23, '13 1:45pm PST 
Get out to sporting events (ideally sports you're interested in) and meet dogs, chat up owners and get a feel for who's producing what. I'm in the midst of doing the same thing. I feel that you really need to go out and get your hands on these dogs to make the best decision.

E: I also think that, if this is your first sports dog, that getting a sporter collie from a sport breeder is likely overkill and you may find yourself overdogged very quickly.

Edited by author Wed Jan 23, '13 1:49pm PST

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Calamity- Jane

1139619
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 24, '13 9:27am PST 
Alright. I'll try to get to as many events as I can.

And yes, this will be my first real competitive sporting dog. Do you really think I'll be over my head with a sport bred Border Collie? If so, do you think I should start with a show or working Border instead, or a completely different breed?
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Cohen CD RE- ADC SGDC- FDCh CGN

The Monster
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 24, '13 9:52am PST 
I think you'll have to talk to some breeders who know their dogs better than I. However, I think sport bred BCs are a handful. I see some absolutely phenomenal BCs around but what I don't see are the hours of training spent working through reactivity issues, impulse control issues, safety issues... It's wonderful to look at the finished product and admire it but forget about all the work spent creating it. Sport BCs can run very fast and very hot. Not all of them are level headed. Not all the level headed dogs you see were born that way.

I'm having a lot of BC owners/trainers tell me that it's the trainer who determines if their dog is a nutcase or not. While I think genetics play a very strong role, I'm sure it's no coincidence that the best trainers have the most sound dogs.

I do honestly think that a sport BC as your first eventing dog is overkill. But I'm sure you'd not be the first to start out that way, and you may very well hit the ground running. My motto is, "plan for the worst, hope for the best". So how confident are you that you can handle all the fallout associated with a drivey, intense dog?

I think you'd probably be well suited to a show or farm type breeder, assuming they've been focusing on solid temperaments. Just keep in mind that world class agility/sport competitors get their dogs from sport breeders (mostly) and you probably won't require that much from your dog in your first foray into sports. Have you looked at English Shepherds at all?
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Calamity- Jane

1139619
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 24, '13 10:40am PST 
Well, I have worked with reactive and strong-willed dogs in the past with moderate success, but if I'm really honest with myself, I don't have a lot of confidence in my abilities. While I'm working on becoming a stronger trainer and person overall, perhaps in the mean time it wouldn't be a great idea to bring an overly challenging dog into my home.

No, I hadn't thought about English Shepherds. I've never met one personally (I've known tons of Borders, which got me into the breed in the first place), and I don't know much about them. I'll have to look them up. Thanks.
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Mulder

Spooky Mulder
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 24, '13 8:36pm PST 
I do agree with Cohen on this, if the main goal is sport and not the dog itself, one should start from the bottom and work their way up.

There are much easier breeds to work with, who can be brilliant workers and who can take you quite far. You might find it interesting to know, that the last few agility trials I attended, the majority of dogs running actually weren't BCs... but Goldens! Of course, the high winning dogs were often herders, yes most Collies, but its something to think about.

Picking a breed who will allow you to make some mistakes on it first, and be able to roll with those punches and walk them off for you is SO important. Because of course, you must always keep in mind, that this dog has to live with you the other 22-23 hours a day you own it when you're NOT on the field... and what goes on in those hours is VASTLY more important than what happens for the few that you are training.

I say, if you are open to the idea, pick a more "user friendly" breed to be your first sport dog. BCs are amazing dogs, but as I've said ad nauseum, not a breed you get unless it is the dog ITSELF that you are passionate about...rather than just the things it is capable of.
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Calamity- Jane

1139619
 
 
Barked: Fri Jan 25, '13 6:08am PST 
While I'm open to other breeds that are more beginner friendly for the time being, I actually am very passionate about the breed. Border Collies really are amazing dogs smile. I know the breed up and down, and I know I want one eventually. I just don't know if I'm ready for one right now.
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Cohen CD RE- ADC SGDC- FDCh CGN

The Monster
 
 
Barked: Fri Jan 25, '13 6:51am PST 
There's a reason people call BCs "Handler Mistake Amplifiers".
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Calamity- Jane

1139619
 
 
Barked: Fri Jan 25, '13 7:25am PST 
Okay, so maybe a Border Collie may not be the best choice at the moment. Any other breed suggestions then?

I'm interested in doing sport (agility, freestyle, maybe herding) and maybe conformation, and while I like a challenge, perhaps my challenge should come from the activities I plan on doing rather than the dog itself, for the time being anyways. I really don't want to be over my head.

My size requirements range from about 30 lbs to about 60 lbs. I can go a little lower or a little higher, but not much.

I don't care about the coat type, as long as it doesn't insane amounts of grooming (one of the main reasons I eventually decided against a poodle).

Shedding and slobbering I can deal with.

I want an intelligent, high energy breed.
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Tyler

Whippy- The- Whipador
 
 
Barked: Fri Jan 25, '13 8:07am PST 
What about a Bearded Collie or a Smooth Collie? Still have that energy and great sporting ability but are less intense than the Border Collie and might be a better suited "first time" sport dog. I know someone on another site who owns Beardies and they are such happy, lovable dogs who really can put their minds to anything.
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