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Blue Merle Border Collie: Facts, Origin & History (With Pictures)

Written by: Patricia Dickson

Last Updated on May 18, 2024 by Dogster Team

Border Collie

Blue Merle Border Collie: Facts, Origin & History (With Pictures)

The Border Collie is a friendly dog that anyone would be proud to call a pet. It is a loyal, energetic, and loving companion. However, have you ever thought about the history behind the Border Collie breed, or even the history behind the Blue Merle Border Collie, which is a color variation of the original?

The Blue Merle Border Collie stands 18 to 22 inches tall, weighs between 30 and 45 pounds, and lives 12 to 15 years. It has a gorgeous coat, with black and blue-gray patches over a white base. If you want to give this breed a forever home, we’ll discuss the dog’s history and a few interesting facts.

Breed Overview

Height:

18 to 22 inches

Weight:

30 to 45 pounds

Lifespan:

12 to 15 years

Colors:

White, blue

Suitable for:

Active families, with plenty of space and a yard

Temperament:

Loyal & loving, intelligent, easy to train

The Border Collie’s coat can come in black, gold, blue, white, red, red merle, lilac, sable, sable merle, and blue merle. The blue merle Border Collie is unique because the colors and patterns vary. The Border Collie, regardless of what color its coat is, is an energetic, loyal, and loving companion.

Blue Merle Border Collie Characteristics

Energy
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High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Trainability
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Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Health
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Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Lifespan
+
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Sociability
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Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.

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The Earliest Records of the Blue Merle Border Collie in History

Where the Border Collie relatives originated from isn’t exactly known. They most likely descended from Roman working dogs and Spitz-type dogs brought by Norse Vikings, but that is unconfirmed. What we do know for sure is that the breed was developed in the 1700s in the border regions of Scotland and England, more specifically in Northumbria.

The Border Collie was created to be a working dog. Lowlands like Northumbria typically make great land for shepherds, and where there are shepherds, there must also be sheepdogs. The Border Collie was bred to be a fast and slender herder and has maintained those traits to the current day.

blue merle border collie puppy with blue eyes lying in a basket with hay
Image by: Olga Maksimava, Shutterstock

How the Blue Merle Border Collie Gained Popularity

The Border Collie was bred to be a high-energy working dog, and several still herd sheep, but many Border Collies live simply as companions now. This journey began in 1873 when the first Border Collie sheepdog trial was held. This led to further sheepdog trials being held and in 1906, the International Sheepdog Association was established. Since then, Border Collies have dominated sheepdog competitions worldwide.

Formal Recognition of the Blue Merle Border Collie

The Border Collie was eventually exported to the United States, where it was used on many U.S. ranches. The dog became very popular in the U.S., and the North American Sheepdog Society was set up in 1940. Soon after, the Border Collie Society of America was formed to preserve the breed herding instincts.

Despite having existed since the 1700s, the American Kennel Club recognized the breed as part of the miscellaneous class in 1955. The AKC didn’t properly recognize the breed until 1995, 40 years after it was first recognized and almost 300 years after its first appearance.

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Top 4 Unique Facts About the Blue Merle Border Collie

1. Their Name Comes from Old Gaelic

The Border Collie’s name comes from the Old Gaelic language. In Old Gaelic, if something was “Collie,” it was useful.


2. They’ve Been Owned by Royalty

Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom owned many dogs, but in the 1860s, she became particularly enthused with Border Collies and owned several.

blue merle border collie dog on a sunny day
Image by: CherryTonic, Shutterstock

3. Border Collies Have Set Many World Records

Not only do Border Collies hold many world records, but they also hold some incredibly strange records. A Border Collie named Striker, from Quebec City, set the world record for a dog rolling down a manual car window. A Border Collie named Jumpy holds the world record for Canine Skating; he managed to skate 100 meters in 20 seconds.

Finally, a Border Collie mix named Sweet Pea holds a record for balancing a can on her head. She walked 100 meters in 2 minutes and 55 seconds while balancing a can on her head. While it isn’t a world record, a Border Collie named Chaser is widely recognized as the most intelligent dog in the world. Chaser knows the name of over 1,000 objects.


4. A Border Collie Features in a Poem Written by Robert Burns

Robert Burns was a widely renowned Scottish Poet and Lyricist whose poem “To a Mouse” inspired the 1937 novella “Of Mice and Men.” What may be less well-known about him is that he owned a Border Collie named Luath. The death of Luath inspired Burns’ poem “The Twa Dogs.” Many statues that depict Burns also depict his loyal Collie right by his side.

blue merle border collie dog posing in an urban setting
Image by: Koen Adriaenssen, Shutterstock

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Does the Blue Merle Border Collie Make a Good Pet?

The Border Collie is an excellent pet for the right kind of owner. Border Collies are working dogs and, because of that, have an insane amount of energy. If you live in an apartment or don’t have enough time to exercise your Border Collie, they probably aren’t the right dog for you.

Border Collies are great dogs for active owners with large yards. If you run daily, you can take your Collie with you; they’ll love it. Their need for attention also makes them a great choice for families. Basically, if you have the time to devote to your Border Collie and you have the space for them, they make a wonderful pet.

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Summary

As you can see, the Blue Merle Border Collie is a color variation of the original Border Collie Dog breed and is just as loving, friendly, and loyal as the others are. These are working dogs, so they have a lot of energy, which means you need plenty of time to run with your pet and a big backyard for the dog to play in.

If you’re considering giving a Blue Merle Border Collie a forever home, remember that this dog, like other athletic canines, is a lot of work, so make sure you’re prepared for the task. This gorgeous animal will return your love, loyalty, and affection in spades.

See also:


Featured Image Credit: ForeverNaturalPhotography, Shutterstock

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