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Lilac Border Collie: Facts, Pictures, Origin & History (with Pictures)

Written by: Ashley Bates

Last Updated on May 24, 2024 by Dogster Team

lilac border collie dog sitting on the grass

Lilac Border Collie: Facts, Pictures, Origin & History (with Pictures)

Border Collies are a breed of great stamina and excellence. They have earned their place in the world and are champions among sheepdogs and make notable family companions. The lilac Border Collie is not another separate breed; it’s simply the coat color.

Lilac Border Collies are much rarer than other colors. Because of this, they are more sought-after and expensive, in addition to being harder to find. Let’s learn more about the history of this charming dog and its lovely coat.

Breed Overview


21–22 inches


38–42 pounds


10–17 years


Lilac, white, light brown

Suitable for:

Active families, land owners, farmers


Energetic, intelligent, dependable, alert

Lilac Border Collies are a specific coat color that exists in the breed. This rare coat color is a lovely sight to behold, so take it all in if you’re lucky enough to meet one. It is just one of the many beautiful options.

This color variation comes from puppies with homozygous recessive genetics for their B- and D-locus. The black or brown color dilutes, giving way to this incredible tone.

Lilac Border Collie Breed Characteristics

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.
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.
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.
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.
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 Lilac Border Collie in History

The Border Collie is a herding dog that is a champion among canines. While we have records dating back 150 years, historians believe this breed might predate that tremendously.

A book titled Treatise of English Dogges features a descriptively similar herding breed—could it be the early Border Collie? It’s hard to know for sure, but it is certainly speculated.

Revered for its intelligence and capabilities, the Border Collie comes in a variety of stunning colors, including the lilac coat.

How Lilac Border Collie Gained Popularity

Border Collies are classic sheepdogs. Everything about their lineage has prepared them for herding. This particular breed has the endurance, vast intelligence, and trainability to perform extreme work tasks on the farm.

These dogs are always alert and ready, making them superior work dogs. Since they were so valuable in terms of work and service, they have really asserted their place in the world of dog popularity—today ranking #31 on the American Kennel Club list of breed popularity.

However, the lilac Border Collie is the rarest of all colors and, subsequently, one of the most sought-after.

Formal Recognition of Lilac Border Collie

The Border Collie was recognized in Great Britain by the Kennel Club in 1976. Sometime later, the Border Collie was formally recognized by the AKC in 1955. Originally, the AKC classed the Border Collie under the miscellaneous category.

The Border Collie was the 139th breed recognized by the AKC.

lilac border collie dog lying down on the grass at the park
Image By: Susan McQuade, Shutterstock

Top 5 Unique Facts About Lilac Border Collie

Since the lilac color is simply a coat variation, there’s little to say about the color specifically. But here are five nifty facts about the breed.

1. The Border Collie Comes in a Variety of Coat Colors

The lilac color is achieved by breeding a chocolate and blue dog. However, that’s not all! There are several other Border Collie colors apart from lilac.

These include:
  • Black
  • Blue
  • Blue merle
  • Red
  • Red merle
  • Sable
  • White and black
  • White and blue merle
  • White and red
  • Saddleback sable
  • Sable merle
  • Gold
  • Brindle
  • White and Blue
  • White and Red Merle
  • White Ticked
  • Seal
  • White and Seal
  • White and Gold

2. These Dogs Are Incredibly Intelligent

The Border Collie consistently ranks number one for the highest intelligence in canines. These dogs are alert, responsive, and trainable. They constantly impress professionals with their capabilities, always pushing the envelope on what to expect from canines.

This breed is often described as being a workaholic. Without a job to do, they get incredibly antsy and bored. They thrive when learning new things and remarkably show up when a new concept is presented to them.

lilac border collie dog playing with stick outdoors
Image By: Eva Manzano, Shutterstock

3. This Breed Makes a Great Search and Rescue Dog

Because of the physical athleticism and incredible mental capabilities of this breed, they make extremely good search and rescue dogs. They are tasked to help teams locate missing persons in disasters and other events.

They have all the necessary traits: intelligence, a superior sense of smell, speed, and agility. Put all of these together and you have one heck of a worker.

4. Lilac Is Technically Muted Red

The Border Collie has lots of exciting colors. The lilac color is actually a dilution of the color red. It expresses itself in a diluted gene, making the red appear faded and somewhat soft purple.

Even though there might be a hint of purplish tone, their coat could be described as a diluted cool brown.

5. Border Collies Are Record Breakers

Border Collies are breaking records all the time. For example, a duo of Border Collies broke a record on December 22nd, 2020. In a single minute, they did 28 tricks with precision and swiftness.

Directly afterward, the female Border Collie crawled 5 meters in 2.175 seconds. This broke the record for the fastest crawl.

lilac border collie puppy dog running on the grass
Image Credit: xkunclova, Shutterstock

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Does the Lilac Border Collie Make a Good Pet?

The lilac Border Collie can make an excellent pet. But we want to be real with you. Having a dog of any breed has its fair share of positives and negatives. So, we’ll share the good, the bad, and the ugly so you can decide if it’s a good pet for you.

The Border Collie is unmatched in terms of intelligence. If you’re looking for a dog you can easily train and acclimate into the family, this is certainly a top contender. However, it would be best if you were consistent and never restricted your dog’s access to exercise.

This is not the kind of dog you can have cooped up in an apartment or a kennel all day. They absolutely require physical exercise to stimulate their mind and body. If you do not cater to their extreme physical needs, they will develop issues, including separation anxiety, destructive tendencies, and other unsavory behaviors.

Border Collies are best suited for homes with a large fenced-in yard or a lot of land. They need to be given tasks; otherwise, they will become very bored.

Are Border Collies Good With Kids?

Even though Border Collies make excellent family companions, being completely compatible with kids, they are herding dogs. That means they might nip at the heels!

If you have an athletic lifestyle where you’re on the go often, a Border Collie can acclimate very well. They also make excellent playmates since their energy levels match young children’s. Border Collies are also very attached to other canines, so having more than one is always a good idea.

It is not uncommon to see your Border Collie nipping at the heels of your children to try to get them in line. This is a primal instinct for them and simply part of the breed’s makeup. And while these behaviors can be curbed, they cannot be changed.

Cute boy hugs his border collie on the road
Image Credit: encierro, Shutterstock


The Border Collie is an excellent addition to your home, permitting you to have the time and energy for this particular dog breed. If you are equipped to deal with this strong breed’s physical and emotional needs, you can have long-lasting replaceable companionship.

The lilac variation is simply a coat color variation of the Border Collie, but it is one of the rarest and most beautiful of all.

Featured Image Credit: fontenelesther, Shutterstock

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