Border Collies are popular because of their appearance as well as smart personality. While many people want to have one, they like them in a smaller profile. You probably will not be herding sheep. Thus, it can make you think that a smaller dog would be less challenging. Hence, more manageable to take care of. They would require less exercise, eat less food, and be less destructive.
Since a lot of people believe that smaller dogs are more manageable, it creates interest for a mini Border Collie. Despite their small legs, Mini Collies still pack the same personality as their standard-sized relatives. Are you thinking about adopting or buying a Mini Border Collie puppy of your own? Cause if you do, this article will be extremely useful in your search.
What Is a Mini Border Collie?
The practice of breeding and raising Border Collies in a smaller size is becoming more and more popular. The miniature Border Collie is not a purebred dog. Rather, it is just a Border Collie that has been reduced in size. Miniaturization of popular dog breeds is growing in popularity. There are pros and cons to every method of reducing a dog’s size. Not all the time it is perfect. Every aspiring owners need to be prepared of its drawbacks.
How Do Miniature Border Collies Get Bred?
Miniature Border Collies are produced via selective breeding. To be specific, there are 3 known ways to achieve such breed. These are brought by Dwarfism Gene, Breeding Runts and Crossbreeding. Let’s learn about each method.
Pituitary dwarfism is a rare inherited condition. This is where the pituitary gland fails to produce sufficient growth hormone. It occurs most frequently in pastoral breeds.
Unfortunately, Pituitary Dwarfism affects a large number of dogs worldwide. Truth to be told, it is not a rare condition as what people thinks. The amount of breeds that are affected is unknown. This is because some are more susceptible than others. Though, some of the common breeds affected are:
- Border Collies
- Australian Shepherds
As stated, there are Border Collies that naturally have this gene. What breeders do is mating a healthy Collie with another one that has this gene. The result, a miniature Border Collie. These dogs are immensely adorable, for sure. However, the result of such breeding can cause certain health issues. Some of which include but not limited to skeletal deformities and cardiovascular problems.
Runt refers to the weakest or smallest of the litter. Litter on the other hand is just a group of puppies that were born from the same mother. The phrase “runt of the litter” is then used in describing the weakest or smallest of all puppies in the dog’s litter.
What happens here is, the mother is bred time and time again until the puppies became smaller. Of course, possessing similar characteristics of a normal Collie. While this is a common practice to some, be mindful that it carries several health concerns for its offspring. Some of which are respiratory problems and heart defects.
Lastly, crossbreeding method. This is in fact deemed as the most humane approach to achieve a mini Border Collie.
There is a belief among dog owners that mixed breeds provide the same health benefits as their purebred forebears. All thanks to its hybrid vigor. However, there is no guarantee that a mixed breed won’t get sick. Rather, what means is that, there is a decreased probability that they will develop or acquire genetic diseases.
What seems to be the challenge in this method is unpredictability. Breeding two different breeds isn’t a guarantee that the litter is going to get half of the Border Collie and half of the other.
What Is The Appearance of Miniature Border Collie?
Border Collies appear mini or small in size when compared to the standard ones. Border Collies possess fur in the colors of black and white, blue/red merle and white, or chocolate and white, among others. There are a great number of other combinations.
As for the fur of mini Border Collies, this is typically medium in length. It also has a bushy tail and erect or semi-erect ears.
How Big Do Miniature Border Collies Get?
Mini Border Collies size up at around 17 to 23 inches. As for their weight, it can be anywhere from 30 to 57 pounds. As with many other breeds, female minis could be lighter and smaller than males.
What Is the Personality & Temperament of Mini Border Collie?
Despite the herding instincts and occasional bossiness they have, mini Border Collies are not aggressive. In fact, these breeds are low-key and show great devotion and affection to their family.
On the other hand, an aggressive mini Collie is definitely brought by external factors. These can be anything from harsh parenting, early trauma and the likes. In such cases, it is highly recommended to seek assistance of an expert. They are the ones who have the knowledge and experience to fix this kind of dog’s behavior.
Minis Have a Lot Of Energy
As mentioned, minis are just like their regular counterparts. Meaning to say, their energy levels are practically the same.
Indeed, Border Collies, minis included are wonderful dogs. However, only a few people are prepared for its unending energy. Unless you can keep them occupied, they will be a natural artist – creating new doors to get outside, give your footwear a new design and so forth.
Border Collies need to burn off excess energy. Only then, they can focus on anything else. Keeping them stimulated is the key to controlling their high energy levels. Therefore, the key to wearing them out is finding out how to keep them entertained.
Mini Border Collie and Family
Behind their reservations with strangers, lies an attitude that is so eager to please their owners. Thus, it makes them to be trainable. They are confident, gentle and obedient. Even more, they are extremely loyal to their family. They are very playful and can be more affectionate among children.
Since they carry the traits of a regular Border Collie, they can be a useful watchdog. They’ll constantly bark on anyone to alert owners. Although because of their size, they might not be effective enough in fending intruders away.
How To Train Miniature Border Collie?
Since these dogs are naturally gifted and smart, training them would not be much of a problem. And to simplify every training session, check out the tips below:
- Tip 1: Start their training at an early stage – it is essential that your puppies are trained to socialized. This will guide them on how they can properly interact with others both dogs and humans. Breeders would most probably begin this before you pick up your pup. Doing early obedience training strengthens the bond with your pet. This is critical in laying the pillars for your dog to learn tricks in the future.
- Tip 2: Take advantage of positive reinforcements – one thing that you must know about mini Collies is that, they’re quite sensitive. Thus, they easily notice if something’s off with the mood or verbal cues of their owner. As their pack, there’s no need to be harsh or strict during training.
- Tip 3: Use a leash – even though these Collies are small, don’t forget that they still have the genes of a normal Border Collie. Meaning, it’s still in their genes to herd. It’s instinctive to them to chase other animals, humans or objects. Avoid this by keeping a firm hold on their leash. Additionally, installing sturdy fences on your yard would eliminate any of their chance to escape.
Mini Border Collie Is Quite Intelligent
One of the top traits of a mini Border Collie is their level of intelligence. They perform well when engaged with obedience training. The intellect they possess means that they can learn fast. However, it’s also the same reason why their owners ought to schedule various activities. Not to mention, to give them mental stimulation constantly.
The fact that they are intelligence also is the same reason why they are perfect as a service dog and therapy.
How Healthy Are Miniature Border Collies?
Overall, mini Border Collies are a healthy breed. Though they are not perfect. There are a few things that any interested would-be owner has to watch out.
Collie dogs are normally healthy breeds. Though they have health conditions that run in their genes. A few of the genetic diseases common to this breed are collie eye anomaly, hip dysplasia, lens luxation, epilepsy as well as retinal atrophy.
In addition, the Grey Collie Syndrome is a condition that is specific only to Collie breeds. This affects all variants from Smooth and Rough and even mini Border Collies. Then again, hereditary disorders exclusive to Collies are genetic forms of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis, and intestinal cobalamin malabsorption.
Some dogs, depending on their living conditions and how they were raised could be vulnerable to several health issues. On the other hand, thyroid disease, gallbladder mucoceles, eye diseases and von Willebrand’s disease are some of the major ones that owners should watch out for.
A regular Border Collie could live for as long as 9 to 15 years. In the case of its miniature counterpart, they can live longer than that. On the other hand, their lifespan might be reduced in case unhealthy genes are passed onto them.
What And How Much To Feed Miniature Border Collie?
We all know that mini Collies are quite energetic and active dogs. This means that they will require more calorie intake than other dogs of the same size. Approximately, they need 1,000 to 1,400 calories, which heavily depend on their activity levels.
Luckily for owners, this breed don’t have specific requirements in terms of diet. They are not even allergic to any foods. This makes feeding time a lot easier. On the other hand, what owners have to do is make sure that their dog is getting high-quality foods. Further, mini Collies have to be fed two times per day. You can feed them once every morning and the other, at night.
If you wish to feed them trice a day, it’ll be okay too. Just do not give them much more than the suggested amount. When feeding your Collies, there are vital nutrients that they should be able to take.
- Calcium – their joints are at a great pressure due to their high activity levels. To ensure that their joints would never be compromised, give them foods that are high in this nutrient.
- Protein – while such breed can live on vegetarian diet, it does help to introduce proteins too. Similar with humans, it can help its muscle to become healthier and stronger.
- Carbohydrates – in an effort to boost calorie intake, mini Collies must have slow-burning carbohydrates. A few examples would be vegetables. But steer clear from feeding them wheat, soy and corn. It recommended by vets.
Always remember this when feeding your pets.
How To Groom Miniature Border Collie?
If your mini Border Collie is shedding, it is best to brush their coats daily. While doing so, brush their undercoats as well. This helps in removing dead hair and debris. Also, it stimulates blood circulation in the skin. Ultimately, it redistribute oils throughout their skin.
In terms of bathing, it must only be done once every quarter. Of course, if your Collie is extra active and accumulated more dirt than usual or perhaps, if they’ve played in the mud, you can increase the frequency. But remember not to over bathe your dog. This practice does no good than irritating their skin.
As expert’s tips, best check their paws, nose, fur, skin, teeth and eyes. This lets you find any potential problems that can be averted right away.
Where To Get Mini Border Collie Puppy?
You can instantly know whether the dog breeder you are talking to is trustworthy or not depending on the way they talk to you. Oftentimes, reputable breeders are not automatically selling their pups to anyone who asked.
This happens but they are deemed to be puppy mills. Unfortunately, buying pups from these places normally leads to dogs with temperament issues, in poor health or combination of both. What’s worse, these are problems that don’t immediately manifest from the dog. It is something that takes times to be noticed. When that comes, it is too late for the owner.
What a responsible breeder does is screen interested individuals. They check their background whether they can responsibly raise the pup and so on. Getting a mini Border Collie or any other dog is a process. You’d be thanking the breeder eventually for undergoing the procedure and not rushing things.
Conclusion: Should I Get a Mini Border Collie?
Mini Border Collies are cute and adorable. There’s no doubt about that. They’re almost identical to a regular Border Collie and thus, the personality and traits they possess. With the methods of breeding one, it is important to know how they were bred. This gives the idea on what to expect in the future.
Let us not forget as well that they should be given proper diet. Though they can live longer than other dogs, this can only happen if they receive the right care and love from their owner.