Jump to content
BC Boards

Questions about my own dog, and also questions about Border Collies in general.


Recommended Posts

Hello!

 

Please pardon my newness, and I hope that my questions can be answered. Here is my story, and I hope I can get some input.

 

Last fall, I traveled down to Oklahoma from Illinois to stay for a few months. While I was there, an oily, dandruff-filled, dirty, scabbed up little puppy just happened to be on the front porch one day hiding behind a chair, unwilling to move. The puppy was so nasty and dirty that we couldn't even tell if she was a domesticated dog or a coyote, and because my boyfriend's family owns a ranch, they couldn't have a coyote on the property with all of the new calves and such. They were going to get rid of her, one way or another.

 

But she ended up to be really, really sweet. Scared out of her wits over everything, but really sweet. Because all of his other dogs were fed outside and they roamed the ranch free, it was hard to feed them and /not/ feed anything else that decided to come along. We tried to not feed her so she wouldn't stay and eventually go back to where she came from, but even after three days she did not leave. So I decided that I liked her, and I gave her a bath and just started to feed her and such. I put up notices, I contacted several people in the area asking if they knew the dog, and nobody knew who she was or where she came from. (His family owns a purebred black and white Border Collie, but he is an adult, and I had no idea that Border Collies could come in so many colors so I didn't even make the connection.)

 

I then put her in the rental van and drove with her 700 miles back to Illinois to introduce to my mother and sisters. She is an absolute joy, and is the best dog I could have ever after. Our vet has declared her about 1 year old, which would have made her about six months old when I took the first set of pictures (Below).

 

At that point, I was browsing the internet every day trying to figure out what kind of dog she was. I was more of a cat person then (Boy was I in the dark) so I knew next to nothing about dogs other than that I have some sort of curse/gift that insures I find a dog every year. But mostly, I find where they come from and get then back home.

 

Before long, I found a breed called an "Australian Shepherd." She sort of looked like the pictures, but not being fully grown I just couldn't tell. Her fur is a strange color, her markings didn't match up, and she just wasn't fluffy enough. But even our vet said she was "Definitely an Australian Shepherd" and that's what he put on her vet records. Well one day I took her to work with me, and a breeder said I was silly for thinking that, and that she was "Definitely a Border Collie." So I went online to see what kinds of Border Collies existed, and yeah, they seemed to be pretty darn close! Apart from the strange orange color that seems to be somewhere between a Brown BC and an Australian Red BC, the fur length, temperament, and other features seemed to match to a T.

So here I am, on a Border Collie forum, wondering if you lovely people could tell me if my dog is a Border Collie! Below are pictures of her after her first bath (Before the bath, she was unrecognizable. She was literally black with oil and other disgusting things). And the latter is a picture of her I took several days ago while we were relaxing in the yard.

 

And also, I have a couple of questions about her health/fur.

 

I have tried SO MANY different brands of dog food. We are currently trying Taste of the Wild, but she just doesn't seem to have much of an appetite. I have taken her to the vet many times for this, and all he's said was that dogs just don't get very hungry in the summer. She eats a little bit here and there, but not nearly as much as the dogs I take care of or any other dog I've met.

 

She is starting to develop white hairs on the very end of her tail. She gets more and more every time I look. Does this mean she'll have a white tip when she's older?

 

Here she is!

 

puppy_by_ibbins-d3finnx.png

 

olive_by_ibbins-d3fio4e.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can't help with determining her breed, but she is gorgeous!

 

She does not look underweight at all in the pictures. As long as she's maintaining her weight, I would not worry about how much or how little she eats. She looks like a petite girl...I can't imagine that she'd need to eat much unless she was super active and burning up calories. Also keep in mind that a large percentage of dogs in this country are overweight. Be careful about what dogs you're comparing her too.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can't help with determining her breed, but she is gorgeous!

 

She does not look underweight at all in the pictures. As long as she's maintaining her weight, I would not worry about how much or how little she eats. She looks like a petite girl...I can't imagine that she'd need to eat much unless she was super active and burning up calories. Also keep in mind that a large percentage of dogs in this country are overweight. Be careful about what dogs you're comparing her too.

 

Really? Hrm. I know when I took her to the vet they told me she was underweight by twelve pounds! She's fattened up a little bit since then, but when I bathe her her ribs all still stick out. : C

 

Maybe that's just her nature? I'm not sure. She looks nice and chunky with her fur is all brushed and fluffy, but when she's wet she is so, so tiny..

 

Thanks for the advice! : D I think she's around what she needs to weight at the moment. I just don't want to do anything wrong, you know? I've never had a dog before in my entire life.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you make a fist with your hand, and run your fingers of the other hand over the first segment of the fingers in the fist, that's what your dog's ribs should feel like when you lightly run your hands over them. Too many people keep their dogs too fat; I am of the opinion that a thinner dog is a healthier dog! Just looking at her, she doesn't look too fat to me at all.

 

She's got a border collie face, but an Aussie body and that tail(!) screams BC X Aussie mix. My border collie Briggs was that same red, with the tri. And my BC X Aussie has that same tail.

 

She's a lovely looking thing. I found that when I had just one border collie adolescent, he was not so interested in food and would sometimes go days without eating more than a few mouthfuls. All of my subsequent pups have had "competition" for food in the house, by way of the other dogs, and have had much more appetite. I wouldn't worry too much.

 

Lovely dog. Thanks for rescuing her!

 

RDM

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you make a fist with your hand, and run your fingers of the other hand over the first segment of the fingers in the fist, that's what your dog's ribs should feel like when you lightly run your hands over them. Too many people keep their dogs too fat; I am of the opinion that a thinner dog is a healthier dog! Just looking at her, she doesn't look too fat to me at all.

 

She's got a border collie face, but an Aussie body and that tail(!) screams BC X Aussie mix. My border collie Briggs was that same red, with the tri. And my BC X Aussie has that same tail.

 

She's a lovely looking thing. I found that when I had just one border collie adolescent, he was not so interested in food and would sometimes go days without eating more than a few mouthfuls. All of my subsequent pups have had "competition" for food in the house, by way of the other dogs, and have had much more appetite. I wouldn't worry too much.

 

Lovely dog. Thanks for rescuing her!

 

RDM

 

Thank you, this is very helpful. : 3 I wonder if she'll grow a white tip. She's got some white hairs forming. Her tail has had the biggest chance since I met her. It went from bristly and almost no hair on the tip, to full out super long hairs and a wolf-like appearance. Sometimes she curls it up over her back, and other times she lets it hang straight down.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Awww, she is adorable!! Looks to me as though she could have border collie in her, and possible Aussie as well. Whatever she is, she is beautiful and bless you for rescuing her. I wish you great good luck with her, and also welcome to the BC Boards.

D'Elle

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd guess a BC/Aussie cross. She doesn't look really 100% either - but she is 100% cute! :)

 

As for food, have you tried putting warm water on her kibble to soften it before serving, perhaps mixing it with a dollop of canned food to make it more tasty? She may just need a little extra enticing to create a more enthusiastic appetite. Also, at a year old, they can tend to be ribby and leggy and a bit fussy about meals. They've got too much to DO, to waste time with food. ;)

 

Glad you found and saved her wee self!

 

~ Gloria

P.S.

The working Aussies don't have as much coat as the show Aussies most folks think of. :) And her color looks like just one of many manifestations of red tri, perhaps a bit lightened by the sun.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

She's a lovely girl and lucky you found her. Like others, I'd guess BC/Aussie cross. The body structure seems not exactly like a straight BC. The only way to know for sure, I think, is to see what she does on livestock (if it matters to know for sure). I don't know about working Aussies, but Border Collies hold their tails low when they work (one way to know if they are playing or believe themselves to be working is by what they are doing with their tail). In terms of the white on the tail, I've heard (and it appears true on my experience) that dogs will have roughly as much white on their tail tip as they do on their hind legs. From the pics, it doesn't look like your girl has more than white toe tips in back, so she may not get much white.

 

Like others, I wouldn't worry too much about the eating as long as she otherwise seems fine. You could put a raw egg or some yogurt on her food (in addition to what Gloria suggested) to see if that makes it more enticing. We find that our dogs eat about half what the dog food bag suggests for daily feeding and they're all a good weight. We tend to top their kibble with a variety of unprocessed stuff. Blueberries and bananas are a hit with all but one of them.

 

What's her name? Thanks for giving her her chance!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you make a fist with your hand, and run your fingers of the other hand over the first segment of the fingers in the fist, that's what your dog's ribs should feel like when you lightly run your hands over them. Too many people keep their dogs too fat; I am of the opinion that a thinner dog is a healthier dog! Just looking at her, she doesn't look too fat to me at all.

Yes, border collies should have an athletic build; all muscle, no fat. My foster boy, Pacco, was delivered to me with the comment that he was just skin and bones, yet he has lost some fat (and gained muscle) since he has been with me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...