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Hello Everyone,

I recently bought a border collie puppy and I've read so much about them. Often in videos, blog posts, etc, I notice people saying that they have the largest hearts of any breed but I can't find any good sources on this. Is there any truth to this? 


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Hi CptJack,

My BC definitely has a big heart as far as he's very sweet and affectionate but I've seen people say that in reference to their endurance such as they can work all day and can run the fields due to the fact that they have a larger heart than any other breed but there is a good chance I just interpreted what they're saying wrong. :)

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I actually found the video where I saw a breeder/trainer say that. It's posted below. She seems like she knows her stuff which is why I'm curious if it's true or not.



...they're built with a larger heart..they have a larger heart than any other breed, it makes them more athletic....



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Yeah, no if they're claiming a larger heart is a physical thing they're full of it.  In truth larger hearts tend to be a *BAD THING*.  As in: An enlarged heart is a sudden death causing disease and giant breeds often have heart issues.   BC hearts are perfectly normally proportional for a medium sized dog.  The only way a 'big heart' makes them more athletic is, again, the metaphorical sense:  They've got a lot of heart (metaphorically) and a lot of courage and a lot of "Go" and almost no quit.  It isnt' a physical trait in any regard.

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I vaguely remember reading that border collies have a larger heart proportionally and a quick Google has brought up this very little study which says:

"Comparison of the weight adjusted M-mode echocardiographic means from Border Collies to those from the general population of dogs showed Border Collies to have larger left ventricular systolic and diastolic dimensions, smaller interventricular septal thickness, and lower fractional shortening."


I don't think it is saying that if you removed hearts from dogs that the ones from border collies would be obviously bigger, but rather that their left ventricle has a slightly larger capacity.

Edited to add: I haven't read the full article and have not looked at their methods, statistics etc. Just posted to show that it is something that has been researched.

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  • 2 months later...
On 3/26/2019 at 12:44 PM, EvoPA said:

You're all probably right, I took it literally which is why I couldn't find any more info on it online. Thanks for clearing that up. I'm glad I didn't ask the vet and look like an idiot in person.

I work with working border collies all day and they do in fact have a 15% bigger heart than other canines which enables them to run so fast and be as agile as they are.

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