This is a breed that almost everyone is able to recognize, thanks to the incredible bravery and brains of a certain rough collie named Lassie. Collies have enjoyed uninterrupted popularity since the show’s inception in the 50s, and they continue to be a favorite pet for families all over the country.
Which makes serious sense—these pups tend to have a way with children (in fact, they usually adore them) and immediately become part of the family. They’re endlessly loyal and very intelligent, which means training is both fun and necessary to keep them entertained and out of mischief.
They’re also fairly sensitive pups and don’t like a lot of tension or loud, upset voices around them. Rough collies also thrive on companionship, so if you can’t spend lots of time frolicking and having fun with them—they’re probably not the right breed for you.
Now that we’ve learned a bit about this incredible breed, it’s time to understand what taking care of a rough collie entails. Here’s what you need to know.
Rough collies are well known for their beautiful coat. It’s large, it’s luxurious, and it tends to shed a lot—so be prepared for a bit, or a lot, of fur on your furniture.
They’re double-coated, so the shedding lasts year-round with an especially impressive uptick when they “blow” their coats in the spring and fall. Because of this, sadly, these collies are not a great match for those suffering from allergies.
We’ve mentioned that incredible coat, and now it’s time to talk about how to care for it. Because it definitely needs care.
Obviously, brushing is important, especially in areas that sometimes get overlooked, like the legs and belly. The best course of action is a thorough brushing and combing a couple of times a week to keep mats and tangles at bay.
According to The Nest, brush places that are getting tangled witha slicker brush. Anywhere else, you can use a stiff-bristle brush. Go against the hair direction first to get rid of dead hair, and then with the hair to smooth everything out. It’s also a good to spray the fur with water or a grooming spray before brushing to ensure that you don’t break any of those luscious locks when you brush.
Despite the intense amount of fur, these pups are pretty clean dogs. You don’t need to go overboard with the baths. Giving them a good scrub every few months should be more than adequate. Don’t forget—it’s always best to groom your pup thoroughly before getting them into the tub.
You’ll want to invest in a nice pair of scissors to help you trim the hair around the paws, between the paw pads, and under the hocks—otherwise the fur there quickly spirals out of control.
You’ll spend most of your maintenance time dealing with this breed’s coat, but don’t forget to take the other aspects of your pup into consideration. For instance, make sure that nails stay regularly trimmed to avoid discomfort for your dog. Keep an eye on the dew claw, which tends to grow fast in older dogs and cause problems.
It’s also imperative to brush your pup’s teeth regularly. This keeps them healthy and keeps their doggy breath at a more manageable level.
It’s not necessary! There are plenty of breeds of dogs that simply don’t need haircuts as others do. Not only because their hair doesn’t grow past a certain length, but because trims are unhealthy for the dog.
While discussing grooming tips for this breed, it’s essential to emphasize that you should not shave your collie. Here are just a few reasons this is a bad idea:
- Their double-coat works together to keep your dog comfortable—cool in the summer and warm in the winter.
- Shaving removes the outer coat, which takes away the beautiful coloring and markings of your pup. All you’ll be left with is the undercoat—a less exciting, muted cream, gray or beige color all over.
- Even when they’re shaved, they’ll continue to shed (although the hairs will be shorter, obviously).
The only time you should shave or trim a rough collie is at your vet’s recommendation, usually due to a health issue. For example, if they scratch enough to wound themselves, it may be in their best interest to shave parts or all of their hair to apply topical medication or to regrow hair from scratch.
In other words, your collie is perfect as is. Besides a shampoo, brush and thorough blow-drying, a collie is primped, fluffy, and ready to go!
Does your rough collie need a shampoo and glam-up? How about a fresh nail trim? A groomer can now come to your house! Rover offers dog grooming in Seattle, Austin, Washington DC, and Denver. To learn more, please check out our page here.