I frequently hear the following from people looking for a Collie puppy:
“I’m not looking for a show dog, just a good dog.”
I get that! But I think under that comment might lie a few misconceptions about show Collies vs. pet Collies.
The mature Rough Collie can be so stunning, you will find yourself in the middle of an admiring crowd whenever you take them out in public! But if not expressly bred for those attention-getting virtues, a Collie won’t have them. Genes always have to come from somewhere!
The crowning glory and distinctiveness of the Rough Collie is it’s luxurious coat and dramatic outline – from the intelligent, lovely expression and abundant snow-white ruff to the poufy white-tipped tail. This look has to be persistently selected for, bred from show ring stars.
Show dog breeders guard their genetics closely, just as a corporation guards their brand. They do not sell breeding rights to their dogs, and they do not sell their best prospects to commercial or hobby breeders. Beware of online Collie puppy sellers who maintain a few “breeding pairs” and mate the same dogs together repeatedly. That is not how beautiful Collies are made, and you will be disappointed if you buy one of their advertised puppies, expecting that traffic-stopping “look” that well bred show Collies have. Most online pet breeders have obtained their breeding stock from other pet breeders. It isn’t their goal to breed Collies that gather crowds. So they don’t.
At Whitehall we search the country for studs that best complement our girls, that will add virtues to the mix, so each generation is better than the last. Rarely would a male in our yard qualify for our own matings, since they are of the same family as our girls. The process of acquiring superior genetics from outstanding studs who live hundreds or thousands of miles away is very expensive! But a breeder who is willing to do that, when required, to improve their stock displays the passion and commitment it takes to aspire to consistently produce healthy, well-tempered, breathtaking Collies. The kind we hope goes to live at your house!