Rough Collie Puppies: Everything You Need to Know

Collie dogs are known best for their innate herding skills as well as their gentle, family-oriented nature. If you and your family are considering adopting a rough collie puppy, there are a few things you will want to learn about first. Below you will find a wealth of knowledge, all about rough collies and how to care for them in their younger years. You will also learn about what to expect with their personality and temperament as they grow, and what health complications that could possibly arise.

Puppies are a handful, especially when you don’t prepare by doing some research on the breed beforehand. Their temperaments and personalities may come as a surprise if you haven’t looked up what to expect, as each breed tends to have its own typical personality or mannerisms. As far as grooming goes for this breed, they do take a bit of work to manage. The “rough” collie gets their name from the texture of their thick fur coat.


The Rough Collie personality is one that you won’t be able to help but fall in love with instantly. Their gentle, lovable nature will have you snuggling right up to them immediately. As a member of a lineage of herding dogs that were once running the fields of Northern England and Scotland, they have a naturally intelligent and loyal personality. Their family, including children, are the center of their world once they’ve become a member of your family. 

The Rough Collie temperament is generally calm and docile, but they aren’t shy when it comes to getting up and playing in the yard with the children in the family. They have lots of energy and will love expending it outdoors with the smaller members of the family. Or even with you on daily walks around the neighborhood. 


Collies are incredibly intelligent dogs by all standards. You can expect your Rough Collie puppy to catch onto their training rather quickly. Puppy classes are still recommended, but this is more so for the socialization aspect of puppyhood.

Puppy training classes will give you Rough Collie pup the opportunity to interact with other dogs and learn what is and is not okay. Puppy training classes are also an amazing opportunity for you and your new pup to bond and strengthen your relationship. 

Positive teaching methods are what will work best with your Rough Collie pup during training. This involves positive feedback with treats and praise when a command was executed correctly. Besides obedience, Collies are also known well for their agility. Making Rough Collie puppies great for someone who would like to raise a dog that runs agility courses and competes against other dogs for fun. 


Rough Collies are generally a healthy breed of dog that you can expect a good 12 to 14 wonderful years with. Although, due to a “Collie eye anomaly” that is inherent in the breed, it's recommended to take your puppy to see a veterinary ophthalmologist at 6-8 weeks of age. Due to a genetic mutation called MDR, Rough Collies are also sensitive to certain drugs. You can find out if your Rough Collie has this mutation through lab tests. That way you can be sure your pup can stay clear of those specific medications. 


Rough Collies have long, thick coats of fur, so it's right to expect that they will be needing regular grooming. Thankfully, Rough Collies get their name from their rougher coat of fur, compared to their “smooth” cousins who don’t tend to have mats in their fur.  Collies have a double coat of fur so there are certain times of year that they will shed more than others. To prevent mats and keep up with shedding, regular brushing 2-3 times per week is recommended. Their elbows and behind their ears are spots that tend to mat up more than others will. 

Just like with any other breed of dog, you will want to begin your grooming practices with them at a young age so that they can become comfortable and used to the routine and what all goes on when they are being groomed.

Some great tips and tricks for helping a puppy get used to being groomed include letting them sniff the tools you are about to use and rewarding them with praise and treats after the grooming is finished.


Rough Collies make great family dogs, from puppyhood all the way through their doggie adulthood. Collies, as a breed, are incredibly intelligent and loyal dogs through and through. They also love children. They love to watch over them and play with them. Their undying loyalty and obedient nature are well worth the work of weekly grooming sessions and all else that goes into raising and caring for a rambunctious puppy. 

What is a rough collie?

A rough collie is a breed of loyal herding dog that was famously utilized for their natural herding abilities in Northern England and Scotland once upon a time. Now they’re even more well known as a loving and loyal family dog who loves children. You’ll often find them wanting to run around and play with your kids. The name “rough” comes from the texture and quality of their fur coat.

How big do rough collies get?

Rough collies can grow to be 2-2.5 feet tall, and 50 to 70 pounds in weight. These numbers vary depending on their gender primarily. Their diet and amount of physical activity they get can also affect their weight.

Do collies shed?

Collie dogs certainly do shed. Anyone who is preparing to adopt a collie prepare to bathe them up to once per week and keep up with brushing their long fur on a regular basis. These are just their grooming needs on top of what will help to minimize their shedding around your home.

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Written by Leo Roux


It is crucial to recognise that the accepted standards for dogs in USA, often vary from those in UK.

I was a UK Kennel Club registered breeder, trainer & exhibitor of Rough Collies and found that generally speaking, the UK adheres very closely to practicalities. Of particular note if the desirability of compact conformation. Watch a Rough Collie run at speed then change direction. It is the most beautiful sight and inspires the reasoning behind short wheelbase vehicles for manouvreability !

I also would point out that Rough Collies have the most remarkable ability to look after their own coats if allowed to. The long, outer coat of an adult dog should be coarse to the touch, overlaying a soft, fleece-like undercoat which some owners strip unnecessarily with incessant combing. It’s there for warmth and helps ‘the look’. Please don’t ruin it. Do keep a look out for tangles & matting though (as already commented). Your dog will self-groom so beware them coughing on accumulated fur balls. They may need help on rare occasions.

The bathing comment, I find impractical and unnecessary. If the dog has become excessively dirty then yes, but ordinarily, a bath every 3 – 6 months is enough. Do keep them in until completely dry though and I advise keeping them on leash for the first couple of days afterwards during exercise. They need time to reestablish their own scent, otherwise they will ‘acquire’ – usually rolling in the dung of foxes and the like !

David Trigger on Mar 01, 2022

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