Why a Collie?


Sometimes you choose a breed of dog, sometimes the universe chooses for you.
I know you're probably looking at this like, this person is crazy there is so much collie stuff on this site why are they so in love with collies, and I hate to disappoint you but there is no short, sweet antidote on why collies are great for everybody or how I have always wanted one. Instead, sometimes the universe picks your obsession and leads you down a long and winding path as you discover more about yourself.
The main things I considered when picking a breed in the beginning were temperament, size, energy level, and grooming. I wanted a bigger dog with a solid friendly temperament who would enjoy going places with me. That is how I landed on a rough collie, but they were not my first pick.
Ever since I was a child, I loved corgis; I would like to say that this was before the whole corgi obsession of the internet since I was not on the internet at the time, but I am honestly not sure when that started. Every dog is big when you are in elementary school, however as any parent knows small choking hazard sized things are also attractive.
During that period, I was smitten with a baby chihuahua I met at a farm as well. Mostly the relationship consisted of me having the baby on my lap and running away from the mother, which was thrilling. I am pretty sure she tore my green sweatpants. Now, I run away from Kazoo, and she tore my red plaid pajama pants, so we have come full circle.
As I got older, I still liked herding breeds and found their energy level compatible. Farm life is something I always found appealing and there was just something about herding dogs that fit into that dream better than a guardian dog. I think that was because I grew up with a Great Pyrenees and we did not have a whole lot in common once I was no longer a toddler.
Around college age I decided to seriously look into breeders. I had no idea what kind of life I would have post college, but I knew what I liked to do. Herding dogs were still in the picture, and I was looking at breeders in my state.
The first breeder I reached out to was for Buhunds. I thought they were unique, and their high energy meant that hiking and other outdoor activities would be possible. Their coat was durable and short, which I liked at the time for less grooming effort.
When they never responded, I started looking elsewhere. By this time my friends had all settled down into apartment living and picked small dogs that were within their apartment's restrictions. I realized there was no way that I could live with a smaller dog without tripping over it constantly, so I went bigger. I also had no desire to live in an apartment.
A bigger buhund seemed to be a smooth collie. They are both herding dogs with short fur and upright ears. Looking into them, most articles consisted of rough collie information with a disclaimer that they also came in a smooth variety. Rough collies were too much fur at the time, however I also thought that smooth collies just looked peeled, and they needed more fur.
I started looking into scotch collies after that. Their coats were not as crazy as rough collies, and they still had desirable traits. Since they are more of a landrace breed, they are not as typey as a rough collie, which I will admit was a negative for me as I liked the collie face shape. After talking to breeders, I decided that I was not a scotch collie type of guy.
The next logical step for me was rough collies. As they are an AKC breed I read all the AKC information and looked at breeders on the AKC site. At this point I was a bit impulsive and investigated places that currently had puppies. (In my defense all my friends were getting puppies and puppy fever was hitting hard after wanting one for a decade.) I narrowed the list down by seeing who had the best contact information, like websites and emails. If I could not contact you, I could not get a dog from you anyway. Once I did that, I found the website Gooddog, which listed reputable breeders. Since AKC does not mean reputable I focused on breeders that were in both groups.
I reached out to a few; some I immediately got a bad feeling about. Others I realized were not health tested as much as I would like, and yet others had some transparency issues. I picked Kazoo's breeder because I appreciated the transparency, and I enjoyed talking to the breeder. She answered all my questions and was not bothered that I pushed off getting a puppy.
Yeah, I decided impulse wasn't good. I had already put down a deposit, and still wanted a puppy from her, but it took a few years after that to get Kazoo. Part of that was because I wanted a blue merle, but honestly, I would have been fine with a Tri. If Kazoo had not been born merle this spring, I was fully intending to get any color collie in August as I was anticipating a different pairing.
So, getting a collie wasn't exactly a simple cut and dry ordeal. I very easily settled on herding breeds because dogs in that category had traits that I liked, but after that everything was out the window. Even though I was not born wanting a collie, I am very glad that life played out the way it did, and I could not ask for a better dog than Kazoo.