If you’re looking for an intelligent, beautiful dog, you won’t be disappointed with the German Shepherd Border Collie mix, a hybrid dog that is created when you combine a Border Collie and a German Shepherd. Often Known as the Shollie, these dogs are very talented and enthusiastic, making them a great dog for the family Of course, before deciding to add a German Shepherd Border Collie mix to the family, it’s a good idea to learn more about the Shollie and what you can expect. Here’s a look at the hybrid’s history, health concerns, grooming needs, temperament, and other essential information that can help you make your decision.
Origin and History
More than likely, the German Shepherd Border Collie mix was created within the past 20 years. Unfortunately, we don’t know many details about why, by whom, and when this cross was first made. However, we can learn a lot more about these dogs by looking more closely at the origin and history of the parent breeds – the Border Collie and the German Shepherd.
It’s thought that the history of the Border Collie traces all the way back to the first century B.C. The Romans were invading Britain and they brought along some dogs to help with herding. Later it’s thought that Viking raider dogs were bred with the Roman dogs, resulting in a smaller dog that was better at sheep herding and excellent at navigating the highlands found around Wales, England, and Scotland. Today’s modern Border Collies can be traced back to Old Hemp, a dog born in England back in the 1890s. During the 1890s, these dogs were brought to America, although the name “Border Collie” wasn’t used until 1915. Today these dogs are still used as working dogs on farms and ranches, and they do extremely well in agility competitions.
The German Shepherd breed was first started in Germany and developed to offer aid in sheep herding during the 1800s. It’s thought that the ancestors of the breed were a result of breeding native dogs from both northern and central Germany. In 1899, the German Shepherd Dog Club of Germany was first started. During both World War I and World War II, these dogs were used for various tasks, and they became quite popular. Later, they were imported to the United States, and the German Shepherd Dog Club of America was finally founded in 1913.
Your German Shepherd Border Collie mix will be a large dog that weighs between 70 and 80 pounds and grows to be between 21 and 29 inches tall. Usually these dogs look a bit more like a German Shepherd, although their tail isn’t quite as bush as that of a German Shepherd. They may have floppy ears, and their coat may be silk and smooth and short to medium in length. Some of the common coat colors to expect from the Shollie include brown, cream, white, black, yellow, sable, and tan.
German Shepherd Border Collie Mix Temperament
The German Shepherd Border Collie mix is a very smart dog, and these dogs are also very industrious, energetic, and protective. While they can be a bit wary of strangers, these dogs are very fun and playful with the family. They have a loving, affectionate side, so they enjoy getting plenty of attention from the family. These dogs can be very enthusiastic, especially when it’s time to get some exercise. However, they may have some stubbornness, which can make training a bit more difficult.
Since the German Shepherd Border Collie mix can be a bit stubborn, it’s important to start training these dogs right away. Make sure they are trained and socialized as early as possible. They love learning, so they are usually very motivated during training. Just make sure you are firm when training and make use of positive reinforcement techniques. Avoid harsh training, which can bring out stubbornness. Rewards, treats, and praise are the best way to ensure your German Shepherd Border Collie mix learns quickly.
These dogs have so much energy, so you need to make sure that they get plenty of activity. You need to have a yard where these dogs have enough room to run and play. They don’t make great apartment dogs. A couple of jogs or long walks are needed each day, and plenty of play time is in order as well. Tricks and games can ensure that you keep your German Shepherd Border Collie mix mentally engaged and challenged as well.
The German Shepherd Border Collie mix is a moderate shedder, and you can expect a bit of seasonal shedding as well. It’s a good idea to brush these dogs daily, particularly when they are shedding heavily. Only bathe these dogs when they need it, since over bathing the Shollie may negatively affect their skin’s natural oils. Teeth need to be brushed at least three times per week. Usually these active dogs will wear their nails down on their own, but if they don’t, they may need to have their nails trimmed by a groomer. Ears should be wiped clean weekly to prevent infection.
Since both the German Shepherd and the Border Collie were used for herding, the German Shepherd Border Collie mix can be an excellent herding dog today. These dogs are very smart as well and may make great police dogs, military dogs, or even search and rescue dogs.
While the Shollie is young and their longevity is unknown, by looking at the parent breeds you can probably expect the German Shepherd Border Collie Mix to have a life expectancy of somewhere between 10 and 15 years. Many of the health concerns of the parent breeds don’t affect hybrids, since hybrids tend to be healthier. However, you still need to be aware of some of the potential health concerns that may be inherited from the parent breeds when you have a German Shepherd Border Collie mix, such as:
- Congenital deafness
- Progressive retinal atrophy
- Chronic superficial keratitis
- Collie eye anomaly
- Familial cerebellar degeneration
- Hip dysplasia
- Primary lens luxation
- Persistent right aortic arch
- Nasal cavity tumors
- Degenerative myelopathy
- Tricuspid dysplasia
- Glycogen storage disease
- Cherry eye
- Mitral dysplasia
- Pituitary dwarfism
- Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency
- Myasthenia gravis
- Mitral dysplasia
- Cushing’s disease
- Aortic stenosis
- Footpad disorders
- Immune mediated thrombocytopenia