A miniature Collie is a purpose-bred smaller sized Collie. If you intend to house one, it is best to know how you can keep it happy and healthy.
In this article, you’ll find everything on miniature collies that you need to know. Besides offering them unconditional love, you need to familiarize yourself with the following things about your Miniature Collie:
- Dietary requirements
- Playtime accessories
- Temperament and Compatibility
- Health issues
- Training and grooming guidelines
The Original Collie vs. Miniature Collie
Usually, a full-sized Collie is a medium-large sized dog. It has its origins in Scotland and Northern England, where it would herd livestock. The breed’s handsome looks and pleasing temperament are the two main reasons for its worldwide popularity. Adult Collies weigh between 50-75 pounds and can be 22–26 inches tall. Miniature Collies, on the other hand, may weigh anywhere between 35 and 55 pounds and are considerably smaller than full-sized ancestors.
Miniature Collies are excellent athletes because they are fast and agile. They are also smart, making it easier to train them. Unlike the other breeds, the collie can be trained in many disciplines. All in all, you’ll be bringing home a dog that can take part in sports and excel at agility competitions.
When it comes to temperament, these pups are loyal, shy, and loving canine companions. Miniature Collies aren’t as bent on the destruction of the furniture, etc. as full-sized ones are, either. Their smaller size means that they will be perfectly at home in apartments or more modest houses. But just because they are adaptable to small living spaces doesn’t mean they are couch potatoes. They love performing tasks – ones that allow them to exercise. So, if you are searching for low-energy dogs, this breed isn’t suitable.
On the other hand, people who have an active lifestyle will love sharing it with a mini Collie. Your miniature will require a couple of hours of exercise each day. Also, they will accompany you during runs and long walks. Providing them with enough exercise, lots of love, and the right food and care can keep your miniature Collie by your side for 12-15 years.
Since they’re the result of different breeding combinations, miniature Collies come in a variety of colors. Those include:
- Dark brown
- Blue merle — Less common, blue merle looks like bluish-silver
A Collie’s undercoat is curly and short. In addition to these shades, you will find some white in every miniature Collie’s coat. According to the AKC, though, too much white is a breed fault.
How Well they Play with Others
Truthfully, even though mini Collies are very loving as pets, they may not necessarily be the best breeds of dog with children. Most of the time, that’s because they haven’t grown up around kids, which tends to make them nervous.
You should begin socializing your mini collie at a very young age. When you show the dog how to behave with children from puppyhood, they do just fine. Although, remember to train the kids too. In their turn, they should know that the following behaviors can cause miniature Collies to become aggressive and thus, are off-limits:
- Pulling tails or ears
The way your collie will act towards other pets depends on the individual dog. Typically, though, they get along well with family pets, such as cats and other small animals. But since their instincts tell them to chase and nip, they might continuously harass your cat. A friendly, patient feline might put up with it, but, we’d recommend keeping them separately when you aren’t around to supervise.
Additionally, they will chase smaller animals that they view as prey.
Miniature Collies come from relatively healthy breed stock. It means their lineage comes across fewer health risks. Even so, certain dog types are predisposed to developing specific health issues. For Collies, the most common health risks include eye problems and displaced patellas or knee caps. You can correct the former with surgery.
Other than that, your miniature Collie might run afoul of the following less-serious conditions:
- Hip dysplasia
- Dermatomyositis (skin conditions)
But also be on the look out for symptoms of these serious health problems:
- Thyroid disease
- Gallbladder mucoceles
- Von Willebrand’s disease
Besides the conditions we mentioned above, certain canine medications aren’t right for them, including some that prevent heart worm. Finally, when it comes to diet, don’t overfeed your Collie since they are prone to weight problems.
Diet & Nutrition
Being fun-sized, your Collie will consume less food and take up less space than a full-sized one. They will be okay with a small bed and pet carrier. They will also need less exercise to stay fit. Buy good quality dog food for them, and they will do well on it. Mostly, miniature Collies don’t have particular dietary needs. However, if you notice symptoms of indigestion, consult their vet.
What’s more, they can be allergic to common ingredients, like wheat and chicken. Like any canine, you will do well to provide your miniature Collie with complete and balanced dry food. Alternatively, combining canned and dry food can also work.
Most importantly, we mentioned that a miniature Collie could develop weight-related issues. Therefore, watch how much you feed them along with which dog food you give to them. Leaner dogs have a longer life span and won’t develop as many health problems compared to overweight canines. Discussing your dog’s ideal weight range with the veterinarian is the best way to forge ahead. Also, there is a feeding chart on the bag of most dog food brands that you can use as a guide. Combine that guidance with regular exercise, and your mini Collie will remain lean and fit.
For very active dogs, opt for a sporty brand, such as Purina Pro Plan Sport. It suits dogs during all life stages. Otherwise, go for a brand that offers complete and balanced dog food like Iams Proactive Health Adult. You can avoid various future problems if you feed appropriate amounts of Purina Pro Plan Savor puppy food to younger pets.
Grooming and Fur Care
Considering their grooming needs, a miniature Collie is almost low-maintenance. That’s because their coats will shed dirt quite nicely without your assistance. If you want to pamper them, brush them for 10 minutes two or three times a week. That will keep the miniature Collie’s coat nice and shiny.
If they are shedding too much hair on the carpet, then apply more frequent brushing. Aside from brushing, there’s also the issue of baths. Miniature collies do not give off a strong odor. So, bathe them only when they begin to look dirty – or when they have rolled in something stinky. If bathing them doesn’t keep them from stinking up the apartment within hours, a trip to the vet could be around the corner. It could be a skin problem or an ear infection that is making them stink!
Lastly, clipping toenails should be a regular weekly routine. Some dogs do wear their nails down if they run a lot on hard surfaces. Check the nail situation weekly in any case.
How about these handy Weefun grooming kits? It includes dog clippers, electric trimmers, a 2 in 1 washable grooming kit, low noise dog cordless shaver. The shaver is both cordless and USB rechargeable.
Intelligence & Training
Miniature Collies are intelligent enough to standout. It makes them quite trainable. After all, they do come from a breed that used to guard farm animals. That means they are smart enough to learn some tricks. Fortunately, it shouldn’t take a lot of work to train them. Being fast learners, they won’t have to spend months in obedience training to pick up the lessons.
While they are easily trained, here are the tips that will make the process much smoother for both you and the pooch in question:
Early socialization and training results in earlier and easier assimilation
The main reason we socialize puppies is so that they can learn how to interact with other canines safely. But there are others, such as:
- It makes them more comfortable around people other than yourself.
- Yet another reason for socialization is the establishment of your relationship with a pet. That way, they will know to look to you for cues in unusual situations.
- In addition to that, obedience training during puppyhood is the foundation for trick-learning later on.
- It curbs turning undesirable behavior like barking into a habit. A miniature Collie will indulge in much barking, growling, and whining. That’s where the training comes in.
If you got your miniature Collie from a breeder, they would likely start the process of socializing before you get the pup. Even so, you can reinforce those lessons by running your dog through them also.
Provide them with plenty of positive reinforcement
Miniature Collies are sensitive to verbal cues and even moods of their trainers. So, you won’t have to be firm or harsh when training them. Moreover, positive reinforcement through petting and dispensing of treats, encourages learning.
Try out these Wellness Natural Grain Free Puppy Training Treats
Use the leash to keep the miniature Collie from racing off
The original purpose for the breeding of Collies was so they could help farmers and herders care for the livestock. Simply put, that is the reason they have a built-in response to chase after moving objects. When they’re outside with you, they might not be herding cattle, but the Collies will run after squirrels, cars, and other dogs.
You can keep them by your side if you have a tight hold on their leashes. A miniature Collie might also try to escape the confines of a house, so install solid and tall fences around the property.
We recommend the following products for safer walks:
6-foot-long leash from ADITYNA. The material is soft and durable leather and ideally sized for small and medium-sized pooches
PetSafe Collar that is gentle and doesn’t pull at the dog’s throat
Harness by Voyager Step-in Air. It is suitable for all-weather due to a mesh cover. The size suits both medium and small-sized canines.
Toys and Treats
Indeed, you will find a lot of toys to choose from for your miniature Collie. But we’d suggest looking for ones that have the following qualities:
- They are useful in keeping your pooch busy and engaging their mental energies. So, look for a brand that doesn’t just offer vague statements about what the toy does.
- Another factor is durability, which is just as important as a toy’s function. Longer lasting toys are the ones created out of long-lasting materials. Therefore, rubber and nylon toys will fare better against rough chewers. Cheaper plastic and thin fabric gadgets won’t last a week if your miniature collie is an aggressive chewer.
- Thirdly, every collie is different and has individual preferences. Keep that in mind when choosing a toy for yours. Which of the previous ones did they prefer? Get a new toy that is similar to those.
Our recommendations include:
PetSafe’s Busy Buddy Nobbly Nubbly Toy that holds a treat for your miniature collie. It is perfect for Strong Chewers and comes in four different sizes
Nina Ottosson interactive dog brick toy by Outward Hound
Kong’s Cozies, which is a Dog Squeaky Toy
Choosing Healthy Miniature Collies
When choosing a healthy miniature Collie puppy with a good temperament, don’t be in a rush. First off, decide what activities you’ll be doing with your canine companion most of the time.
Do you want to take them along on hikes or while jogging?
Will you perform agility?
Would they assist you in herding livestock?
Once you decide, discuss the concerns with the breeder.
Another important aspect while choosing healthy puppies is to look for issues they may be predisposed to. For a miniature Collie, eye diseases like juvenile cataracts and Progressive Retinal Atrophy are such problems. Hip problems such as dysplasia are common too. Hence, you might want to ask the breeder to show you a C.E.R.F. certification for the eyes and O.F.A. documentation for the hips.
Get a miniature Collie that is well-socialized. Two desirable indications of successful training are friendly dispositions and confidence.
Now, look around for a mini Collie that calls to you. Get the breeder to assist you in choosing a puppy whose personality matches yours. If the breeder is good at what they do, they will know!
Other Related Questions
Can I get a miniature Collie and Chihuahua mix puppy? Known as Chigis, these miniature Collies come in very small sizes. Some can be as tall as 22 inches while others are as tiny as 6 inches.
Can I get a miniature Collie and Pomeranian mix puppy? Yes. Called Poms, these babies are 12 inches tall and may weigh between 15 and 25 pounds.
Are there miniature Collie and miniature Australian Shepherd mixes? The Aussies will take after their parents. So they can either be 14-18 inches tall and weigh 17-30 pounds like mini Australian Shepherds are. Or, they could be like their Collie parent, i.e., 18-22 inches tall with the weight falling between 30-45 pounds.
How about a mix of miniature Collie and miniature Poodle? Bordoodles are even smaller and petite. They may be 16-17 inches tall. The smaller ones are shorter. The former’s weight is around 20-30 pounds while the petite mini ones only reach up to 14-16 inches, weighing 12-20 pounds.
Where does one get a miniature Collie from? Both the American Kennel Club and the United Kennel Club are well-known prestigious organizations. Their lists of reputable breeders will be of great help to you. But you can get your vet to recommend some high-quality breeders to you too. Or, reach out to fellow dog-owning friends for recommendations.
When you find a good, reputable breeder, get them to allow you to visit the facility. Firstly, it will let you look at the available bloodlines. Capable breeders will have detailed information on that topic. Secondly, you can see that all the canines in their care are healthy and well-cared for. Thirdly, a visit will give you a chance to ensure that your breeder doesn’t separate the miniature Collie puppies from their mothers too early. The age that experts recommend for separating puppies is between eight and 12 weeks. Another reason to visit the facility will be to see if the breeder has data on the puppies’ health screenings, microchips, etc.
The rationale behind the creation of this comprehensive guide on miniature Collies was to help you understand a beautiful, energetic breed better. People who want an intelligent, easily trainable, and the active family dog usually fall for the miniature collie. The same might be right for you! With our guide, you can care for them and give them a loving forever home!