My husband and I have been border collie fans ever since we got our first border collie, Simon, over 11 years ago. Up until that point we had no experience with this breed of dog, but after living and playing with Simon for over 11 years, we have become official border collie fans.
Simon is what's called a rough-coat border collie, and our precious border collie/Australian shepherd fur-baby Karma was also a rough coat border collie.
After Karma died tragically a few months ago, the hole in my heart was so huge that I had a hard time focusing and my grief was extreme (anyone that has experience with these dogs know how absolutely into your heart they get - their intelligence is so incredible) Not long after Karma died, and against my husbands wishes, I got another puppy that I named Indy (he was so broke up over Karma's death that he swore off getting anymore dogs, but now he loves Indy, of course)
Although Indy looks a lot like a border collie, she also looks very different because she is whats's called a smooth coat border collie. I was not trying to replace my Karma, but had a great need to love another dog and yes, to help assuage my grief over losing my precious friend Karma.
Poll on Border Collies
Charcateristics of a smooth coat border collie
One of the most obvious differences between a rough coat and smooth coat border collie is of course, their coat. Simon's coat is absolutely like a bears, he requires a lot of grooming and when he sheds, he sheds a lot! Karma was the same, and I still find my Karma's hair in nooks and crannies of the house, many months later.
Indys hair, on the other hand, is entirely different. Her hair is smooth, and she rarely sheds (well at least not yet - she's only 6 months old so I'm sure that's coming to at least some extent) Because of the coat difference, she looks so much different than our other collies that at first my family didn't believe that Indy was even a border collie. Add some hair to her though and she looks suspiciously like our other border collies!
The only difference between a rough coat border collie and a smooth coat is the length of the coat. Inside they have all the same border collie characteristics. Rough coats have usually been the most widely recognized border collies in the ring and on TV though, so some people mistakenly think that all border collies have a long coat.
Tri-color smooth coat border collie breed
Smooth coat border collies, like roughs, can come in many colors and varieties. Indy is what's called a tri-color smooth coat border collie, and she has a combination of colors - black, white and beige. Smooth coat collies are much easier to maintain than rough coats, they don't require much grooming and water seems to repel right off of them,. Although I would take my Karma back in a heartbeat if given the chance, one thing I have noticed is that there is a lot less hair around our house.
I usually "furminated" my baby-girl faithfully twice a year, so I managed to keep her hair pretty much controlled (well at least I tried, I should say) Indy's hair is far more manageable, and she is much easier to bathe than Simon or Karma.
If you are looking to buy or adopt a border collie and don't have a lot of time to maintain the dogs coat, a smooth coat border collie is definitely one you would want to consider because their coat is a lot less upkeep. Farmers also tend to prefer smooth coat collies for exactly this same reason - they are usually working dogs and farmers ususally prefer the more maintenance free smooth coat border collie.
Dorsi Diaz (author) from The San Francisco Bay Area on October 22, 2012:
Thank you Suzzy. I miss her so much, she was such an amazing friend. Their faces look alike, Indy reminds me of Karma in that way - but she has her own little quirky personality too, which I love. Thanks for coming by my friend.
Susan Britton from Ontario, Canada on October 22, 2012:
Sorry for your loss Dorsi. I had no idea about their difference in their hair. Great pictures of their sweet faces.