Collies: Back to the Future

The purpose of this website is to provide sources of information about the history of the collie breeds (breeds that were developed from the old working collie of the British isles) in order to encourage preservation of important functional, physical, mental, behavioral and aesthetic characteristics for the future.

As you read collie/shepherd history, and look at old photos and prints, please keep in mind that the concept of "breed" and "type" have changed a great deal over time.


"19th-century American photos show dogs of the old working collie/shepherd type.  Some people attempt to label the dogs in these photos with specific modern breed names, but this is not really accurate. Most of the breeds in their narrower, standardized kennel club-recognized form (this is the case in all the groups -- terriers, gundogs, whatever) did not become clearly defined until the advent of dog shows.  Which of the old landraces came to be recognized breeds, and at what time, and even in what form, had a lot to do with whether and when a group of people took up the type as their breed."

from "Australian Shepherd History" by Linda Rorem

Royal Copenhagan Collie, photo copyright Linda Rorem.

The Once and Future Collie

Where did they come from, and what will they become? Read historical articles and look into breed health and maintenance issues at  The Once and Future Collie

Farmcollie Email List

Talk to others who have or are interested in farm collies and shepherds. Find out what other people think of as "farm collies" and "farm shepherds", and why. A diverse group with diverse ideas, there is disagreement on many points but mutual respect prevails on the farmcollie email list.

Farm Collies, Farm Shepherds : Concepts and conservation

Looking for a collie / shepherd companion?

CAUTION: If you have a clear idea about what you mean by "farm collie", that's great, but don't assume anyone else means the same thing: be prepared to explain your idea in detail.

Suggestions on how to find YOUR farm collie/shepherd.

Please consider a rescue first!

There are literally thousands of rescue organizations that have collie-related dogs, purebreeds and mixed breeds, waiting for new homes.

A few groups are listed below but this is just the tip of the iceberg. Do a Google search and you will get thousands of hits.

Fine print

Website format copyright webmaster. Photos and text stored at this website are copyright their creator (in some cases the webmaster, in many cases other people).

Feel free to LINK
BUT seek written permission before appropriating
any material stored here... Er the Gobble-uns 'll git you
                                    Ef you

File updated 03-05-2013. (previous version 01-05-2006)

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