I am a dog enthusiast and have helped many friends and family members find the right breed and breeder for them.
I also grew up with a bearded collie. He was a wonderful pet. My family also decided to show him as a hobby…so we had the unique experience of being outsiders getting a very good first hand look at the breed and the breeders. The well-respected breeders who are entrenched in the show world are highly ethical and very committed. The breed itself is known for being friendly because they, unlike other herding dogs (such as Komondors and Bouviers) did not do double duty as guard dogs….rather….they were the dogs who were sent out to find, take care of, and bring home lost sheep. I will say it again…bearded collies are not guard dogs. They are lovers. It is in the breed description and if you have encountered a breeder who is selling dogs who are not so, those dogs are not consistent with the breed standard.
Regarding the breeder…I have never heard of Kiltie Bearded Collies. I cannot find a website for them online. I don’t see her dogs listed on any registries for shows or at the AKC. Was she a show breeder? Were your dog’s parents championed? Did you meet them (at least the mother)? Was she (the dam) sweet and friendly when you came to see her? Was the premises clean? Were the dogs in this house all friendly? Were there only bearded collies there? If this was a good breeder, the answer to those questions should have been "Yes."
Fortunately, because bearded collies are not a hugely popular breed, there are fewer backyard breeders and puppy mills breeding bad dogs than with some other breeds like Golden Retrievers (who, have personalities much like beardies, but can come with a host of health issues due to overbreeding). However, that doesn’t mean that there are NO bad breeders out there. One has to be careful when choosing a breeder and it sounds like you had bad luck with yours. But, I can assure you, I have never met a bearded collie from a reputable breeder (and I have met hundreds) who was not very outgoing and friendly to everyone he or she met. This is a breed you can count on as therapy dogs and to be good with children.
There are reasons not to get a beardie. Their long coats require a great deal of grooming to prevent matting and keep them clean. If not trained, they can have "wanderlust" and take themselves on walks without permission. They have a tendency (again, if not trained) to try to jump up and kiss the faces of visitors, which many non-dog people don’t welcome. These are real, legitimate reasons why a bearded collie is not the best choice for everyone. But, a sweeter, smarter, friendlier breed does not exist.
Please understand, it is the breeder, and not the breed who were your problem…and that there are many good bearded collie breeders out there, if you just do your research and ask the right questions.
Again, I’m sorry you had a bad experience, but please do not discourage others from the joys of bringing this wonderful breed into their homes.
On Friday, March 15, 2002 at 11:10:14 AM UTC-4, Dave McKay wrote:
> Our tale of sadness of being a Bearded Collie owner
> Our names are Suzanne and David McKay. We live in West Chester, Pa, and
> have 4 children and a Shetland Sheepdog and 3 cats. In the spring of 2000,
> we purchased a Beardie pup from Kiltie Kennels, also in Pa. . We paid $800.