On the Dog Breeds List, you can find a list of dog breeds ranked by intelligence. On this list, the Border Collie comes in as the number one most intelligent dog breed.
The German Shepard places as the 3rd most intelligent dog breed with the Standard Poodle intervening between the two.
To date, I have never seen a ranking of dogs by intelligence that did not include the Border Collie in the first place or the German Shepard in the top five.
This should be our first clue as to what the Shollie, the Border Collie and German Shepard mix, will be like.
According to TheHappyPuppySite Let’s talk a bit about the individual breeds that produce the Shollie. The Border Collie has been around since the Romans controlled Britannia.
It is thought that their name comes from their origins herding sheep in the border area of England and Scotland. Also, ‘Collie’ is a Scottish Gaelic term simply meaning sheepdog.
The exceptional intelligence of these dogs comes through in their easy trainability and there ability to perform somewhat complex tasks on their own.
They can be told what to do when it comes to herding sheep and they have an uncanny ability to make their own decisions to accomplish that task.
Even though they are a very old breed, for some reason, they were not registered as an official breed with the American Kennel Club (AKC) till 1995.
The German Shepard Breed is actually much younger. This breed was created in Germany before the turn of the 20th century by Max Von Stephanitz. It was recognized by the AKC as an official breed in 1908.
The German Shepard was meant to be a herding breed that could do its job in adverse conditions. This breed soon became known for its loyalty and trainability.
Combine these characteristics with its size and you can clearly see why the German Shepard is prized for its role in police work and military operations.
It is no surprise then that by combining these two dog breeds you would get a dog of exceptional intelligence, fierce loyalty, and unflagging energy. This is what the Shollie is all about.
The Shollie has yet to be registered as a separate breed with the AKC. According to K9Web, Some dog clubs do recognize the Shollie.
One that specializes in mixed breeds is the American Canine Hybrid Club. Also, the Dog Registry of America, Inc. recognizes the Shollie.
According to Perfect Dog Breeds, It ought to be noted that the main reason for the AKC not recognizing the Shollie could be that it is difficult to write a standard for.
A standard is the set of criteria by which a breed is judged. To do that for a Shollie is pretty much impossible.
While in many cases the coat of the Shollie may be tan, similar to a German Shepard, This is often not the case. Sometimes coats are black with splotches of white. There are pure white Shollies. Other colors like red or merle blue can be part of the Shollie coat.
There are Shollies with the build and musculature of a German Shepard but with floppy ears and a less bushy tail like the Border Collie. Some have the build of a Border Collie but with straight ears and a bushy tail like a German Shepard.
Not much is generally true about the Shollie. They tend to be anywhere from 45 to 80 pounds in weight. Their height is from 21 to 27 inches tall when they are fully grown.
The more their body type represents the Collie parent the shorter and lighter they will be. Those things that all Shollies should have in common are double coats and the fact that they shed with the approach of summer.
According to Animalso, What mainly sets the Shollie apart is the character of this mix: intelligence, loyalty, and energy. Let’s see how these traits make the Shollie such a great family dog.
While the Shollie should never be left with very small children unsupervised, it is important that the Shollie get to know all family members as soon as possible.
Once the Shollie gets to know who is in his/her family group, the less likely this dog will act out in an aggressive way toward these family members.
The Shollie tends to be wary of and sometimes aggressive toward strangers. This trait can be utilized to protect your family, but it can be a problem when a friend or relative comes to visit.
Be sure to introduce the Shollie to any stranger in controlled circumstances. Have your friend or relative give your Shollie a dog biscuit or other treat to show that this stranger does not represent a danger.
To help control any aggressive tendencies your Shollie may have. It is important to teach your dog when it is not okay to bark.
Even though Shollies do not tend to be frequent barkers anyway, it is still important to suppress their instinct to bark as much as possible so that you can train them when it is appropriate to bark.
For instance, you can withhold a treat from them as long as they keep barking and only given them the treat when they stop barking.
You can also ignore your Shollie if he/she barks inappropriately and only give your dog attention when he/she stops.
Then have a neighbor come over, pretending to break into your home and give him/her a treat when the dog barks as appropriate. A well-trained Shollie can be a great security asset for you and your family.
Because the Shollie is such a high energy dog you and your family will love playing with him/her. You and your Shollie can spend hours playing frisbee or fetch the ball with your Shollie.
Your Shollie should be taken on long walks on a daily basis. If you live near a dog park, that would be an ideal place for your Shollie to play with other dogs.
It should be noted that the Shollies energy level can be a two-edged sword. For those who are homebodies or who do not have the time to commit to your dog, the Shollie is not likely right for you.
This is because if the Shollie does not get enough exercise and training, their mind will inevitably think up destructive things to do.
This could include digging holes in one’s back yard, knocking things over and breaking them, tearing up one’s shoes or other articles of clothing.
The Shollie is only right for those who have the time and commitment to keep up with the Sholly’s energy level. This dog is best suited for sizeable families, the more children the better.
The Shollie can also be good for an individual who simply has a lot of time to dedicate to training the Shollie and to helping him/her exercise this dog’s amazing mental capacity through such activities as agility training and flyball.
If you have ever been to a dog show you probably know about dog agility and how complex it can be. Dogs have to pass through a series of obstacles as quickly as possible.
These obstacles include tunnels, seesaws, A-frames and the type of obstacle shown in the above-linked video. This is the perfect mental training for a Shollie.
A flyball is a relay event where dogs perform in teams and must run down a course to get a ball and return before the next dog goes. The team that collects all the balls first wins. This game is a really good release for the Shollie’s pent up energy.
Aside from just plain physical activity for your Shollie training is important. Besides doing the basic sit, stay, roll over commands; train your Shollie to get the paper in the morning.
Try to do tests for your Shollie that will challenge his/her mind. Put some sort of barrier between your Shollie and his/her favorite treat and see if your dog can devise a way to get to it. Hide kibble throughout the house and watch your Shollie try to find it all.
The Shollie is notable for how affectionate this dog can be. They love to cuddle and lick their owners and constantly play and interact in all sorts of ways.
They are always ready for a game of tug with a towel or article of clothing. If you like a dog that you may be having constant interactions with, the Shollie may be for you.
As with any dog breed, it is important to discuss the Shollie’s maintenance and health. It is important to brush the Shollie’s thick coat at least twice a week to prevent matting.
If matting occurs it is an extra expense to have to take your dog to a groomer and have it removed. As noted above, the Shollie sheds. So be prepared with brush rollers to clean up shedding hair.
The Shollie should be fed twice a day one and a half cups of dog food. You can choose wet food or dry food but the should contain at least 25 percent animal protein.
Unlike some breeds, the Shollie is quite healthy and often goes 15 years or more without major health problems, but there are some things a Shollie inherits from the parent breeds.
Hip dysplasia can be a problem inherited from the German Shepard parent. Epilepsy is a problem with Border Collies and is also inheritable.
Other problems that can show up sometimes are Deafness, eye problems or anomalies, allergies, Bloat, and Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency.
To save on possible vet bills it might be a good idea to buy pet health insurance that is widely available these days, usually at an affordable price.
If you are considering the purchase of a Shollie puppy, be aware that it can cost you between 450 to 950 dollars in the US. It is preferential to go directly to the breeder for this purchase.
You simply do not know what you are getting from a pet store that may get a puppy from a puppy mill that has lax breeding and sanitary standards.
By going directly to the breeder you can check the paperwork of the parents to make certain they are both purebreds.
You can get a good look at the parents to see whether they have good temperaments. You can check to make certain that the puppy has had all of its recommended shots. You can satisfy yourself that the breeding area is sanitary and in good condition.
Finally, if the breeder is truly reputable he/she will not be too quick to let the puppies go. They will check into you, the buyer, to be certain the puppy is going to go a good home.
They may ask seemingly intrusive questions about your income, your home life and your plans for the dog. Don’t be offended. This is all part of a responsible breeder’s responsibility to get good homes for their pups.
After purchasing a puppy, please be aware that expenses will continue. At a minimum, you will spend 475 to a thousand dollars a year on feeding.
This does not include accessories like a leash, collar, harness, cage or toys. There will be visits to the vet. Even though Shollies are not recommended for apartments, if you happen to live in an apartment you will often find that you pay extra rent per month for your pet.
If you are a busy professional who doesn’t have that much time for your Shollie you will definitely want your dog in doggie daycare. You may also want professional training for your Shollie and expenses will become an issue.
Clearly, owning a Shollie is a big responsibility, but they give a lot of love and affection to give in return. Shollies crave their owner’s attention and the responsible owner wants their Shollie to have a good life.
Please please do not get a Shollie unless you or your family can provide this dog with the attention it needs or can pay someone to provide that attention.