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Damn hard. You'll probably be able to get 2 out of 3, but all three is going to be tough, particularly if you care about tempermental soundness, lack of cancer and thyroid problems, and lack of bloat in the bloodlines.

Of those three, I'd worry about MDR1 the least, simply because it's just not that big of a deal - you just don't give ivermectin and you check the drug list for otehr possibilities. (That said, even MDR1 free dogs CAN have drug sensitivities; Wings was MDR1 clear and her seizures started the day after a normal Frontline dose- timing may be coincidental, though.)

CEA sucks, and eliminating it to ME is very important, but mildly affected dogs have no real quality of life impairment. There ARE good breeders breeding CEA normal dogs out there, but they're few and far between- and there are a number of BAD breeders who are using health testing 'clear' as 'proof' that they're good. PM me for more info about the specifics on this one (The problem being that you can't 'test' for good temperament short of performance titles, and the scariest (to me) health problesm are also untestable- bloat and epilepsy.) The Valiant dogs are behind nearly ALL of the normal-eyed dogs out there and their temperaments were wonky and the pedigrees pretty suspect.

PRA is a concern, but I don' tknow how common it's actually going to prove to be. We'll see. I think that's the easiest one to find a dog that's clear of.
 

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Do the collie owners here think that a smooth collie could be a good running partner? I'm considering one in the future.
Yes.
Ours loves to exercise, yet he doesn't go crazy if we have bad weather for a few days and I can't get him out to exercise.

Another cool fact about Collies: besides the choice of a rough or smooth coat you also get a choice in colors. Tri, sable, blue merle or white. No two collies really look exactly alike vs. Goldens which other then the shading of their coat, they are all the same color.
 

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Do the collie owners here think that a smooth collie could be a good running partner? I'm considering one in the future.
Absolutely! My only caveat would be to use common sense. For example, I would not take it out running during the hottest part of a humid summer day. But I would not take any dog out running at those times.

To the OP: Other than sometimes being a bit barky or nippy (they're herding dogs) and being overly sensitive at times (they can be real drama queens and kings LOL) I really don't know anything negative about Collies. Some might say the grooming for a Rough or the shedding for both varieties but the former can be enjoyable if you keep it up regularly and the other under control with a good quality diet and regular grooming. Not that I'm prejudiced or anything, of course :D
 

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I'll third the fact that the Collie's energy level is awesome...Teddy loves to come with us wherever we go and will tear around a fenced in yard for hours on end; but on days where we just walk him and come home he's content to just lie around.
 

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Thanks for posting this question, Waves! My hubby and I were also trying to decide between collies and goldens a while back, but finally settled on applying to rescue a collie. Goldens are more readily available in our area, but we decided that the pro's outweighed the con's for collies...so we're prepared to wait a while to find the perfect match. We have three cats, no kids yet, but do occasionally have company with small children...so we were looking for similar qualities in a dog. We decided that for us, the mouthiness of retrievers was the biggest drawback. We have enough trouble with our cats chewing things to bits, and didn't want to add a highly chew-oriented dog to the mix. The energy level and tendency for goldens to remain puppy-like for years was also a consideration. We love puppies, but I'm not sure we'd want a full-grown dog that is just as active as a 12-week old pup!
 

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I think the drug sensitivity is the least of your worries. It's lower on my list. Just don't give them anything that they should be sensitive to, and you should be fine.

There are a few breeders who do normal eyes. Not many, though.
 

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I think the drug sensitivity is the least of your worries. It's lower on my list. Just don't give them anything that they should be sensitive to, and you should be fine.
I agree with this. Both of my boys are MDR1 mu/mu. We just have to avoid some meds. But it doesn't affect them in general. I do think it's wise to know what your dog's MDR1 status is. The test is a quick buccal swab... easy.
 

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Okay, I'm going to biased here....I have 8 dogs, 6 of which are Goldens. I have ALWAYS wanted a Collie though (like someone else up there in the thread said, who doesn't want a 'Lassie'?). They're gorgeous. I'm partial to long haired dogs. I need another dog like I need a hole in the head, so I haven't even thought about researching Collies to get one....maybe one day...

Anyway, here's my take on the Golden Retriever:

PROS
~They live for a long time (if properly cared for). Usually 10-15 years.
~They are versatile! Obedience, agility, field work, search and rescue, drug dogs, guides for the blind and handicapped, dock dogs,...the list goes on and on
~That "Golden" temperament. Loyal, sweet, affectionate, always aim to please
~Great with kids. They don't mind having their tails pulled or a toddler climbing over them (although this should be avoided).
~They are smart and obedient. They love to learn, and are quick on their feet.
~They are active in the backyard, and somewhat lazy in the house. They love to swim whether it be in a pond or a swimming pool.
~They are not barkers, meaning the average Golden won't keep you or you neighbors up at all hours of the night barking. They also don't make good watch dogs, as they'll happily greet and accept most strangers.
~Great with other dogs and pets!
~Highly adaptable to most any environment/living arrangement.


CONS
~They shed a lot. If this is going to be primarily a house dog, daily or at least 2-3 times weekly brushing is a must. A good vacuum cleaner and a Furminator "type" of brush is a must. Good nutrition will keep shedding to a minimum and coat shiney.
~They are mouthy. This is a natural breed trait obviously bred into them for the "Retriever" part of them. If it's laying around, they will pick it up and bring it for you to play fetch with.
~They can be big chewers. Provide lots of INDESTRUCTABLE toys (think Nylabones and Kongs)
 

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~Highly adaptable to most any environment/living arrangement.
I have to give my dog props on adaptability. Our house is way more than average hectic. Closer to chaos, really. The dog is not fazed by much of anything as long as he gets to be part of the action.
 
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