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Is Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix The Best Designer Dog?

Is Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix The Best Designer Dog?

Let the debate start. The topic is — Can we say that the Border Collie Golden Retriever mix is the best designer dog?

They are friendly, full of energy, and utterly affectionate toward family members. This is a mix dog made by mixing some of the most loved and adorable dog breeds in the whole world!

But what makes a designer dog the best one? There are lots of designer dogs, and I am certain some are being made right now. So, how to tell which one is the best?

It depends on what you are looking for. If we look for the physical and mental compatibility of two purebred dogs that make a designer dog, then Gollie or Border Collie Golden Retriever mix is on top of the list.

We’ll see all of the traits of a Coltriever (another name for our mixed dog) including the looks, temperament, and health. You can decide on your own if this mixed dog deserves to be called one of the best designer dogs in the world.

Don’t forget, this dog has many names — Golden Border Collie, Gollie, Coltriever, Golden Border Retriever, and Golden Collie.

Meet The Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix

border collie golden retriever mix lying on the grass
Photo from: @lillamarliecus

Here we go! It is the ultimate guide to one of the most loyal dogs among mixed breeds! It is the Golden Retriever Border Collie mix. We want to know more about the dog that has such beautiful looks and amazing temperamental traits at the same time! We want to know where they come from.

What kind of DNA chains and the genes that they make, are responsible for such a joyful floof? Who gave the Gollie such gorgeous and loving eyes that steal your heart right away? And there is more! This dog can bring you back things you throw without training! Almost without training…

They are also constantly trying to herd the ducks in the backyard. What’s up with that? Are there answers to all of our questions? Hold your horses! Or better yet, hold that leash tight!

The answer lies in the parent breeds. We will find the answer to all our questions if we take a closer look at the dog’s parents. The topic of our debate is a type of mixed dog, so we need to look at the things that made the mix — parents.

That’s where the genes come from, after all. We are all made from information written in the chromosomes we got from our parents.

It’s the same with dogs. They have 78 chromosomes — 39 from mom and 39 from dad. Let’s read those chromosomes. Reading time!

Who Are The Parents?

border collie golden retriever lying on the bed
Photo from: @dummy.dubbie

We are going to meet the mom and dad of the Golden Collie mix dog. They have two purebred dogs in their bloodline. Both dog parents originated in Scotland. One was made for herding and another one for retrieving prey from the water.

Who are our mystery parents? This is not the Jerry Springer show, we already know all about the parents. It’s the famous Golden Retriever and the high-energy Border Collie. Don’t get me wrong — Collie is also popular.

But the Golden Retriever is a true golden boy of so many families all across the States and Europe. It is no wonder that everyone knows what this beautiful dog looks like. They are in the movies, TV shows, commercials, etc.

On the other hand, the Border Collie is extremely famous among herders and farm workers as one of the best shepherd dogs. And, for a very good reason! It’s the best dog to gather the flock!

So, as we can see, this lovely ball of fluff is a dog made by mixing two very popular and famous dogs. It’s time to put those popular parents into the spotlight.

Border Collie

Do you know that the word Collie is a Scottish word used for herding dogs? And, that the word Border in the name of the Border Collie comes from a literal border — a state border? Aye, this dog was thriving in the border region, between Scotland and England.

So, we can literally translate the name and call the dog the State Border Herding dog. The Scots must be proud of this dog breed. It is not only absolutely beautiful, but it is as smart as a whip!

This is one of the most intelligent dogs, and they thrive in obedience and agility competitions. Pay attention to these traits as they will come up in our mixed puppy, as well.

Of course, there are other amazing Border mixes. People realized the beauty and intelligence of this dog and started breeding it with other dog breeds. For example, there is a very popular Border Corgi mix or a Borgi.

Just like the Borgi, our Golden boy Gollie inherited a lot from its wonderful Border Collie parent. From being an amazing family pet to having amazing coat colors and coat patterns.

Golden Retriever

I believe that we all know a person that has a Golden Retriever dog. It’s your neighbor, your colleague, your mom’s friend, anyone. That is how popular these dogs are. The only possibly more popular dog with similar physical traits is Labrador Retriever.

But still, once bred and used as brilliant bird-hunting dogs, today they are one of the most loved family dogs around the world.

Golden Retrievers were bred by mixing an extinct breed of dog called the Tweed Water Spaniel with the first Golden version called the Yellow Retriever. They also added Irish Setters and Bloodhounds into the mix.

The outcome was the gundog who could withstand rainy weather and harsh terrain and climates — the Golden Retriever we know today.

When you have such a lovable pooch, the next logical step is to make some kind of Golden Retriever mix and make an even better doggo! And that’s where our amazing Golden Collie comes into the spotlight!

Origin Of The Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix

beautiful border collie golden retriever in the park
Photo from: @pippa_pupperoni

So far, we’ve met the parents and we know that the Gollie is going to inherit some amazing traits of a working dog. But where did this amazing crossbreed originate?

We don’t know. I know this is not a satisfying answer, but it is often the truth with mixed dogs or designer dogs. We know that the Golden Retriever’s origins start around the 1840s and we also know that the Border Collie has Viking origins.

But the crossbreeding of these two dogs started much, much later. The American Kennel Club (AKC) registered Collies in 1995 and Golden Retrievers came to the club in 1925.

According to the registry year, it means that our magnificent Golden Collie couldn’t have shown up in the doggy world up until the 21st century. But that doesn’t have to be the case. People use dogs to create new mixes long before they are officially registered by the AKC.

The possible year of the Golden Collie’s origin could be around the ‘80s. This is all just a guess. There are no records of when this mix was first bred.

So, simply put — the year and the place of the Gollie origin is unknown. It can be assumed that it happened either in the UK or in the States.

Appearance Of The Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix

border collie and golden retriever sitting in the car
Photo from: @riverlandgollies

We can say that the Border Collie Golden Retriever mix is a large dog. Sometimes, depending on the genes, the size can be more of a Pitbull than a Golden Retriever. But it all comes down to those chromosomes we’ve already talked about.

They will tell us about the appearance of the Golden Collie. Will our new mixed puppy be a dog that has a rose ear shape or floppy ears like its Golden Retriever parent? Let’s see the physical traits of the parent breeds first.

After that, we can see the possible looks of the Golden Border Collie. From head to toe…I mean paw. From head to paw.

Border Collie Appearance

Our first lassie (or laddie) is a medium-sized dog with an average height of 22 inches and an average weight of 30 to 50 pounds.

Border Collie puppies have a wavy, medium-length double coat. As for their coat color, they can come in many coat color variations, but the most famous is the black and white color. These dogs are shedders, and they will shed more during the shedding seasons.

But their shedding is easily tolerated when you realize what an amazing and smart doggo this is. Once again, this is not a dog for everyone. They are very active and can be put into the high-maintenance dog group, but only because of their need for an active lifestyle.

Not everyone can follow up with such a high-energy demanding dog, which means their mixed-breed puppy will also have a lot of energy! This is very important to know if you plan on getting any Collie mix, especially our Golden Collie mix.

Golden Retriever Appearance

The Golden Scottish dog or the Golden Retriever can be put in the large dog group. But because they can weigh anywhere from 55 to 80 pounds, we can put them in the medium-sized dog group.

Their height is from 21 to 24 inches. There is a slight size difference between male and female Golden Retriever dogs. Female Golden Retrievers are usually smaller than males.

Their coat is of golden, dark golden, and light golden color. Just like the other parent of our Gollie, this dog parent also has a double medium-sized coat.

The Golden Retriever is truly a friendly pooch. They’ve won hearts all around the world with their kind nature. But this friendliness does not make them very good guard dogs.

This is a trait that will come up in the Golden Retriever crossbreed puppies, as well.

The Result Is…

border collie golden retriever dog in the forest
Photo from: @lillamarliecus

Add sugar, a bit of spice, and everything nice — it’s the Border Collie Golden Retriever mix! The Golden Collie will have the looks of its parents, of course, but what exactly can we expect to see?

The chances are equal. It can inherit the physical traits of both parents. In most cases, the crossbreed is somewhere in between the two breeds that were involved in its making.


The Border Collie Golden Retriever mix puppies will be larger dogs than their Collie parent and smaller than their Retriever parent. That is the usual case.

The average weight of the Golden Collie is between 60 and 70 pounds. The average height is around 20 inches, but some puppies might be taller than this.

This mixed dog has a proportioned and muscled body with a bushy tail happily wagging whenever they see you.

There are also Mini Border Collies and Mini Golden Retrievers. If we use these dogs to make a Gollie (mini Gollie), then we can expect much smaller puppies. But mini versions of both Collie and Golden Retriever are not purebred dogs.

They are also designer dogs. That changes the entire temperamental and physical traits of the Golden Collie puppies.


The head of the Border Collie Golden Retriever mix can have a narrower  and longer shape if the Collie genes are more dominant. But if the Golden Retriever genes are more dominant, then the muzzle and the head will be broader.

The ears are one of the cutest parts of this beautiful mixed dog. They can be floppy or rose ears. Both versions are fluffy and soft. The floppy shape comes from a Golden Retriever and the rose ear comes from Border Collie.

The eye color is brown — light brown or dark brown. Very rarely, they can be blue. The blue color comes from the Border Collie side.

Color of the Coat

This is trickier to predict. Why? Because Collies have  a lot of different coat colors and different coat markings — white, merle, tan, etc.

The Golden Retriever has one — golden color. So, in general, the mixed puppies can inherit any possible Collie coat variation or that one color version from the other parent.

One of the prettiest color variations of this mixed dog is a light golden color with white markings. Beautiful! Pay attention to your Border Collie coat color. In most cases, that will determine the color of your future puppy.

Type of the Coat

This is easier to predict! Your new mixed puppy will have a medium-length and double-coat type. That is a certainty because both dog parents have such a coat.

The coat is close-fitting and resistant to water. The water resistance trait means it is dense and can be rough on the outside. The inner layer of the coat is soft and shorter than the outer layer. Longer hairs can be expected on the ears, at the back of the legs, and on the tail.


Now, don’t be disheartened when you hear that these dogs shed…a lot. Nothing is perfect and there is always at least one thing to get in the way.

But think about it this way — grooming is an amazing way to bond with your doggo! It can also be good obedience training, as well. If you start from an early age, teaching your pup how to behave during grooming is a good way to teach him some doggy manners.

Temperament Of The Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix

adorable border collie golden retriever dog in the kitchen
Photo from: @pippa_pupperoni

Looking into those almond-shaped eyes and seeing them wag their tails happily, one must assume these dogs are sweet-natured and gentle. And that is correct!

This is another reason to believe that the Golden Collie mix is one of the best designer dogs. They are not aggressive, they are friendly, open to strangers, and affectionate.

Some people wonder if Golden Retrievers are aggressive and if that aggression can influence the Golden Retriever mixed offspring. We can say that no dog is born aggressive.

The way we treat the dog and teach him how to behave in certain situations is what makes the dog aggressive. If we treat the dog with respect and love and make sure to give them proper socialization during puppyhood — there are no problems.

Here is what to expect from the Golden Collie mix:

  • High-energy
  • Good watchdogs
  • Possible separation anxiety
  • Lots of mental stimulation needed

Because of the high-energy trait and the fact that they need a lot of mental stimulation to keep them healthy and happy, these dogs might not be suitable for first-time dog owners.

Then again, if you are an active person that enjoys going on long walks or loves to hike and has  the time for it — go for it! This is the type of dog that will be most happy to accompany you on these trips!

Some say this is not a dog for a single person. But that is not true! It is easier to manage an active dog if you have more people who can do it and share the responsibility, but it can be just as easy if you are living alone.

As a matter of fact, you will enjoy all the fun times with your doggo and make the best friend for a long time! So, this dog is for everyone who has the time for an active dog!

Health Of The Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix

border collie golden retriever dog sleeping in his bed
Photo from: @lillamarliecus

If you get the puppy from a reputable breeder, then you won’t have a lot of problems with your dog’s health.

Both dog parent breeds are healthy dogs with few health problems. But as with any dog breed in the world, there are some health conditions that these dogs can be prone to. Consequently, these health issues can become health issues for their offspring too.

What can be a problem:

These problems can be avoided if you get a puppy from a responsible breeder that has done health screening of his or her dogs. There are health tests and evaluation programs available to check if your dog has some of the mentioned health issues.

A responsible breeder will not breed a dog that has some of these health issues or health conditions. Also, any test should be done by a professional veterinarian.

Healthy Diet

A very important part of the dog’s health is a healthy diet. What we feed our doggos is very important. It can influence the health of the digestive system, coat and skin, teeth, etc.

There are several types of diets to feed our dogs:

  • Kibble (dry dog food)
  • Raw meat diet
  • Homemade diet

All of these types of diets have their pros and cons. The most recommended type of diet by veterinarians around the world is kibble. They recommend kibble food because it helps with oral health, is well-balanced, and is not time-consuming.

But this is only the case with good food brands. What are good food brands? Good brands have a high percentage of proteins and a low percentage of carbohydrates in their kibble dog food. They also have the necessary vitamins and minerals.

No matter the minerals and vitamins in your dog’s dry food, you can always enrich your dog’s diet by adding some veggies safe for dogs. For example, you can add a few brussels sprouts, broccoli, carrots, etc.

The Average Lifespan

Our mixed beauty, the best designer dog in the world, has an average lifespan of its parents. The Border Collie has a longer life expectancy than the Golden Retriever. On average the Collie will live for around 15 years.

The Golden Retriever, on the other hand, has a few years shorter lifespan. So, that would mean that their mixed offspring will have an average lifespan of 13 or 14 years, but it can be longer than that.

If we give our dog a lot of love and affection, give him high-quality food, take him for  regular vet checks, and spend enough time on activities — our dogs can live longer than the average life expectancy.

The Average Price Of The Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix

border collie golden retriever puppies eating from a bowl
Photo from: @riverlandgollies

When we want to find out the average price of a dog, whether it’s a purebred dog or a crossbreed, we need to ask ourselves a few questions about the breeder or the person who sells the puppies.

We all want to buy a puppy from a breeder that is professional, reputable, and well-known in the breeding business. That way, the chances of buying a puppy that has a lot of health issues are very low.

But with a good reputation comes a higher price for a puppy. On average, the price of the Border Collie Golden Retriever mix puppy is between $600 and $2000. This price can be much higher if you get the puppy from a breeder that has Champion bloodline purebred dogs.

Also, it can be a lot less if you get a puppy from a home breeder that does the breeding as  a hobby. Or if they just want to sell the puppies because they don’t plan on keeping them and they are looking for good homes.

In either case, take a look at the dog’s parents. If you do get a puppy from a breeder, asking for health tests is a must. Why would you pay more if they won’t show you the reason behind such a high price?

Then again, if you adopt a puppy or get it from a home breeder that doesn’t breed dogs professionally, you won’t have any proof your dog does not have genetically inherited diseases, for example, hip dysplasia or progressive retinal atrophy.

Where to Adopt?

The short answer is — animal shelters. But you will have to go and search your local animal shelters on your own. Or you can subscribe to some online animal adoption programs and get an alert if there is a dog type you want.

These are some of the websites you can check:

And of course, check animal shelters in your area to see if there are some Golden Collie puppies or dogs for adoption. Adopting a pet from a shelter is an amazing thing to do — you are saving a life! But it also means that you won’t know what kind of puppy or dog you are getting, genetically speaking, of course.

That means you don’t know if the dog has some hereditary diseases or health conditions that can show up sometime during your dog’s life. But it’s a bargain we’re ready to say yes to.

The Conclusion

It is the closing time of our debate. The winner is most definitely the team who said that this mix is among the best (if not the best) designer dogs in the world!

This is a bold thing to say, but we saw all the wonderful traits this mixed doggo can have. They inherited the best traits from their dog parents and are enjoying the love they get from us!

This mixed dog is friendly and affectionate. Golden Collies are also very loyal, sweet-natured, and energetic dogs. Remember they love to do things, so mentally stimulating them daily is a priority to keep them happy. And a happy dog is a healthy dog!

Take them on long walks, go on a hike, or play a good game  of fetch with your Gollie and you will both have a wonderful time and your doggo will be a happy, shiny, and healthy pooch.

They can live in an apartment, but because of their active nature, the best option would be a place with a yard for them to run around and keep themselves busy. A yard is also a great way to keep your dog active and entertained while you have some work to do.

No matter the place you live — a home or an apartment, the Golden Collie mix will be an amazing addition to your home.