The McNab Border Collie is one of the lesser known breeds of herding dog that originates from California in the United States. This small-medium breed has many fantastic traits that make it ideal as both a pet or as a working dog. If you have not heard of this dog before, you may be interested in learning a little more about the breed. Here are ten facts about the McNab Border Collie that you probably did not know.
1. They Were First Bred by Alexander McNab
In the late 19th century, Alexander McNab left Scotland and established a sheep ranch in the area that is now Hopland, California. He needed herding dogs that could cope with the rough terrain at his ranch. He crossed the Scottish Collies that he had brought with him when he emigrated with other sheepherding breeds of dog.
2. They Are Skittish
Most herding dogs are described as calm, collected and intelligent. While this is true of the McNab Border Collie to an extent, the breed is also described as being a little skittish. This is unusual in comparison to other herding breeds.
3. They Have Cat-Like Feet
There are many physical characteristics that define a McNab Border Collie, but one of the most unusual features of this dog is their paws, which are often described as being cat-like in their appearance.
4. Some Have Docked Tails
Naturally, the McNab Border Collie has a long tail. However, many owners dock their tails, especially if it is being kept as a working dog. This is to prevent their tail from hindering them in their duties. However, docking is an outlawed practise in many countries where it is considered cruel and unnecessary. For this reason, you may see some McNab Border Collies with long tails and others with their tails docked.
5. They Need a Lot of Exercise
The McNab Border Collie is not the best breed of dog for people who live in apartments to keep because they need a lot of exercise. Ideally, they need to go for a run at least once a day.
6. They Are Known by Several Names
Although most people refer to this breed as the McNab Border Collie, it is known by several other names. These include the McNab Stock Dog, the McNab Collie, the McNab Sheepdog, and the McNab Herding Dog. It is sometimes simply referred to as the McNab Dog.
7. They Are Not Recognized as a Standardized Breed
This dog is not recognized as a standardized breed by any of the major breed registries or kennel clubs anywhere in the world, such as the United Kennel Club or the American Kennel Club. For this reason, although it is generally considered as a herding breed, they are not officially classified into any particular category.
8. They Are Popular for Dog Sports
Originally, this bred was predominantly used for herding sheep and then expanded to herding many other species of animal. They have since become popular for use in dog sports as they are intelligent and agile. They are also good at endurance activities as working dogs can often run over one hundred miles in a day while completing their herding duties. Some of the sports in which they participate include disc dog, agility trials, flyball, dock diving, and ranch dog herding.
9. They Are Sensitive to Some Drugs
Although this breed is considered generally healthy and does not have any specific health conditions to which it is prone, they may carry the MDR1 mutant gene. This makes them very sensitive to some drugs that vets commonly prescribe, and they may suffer from a severe reaction. There is a test available to check if dogs are carriers of this mutant gene that simply involves taking a cheek swab. This healthy breed of dog will usually have a life expectancy of between 13 and 15 years.
10. There Are Several Color Variations
There are several color variations of the McNab Border Collie breed available. The most common of these is either red or black with white markings on the feet, neck, face, and the tip of the tail. However, this is not the only variation available. They also come in all black or tricolor with various markings. Their coat is dense and weather-resistant.