One of the larger designer dog crosses, the "borador" is a mix of the Labrador retriever and border collie breeds. That doesn't mean you end up with a dog that herds birds: It means you love a big dog that's energetic, athletic and friendly.
According to American Kennel Club standards, the border collie's height ranges between 18 and 22 inches at the shoulder, while the Labrador retriever's height ranges between 21.5 to 24.5 inches. The Lab's weight runs between 55 and 75 pounds, while the border collie ranges between 30 and 45 pounds. In both breeds, males are larger than females. Your borador should fall somewhere in the middle of the two parent breeds, almost as tall as but thinner than the Lab.
The borador typically appears as a mix of both breeds, with the black and white coat of the border collie or a predominately black Lab or golden Lab coloring with white markings on the face, chest and feet. If your borador leans more to the Lab side of the family, he'll probably shed quite a bit. However, the borador's coat is relatively dander-free, so that's a plus for family and friends suffering from mild dog dander allergies.
This is not the type of dog for you if your primary recreational activity consists of sitting on the couch, watching TV. The borador crosses two of the more active breeds in the canine world, so this dog requires some serious exercise. Both breeds are high-energy dogs that don't tire easily. The Lab blood does calm down the border collie hyperactivity somewhat, but this is not the dog for a small apartment or just a daily walk around the block. On the other hand, if you like to run or take long walks, the borador fills the bill. His energy matches that of young children and he's ready for rough-and-tumble, so he makes a great family dog.
Good-natured and friendly, the borador descends from two highly intelligent dog breeds. Labs are the dog of choice for serving the blind and disabled, while the border collie's work ethic is second to no other canine. The borador should excel at obedience and agility training as well as other canine sports like Frisbee. If your dog tends more to the border collie side he might be excitable, but this is something that good training can improve. The borador is an excellent companion for active owners.
Jane Meggitt has been a writer for more than 20 years. In addition to reporting for a major newspaper chain, she has been published in "Horse News," "Suburban Classic," "Hoof Beats," "Equine Journal" and other publications. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English from New York University and an Associate of Arts from the American Academy of Dramatics Arts, New York City.