How to Groom a Rough-Haired Collie

Updated November 21, 2016

Grooming rough-haired collies is very important as this breed of dog has a double coat and usually requires twice the amount of care versus that of a smooth-coated collie. The outer coat of a rough-haired collie is comprised of long hair that can be coarse to the touch. The undercoat tends to be much softer and the fur is much more compact and tighter. Grooming your collie is not only beneficial for you in establishing a closer bond with your pet, but alerts you to any health concerns such as fleas, ticks, lumps and more.

Prepare the bathing area where you will wash your dog by having all necessary tools close at hand when needed. Thoroughly wet the dog's coat and then apply shampoo that is specially formulated for dogs. Use a rubber curry brush (such as the Kong Zoom Groom), which not only aids in removing excess hair and keeps it on the brush, but also stimulates blood flow. After rinsing the shampoo, apply a doggy conditioner, work it into the dog's coat and then rinse it thoroughly.

Towel-dry your dog after it emerges from the bathing tub. If possible, work with your rough-haired collie using a table on which it can stand so you have better control and the dog is not on the floor, which it normally associates as its playing area. Use a hair dryer at its lowest setting being sure to move it around briskly so as not to burn the dog's skin.

Comb your collie with a good quality pin brush and use a comb for those smaller areas (such as ears, neck, throat and chest) and for its hind legs and tail, which usually require more grooming since these areas mat more easily.

Clip your dog's toenails with a high-quality pair of clippers that do not pull the dog's nails or result with a ragged cut that requires filing later. Some owners like to trim the fir around dogs' paws to keep them clean, but be careful if you decide to do this.

Insert an ear cleaner (which can be purchased at pet stores and some veterinarian offices) and gently rub the base of your dog's ears to coax the solution around. Gently wipe out the excess solution using a soft cotton cloth.

Brush your dog's teeth with dog toothpaste (such as Petrodex Enzymatic Toothpaste, poultry flavoured) on a regular basis to keep its teeth and gums healthy. Do not use toothpaste for humans as dogs are unable to spit and rinse. If you are uncomfortable brushing your dog's teeth, be sure to have a vet examine your pet on a regular basis as most dogs suffer some form of dental disease at least once during their lifetime.


Bathe and groom your rough-haired collie at a very early age to get it used to the process and to increase the bond between you and the dog. Rough-haired collies should be brushed on a regular basis, such as once a day, but no less than twice a week to keep tangles and matting at bay. If you are uncertain about clipping a dog's toenails or brushing its teeth, be sure to let a professional groomer take care of these tasks.

Things You'll Need

  • Dog shampoo and conditioner
  • Rubber curry brush
  • Pin brush
  • Comb
  • Nail clippers
  • Ear cleaner
  • Cotton cloth
  • Toothbrush and dog toothpaste
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