and I contacted Border Collie Rescue because, of course,
we were looking for a Border
Our previous collie, Willow, had sadly
had to be put to sleep at only 20 months old the day
before Christmas Eve.
After saying we
would not have another dog we were soon looking on all
of the rescue sites, but we knew that we were looking
for a very special dog.
I manage a
Local Nature Reserve and needed a dog who would not only
be a pet at home and mix in with children and 5 cats,
but could also come to work with me.
A dog would need to be good with strangers, mix
in with the volunteers and their dogs, not chase the
wildlife or the Highland cattle that we have on site.
When Nicki Oliver, from Border Collie
Rescue, rang me to say that there was a suitable dog in the care of
the charity and told me about Annie, she sounded
Then Nicki said that she was 13 years old! My
initial reaction was that she was far too old.
a dog who was up to being outside all day if necessary.
Who would be able to
keep up with a quad bike when needed, in all weathers,
and not be so worn out that it couldn’t do the same
thing the next day again!
Nicki assured us that Annie was very fit
for her age, so we agreed to go down for a visit.
to say that Annie does not look her age. We brought her
home on a 4 weeks trial and the next day she was at
For the first couple of weeks she seemed
very bewildered at what was going on.
along after me with her head down.
In the last couple of
weeks though she has found her bounce and been an
OK, she’s not running around like a
puppy, but she goes all day, is brilliant at greeting
visitors, and so what if she gets a ride in the trailer
instead of running alongside!
Annie is the perfect fit
to our lifestyle.
She is a marvelous pet at home, good
with the cats, who’ve become friends already, and a
lovely working companion.
My last thought is to say don’t discount
older dogs; they have something to offer even if they
are not quite in their prime.
Also, trust Nicki to match a dog to what
She gets to know the dogs that come her way
and she definitely matched Annie to us.
I leave you with a small piece
from Annie herself:
My name is Annie and I am a 13 year old Border Collie.
I was brought to Border Collie Rescue after my first family went back to another country called Australia.
I had been there before - when I was just a young pup - and then we all moved here to the UK where I had
originally been born, but the vets thought I was too old to go back with them this time and advised them, for my sake, not to risk it.
That’s how I came to Border Collie Rescue.
They took me and my older friend "Irma" into their care. They were very good to us and although we didn’t really know what was happening at first, it was great fun and they kept us so busy we didn't have time to feel unhappy or dwell on the past.
Then in February this year I was introduced to some new people. They patted me and made a fuss of me.
After a walk in the paddocks at Border Collie Rescue they took me home to their house.
That evening, when I got to my new home I had to get used to 5 new cats!
They did not seem to bother about me. I just ignored them and they ignored me. We’re on friendly terms now I’ve been here a while.
I kept my reserve for the first couple of weeks as I got used to a new routine and learned about my new family and home. It's always best not to give away too much until you know what your got yourself into!
It turned out they are very much like my old family and our personalities work well together so I was soon able to drop my guard and show them what I was made of.
There is one major difference which really suits an intelligent and outgoing dog like me.I have a new job to do!
I now go to work on a Nature Reserve where there are lots of people and dogs to meet and acres of open space for me to run around in - as long as I behave myself!. I don’t need to be on a lead and I have my own corner of the office to curl up in when I’m tired. I get quite a lot of attention when I’m there and part of my job is to meet and greet visitors, which is nice.
It’s very reassuring at my time of life to know I can still keep up with the young ones!
It's also very nice to know that my qualities are still valued.I am now quite happy and have settled in with my new family.
It’s different from before, but in a good way.
Thank you Border Collie Rescue for finding me this new family.
Border Collie Rescue will not turn away a dog on account of its age. We don't 'cherry pick' dogs, we rescue them.
The way we measure success is not by numbers we re-home but by getting it right for those we do - finding them the best home we can - one that suits them and
fulfills their needs.
Border Collie Rescue frequently takes in older dogs from 10 years upward.
It's true that if you adopt one of these dogs there is a risk that it may not be with you for as long as a younger one, but life cannot carry any sort of guarantee and with the risk comes a reward for those prepared to take it.
Special people and homes are needed for these older dogs. People who have empathy for a dog.
If you are interested in adopting a Border Collie from us,
please phone 0845 604 4941 during office hours.
(2 pm to 5 pm Tuesdays to Thursdays)
Please do not write to us or email us about adoption - we want to speak to you before we start the process.