Always, smaller eyes (pig eyes) are more desirable for a lot of judges/breeders because they think it gives the dog better expression, makes them look sweeter.
Personally, I hate a small pig eye on a Collie and would never breed for it. I like Cas' eyes just fine, though it would be nice if everyone else wasn't aiming for smaller eyes because then he and others like him just stick out.
Indy, I agree about taping the ears. It should be something that comes natural and doesn't require a roll of duct tape and a can of starter fluid to accomplish.
Founder of the American Working Collie Association.
Actually, small eyes, whether piggy or not, are highly undesirable. Our standard asks for a medium sized eye, almond shape, and set in such a way as to help in his work as a herding dog. They have great peripheral vision, anong other things. The reason you're seeing a number of small eyes is that some people take the excessive notion -- supposed to have medium sized eyes? Well, gosh darn I'll try for a smaller eye to see if it makes it prettier. Doesn't make sense, does it? This can easily lead to microphthalmia and it's issues. Look at coat - this is historically a very old herding breed (and they still work though not as frequently or as obsessively as the Border Collie, his cousin), it was intended to be a good, well fitting coat to help protect the long-haired version (Rough-coated) of our Scotch breed in the severe weather of the Highlands. The Short-haired version (Smooth coated) worked more often in the Lowlands and so only needed a tight-fitting double jacket of short hair. With the Roughs,show breeders tend to want more of a good thing and gave bred for huge coats. Beautiful to look at, but it's not correct -- it's a hindrance in brush, hard for pet owners to maintain. As in any hobby, some people get carried away -- look at the beautiful Arabian? Some heads have become excessive. Horses such as Gyosy Vanners? I LOVE the long manes, etc. But, as with all things moderation should be key.
Cindy M. Dorsten
Author, A Celebration of the
Behaviorist and trainer