Buddies Breeder – Morag McCarte
We recently caught up with Buddies breeder, Morag McCarte, who is based in Lanarkshire. We asked Morag a few questions to find out more about her love and knowledge for her breed of choice.
How long have you been breeding for?
‘We have been breeding since 1985. So, for almost 35 years now.’
Why this breed?
‘I owned a Rough Collie as a child. I was given one as a 10th birthday present.
When Jim and I were married, we initially looked to get a Pyrenean Mountain Dog, but there was a 2-year waiting list at the time. Jim suggested getting a Rough Collie. We only went for a pet, but the breeder asked if we were interested in showing and the rest is history as they say.’
What is the best thing about the breed?
‘Rough Collies are an immensely loyal breed that love to please. A lifetime companion and good all-rounder – showing, obedience, agility and of course, their initial function (no, not Lassie films) but herding (though not many are used for herding today).’
What is the worst thing about the breed?
‘After a wet and muddy field walk, their wet coats do hold the smell. Wintertime ‘snowballs’ (clumps of snow which clings to fur.) around their feathering can be a pain. The worst thing has to be parting with a dear friend at the end of their time.’
What is the best thing about being a breeder?
‘Finding the right home for your puppies, where they will be cherished and trained for their lifetime is great. Also, sending the puppy off to their new home in the knowing they are insured with a competent and reliable company is reassuring.’
What is the worst thing about being a breeder?
‘The word ‘breeder’ implies, to many, ‘lots of litters’. We are very conscious of where our puppies go, and if circumstances change, we will always take a puppy back. We have enquiries from people who think their 8-week-old puppy is ready to ‘save Timmy from the well’, or do not take on board feeding regimes and guidance which is all relative to the breed.
Fortunately, this has only happened a couple of times. If I feel an enquirers circumstances are not right at the time, I will put them off. I do ask potential owners lots of questions, which some object to. Everyone is asked the same sort of questions as it saves their time and ours, and prevents a puppy being out in the wrong home.’
How many litters do you have each year?
‘We only breed if we need a puppy for the show ring, or when we have people waiting, so the litters vary each year.’
If you could have any other breed, what would it be?
‘We tried another breed, the Polish Lowland Sheepdog, who we showed for a short time, but eventually returned to our hearts breed.’
Any other information and achievements you would like to share?
‘We have been fortunate to meet some marvellous and hugely knowledgeable people along the way, who have been happy to share their knowledge with us.
We have enjoyed lots of happy and memorable moments both in and out of the show ring with our dogs.
We both give Challenge Certificates and it is always exciting to start a dog/bitch on its way to the ‘Upper House’ or afterwards, to find out that your ticket winner has achieved its ‘Crown’ on the day.
Our Polish Lowland Sheepdog appeared on the front cover of ‘Dogs in Focus’ in 2013 when the breed was featured.’
Buddies would like to thank Morag and Jim McCarte for sharing her love of the breed as well as some fabulous photos. For more information on ‘Roughrigg’ Rough Collies, visit their page on ‘Collie Life’ here.
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