The Adoption Process
Thank you for your interest in a rescued Border Collie! Please review the application process below before submitting your application. Please remember that every person working with WBCR is a volunteer, doing rescue in his/her “spare” time, so the first part of our adoption process (our reference checks and home visit) can take 2-3 weeks or longer depending on the dogs in our program. If you’re unwilling to wait that long, we hope that you’ll consider adopting a shelter dog in need, where the wait is much shorter.
Step 1: Do your homework!
If you’re considering/looking for your first Border Collie, please do your homework FIRST! While we think Border Collies are the greatest dogs on the planet, we equally believe that they’re not the dog for everyone. Please read our “About BC’s” page to begin learning more about Border Collies, their temperaments, needs and whether a BC is the right dog for you.
Step 2: Complete & Submit an Application
Please answer all questions completely; incomplete applications will not be processed. Our initial review of your completed application will help us decide whether we may have a dog for you. We know our application is long and detailed, but this information is very important to help us determine if you might be an ideal home for a certain dog in the program. The more information you give us, the easier it will be to do that. Please remember that our top priority is to serve the dogs, and to find the most suitable home for each of the dogs in our rescue. While we enjoy meeting border collie loving applicants, the interests of the dog come first. We don’t have many dogs in our program, which means a waiting game for many qualified applicants.
Step 3: Reference Checks
Once we receive and review your completed application, it’s assigned to a volunteer for reference checks – we will call the references listed on your application, so you’re welcome to let them know that we’ll be contacting them. This initial step typically takes 1-2 weeks, so please be patient!
Step 4: Home Visit
Once the reference checks are complete & approved, a WBCR volunteer will contact you to schedule a home visit. This is an informal chance for us to get to know you, your lifestyle, home environment and determine which dog(s) in our program might be a great fit. The HV volunteer will discuss what personality traits you’re looking for as well as general breed traits and what to expect when bringing a Border Collie home. He/she will also do a short walk-through of your home and yard to ensure its safety and to advise on any areas of concern. All household members must be present for the home visit. Please understand that the HV volunteer may not personally know any/many of the dogs in our program so may be unable to answer questions about specific dogs. Once the HV report is received by WBCR, it may take a few days for us to collate & review all of the information and get back in touch with you.
Step 5: Matching/Phone Interview
Once an application is processed and approved, now comes the fun part! While it’s easy to fall in love with a picture, it is the dog’s personality & temperament that determine whether it may make a great match for you. During the matching process, a WBCR adoption coordinator will contact you to discuss specific dogs within our rescue. We strongly encourage applicants to write down questions they may have about Border Collies, and discuss these questions with the assigned coordinator. We work hard to match your desires with the traits and personalities of our dogs.
Please understand that we only want what is best for our dogs, so if we don’t think a specific dog is a good fit for you, we’re not passing judgment on you/your family but are drawing on years of experience with Border Collies, and, more importantly, experience with the dogs in our program. “First Come First Served” doesn’t apply here as we match each dog in our program with the most appropriate home for him/her, whether that home comes next week or next year!
Step 6: Meet(s)
Once we’ve talked with you on which dogs might be a suitable fit, it is time to set up a meet/meets! Your adoption coordinator will facilitate arranging a meet with your household members, your current dog(s) and the rescued dog. We have experience introducing new dogs, so will help with the introductions of your dog to the rescued dog if applicable. During the meet, keep in mind that rescued Border Collies may be rather aloof/timid at first meeting. While we have seen many meets where there is an “insta-bond” between the new dog and the adopter(s), many times that kind of bonding takes time. The meet is a great time to get any/all questions answered on the dog’s temperament, likes/dislikes, and what will be helpful in establishing a wonderful relationship with your new dog!
Step 7: The Adoption
If both you and the WBCR representative feel the dog is a great match for you, the adoption may be completed after the meet. An adoption contract must be completed, signed and the adoption fee paid to complete the adoption. Please review our contract before your meet; it is available on our website or by clicking here. Please note that if at any time during your rescued dog’s life you cannot/no longer wish to keep it, he or she is required to be returned to WBCR.
Step 8: Follow-up
To ensure a successful adoption, we have a network of volunteers happy to answer any questions/help you work through issues that may arise while your new dog is transitioning into your home, or ten years down the road! We are committed to each and every dog we rescue for the rest of his/her life, so please stay in touch with us. Plus, we love getting updates!
This adorable youngster came to us from a Utah shelter and arrived to her foster family a little overwhelmed. While we’re not clear about her past, it sounds like it wasn’t perhaps the best one. It’s taken some time for her to blossom, and indeed she has – into a wonderfully nice and well-rounded canine companion! She’s blown out all of her old coat, too, and is now sleek and glossy. This much more confident girl is ready for a family to call her own!
Bella has grown into a great companion dog – she likes being around “her people.” She watches you attentively throughout the day, and keeps you insight most of the time. She likes to be pet around her neck (and will ask for it by pushing her nose into your hands), and if really relaxed, she even asks for belly rubs. Bella asks nicely to get your attention by slowly placing her paw on your foot, leg, lap. This lovely pup is is also very friendly with all humans encountered so far. She loves walks and going places and exploring, and happily jumps in the car for an outing if you ask her to “load up.”
She’s discovered the joy of toys; toys that she can tear apart are her favorite. She also plays with balls (or pinecones) by tossing them in the air herself but really isn’t interested in fetch. She is able to “chill” through the day, then turn on again when it is walk time or to go play with one of her friends. Yep, she’s playful with well-matched dogs too, and can even find some fun at the dog park! We believe that with the “right” dog, she would fit into a family with another dog. They must be “play compatible” with her. In other words, the other dog must play the way she does – chase and be chased, pounce and wrestle, and roll around mouthing each other for fun. Like a lot of females of herding breeds, she has apparently not been successful in the past living with another female dog, so we won’t place her in a home with a female herding breed dog. An older dog may not enjoy playing like she does, but she can live peaceably with another non playful dog so her compatibility with an older dog is not necessarily out of the question.
Bella will chase squirrels and large birds out of the backyard and so living with cats safely is likely a no go for this girl.
Bella has lovely house manners as well. She’s house trained and crate trained, although sleeps on a dog bed. She will even put herself to bed if she is ready and her fosters aren’t! 🙂 She does not get on the furniture and as mentioned, loves to go for rides in the car. She is of course bright and is learning the basics but like most young dogs, still needs more practice working on skills around distractions. She will do best with adopters who are willing to continue with her education!
All in all Bella is just an all round winner, and whoever is lucky enough to make her a part of their family will be bringing home a real prize! Bella Playing
Currently fostered outside SLC, UT
Bridget – Adoption Pending
This flashy, full of fun little BC arrived at WBCR from a Utah shelter. She is a most unique color – maybe a dilute sable, or a lilac merle? In some light she looks grey, in other light she looks strawberry blonde.
So yes clearly she’s beautiful, but even better, she’s not just a pretty face. She’s little (under 30 pounds), fast, excitable, and positively oozes dog sport potential. She’s verry quick to learn and verrrrry interested in all things moving (for better or for worse) but also quite attentive and eager to be someone’s partner…icing on the cake is she’s super friendly with people and playful with those dogs willing. This little dynamite girl, in the right hands, is going to light up some lucky person’s life!
Currently fostered in Colorado Springs, CO
This sweet smooth coated girly is Kadence! She’s about 6 months old and was found running loose with her brother on a rural mountain trail in northern CO. Some good folks intervened and WBCR stepped up to help. Kadence is the definition of a loyal dog, she will do anything to please her person, and prefers to be right at your side.
Although she’s a little unsure about new people, once you win her heart, she’s all yours! She’s a bit more comfortable with new dogs, enjoys playing with some, and will likely love a doggy sibling of her own to play with and who can help continue to build her confidence. She’s also OK sharing a home with dog savvy cats! This girl is totally into toys, is a tugging fool, and has turned on to fetch, too. She’s really athletic, shows a bit of herdyness here and there, and is typical border collie smart as she picks up on tricks in an instant! She now enjoys getting out and about into the world…she especially loves to sniff and romp around in fields. She’s a higher energy girl who will need a good amount of physical and mental exercise daily to be at her best. Although we doubt she’d ever lived indoors, Kadence is now house trained, crate trained, and started on the basics. She was the more reserved of the two pups but thanks to her foster mom, she’s really started to blossom in her foster home!
This sweet and devoted pup is looking adopters who understand how to help the shyer members of the breed, who can channel her instincts and talents in appropriate ways, and who will continue to help this lovely youngsters confidence overall. If this sounds up your alley, Kadence will be the prize waiting at the end! 🙂
Currently fostered in Denver, CO
Koby is a fantastic young character, a funny and good-natured boy. He came to us from a Utah shelter, and is a typical BC: athletic and energetic. He is also one of the more socially outgoing members of the breed, and is quite friendly with people, adults and children alike!!
Currently he lives with 6 and 11 year old kids in his foster home, and we think he could be an excellent family dog for an active family. He also lives with another young BC and a dachshund, loves to play with other dogs, and would be happiest with another playful dog in the home.
Koby is definitely too interested in cats or livestock to live safely or share a home with either. He loves to run and play, go for long walks, and enjoys chew toys too. He’s house trained and sleeps in his crate overnight.
Koby was originally surrendered to the shelter for escaping his yard and he is clearly well practiced in clearing or climbing fences, so he’ll need a situation where he’s not left unsupervised in a fenced area and where he can safely be contained using methods other than a fence, such as a cable tether in the yard or a covered kennel run, and a leash or long line out in the world, until his recall is more reliable. But with such a marvelous fun and friendly personality, he’s totally worth the extra effort!
Currently fostered outside Denver, CO
This adorable little smooth coat tricolor BC is Luc. He’s just 11 months old, a very soft, quiet, and sweet young guy that enjoys being around his people and loves other dogs. This boy is a special needs BC that will need an understanding home. He has some chronic respiratory issues, diagnosed as bronchitis and lower airway disease. While most times it has little effect on him, he needs a home where he can set the pace. Respiratory issues that are oftentimes minor for most dogs, may prove to be much bigger for Luc. More info coming soon.
Currently fostered outside SLC, UT
This adorable little smoothcoated pixie is Lyric, who came to WBCR from a Utah shelter. She’s a couple of years old, and although we don’t know much about her past, it seems likely she never lived indoors. When she first arrived at her foster home, she was afraid of lots of things in the house (stairs, TV, doors, sounds, etc). The only thing she wasn’t afraid of is humans! 🙂 That’s right – this girl just adores people, has never known as stranger, and is a total love sponge.
Lyric likely didn’t have too many experiences with other dogs, either….she needs slow and calculated intros to dogs as she’s easily overwhelmed and becomes defensive. Once she’s comfortable, however, she will play with another dog, and she currently lives with a laid back dog in her foster home. She also is discovering playing with toys, and now prances around the yard with a ball in her mouth. Although she doesn’t seem particularly hardy, she’s far too interested in small furry creatures to live safely with a cat.
Lyric isn’t a super high energy girl and could be a good fit for someone looking for a lower energy BC who needs just some daily backyard playtime and a leashed walk, although she could of course do more than that. Lyric has come a long way since arriving, but is a sensitive, easily overstimulated girl who is still on the timid side. She will need adopters who are patient and who will continue to work on building her confidence. If you have a soft spot for the cuddly, sensitive souls of the BC world, Lyric may be the one for you!
Currently fostered near Boulder, CO
Mav is a handsome young lad who has just arrived to WBCR from a Utah shelter. We’ll post more as we get to know him.
Currently fostered in SLC, UT
Penny – Adoption Pending
Meet Penny! This pretty red and white lassie came to us as an owner surrender from some older folks who just found her to be more dog than they could handle. They resorted to keeping her outside in a kennel, and thankfully reached out to WBCR for help.
But in the right kind of hands, Penny is proving to be quite a fabulous pup! She’s just a youngster, under a year old, and she’s just learning about the world, but boy oh boy is she oozing with all the right stuff. She’s delightfully social with people and seems to never know a stranger. She is also friendly with canines, and really enjoys playing with those game. Like a lot of female BCs, she is definitely a strong and bossy girl, and due to this we won’t be placing her in a home with resident female dogs. Males are fair game and we think she’d love to have a playful dog to live with. She is also sharing her foster home with cats, so we think she can cohabitate reasonably with felines too. Penny is game for just about anything – she loves playing in the yard with other dogs, going for walks, playing with toys (she’s starting to fetch), going for hikes….she even likes being brushed!!! We also think she’s a good candidate for runners or outdoor adventurers, and she’s likely a promising dog sport candidate as well. She’s a moderate energy girl who will do best with a good amount of physical and mental exercise a day.
Penny has made great strides in her foster home, learning about living indoors with boundaries and rules, and she’s gained a lot of confidence since arriving. She’s house trained, crate trained, and started on the basics. She’s incredibly bright and eager to learn, but as a curious teenaged dog, she needs to be set up to succeed using good management. She’s ready for an adopter to take the torch from here, to continue to give her guidance and structure – this girl thrives with direction, and there’s so much she can learn!
Penny is all in all the full BC package with all kinds of perks. If you are looking for an oozing with potential pup, look no further!
Currently fostered in Breckenridge, CO
Pippi – Adoption Pending
Are you ready for cuteness overload??? We are so pleased to introduce the fabulous Pippi!
This delightful and beautiful little pixie is a happy and affectionate girl brimming with enthusiasm for life. All this in just a pint sized package – Pippi is just 29 pounds! Pippi is just a couple of years old; she came to us when her owner passed away and she landed in a Utah shelter. It didn’t take long for the shelter to notice Pippi was a little more uncoordinated than most dogs, and she’s been diagnosed with some sort of neurological deficit which manifests as lack of coordination sometimes.
The good news is, it doesn’t seem to be progressive – and the other good news is, it doesn’t slow her down one bit, as you can see here: Pippi Playing
Pippi loves to go for walks, car rides, hikes, and play with toys, and is super snuggly and sweet in the house. She has all kinds of skills – she’s house trained and crate trained, has a very good recall when off leash and she walks on a leash nicely too. Check out this video: Pippi on Leash
While she lives with other dogs in her foster home, shows no reactivity towards other dogs out on walks, and will even occasionally play with a dog, she will definitely be happiest as an only dog where she can have alll the toys and alllll the attention in the home. And this special little girl deserves it! Pippi is going to make some lucky person the companion of a lifetime.
Currently fostered near Laramie, WY
UPDATE: Big news: our little Resi WILL play, if it’s the right dog!!! While she’s choosy about with whom (she doesn’t show interest in playing with any of the resident BCs, but to be fair, none of them are very playful either) her foster mom had a lab puppy visiting for a little while and Resi and he just had a ball. Check them out! Chasing and wrestling all the time. Yes all that huffing and puffing is her! So we think she’d love to live with a playful dog.
Check it out: Resi Playing
Looking for the definition for resilient? Here she is. Meet Resi. This young little BC lass was discovered living on her own in rural Wyoming. We don’t know how she got there, but she was too scared to befriend anyone. We have no idea how long she was out there, but she was in rough shape. It took 6 weeks for an incredible and dedicated good samaritan to trap her and bring her to the local shelter, where she then visited this girl daily until we could take her in to WBCR.
Even before she arrived, we could see Resi was making enormous strides daily….and since she’s arrived to a foster home, she’s continued to progress by leaps and bounds, exceeding our expectations. And so we are delighted to announce that Resi is now ready for a family to call her own and available for adoption. Not only is she one heck of a bright and resilient girl, Resi is also proving to be a bouncy, bubbly, happy little BC, with an adorable “woo-woo” chirp when she’s excited. Although she’s pretty hesitant with new people trying to interact with her, she can quite easily coexist with strangers who ignore her, and she just takes some time to trust and befriend a new person…but once she does they are treated to little kisses and requests for pets. 🙂 Resi is quite trusting of her foster mom so we know she can do it 🙂 and we expect her to make continued progress in this department. She currently lives with 3 other BCs in her foster home and has zero issue with any, but hasn’t shown much interest in playing with any, although she does enjoy giving the boys kisses. She is starting to show a very endearing interest in toys, as well as the sheep at her foster home. At some point we may test her on livestock, but that hasn’t happened yet. Cats are an unknown.
Resi really enjoys going for bike rides and hikes, but doesn’t seem to be a super high energy dog…she is quite a home snoozing on something soft. She’s quite an attentive girl who likes to learn and figures things out quickly. It seems like she’s house trained and she enjoys the safe space of a crate. Resi is a little worried about riding in the car but is making progress on that front. She walks pretty nicely on a leash, but uses a no pull front clip harness on bike rides. She has earned off leash privileges somewhat on the farm where she’s fostered, she generally sticks pretty close by and she does respond well when called. She doesn’t seem bothered by any sounds and even made her Denver debut on a weekend trip and wasn’t fazed by the noise or environment.
All in all, this girl is starting to show us the marvelous dog she’s going to be, and whoever ends up with her is going to be rewarded with a loving canine partner with an incredible story.
Currently fostered outside Jackson, WY
This incredibly handsome classic tricolored boy is Sedge….he came to us from a Denver area shelter where he was surrendered after living his life so far outdoors. He was pretty scared at the shelter, they reached out to us for help, and he landed safe haven at WBCR. We think he’s about 3 years old and although he has a bobbed tail, his herding instincts point towards this boy being a full BC.
Sedge is proving to be beautiful both inside and out. Since arriving into foster care, this sensitive and reserved boy has blossomed into just the most cuddly, affectionate, and devoted of BCs with his human family. He wants to be with his people and keeps them in sight at all times. He is going to attach and attach strongly to his humans…and like a lot of BCs, he’s not interested in seeking much from other people outside of his family and friends. He is more timid and shy around people outside of his family, greeting all (especially men, and louder people) tentatively and cautiously and not seeking any physical attention, but has not demonstrated any reactive behavior toward anyone, either.
Sedge currently lives with 2 other dogs and although he lives peaceably, he shows no interest in playing with them, and he wouldn’t enjoy living with dogs who pester him to play. If the resident dogs at his foster home try to instigate something he shuts them down quickly and doesn’t want to engage in play with them, and he’s definitely the “fun police” with groups of dogs playing, so is not a candidate at all for dog parks. He also lives with 2 cats and 2 horses, but does show quite a bit of herding instinct so would require really diligent and aware adopters as well as dog-savvy felines or equines. He definitely wants to eye the cats and livestock and if not managed or given appropriate alternate direction he will circle them or get in front and try to keep them from moving. We’ve not yet tested him on livestock but wouldn’t be surprised if he could be a hobby herding candidate. The dog sport environment would likely be too overwhelming for this kiddo.
Sedge is a total toy boy, he loves to play with toys and will interact with his human and toys with great joy. He’ll carry around a favorite toy and try to engage you to play with him. He is a moderately active dog and has a great chill out mode in the house or when his human is also at rest, but his feet get moving anticipating when it’s time to be going somewhere to do something or when it looks like going outside is imminent!
He’s had many an outdoor adventure at his foster home and enjoys running alongside a bike, hiking, trail riding and horse packing trips with larger groups of people and dogs. He is stellar on the trails as he has not demonstrated any interest in chasing wildlife and has a dynamite recall on the rare occasions that he has actually let his human out of his sight. He’ll run off with the other dogs when their excitement is high about something they’ve seen but Sedge brings himself back when he barely gets out of view from his foster mom.
Since arriving to his foster home, Sedge has been learning about outdoor adventures as well as the indoor life! He’s now house trained and crate trained, and he’s proving to be a super good traveler in cars or trucks. He’s been on multi-day road trips staying at hotels and getting out at different places with his fosters and it doesn’t faze him at all. His manners are generally pretty reasonable, and although we expect it will take a little while for him to settle in to a new family and trust his new people, we know he can do it!
All in all Sedge is just a lovely fellow who is going to make some lucky person a most devoted and loving companion. He will be happiest with a quiet household and people who understand and respect his sensitivity and lack of interest in befriending strangers, as well as his BC instincts and how to manage and channel them. If you have a soft spot for the quiet and sensitive type with some very typical BC tendencies, this handsome devil may be the boy for you.
Currently fostered in Lander, WY
Adorable little smoothie Sis recently came back to WBCR after her owner’s work schedule dramatically changed and Sis was alone far too much. We’ll be posting more as we get to know her.
Currently fostered in Wheatland, WY
Another fabulous dog from a Utah shelter! This is Sterling. He’s a marvelous and handsome rough-coated tricolored middle ager with a bobbed tail, and is just as sweet as can be. Good with people, dogs, and cats. More info coming soon!
Currently fostered near Vernal, UT
Buddy – Adoption Pending
This handsome classic rough coated BC was surrendered to a Colorado shelter, who then reached out to WBCR to help. He’s just about a year old, quite friendly and affectionate with people, and familiar with living indoors. Like many BCs he cannot live safely with cats, but he tested pretty well with other dogs at the shelter. We’ll post more about him as we get to know him!
Currently fostered outside Denver, CO
Doc – Adoption Pending
This wonderfully loving, friendly, and well adjusted senior came to us as an owner surrender from some folks who were moving. 🙁 He is hard at work being adored by his foster family at the moment, but we’ll post more about him as we get to know him!
Currently fostered in Colorado Springs, CO
Just arrived…one kid-loving 3 year old smoothie. Duke came to us as an owner surrender by someone who bought him to work stock and he wasn’t quite working out like they hoped, although he sure did enjoy playing with the grandkids! He’s a sweet energetic fellow who is playful with other dogs (check out the video of the day he met his foster sister!) but a no go with cats. And a definite YES for kids! 🙂 More info coming soon.
Currently fostered in Boulder, CO
This big, strapping, handsome lad is Gus. He was picked up as a stray in a central Wyoming town and never claimed. Some fellow rescuers took him in, got him neutered, tended to his disastrous mouth filled with broken and infected teeth (owww! 14 extractions!!!), and then transferred him to us. (Thanks a ton, you guys!)
This big softie is a quiet and sensitive boy, and thanks to his painful mouth and pacing a lot from being stressed, he came in pretty underweight….but he’s settling in to his foster home, now eating well and gaining some much-needed weight. He seems to be social with people and other dogs and we suspect he was a working dog….he is reeeeeally interested in the sheep at his foster home and he’s showing some good herding potential. But if it’s not a sheep, he’s not interested….in fact he’s pretty laid back around most everything else with just a few exceptions that really worry him which probably stem from what seems to be never living indoors before (big flights of stairs, slippery floors, certain sounds). We have no idea how old he is with that set of teeth, but best guess is a few years perhaps? He’s now house trained at his foster home, loves the crate, and walks nicely on a leash, trots nicely alongside a bike, and showing just a glimmer of goofily being interested in toys. 🙂 We’re just getting to know him and will post more as we learn it.
Currently fostered outside of Jackson, WY
Just arrived from a Utah shelter – this young BC chap is not only handsome but quite personable too! More info coming soon.
Currently fostered near SLC, UT
Just arrived! This young smoothie landed in a Utah shelter after being hit by car and was never claimed. We got her all fixed up and she’s on the mend! We’ll post more about her as we get to know her.
Currently fostered near Durango, CO
Meet Zoey! This beautiful classic rough coated girl is 4 years old and quite a package. She has been a well-loved dog and it shows, but has come into WBCR due to an unexpected change in the owner’s life situation. She seems to do well with other dogs, has lived peaceably with a cat, and looooooves to play fetch! We’ll post more as we get to know her.
Currently fostered outside Cody, WY