Dog of the Day: Cooper the Border Collie/Flat Coated Retriever Mix

Sorry for the late post. Trying to get rid of a head cold. Ugh.

Haven’t run into any flat-coat mixes before. He almost looks like a pure border collie, but he doesn’t quite have that ridiculous ‘eyes boring into your soul’ intensity that a pure border collie tends to have. His dad says he’s calmer than a pure border collie, too, which is funny: flat coats tend to be a bit hyper and puppyish, and border collies are energetic, active, and can end up neurotic if they don’t get enough mental (and physical) exercise. And the combination is calmer than either one alone? Don’t look at me, I’m not Mendel.

He lives less than two blocks from my house, and I’ve been taking pictures for almost a year and a half now, and I’d never seen him yet. There are a lot of dogs in San Francisco.

(Edit: Added the pup’s name. For more info about him, check out the comment from his dad, in the comments section.)

Border Collie/Flat Coat Retriever Mix

This guy came from a border collie rescue, but you couldn't tell it by his attitude.

Border Collie/Flat Coat Retriever Mix

From the side, he looks like he's just black with tan socks, but he has that white chest and belly hidden away.

Flat Coat Retriever/Border Collie Mix

The famous 'baroo' puppy head tilt! He clearly doesn't quite know what to make of me.

Half Flat Coat Retriever, Half Border Collie

Dogs do such goofy things with their tongues. I should make that a tag: dogs doing goofy things with their tongues.

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13 Responses to Dog of the Day: Cooper the Border Collie/Flat Coated Retriever Mix

  1. John Wong says:

    Hi Adam,

    Thanks for the post. That’s my dog, Cooper. He has his moments, that’s why I run him every morning at Chrissy Field for an hour. He came to us as a 3 month old pup via Border Collie Rescue of Northern California. For those who can run their dogs, please check out the other border collie rescues available.


    • Jjen says:

      Hi John,
      Do you happen to have a picture you can post from when Cooper was 3 months old. We have adopted a black & tan rescue puppy, who we think looks like a border collie/aussie puppy and I am curious if Cooper looked similar as a puppy. Thanks,

  2. Wow, what a handsome dog. Great face, really interesting coloring, and nice light eyes with lots of emotion.

  3. Bonnie Donald says:

    This is so cool! I adopted my Zach from the Southern Oregon Humane Society at the beginning of December of 2010. He had just arrived from a shelter in Tehema County in Northern California and the only information they gave about him is a birth date of 11/27/09. Even though they billed Zach as a shepherd mix, I knew he had to be part Border Collie & couldn’t figure out what he might be mixed with. I decided to look for photos of black BCs with brown feet on the Internet and found you. I think my dog Zach & Cooper look enough alike to be brothers and would love to find out if they are related, so hope his dad, John, sees this and responds. (I can’t figure out how to attach pictures of him, though.) Fortunately, I don’t have to find somewhere to run him for an hour a day. I have 9+ acres, and his favorite game/love/obsession is my horses. He will spend hours just staring at them, then sneaking up with the slinky herding creep, and finally charging to see if he get then to run so he can herd them.

    • Adam Lang says:

      Awesome! I’ll drop John a quick ping and let him know you’re interested. And yes, Cooper is murder to photograph (black fur is the bane of my existence) but he’s an absolutely gorgeous dog.

      As for posting pictures, there are two ways: if you just want to put up a few pictures, you can upload them to here: And then just leave a link in a comment here, and people will be able to click the link and go to them.

      Alternately, if you have a few good pictures of him, feel free to submit them to me, at “alang” at this blog (which is to say, “”), and I’ll post them sometime, in a ‘dogs out of SF’ post.

  4. Flora says:

    Gorgeous dog! He looks like our border collie/flat-coated retriever mix, Luke! Luke always gets complimented on his stunning good looks and wonderful personality! lol. Beautiful photos and blog here!-:D

    • Adam Lang says:

      Thanks! And I bet he does… if he looks anything like Cooper, he’s got to be a very distinctive dog. If you have any pictures online, please do leave some links in a comment, I’d love to see him.

  5. Amber V says:

    This is my most favorite dog on this entire blog. I just can’t get over how beautiful his markings are. I love black long coated dogs. And I love border collies and German shepherds. I’m sad because I didn’t get to find this one as a pup and raise him as my own. I hope to find a pup as beautiful as this one. Obsessed.

    • Adam Lang says:

      Isn’t he beautiful? I agree, he’s easily in my top ten most gorgeous dogs. And that’s out of thousands. I still remember exactly where I ran across him, and about when it was too. And somehow I haven’t managed to see him again, even though as far as I know he still lives quite near me.

      I wish you luck finding a dog like this. Keep looking, I know they’re out there!

  6. Jjen says:

    Hi – Do you happen to have a puppy picture of when you got your beautiful dog. We have just adopted a rescue puppy and I am wondering if your dog looked similar to ours as a puppy. Thanks!

    • Adam Lang says:

      You might try replying to John, the first commenter on this page. It’s his dog, and he might be watching comments here.

      I’d love to see some puppy pictures from you, too, though. Feel free to post links!

      • Luisa says:

        OMG! I have a similar dog, her name is Lulú and she is a female, I could even believe that she is the sister of the dog in the image but she is Colombian.

        • Adam Lang says:

          Any pictures of your pup online? If so, please post some links in a comment here, we’d love to see them. Cooper is one of the most distinctive pups I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting.

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