I love both rough and smooth collies. My love for collies began much the same as any collie lover - I fell in love with the Sunnybank collies in Albert Payson Terhune's books, and with the Lassie movies. There was no mention of smooth collies in either the books or the movies. When I caught a glimpse of my uncle's first smooth collie, years ago, I thought she looked all kinds of wrong. But my opinion has changed, as the smooths here have greatly improved over the years, they are now beautiful examples of the collie breed.
My first collie, lad, was actually a smooth. So were my second and third collies, Abby and Holly. But then Ryder was born, and I just couldn't part with my sweet, fuzzy boy. So we kept both our little smooth girl, Kori and our big rough boy, Ryder.
I still find it funny that so few people even know about the smooth collie. They have the same wonderful collie temperaments, and they are MUCH easier to groom. And getting them ready to enter in the show ring takes about half the time as a rough. But when we walk both Ryder and Kori, everyone immediately call out to Ryder, "look it's Lassie!" And they immediately smile and ask to pet him, while little Kori stands waiting, wagging her tail. I can't tell you how many times we have been asked if our smooths are collie mixes, or why did we shave our collie? In the UK, Smooth collies are actually on the UKC's endangered/vulnerable breeds list. http://www.thekennelclub.org.uk/item/808 But I'm happy to say the smooth collie seems to be gaining popularity here in the USA.
I think you might appreciate this conversation between Kori and Ryder today...
Kori: I'm tired of everyone petting Ryder first...(sad face)
Ryder: Is it any wonder the people love me? I AM a superstar!
Kori: You're nothing but a brother!
Ryder: Brother, super star, stud muffin...take your pick!
Kori: Oh pleeease!
Ryder: I'm going to bed, being this awesome is exhausting...