So I'm finally at a point where I can get a dog of my own and I'm having some trouble deciding on a breed. Some background is that I grew up around a yellow lab (personal dog) and goldens (aunt's dogs). The yellow was a pure bred from hunting lines and was supposed to be my father's prize bird dog, but due to a change of venue turned out to be a 90 lb lap dog. Currently my family has mini dachshunds, a sheltie, and my aunt has several australian shepards. I've always loved labs and generally prefer larger sporting breeds. That being said I have taken to my sister's sheltie and decided to entertain the idea of getting something other than a lab. While researching I came across smooth collies and thought they may be a good fit for the type of dog I'm looking for. Unfortunately you don't see any collies around where I live and breeders seem to be few and far between so I was hoping to shed some light on them. I've read/researched quite a bit on them, which is what prompted the post here. Generally what I'm looking for is a dog that's biddable, friendly with other dogs, loyal, loves to be outside (will live inside), goofy (one thing I love about labs) and enjoys being around/with it's owner. As for activity/lifestyle generally I enjoy hiking in the local parks or traveling short distances to parks nearby, mountain biking, hanging out at the beach, etc. It seems like either breed will generally fit in and the biggest difference seems to be whether I want a breed that keeps the goofy puppiness or one that is a little more reserved. Any advice or onions or which way to go are appreciated.