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Intelligence / Trainability

The Border Collie is at the top of the list when it comes to intelligence with an added bonus being that these active and lively dogs like to please. Rarely do Collies get it wrong once they are shown or taught what to do. They may be hyperactive characters, but this not mean they cannot focus on an owner during a training session and they thrive on the one to one contact they are given too. They are after all “eye dogs” and when they focus on an owner or handler, it is usually very hard to break a dog’s focus.

The first commands a Border Collie should be taught as early as possible are as follows:

  • Sit
  • Stay
  • Here/come/recall command
  • Down
  • Leave it
  • Heel
  • Quiet

Once a Border Collie is 12 months old, they can be taught to do all sorts of things which includes “speaking” on command and “rolling over” when asked. They also respond well to visual commands as well as verbal ones.

Children and Other Pets

Border Collies are not always the best choice as a family pet because of their need to round things up and this includes the children and anything else that takes their fancy. With this said, if well socialised from a young age and living with a family where most of the day is spent in the great outdoors, the Border Collie would fit in well with that sort of lifestyle and generally get on well with the kids providing they know how to behave and when to leave a dog alone.

Border Collies can be rather aloof when meeting dogs they don’t already know which could lead to them showing a little aggressive behaviour towards the dogs which is why early socialisation is so important. When it comes to small family pets and cats, if a Border Collie has grown up with them, they are generally good around them. However, the need to herd and round things up is so deeply ingrained in some Border Collies that they may well continue to herd other pets in a household to satisfy this deeply embedded need.


A female Border Collie can be safely spayed when she is 6 months old, but never any younger than this. Male Border Collies can be neutered when they are 6 months old too.

It’s essential to keep an eye on a Border Collie’s weight more especially after they have been spayed or neutered when some dogs can put on more weight. The same applies to dogs when they reach their senior years and when they are not.

So keen to go out of so much exercise. It’s important to adjust a Border Collies calorie intake so it not only suits their age, but the amount of daily exercise they are given too.

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