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Border Collies

  1. richtwf profile image59
    richtwfposted 6 years ago

    Would appreciate any personal views/opinions/experiences with regards to Border Collies. Also if you have very young children - what has been your experience with having children and having a Border Collie as a pet? Good experiences? Bad experiences?

  2. IzzyM profile image85
    IzzyMposted 6 years ago

    Border collies like all dogs have good or bad natures. I've met biting farm border collies as well as good natured ones.
    That said, a properly brought up border collie makes a great family pet. Intelligent dogs, they will really look out for your child in a way that most dogs wouldn't. They are fun to walk, they 'herd' you along the pavement - constantly running in front of you to keep you in line. It is in their nature to nip the legs of the creature they are herding, and this could be you. Some gently dissuasion from this practice works when they are still puppies.
    I love border collies and think they make the best pets ever. Intelligence and obedience make a great combination.

    1. richtwf profile image59
      richtwfposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks IzzyM for that great feedback. Really appreciate that. I admire border collies for their intelligence and boundless energy and would like to raise one as a puppy but also start a family with my wife, so was just a bit unsure about how the two might mix as I'm aware of their herding instinct. Anyway grateful for your insights and for giving me a better perspective of these wonderful dogs.

  3. frogdropping profile image84
    frogdroppingposted 6 years ago

    We have a Border Collie. She doesn't do anything that Izzy just offered. No herding, nipping etc.

    Ours uses the 'eye' as a means of focus. Were she a working collie, the eye would be her way of controlling a herd of sheep or cattle. Boo simply stares. Others nip at or around the lower leg. Not designed to cause pain, it's meant to motivate the herd animal into motion.

    They do have a very strong herding instinct - and it generally involves anything that moves. People, objects such as cars, cycles, other animals - cats for e.g. Boo doesnt bother. Not because she doesn't want to, it's because she's not allowed and knows.

    They are fiercely intelligent. Boo learns fast, good or bad, so be careful smile

    If you really want one, get a pup. You won't inherit a previous owners habits, the dog will only know what you've shown it, allowed it to experience etc. It excludes the possibility of undesirable behaviours - Boo struggles with other dogs as she was either unsocialised or attacked by another dog.

    As for lots and lots of exercise and stimulation? For my part, I don't provide lots of anything. She's walked regularly, petted, groomed, fed, played with - none to excess or because she's a collie and it's recommended. She's great around the house, even when left.

    As for children, she's wonderful with them. Careful, playful, loving. Babies, toddlers, young children and teens - she loves them all equally.

    But - this is Boo. She's not every collie smile

    1. richtwf profile image59
      richtwfposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Cheers FD for sharing your personal experience.

  4. psycheskinner profile image83
    psycheskinnerposted 6 years ago

    In my opinion BCs don't make the best choice as a pet.  I have one because he was a stray and would otherwise be put down.  But you have to give them a lot of physical and mental exercise.

    1. richtwf profile image59
      richtwfposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Cheers PS for your comment.

  5. wilderness profile image96
    wildernessposted 6 years ago

    As frogdropping says, intelligent.  We had one years ago and bought the invisible fence (collar beeps then shocks when too close to a buried wire).  It took her less than a week to learn that if she ran up and down the "fence" at the beeping but not shocking distance the battery would soon go dead and she was free to go where she wanted.

    Other than that, a great dog.

    1. richtwf profile image59
      richtwfposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Cheers W for your comment.

    2. IzzyM profile image85
      IzzyMposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      wilderness, that is just great! Loved that story...so typical of the intelligence of this dog!

  6. Scribenet profile image84
    Scribenetposted 6 years ago

    A friend had a lovely border collie "Lady" with a wonderful personality. On the other hand, my upstairs neighbor has one that had become aggressive with another dog in it's previous household and so my neighbors took it in.

    This dog barks at anything and anybody non-stop. It is a nuisance since I live an apartment in the house and the minute it sees me it barks nonstop! Unless they  take him in it would continue barking even when I have gone into the house.

    He barks at visitors they have and I can hear them hauling him off to another room where he continues barking. It seems like he is actually frightened or not exercised enough, but the barking is not normal since I am a dog lover, but stay away from this one since he shows no sign of being friendly.

    So yes, get the dog as a puppy so you can have a happy dog and be prepared to give the dog physical and mental exercises as psycheskinner recommneded.

    1. frogdropping profile image84
      frogdroppingposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Likely. Plus he is clearly the alpha dog, therefore it's his job to guard - very stressful for the dog. A lack of exercise doesn't equate with barking. He may well be friendlier than he looks, though I wouldn't approach him. Poor dog neutral

      1. Scribenet profile image84
        Scribenetposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Good point frogdropping about the barking and exercising not being related.

        I think he may be frightened because I looked intently at him one day when he was barking and put my hands on my hips and tilted my head and he backed away out of my eyesight but continued to bark. He probably has not been socialized properly, but since he is an adult dog ...he probably needs the "Dog Whisperer".

    2. richtwf profile image59
      richtwfposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks S for your advice.

  7. pylos26 profile image76
    pylos26posted 6 years ago

    Why in the world don't the us gov. string border collies along the border to dissuade them illegals, and train them to nip at the middle section rather than legs? hoho

  8. IzzyM profile image85
    IzzyMposted 6 years ago

    Our Mac was the perfect dog IMO. Farm-raised, he came to me when he was roughly 13 weeks old. When I first met him he was riding shotgun on his owner's 4 wheel motor bike thingie, and he never outgrew his love of motorbikes. I never did manage to stop him chasing them, although if I was present a simple "no" stopped him in his tracks.
    I took him to live in a city, and I was worried he'd suffer from lack of green fields to run around in, but he adapted just fine. So obedient, I could take him shopping and give him the simple commands "sit" and "stay" and he wouldn't move a muscle until I came back out of the shop.
    The kids adored him, and he them.
    His only real vice was an inclination to jump into any stationary vehicle that had its door open.
    I paid a fortune to bring him to Spain with me, and one night he was walking up the road with me. He ran ahead round a corner and I heard a vehicle pulling away.
    I never saw him again. Whoever has him knows they have bagged a bargain. Mac had learnt Spanish commands by this time. How about that, a bilingual dog that was obedient, spotlessly clean and loved by all.
    I'll never have another dog like that...unless of course I get another border collie.

    1. richtwf profile image59
      richtwfposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks IzzyM for sharing that experience with us. Can't be easy to lose such a precious member of the family. I can sympathise but I can't empathise; but my dad certainly can because he was walking with Bobby, his beautiful rottweiler in Hong Kong on a country road and something similar happened to him. Sometimes my dad used to walk ahead and allowed Bobby to take his time to return home, well it was on one such occasion that he never returned home, and my parents believe that someone took him. These things unfortunately happen and we only have memories and photographs to remind us of what is missing from our lives, but at least we have treasured and happy moments to relive in our minds.

  9. seamist profile image81
    seamistposted 6 years ago

    I've had two Border Collies. They are a very intelligent, sweet, loyal dog. However, they need lots of activity and a job to do!!! I cannot underestimate that. Without exercise and a job to do, they can become hyper with incessant barking. I finally had to give my Border Collie away to a farmer. Unfortunately, I heard he eventually got run over. I hope he led a happy life until then.

    1. richtwf profile image59
      richtwfposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Seamist - you had two of them. One is surely a handful but two! Twice the energy to look after them and twice the fun and good company for each other?

  10. seamist profile image81
    seamistposted 6 years ago


    I am so sorry your dog was stolen. That must've been very heartbreaking.

  11. Diane Inside profile image87
    Diane Insideposted 6 years ago

    My dad has a border collie, he got at the same time when my nephew was born, the dogs name is Jack, Jack let Jordan, my nephew do anything to him, he doesn't care, and Jack will defend that little boy with his life.

    Jordans mother has to be careful when repremanding Jordan, if Jack is around.

    She usually has to wait till they are in the house out of Jacks view to repremand Jordan for any misbehavior. Because Jack will attack anybody who even acts sternly to Jordan.

    He's a great dog, but he can be to overprotective.

    1. richtwf profile image59
      richtwfposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks Diane for that interesting insight. I'm slowly beginning to build up a better perspective of BC's thanks to the personal experiences that are being kindly shared here at HP.