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Is a Border Collie right for me?


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Hello!

I'd like to get a Border Collie. I've been thinking about it for a while now and I'd just like to run some things by people who have experience with them to get some feedback first. I want to be prepared etc. 

Is a Border Collie right for me?

I live in the suburbs my yard is quite "average" in size, but by no means is it tiny or anything. I jog in a large park every day for at least 1.5 hours (usually more) and I'd love a jogging partner. I'm home most of the day as I do part time study and I'm working on setting up my own business. I'm actually studying animal behaviour and I will soon offer my own training services (I love training dogs). I owned, in the past, a Shetland Sheepdog and I used to take him everywhere with me, we'd jog together etc. If I were to own a Border Collie, I would dedicate hours to training, and exercise everyday. I'd also want to take him/her everywhere with me (when ppossible). In the near future I'd also like to do hiking and bush walking as well, would a Border Collie enjoy this type of thing? I'd also like a dog that could participate in agility and other kinds of events like that. I don't know what else I could say that's relevant at the moment?

 

Any tips on what it's like to own one?

Are Border Collies generally playful? Affectionate? 

 

Thanks guys!

Edited by Melert
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I don't have BC's nor ever owned one but from what I have read from those that do, mental exercise is the secret to keeping a BC happy in the suburbs ( or anywhere for that matter ). Plenty of BC's compete in agility and yes would love bush walks. There are some health problems in the breed so my advice would be to only buy from a registered breeder that has health tested. Goggle should point you to websites for the various states breed clubs which should have heaps of info on them. Also look here and here

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I only have a 7 month BC, so I'm not the most experienced, but yes, I would say that all sounds pretty great. Right now Dash still gets tired very easily (but recharges just as quickly). He loves to fetch, swim (he's a natural swimmer and LOVES it!), play tug, solve treat puzzles, run around the yard with me and go for walks. And also sit in my lap and cuddle for as long as I'm there. If I'm sitting on the ground, he'll want to be in my lap. 

He's an amazing dog and I love him to pieces, but right now (and I'm hoping he grows out of it once he stops teething and matures past puppy stage) but he's also by far the most destructive dog I've ever had or heard of in my life. He eats EVERYTHING. From the plaster of the laundry (when confined as a tiny pup) to the floor of my deck, to my wooden front door, to my daughter's swing set etc.... I even bought him a clam shell pool yesterday to swim in which he was happily doing, but two seconds later he was chewing it to pieces. So it doesn't seem to be a boredom thing for him as he will happily try and destroy stuff in front of me and even after I've taken him out somewhere etc. 

 

Having said that, even though he has damaged a LOT around the house he's also a pretty amazing dog and I still love him to pieces. He learns everything (except not to chew!!) VERY quickly and is the friendliest, most affectionate dog I've ever had. He is always up for some exercise or adventure and as soon as the hatch of my car opens, he jumps in. He doesn't even wait for it to be opened fully, he just leaps in underneath it whether he's supposed to be going for a drive or not. :laugh: They are amazing at agility and you'll probably find that if you did do agility, that most of the other dogs there are also BCs. 

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You sound like  you'd probably be a good fit for a Border Collie, provided that you have, and will have, plenty of time in your day for small. varied training sessions.    And provided that if you start with a puppy, you can put the jogging with the BC on hold until the growth plates have closed - probably around 14 months.  There are lots of fun relationship building activities and games you can play in the meantime.   BCs are very willing learners but respond very much better to reward based/reinforcement based learning than to correction based.   Which does not mean permissive … they are happy enough with rules when taught appropriately.    

 

It's really important to make sure you get a puppy from an ethical, breeder who is knowledgeable about the breed, and has sire and dam tested for a range of genetic diseases, as well as hip, elbow and eye tests.

 

And yes .. they are generally very affectionate and people oriented.  They can develop really close dog friendships, but many are not by nature party animals or suited to dog parks.    They are for the most part very suited to and enthusiastic about most dog sports.   I have trained and titled BCs in agility,obedience, Rally O, Tracking, Dances with Dogs  and with the help of friends, conformation.    

 

Edited by Tassie
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