Border Collie: Why To And Why Not Have Them As Pets

What To Know Before Owning A Border Collie

pros and cons of owning a Border Collie

Thinking of adopting a Border Collie as a pet?  You should know the pros and cons of a Border Collie before you let one into your home and heart.  

Border Collies ranked 31 on the AKC’s list of most popular dogs of 2021. This is no shocker, as it is one of the most intelligent and energetic breeds. 

Sure, they’re great, but should you get a Border Collie? Here are some pros and cons of owning a border collie that you need to consider. 

Pros Of A Border Collie

Let’s take a look at the pros of this breed first. 

1. They Are Great Learners 

Among the Border Collie pros, this one tops most lists. Chaser, a Border Collie, was named the world’s smartest dog. It knew the names of around 1,022 of its toys. 

The breed is very versatile at learning and, apart from words, can also learn almost any trick. While it does take time to train them, once they learn a command, they execute it beautifully right on cue. 

Apart from being intelligent, their pleasing nature and the innate need to work make them good learners. 

Here is a fun fact: Collie means black. You could say they were named after what they herded! This is because they once tended black-faced sheep. 

2. They Love Exercise 

It is a working dog that we are talking about here, and so it is no wonder that the beautiful Border Collie loves to exercise. 

If you are a nature enthusiast yourself, a Border Collie is the perfect companion. These dogs take running, biking, and hiking very sportingly; however, they will do great even with daily walks. 

P.S. This can turn into a big con if you do not have enough time or are not an outdoor person. 

Average Grooming Needs

3. Average Grooming Needs

If you are worrying about border collie shedding, relax, their grooming needs are not something to be worried about. 

Border Collies come in two types of coats. So, if you are worried about shedding, get one with a smooth coat. It has coarse and short hair that does not become a problem during the shedding season. 

But even the medium-length feathered coat does not have too many grooming needs. Brush the dog three times a week to get rid of debris and tangles. 

4. Border Collie Is A Hardy Breed 

Talking about hardy, how long do border collies live?

Being bred for the climatic conditions of Scotland, the hardy Border Collie has a lifespan of 12 to 15 years. 

pros and cons of a border collie

Cons Of A Border Collie

Continuing with the pros and cons of a border collie, let’s look at the cons.

1. They Are A Highly Energetic Breed

While their high energy makes them great farmer’s friends, it can also make them good family pets. 

They are jittery and need daily exercise, without which they will develop destructive behaviors. A Border Collie dog will also need mental stimulation to keep it healthy and happy. 

2. They Will Herd Your Kids

If you have young kids at home, it is important to consider this disadvantage. Being a herding dog, a Border Collie may treat anyone smaller than them as sheep. 

How big do border collies get? Well, the males can reach a height of 22 inches, while the females are just an inch shorter. Also, as they can weigh up to 55 pounds, their herding is not a joke. 

Why not to get a Border Collie? Occasionally, a Border Collie may even nip at kids, like how it does to sheep not listening to its commands. You may want to avoid this aggressive behavior. 

border collie socialization is a must

3. Socialization Is A Must

If you know about Border Collie temperaments, you must know that the dog is extremely loving, loyal, friendly, and very sociable. But socialization is also one of the significant Border Collie problems. 

Start socializing your Border Collie at a very young age with humans and other animals. Those that have not been socialized have a very difficult time meeting new people and struggle when they get older.

This also gets us to the question, do Border Collies bark a lot? When not socialized properly, the dog develops mistrust and will bark at every newcomer or even strangers on walks. 

This, combined with their protective nature, can become a very big issue. So, are Border Collies difficult? Only when not trained and socialized properly. 

4. They Have Some Health Issues 

Like many other dog breeds, Border Collies, too, have a set of diseases they are predisposed to. Before adopting a pup, get it checked for eye and hip problems. Also, they are highly prone to deafness, epilepsy, and renal atrophy. 

So, with this breed, regular health check-ups, especially for ear infections, are a must. If you already have one and are worried about its health, you must have researched what to and what not to feed your baby. 

Did you know? All puppies are born deaf.

If your collie likes lime, you must have wondered, are limes good for dogs? Or are limes good for Border Collies? While this citrus fruit is safe in moderation, it is better avoided. 

Do you know? A dog’s sense of taste is much less developed than that of humans. They have approximately 1/6th of taste buds than that of humans. 

pros and cons of owning a Border Collie


Is a Border Collie a good pet? Yes, but like every breed, Border Collies come with their set of advantages and disadvantages. One important thing to remember about the Border Collie is that it belongs to the herding breed. So this workaholic dog has high exercise needs.

Now that you know the pros and cons of a border collie, you also know if it is the right fit for you. If you are a family that loves adventures and the outdoors, a Border Collie will be the perfect match for you.

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