Border Collie Training: Burning off Energy

In the beginning, Border collie training can be difficult because these animals are so high energy, not to mention crafty and highly intelligent. They need to be challenged and have a purpose. Border collies have a natural herding instinct and were developed to perform as working dogs, herding flocks.  Because of this, a bored border collie can turn into an escape artist or develop a number of behavioral issues.

Border Collie Training Tips

In the beginning, your Border collie pup will need to learn how to be social with both people and animals in order to overcome their herding instinct. It’s not uncommon for an untrained collie to try and herd the other animals in the home or even small children. Focus on teaching your dog how to relax and play with the other animals in the home and how to interact with family members. Because these dogs are so high energy they’ll need an outlet to burn it off in order to remain happy. This can take the form of taking your dog for a walk, jog or run, playing fetch in the backyard or even entering your dog in agility contests.

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An inexperienced Border collie owner may have their hands full if they’re not familiar with this breed, which is why so many of these animals end up being rehomed. A border collie will thrive in basic obedience training classes because they have an inbred desire to learn and work. Read up on this breed before you run out and purchase one. Learn about their high energy needs and determine if you have both the time and space to adequately care for this dog.

When basic commands are involved, part of Border collie training should involve teaching your dog how to sit, stay and down. Your dog should also be trained to respond to their name and return when called. If you’re unsure of your training methods or you simply haven’t been successful, then it may be time to enroll your pup in dog obedience classes, where a professional trainer will work closely with you and your dog and teach you helpful techniques.

If you’re too harsh with your collie, they tend to act out or can even shut down. Never, ever hit or yell at your dog. Patience from both the owner and collie is important.

Keeping your Dog Safe when you’re not Home

Before you buy a collie, ask yourself if you have the space this breed needs to burn off energy. Is your backyard secure and escape proof? Do you have the time for this breed and their high energy needs? As we have mentioned, a bored collie is a depressed collie. Playtime is important as is socialization and a daily walk. This is a high maintenance breed that requires more attention and training than your average dog. If you’re not confident that your backyard can keep your collie safely enclosed while you’re out running errands consider crate training your dog.