3 border collies standing in doorwayBorder Collie dogs are very smart, high energy dogs that need space to run. Training is necessary with this breed to release their mental energy and physical energy to avoid bad behaviors developing.

They were bred to herd sheep and they enjoy having a job to do, although they may have to be taught to not herd children. Border Collies are excellent on an agility course and enjoy catching a flying disc or ball.


Border Collies were bred in England to herd sheep. The Border Collie was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1995.


The Border Collie dog breed is a member of the American Kennel Club’s herding group of dogs.


Border Collie’s are dogs of a medium size, standing 18 to 22 inches at the shoulder and weighing 30 to 45 pounds.


The standard colors for the Border Collie according to the AKC are black, blue, blue merle, brindle, gold, lilac, red, red merle, sable, sable merle, saddleback sable, white and black, white and blue, white and blue merle, white and red, white and red merle and white ticked.

The AKC’s standard markings for the Border Collie are tan points, white markings, white markings and brindle points, white markings and tan points, white markings and ticked, and white markings, tan points and ticked.


Border Collies are active dogs that are playful and affectionate. They are good with kids and other animals but they are high energy dogs. They will bark to alert their owners when a stranger is present or when someone has arrives at your home. Being smart dogs, they are easy to train and they learn very quickly.

border collie jumping for bubblesEnergy

The Border Collie will need at least 2 hours of exercise each day, to release physical and mental energy or bad behaviors will develop. They are active dogs and need to have active owners.

This dog breed needs to have space to run, preferably a large yard with a fence or a farm, although they can disappear from fences by jumping, digging or opening gates.


The lifespan of a Border Collie is 12 to 15 years old. Generally healthy, they may be prone to deafness, epilepsy, hip dysplasia and eye disorders.


Border Collies can have a rough coat or a smooth coat, both having a double coat with a soft undercoat. The coat can be short to a medium length.

The Border Collie sheds moderately and regular brushing will keep their coat free of tangles and remove loose hair. They will shed heavier in the Spring and the Fall.

Other Grooming

They will need routine grooming such as brushing their teeth several times a week, cleaning their ears once a week and keeping their nails trimmed.


The Border Collie is a smart dog that learns quickly, with a few repetitions of the commands you are teaching them. They will enjoy training as they like to have a job to do. Training should include the release of mental and physical energy for the Border Collie.

Separation Anxiety

Common for this dog breed, Border Collie’s can suffer from separation anxiety severely. They need activity and interaction to be happy. Anxiety can develop quickly and bad behaviors will appear such as digging, chewing and barking.

You must exercise your Border Collie before leaving them alone. Make sure you release their physical and mental energy to leave them in a relaxed state. Only leave them alone for short periods of time.

border collie and tunnelRescue

If you have an interest in the Border Collie dog breed, please consider adoption. You can search for a Border Collie available for adoption in your area by going to PetFinder.

To find a Border Collie rescue organization, you can enter “Border Collie Rescue” into a search engine such as Google. You can also search including your zip code by entering “Border Collie Rescue + zip code”, replacing zip code with your actual zip code.

What do you think about the Border Collie dog breed? Leave a comment below or share a story about your dog. The information on this website is not intended to replace the advice of your own veterinarian, dog trainer, or dog behavioral specialist.