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How much attention do border collies need?


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Yesterday I had a long phone call with a breeder who sells "Australian BC". She was AKC registered and sells "show" BC. I googled and found a dog which looked more like a golden retriever. Anyways that is not important. Her point was I should get of them as they are much mellow and better family pets. She said a working dog is "Neurotic" and will seldom feel a need for human companionship (I do want my dog to come n cuddle in her rest time).

 

She's just trying to get you to drink the Kool Aid and sign up for the dumbed down Barbie collie (most of which are from Australian lines).

 

As others have said, puppyhood and adolescence may well be a whirlwind, but that's true of most dogs. If you're committed to making it work, you can do it with what you've outlined.

 

What concerns me is that after all the time we've spent steering you in the right direction and all the times you've said you get it, you're calling ACK breeders. Why? :wacko:

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What concerns me is that after all the time we've spent steering you in the right direction and all the times you've said you get it, you're calling ACK breeders. Why? :wacko:

 

I'm guessing it's just a matter of getting as informed as possible, by oneself. When I meet people with agility or show BCs I ask lots of questions. I'm not interested in getting one myself but I want to learn as much as possible from the people who have them. It's not that I'm not sure about wanting BCs to be bred for work, it's just that it's one thing to have opinions based on other's, and another to consolidate my opinions, originally formed through other's, by my own experiences. If that makes sense. And anyway, talking dogs is always fun, even if I'm thinking, "yeah, yeah, yabadabada". AND i get to praise working dogs.

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I emailed much before I posted first time in this forum. She was busy with her dogs(I think I heard she had two litters this year) giving birth, so she called me 2 days ago. And I have a tendency to listen to people before judging them, so I heard her out. Even though I might not buy from her, she gave me some food for thought. I think I have a lot of things to learn for all breeders, dog-owner (Even non BC owner). So that at the end I can make an informed decision which is best for the puppy and myself.

 

Thanks to you guys, I am now inclined to wait out however long it takes to find a perfect pet. I have received a wonderful support from you guys.

But again I will still want to reach out to as many people as possible.

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I have a friend with three BC and an Australian Shepherd. She just adopted a BC (2yo from a AKC breeder and there is no question as to why the previous owners wanted to get rid of her). This poor dog is cute as a button but an ADHD mess. Friend says she is more work than all the other dogs put together. I have spent time around one of my friend's Border Collies and her Australian Shepherd and they are wonderful dogs. I would take them home in an instant, I would not take her AKC dog.

 

There is another AKC Border Collie that was in the agility class with my daughter. She was a cute, short legged dog with the most fluffy coat I have ever seen. She didn't focus well and did not do well in the class. You couldn't pay me to take her.

 

My five month old pup has more focus and is easier to work with than either of the AKC dogs. It is worth it to get a pup from working lines.

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Forgot to say that doggy day care can be a wonderful resource. Sometimes I need to be away from the house all day so I drop off my pup. She has a great time and gets to play with other puppies and is tired when we arrive home. The doggy day care I take my pup to also has a doggy boot camp where they will train your dog. I have seen the trainers work with the dogs and they teach obedience skills and cute tricks as well. If I worked full time I would take advantage if the doggy boot camp or day care at least a couple of times a week.

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Dear Doggers,

 

That first Border Collie can change your life.

 

Donald McCaig

Yes. This. Exactly!! to the OP - think about it - how well would a neurotic dog fare on a farm? They have to have calm self control to be able to manage a flock. My working bred and (and rescue) dogs would be fine with a schedule like what you posted. They are incredibly easy to live with when their needs are being met. They are intense when outside doing stuff and ready to chill when inside. They need structure, a job to do (mental/physical exercise), a person to do stuff with. If they have those then they can thrive in a variety of settings.
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Dear Doggers,

 

That first Border Collie can change your life.

 

Donald McCaig

I completely agree! - though in my case it was the third one.

My first 2 BCs were both from farm working stock, but seemed completely content to be full time active loving pets who fitted around my full time job. My third introduced me to the herding world and since I've discovered sheep, my whole lifestyle has changed for the better.

 

A Border Collie can definitely open you eyes if you are just prepared to take the time to look.

 

To the OP.. I agree with the others, a BC from working stock, can make great pets..although genetics definitively play a part..a dog (any dog) is often what you as the owner make it.. As well as periods of mental and physical activity, a pup also needs plenty of "down time" on its own so that it does not develop separation anxiety issues later on.

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MIne are all working bred. They live in the house. I work full time and I also freelance part time (another 15-20 hours a week). I get home from work, throw them out in the yard for a bit, and then they can come back in and hang out while I do my freelance work. I raised all but one of them. They learned from puppyhood that downtime was a fact of life and that I was not the source of all entertainment for them.

 

Some or more cuddly than others. Most of them are related, so this is an individual trait; if it were purely genetic, I'd expect them all to be very much the same when it comes to desire to cuddle, and they're not. That said, the closely related dogs do have some similar behavior traits.

 

You are more likely to have issues of any sort with a poorly bred, poorly raised dog than any other sort. A well-bred, poorly raised dog might also be difficult. But really, working bred dogs were created to work with a human. A dog that couldn't do that wasn't like to stay in the gene pool. Working with a human can mean any number of things, from real stockwork, to sports, to hanging out. They want to be with their human, generally. They would love to interact with you, but that interaction doesn't have to be exercise/entertainment 24/7.

 

And even though mine are working bred and I can work them as I want, I will say that once I have a dog fully trained, I don't train. I'll do chores as needed, and maybe do some "tuning up" before a trial, but there certainly isn't enough regular work for all of them, nor do they get regular work. So the fact that they are pleasant cohabitants in my house isn't the result of working all day and therefore being happy to lay about in their off hours.

 

They are what you make them, as long as they are mentally stable. They can adapt to a wide variety of lifestyles. Quality of interaction is much more important than quantity. If you are willing to allow a dog to be an active participant in your life, you'll probably be fine.

 

J.

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I adore my new 1 year old guy, he is worth the work. I spend as much time as I can (as I am retired) with him and the ten year old female. I'll check out the nose work stuff, see if that calms him. He is very affected by noise on my street. At night when I have him crated near my bed, I have to turn on the white noise generator. He was a farm dog, now a pet living in a rural city setting on a street. My yard is fenced, and I plan to have a dog run installed so perhaps these refusals about going out to do his biz will be reduced. He is my 3rd BC. Thirty years ago I had a rough collie. I have also had many dogs over my lifetime. He is my 6th herder. I feel lucky as he is very cuddly, touchable. Compared to my female who is standoffish.

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  • 2 years later...

I emailed much before I posted first time in this forum. She was busy with her dogs(I think I heard she had two litters this year) giving birth, so she called me 2 days ago. And I have a tendency to listen to people before judging them, so I heard her out. Even though I might not buy from her, she gave me some food for thought. I think I have a lot of things to learn for all breeders, dog-owner (Even non BC owner). So that at the end I can make an informed decision which is best for the puppy and myself.

 

Thanks to you guys, I am now inclined to wait out however long it takes to find a perfect pet. I have received a wonderful support from you guys.

But again I will still want to reach out to as many people as possible.

Hi Shatarak,

 

I am a newbie here, and have read this post many times as I am in quite a similar situation to you.

I just wondered what happened in the end? Did you end up getting a BC?

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