Border Collie Owners... What Is A Typical Day With Your Border Collie Like?

Discussion in 'General Dog Training' started by MissyBC, Oct 19, 2011.

  1. MissyBC Experienced Member

    Hi there. I was just wondering...

    What is a typical day with your Border Collie(s) like?

    --> Is your border collie a pup (8 weeks - 1 year old)?
    --> Is your dog under two years old?
    --> Is your dog 2+ years of age?
    --> Do you crate your dog(s)?
    --> When you aren't home, do(es) your dog(s) get free rein of the house?
    --> Do you live on a farm?
    --> Do you live in a town or city?
    --> Do you work from home?
    --> How many tricks do you teach your dog to do in a day?
    --> Do you work out of the home?
    --> What do you do to keep the dog entertained while at work?
    --> Is/are your dog(s) ever left alone for more than 4 hours?
    --> Do you own more than 1 dog?

    I was just wondering what your day to day schedules were like so that I could maybe get a better schedule going for my young Border Collie (just turned a year at the end of September).

    Thanks for taking the time to read this and thanks to those who also reply!

  2. Jukes Well-Known Member

    My border collie is just a little over 9 months old and is a female called Quest. I don't crate my dogs but when there's nobody at home Quest and my other dog are left in a room which has their beds,water and toys in it and that's about it so there's nothing for them to ruin like sofas. If I didn't have this room then I would crate them especially Quest since she's still very young and I don't want her to learn any undesirable behaviours like chewing furniture or stealing food or anything like that.

    I don't live on a farm but I do live in a rural area surrounded by farms and our house has a lot of land - 20+ acres so there's lots of room to run around. We also have 8 chickens which I'm teaching the dogs to herd but they aren't herding flocks of sheep everyday or anything like that.

    I have the benefit of being able to work from home and only occasionally go into the office (about once a week for a few hours). The dogs are never left for more than three hours but they are left every week for two hours whilst I do the shopping. On the one day that I go into work I also meet up with friends etc so the dogs go to daycare which only costs me £24 for the whole day for two very high energy and demanding dogs so it's worth it.

    When I do leave them at home they are left with several toys including a kong - often stuffed with food and frozen to help keep them occupied. Also before I go I bring them out for a toilet break and either play a game, go for a walk or go over some tricks to try and tire them out.

    http://www.dogtrickacademy.com/members/forums/threads/kong-stuffing-ideas.4023/#post-28781
    Here's a link to a thread about what to stuff Kongs with - I would seriously recommend a kong for a border collie if you haven't got one already. In fact any treat dispensing toy is a good idea to help keep them busy when you're gone.

    I do some trick training with my dogs everyday - usually 3-4, 10 minute sessions a day per dog. It's best to keep sessions short so your dog doesn't get bored or distracted and it's important to always end on a good note, even if that means telling your dog to sit at the end so you can click and treat. Do you use a clicker? If you don't that's another thing that I would recommend doing. I try to always have a new trick on the go but some tricks are harder than others and so take longer for the dog to learn, plus I like to train different tricks during the day so we rarely learn a new trick in just one day except if it's a really, really easy trick. Doing some tricks training is an excellent thing to do before leaving your dog as it tires them out mentally very quickly so they won't be as bored when they're alone since hopefully they'll be tired and maybe even have a nap:).

    As for a daily routine - it varies depending on the day and my mood but every week Quest has an obidience class, a freestyle class, daily training, doggy daycare, loads of walks and games every day (literally 3-4 hours walks a day - sometimes more if we go on a hike - it could be 7-8 hours - she sleeps well after that!). I don't know how long she's played with for, since I, my husband and my kids play with her and fuss her everyday.

    My older dog who is nearly 2 does a weekly rally obidience class, agility class, a flyball class and is a therapy dog aswell as all the things that Quest does like daycare and walks etc

    But as you know border collies are very active dogs - we're a very active family so it works out well. Does your dog have any problems with your current routine? What is your current routine? We may be able to help you adapt it for a border collie.

    Hope this helped
    tigerlily46514 likes this.
  3. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    --> Is your border collie a pup (8 weeks - 1 year old)?
    No. Knowing what i know now, about dog-aggression, i'd never ever get a puppy, as with a puppy, you can not detect if the pup is going to have the dog-aggression gene. (aggression, and shyness, do NOT always show up in the parents, meeting the parents tells you not a lot)
    I'd only select a dog over 9 mos old, so i can SEE what type of dog he is. Puppies are mystery.
    --> Is your dog under two years old?
    No. We now believe he was one year old when we first got him.
    --> Is your dog 2+ years of age?
    Yes.
    --> Do you crate your dog(s)?
    No. When we first rescued Buddy, he was used to a cage, and so we did buy a crate, left door open, and he could go in if he wanted to. He did now and then, but, overtime, used it less and less, and we put it away.
    --> When you aren't home, do(es) your dog(s) get free rein of the house?
    Yes, and we've NEVER ever had one problem, ever. We did specifically train him to leave the trash alone, and he has never touched it, ever, after learning he should not touch it. He is very good dog, and ohhhh boy, the enthusiastic greeting we get upon return, is almost a reason to leave him home alone, ha ha!
    --> Do you live on a farm?
    No, but, we do have a very large fenced in yard, and do live right by woods and fields.
    --> Do you live in a town or city?
    I live in a suburb, on outskirts of a town. Our neighborhood is set into woods. and half of each and every block, is woodland.
    --> Do you work from home?
    At my home, there IS usually someone home.
    --> How many tricks do you teach your dog to do in a day?
    My dog usually gets one new trick or cue each week. Some tricks take a day or two to learn, some many days to learn, and sometimes, a trick may take week or two to get. We do trick training 3 or 4 times a day, somedays, only once or twice.
    --> What do you do to keep the dog entertained while at work?
    When we leave Buddy home alone, we walk him a good long walk prior, and we do set up several things for him to work on while we are gone. We turn on tv set, on a news channel, to reduce chances there will be screaming or animal noises in the show. We set out toys he hasn't seen for a while.
    I make puzzles out of plastic containers and plastic water bottles (my dog does NOT eat plastic, some dogs will) with treats inside. Some of the plastic water bottles will have holes punched into them to allow treat crumbs to roll out. Usually, these 'puzzles' are one-time use puzzles.
    IF IT IS NICE OUTSIDE, we leave his doggie door open, so he can in/out at will.
    --> Is/are your dog(s) ever left alone for more than 4 hours?
    Rarely, but occasionally. I personally would never leave Buddy home alone more than 7 or 8 hours tops, if his doggie door was NOT open.

    --> Do you own more than 1 dog?
    No, my dog is dog-aggressive, so he is lone dog. Plus, we take Buddy with us EVERYWHERE we go, and it's okay to visit pals with one dog, but, multiple dogs might be too much.
    .
    I think the key to having a happy border collie, is excercise and mental training. Our Buddy usually gets almost 8 miles of walking a day, (4 mile walks, two times a day----but about half or less in winter and bad weather).
    .
    We also take Buddy to places he can RUN full speed off leash, almost every day.
    .
    Wintertimes are difficult, as we have severe winters here, so we do up the training more in winters to help prevent him being a BORED collie, ha ha. We bring his agility equipment indoors, (after cleaning it all off) and do agility INSIDE the house, ha ha, we DO!).
    We've noticed, for *our* dog, he CAN have a boring unactive day every now and then. Some days, in severe weather, he only gets about a mile walk total.
    He WILL do laps around the house, on such days. We do not mind his doing full speed laps around the house, we enjoy it, and encourage it.
    BUT, he can't have several boring days in a row. On bad weather days, even taking him to visit someone, or to Petsmart, or to visit my sister in a nursing home where everyone fawns over him, SOMEPLACE, anyplace!!!! etc, helps satisfy his need to do *something* on a boring, bad weather day.
  4. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    If you are considering getting a border collie, you might want to investigate BORDER COLLIE RESCUE orgs, there are many many various orgs. Most of those border collies, in 'rescue', live with foster families, and that family can tell you EVERYTHING you want to know about that particular dog----------does he like people? does he get on with cats? other dogs?
    does he chase cars? is he fearful? what is he afraid of? how do you handle that? does he have any odd obsessions? (BCs get obsessions easily, lol)
    does he bark a lot? is this dog okay home alone? how much excercise does this here border collie need every day to stay sane?
    Is he destructive if left home alone?
    does he shed a lot? does he like men? kids? is this dog a very high energy dog, or medium, or, is it one of the rare low energy border collies? WHATEVER *you* wanna know, the foster family can and WILL tell you the truth, as they, too, want a good match between dog and person.
    .
    BE AWARE, if you do opt for a dog in rescue, it can take months, and there is lengthy forms, references, etc, to fill out. These orgs tend to be understaffed, and most require a home visit and interview prior to approving you to get one of their dogs.
    .
    SO IF YOUR LIFESTYLE is better suited to a "NO MYSTERY DOG" perhaps consider rescuing a border collie who is currently living with a foster family. Another plus of going THAT route, is, the org is unlikely to let you have a dog that is wrong energy level for YOU, the org is unlikely to give you a very high energy border collie if they assess your lifestyle is not suited to that particular dog's excercise requirements, nor will they give a dog who isn't a great runner if say, you are looking for a jogging partner. They are pretty good at matching dogs with ppl.
    .
    And YES, OH YESSSSSSS, yes, that dog WILL indeed bond on you !!! Oh, it will, with all of his little heart.
    NOpe, not on first day, nope.
    He will probably lie low for first week or two, and size you up. But then, once the dog decides you are safe, (you can almost spot the day you've been approved)
    he will then love you more than you love your own self, more than he loves his own life, if anyone would just give him a chance to show how much love he does have to give you.
  5. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    ohhhhhhhhh, sorry i just now read you HAVE a border collie, i misunderstood, i thought you were considering getting a border collie, SORRY!! Yes, classes and doggie day care, as Jukes does, are GREAT IDEAS!! My dog can't go, cuz of his dog-aggression, but, i think Juke's idea are top notch ideas!!
  6. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    My dog herds laundry baskets, might be worth checking out if your dog enjoys a brand new laundry basket just for HIM. I've discovered, the kind with a flimsy thin pattern of plastic squares on the sides, get destroyed faster. I look for ones that have curved tops, and sturdy sides, often that kind has ovals cut into the sides with a good one inch or more of plastic between each hole.
    .
    Buddy has 3 indoor laundry baskets,
    and 3 outdoor laundry baskets,
    .
    and he can entertain himself for HOURS herding them. He stalks them, giving the baskets the 'border collie eye', and then rushes them, head-butting them all over the yard or house. He sometimes wrestles the unruly basket, and carries it in his mouth too.
    He gathers them up, one at a time, and re-locates all 3 to a new spot, and sits there, staring at the baskets, as if they are moving. Then he gets up, and re-locates them again, one at a time, to a new spot.
    he does this for HOURS.
    we did not teach any of this, he just loooooves laundry baskets. In the house, it is quite amazing, he never ever hits anything as he steers and commandeers the basket around the coffee table, under the table, through a door, he just head butts it all over the house. Once he ever hits an object, he never makes that mistake again, even though we say nothing. Like, if he knocks over a silk plant, he will never hit that plant again.
    .
    He might run a basket full speed right up to that plant, but, he now knows exactly when to turn the basket to avoid hitting that plant.
    .
    Sometimes, i stuff various toys into the holes, and Buddy has to work hard to remove the toys back out of the holes.
    .
    and weirdest of all, evvvery night, with few exceptions, he stores all his indoor laundry baskets under our dining room table, as if he is putting them to bed. crazy.
    Buddy also NEVER confuses OUR laundry baskets with HIS. not ever.
  7. MissyBC Experienced Member

    That's alright. No harm done here! (y)

    Missy LOVES plastic juice jugs (does sort of the same thing as Buddy does with his laundry baskets... but she doesn't give them "the eye" or "put them to bed.")
  8. tx_cowgirl Honored Member

    --> Is your border collie a pup (8 weeks - 1 year old)?
    No, adult.
    --> Is your dog under two years old?
    No
    --> Is your dog 2+ years of age?
    Yes, going on 7 now.
    --> Do you crate your dog(s)?
    Yes, but not often anymore.
    --> When you aren't home, do(es) your dog(s) get free rein of the house?
    Yes, but hasn't until the last couple years.
    --> Do you live on a farm?
    Not exactly, but we live in the country and have horses....but not a farm.
    --> Do you live in a town or city?
    Town
    --> Do you work from home?
    No
    --> How many tricks do you teach your dog to do in a day?
    Not as many as I used to....used to work on 5 or so tricks daily, but now I work full time and go to school full time so unfortunately that has dwindled down to about 5 a week if that. The dogs are taking it better than I am. :confused:
    --> Do you work out of the home?
    Yes
    --> What do you do to keep the dog entertained while at work?
    TV, Kongs, other toys. Before leaving they get lots of playtime or a training session to wear them out a bit mentally.
    --> Is/are your dog(s) ever left alone for more than 4 hours?
    No
    --> Do you own more than 1 dog?
    Yes; Border Collie--medium-high energy, Border Collie/Australian Cattle Dog--insane high energy, Weimaraner--high drive.
    Physical exercise is just as important as mental exercise for my dogs. Mud, my BC, gets more out of training than she does out of a 5 mile jog. Zeke, the BC/ACD is the same way, and Gypsy the Weim, my newest, seems to wear down faster with training than with exercise. Of course both are imortant but such smart dogs really enjoy using their brains. :)
  9. karleee Well-Known Member

    --> Is your border collie a pup (8 weeks - 1 year old)?
    yes,dazzle is a 7 and a 1/2 months old
    --> Is your dog under two years old?
    yes
    --> Is your dog 2+ years of age?
    no
    --> Do you crate your dog(s)?
    nope...dazzle trvels on the back of the ute
    --> When you aren't home, do(es) your dog(s) get free rein of the house?
    well,her pen....with LOTS of toys!
    --> Do you live on a farm?
    Yes we do :) 5 acere's of paddocks,dams and bush
    --> Do you live in a town or city?
    NOOOO....i can't stand towns or cities!!!,so noisy :mad:
    --> Do you work from home?
    well...i go to school for six hours a day as a 12 year old student :p
    --> How many tricks do you teach your dog to do in a day?
    dazzle can usually pick up on about 1-3 tricks a day...she is a smart little cookie ;)
    --> Do you work out of the home?
    as i said before....i go to school for six hours a day
    --> What do you do to keep the dog entertained while at work?
    dazzle has tons of toys to play with when i'm at school
    --> Is/are your dog(s) ever left alone for more than 4 hours?
    no...mums at home when i'm at school...when i come home from school she goes to work
    --> Do you own more than 1 dog?
    we used to have 2,but the elderly dushund passed away...and my beagle got hit by a car :cry:

    Well...dazzle isn't exactly a bordercollie,she is 1/3 bordercollie,2/3 australian kelpie...and is a VERY active pup :)
  10. fly30 Experienced Member

    --> Is your border collie a pup (8 weeks - 1 year old)?
    No
    --> Is your dog under two years old?
    Yes, Fly is 19 months old
    --> Is your dog 2+ years of age?
    No
    --> Do you crate your dog(s)?
    In the car only. The crate is available in the house, door open. But at night, she sleeps in our bedroom (but not on our bed)
    --> When you aren't home, do(es) your dog(s) get free rein of the house?
    Yes.
    --> Do you live on a farm?
    No
    --> Do you live in a town or city?
    At the seaside and close to wide walking areas.
    --> Do you work from home?
    Yes
    --> How many tricks do you teach your dog to do in a day?
    Not one trick a day but at least one session a day, usually at lunchtime, sometimes also in the evening.
    --> Do you work out of the home?
    Sometimes
    --> What do you do to keep the dog entertained while at work?
    Nothing, she sleeps besides me, in my office
    --> Is/are your dog(s) ever left alone for more than 4 hours?
    Rarely but it happens. She's very quiet (lucky me).
    --> Do you own more than 1 dog?
    No

    Important thing : we go for walks twice a day (one hour for each walk) and we have plenty of activities over the weekend. Once or twice a month, we go herding and that's what is really important for a border collie.

    And what about you Missy ? What's your weekly schedule ?
  11. MissyBC Experienced Member

    Is your border collie a pup (8 weeks - 1 year old)?
    Yes, Missy turned a year old in September.

    --> Is your dog under two years old?
    Yes, Missy is almost 13 months old.

    --> Is your dog 2+ years of age?
    No

    --> Do you crate your dog(s)?
    I put her in the mudroom on occasion when I need to walk other dogs. Rarely though. There is usually someone home to watch her when I'm not around.

    --> When you aren't home, do(es) your dog(s) get free rein of the house?
    Sometimes, or I just take her with me when out walking neighbour dogs.

    --> Do you live on a farm?
    No

    --> Do you live in a town or city?
    I live in a town.

    --> Do you work from home?
    Yes

    --> How many tricks do you teach your dog to do in a day?
    One, maybe 2 depending on how fast she learns them. I work on basic obedience with her almost every day as well.

    --> Do you work out of the home?
    No

    --> What do you do to keep the dog entertained while at work?
    I stuff Kongs, give her toys to keep her out of trouble, and exercise her with a walk and run before I leave to walk other dogs.

    --> Is/are your dog(s) ever left alone for more than 4 hours?
    Rarely.

    --> Do you own more than 1 dog?
    No, but I do look after two Shelties full time in my home as well as walk neighbour dogs. :)

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