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The Border Collie dog breed was developed to gather and control sheep in the hilly border counties between Scotland and England. The Border Collie’s name reflects his partially Scottish heritage: the word collie, which refers to sheep dogs, is derived from Scottish dialect.

Border Collies possess a seemingly supernatural amount of energy and stamina. When it comes to the ideal working dog, it doesn’t get much better than these dogs. One technique that these dogs use to herd is called “the eye.” This is an intense stare that they employ to intimidate animals, making it easier for the dog to herd them.

The Border Collie breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1995. This dog breed is often cited as the most intelligent of all domestic dogs, understanding up to about 1,000 words.

Being one of the most intelligent of all breeds, these dogs at the same time are one of the most challenging to live with.

Border Collies are herding dogs, which means they have an overwhelming urge to gather a flock. That flock could be sheep, children, cats, squirrels, or anything that moves. Remember, they were bred to run and work all day herding sheep. This instinct to nip, nudge, and bark, along with their energy, cannot be trained out of them. Rather, it must be directed.

They need to be exercised regularly to spend all of their energy; otherwise, they might misbehave and suffer from anxiety. You’ll also have to be comfortable with a dog who can outsmart you from time to time.

If you want a loving, brainy dog who will keep you active and on your toes, this may be the breed for you! But be prepared to work a lot with your dog. These dogs are not meant to be couch potatoes (they don’t like to cuddle). They can get bored easily.

The decision of whether to choose a male vs. female Border Collie is totally personal. We can give you all the information you need to make the right choice. Stay with us.

Are Male Or Female Border Collies Better?

young border collie in the forestyoung border collie in the forest

This is one of the most frequently asked questions about these dogs. A Collie’s gender is only one small aspect to consider when deciding to get one. There are plenty of other factors that will affect your pet’s overall temperament, health, and behavior once they grow up.

Unless you have a specific reason for choosing one gender over the other, like, say, you want a female Border Collie for breeding purposes, then the gender of your dog shouldn’t be a huge factor in your decision.

However, depending on the situation, a specific gender might be a better option. For example, if you have a Border Collie and want another dog, a female Border Collie gets along well with male dogs as well with other dogs or animals.

This article is here to give you a general overview of the traits of both genders. After all, you are the person who will decide which one you want; a male or a female. Whatever you decide, make sure you choose a pet that will fit your lifestyle and energy level.

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What Is The Difference Between Male And Female Border Collies?

border collie puppy lying on the grassborder collie puppy lying on the grass

Before we start, let’s make something clear about Border Collies. This breed, in general, is high energy, and both males and females need plenty of exercise, long walks, running, learning new tricks, etc. Therefore if you don’t have enough time for them, consider other dog breeds that will suit your lifestyle.

Because of their natural herding instincts, Border Collies are very protective of their families, making them excellent watchdogs. They can be great family companions, so long as they get a lot of physical and mental exercise.

When you decide to get a Border Collie, you will need to think carefully about gender. Think about your own personal choice and the type of residence you currently live in. It’s not just about the characteristics or sex of a Border Collie that you have to think about. You also need to examine your capabilities in getting a really high-quality dog.

If you would like a rather outdoorsy and welcoming dog, then what you are searching for would be a male Border Collie. If you wish to have a dog that is more focused on training, more loyal, and attentive, then a female Border Collie would suit you best.

Let’s check other male vs. female Border Collie differences in the table below:

Male Border Collie Female Border Collie
Height: 19–22” 18–21”
Weight: 30–55 lbs 30–55 lbs
Temperament: Intelligent, stubborn, energetic Intelligent, cautious, energetic
Easy to train: Fast learners Fast learners
Health: Depends on genetics Depends on genetics
Lifespan: Between 12–15 Years Between 12–15 Years
Puppy price: $1,300 – $4,500 $1,500 – $5,000

Male Vs. Female Border Collie – Size

Border Collie sitting on the floor at homeBorder Collie sitting on the floor at home

Photo from: @asaph_v

Borders are athletic, medium-sized dogs standing 18 to 22 inches at the shoulder. They look like a lighter-weight Australian shepherd, but instead of the bobtail characteristic of the Aussie, Border Collies have a feathered tail that reaches to the hocks.

The black-and-white Border Collie is most familiar, but the breed comes in all colors and combinations of colors and markings. They can be solid, bi-color, tri-color, merle, and sable.

Male Collies can grow from 19 to 22 inches tall and can weigh from 30 to 55 pounds. They seem to be larger than female Borders, but this is barely noticeable since both have the same physique.

Males have muscular bodies and long fur around their chests and the sides of their bodies.

Female Border Collies can grow from 18 to 22 inches tall, one inch less than their male counterparts. But this measurement will not make them any less of a sturdy dog.

Both male and female Borders look the same, and there are no significant differences when it comes to their appearance. Similar to males, female dogs also weigh from 30 to 55 pounds. When well prepped, both look sleek and confident.

Male Vs. Female Border Collie – Temperament

Two Border Collies in the woodsTwo Border Collies in the woods

The Border Collie’s personality is characteristically alert, energetic, hardworking, and intelligent. They learn quickly — so quickly that it’s sometimes difficult to keep them challenged. These dogs are smart, intense workaholics who live for order and value being given a job above all else.

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This breed likes to be busy. In fact, they must be busy, or they become bored, leading to annoying behavior, such as barking, digging, or chasing cars. Any dog, no matter how nice, can develop obnoxious levels of barking, digging, counter surfing, and other undesirable behaviors if he is bored, untrained, or unsupervised. With a Border Collie, multiply the destructive potential by a factor of ten.

You could keep a Border Collie in an apartment as long as you are extremely physically active, doing something your dog can also do, such as training for marathons or cycling races. If you’re not that active, this dog in an apartment is a truly bad idea.

Don’t underestimate that intelligence, either. This is among the smartest of all dog breeds and one whose owners need to pay attention lest they find themselves outsmarted.

Expecting Border Collies to spend their days in the backyard and their evenings keeping you company while you watch TV is a sure way to create a barking, bored, destructive dog instead of the calm, well-behaved, loyal companion you thought you were bringing into your home.

Let’s see male vs. female Border Collie differences in temperament.

The Male Border Collie

Male Borders are much more committed and dedicated to their owners, particularly during their baby years. They socialize with other people easier than females, and they are less suspicious of strangers. They reach physical maturity quicker, but mental maturity slower.

Male Borders are more playful and energetic throughout life. Unlike female Borders, male Borders are happier overall. They are more likely to bond with all family members. They are typically more stubborn and get along well with female dogs (consult your vet about neutering).

These dogs can make great therapy dogs. Even when they are incredibly sweet and gentle, they are indeed personally detached. Most of the time, they are noisy because they really want something, whether it be your interest, snacks, or whatever they’d instantly like to have.

Male Borders can move faster when it comes to outdoorsy tasks because they love working hard so much. All you have to do is give them a wide-open place to play around. This helps them to get better at their job.

The Female Border Collie

Female Border Collies are expected to be more responsive and attentive to the happenings around them. Nevertheless, they are also competitive about everything they do, and they like to get their job done.

Talking about loyalty, the female tends to take a little longer to develop its devotion to its owners. At first, they do not offer their confidence immediately, but it’s a wonderful experience once you’ve won their loyalty.

Unlike male Border Collies, which appear to be personally detached, females are highly space conscious. They are often clingy, but they understand when to do or stop something. They are polite and courteous to their owners and have high regard for distance.

Females are generally less aggressive and more independent than their male counterparts. It takes time for them to socialize with other people since they are more suspicious of strangers. Unlike males, they reach physical maturity slower but mental maturity quicker.

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Females tend to bond with one person in the family. They are less stubborn than males. They get along well with male dogs as well as other dogs or animals. Of course, early socialization is very important.

In addition, female Border Collies may also become defensive and grumpy at times. They can also become unpredictable and aggressive if they are not properly trained.

Lastly, if you are not going to breed your Border Collie, then spaying her is recommended.

Male Vs. Female Border Collie – Trainability

Border collie dog catches a flying discBorder collie dog catches a flying disc

Start training your Border Collie puppy the day you bring him/her home. Even at eight weeks old, they are capable of soaking up everything you can teach them. Keep in mind that they are working dogs at heart, and without a high level of exercise, Border Collies can grow bored and mischievous.

Obedience training that starts early and continues throughout their life will keep them happy and provide needed mental stimulation. Exceptionally responsive to positive reinforcement training, these dogs are quick to housetrain and learn commands. Since they love to chase and herd other animals, they should be well trained before you let them off the lead in the countryside.

Collies are smart and intelligent; their intelligence and tractable nature make them easy to train. They are superb at obedience tasks and household instructions.

Male Border Collies

Due to their muscle strength, males are excellent at field tests and excel in Frisbee if you train them. They are slightly larger and more robust than most females are. They can also be extremely careful, too, like female Borders when it comes to hunting and police work.

Relative to many other bigger dogs throughout their baby years, male Borders are much tougher to teach. They can become easily overwhelmed because they want to have fun and goof around.

But then again, do not worry because they seem to be more likely to become excellent in all dog tasks once they have mastered their behavior. They like to serve their masters and can do anything you tell them to during their dog training just for you to praise them.

Female Border Collies

When it comes to training, female Borders have no major disparity to male Borders. They may be sleeker and thinner than male Borders, but females are good at the job too.

Because they reach maturity faster than males, they could be more willing to take responsibility in the field of hunting. They do have extreme restraint, which makes them particularly protective of their territory.

If you train female dogs for basic obedience cues, know that they can respond more effectively than male Borders do. They are calculated in all practice sessions but do not have a long attention span since they get easily bored, and they will be more likely to get their own way to the couch where they can lie down all day.

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Male Vs. Female Border Collie – Socialization

border collie dog stands near his ownerborder collie dog stands near his owner

Like most herding breeds that have an inborn protective streak, Border Collies can be wary of strangers. Early and frequent socialization is essential to prevent them from becoming shy or aggressive in the presence of people they don’t know.

Collies are also highly sensitive to sound and may develop noise phobias, especially to thunderstorms, if they are not accustomed to loud or unexpected noises. On the plus side, they are excellent watchdogs and will always alert you to anything or anyone out of the ordinary.

If you don’t have experience with proper socialization, we advise you to seek professional help. They will show you how to properly work with this dog so both you and your dog can be happy and satisfied.

Border Collies are awesome to be around with children, both male and female. Male Borders are naturally playful. They are also gentle towards kids, even if they sometimes don’t know what stop means. Females are usually more careful when they play with kids because they know that kids can go beyond extremes, and female Borders do not want to exhaust themselves.

As with every breed, you should always teach children how to approach and touch dogs and always supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent any biting or ear or tail pulling on the part of either party.

Collies usually get along with other animals. Whether other animals will enjoy living with them is another question.

Males are more likely to welcome new dogs into their territory, and even if they are males, they should not try to assert dominance over other dogs. They can also be territorial and aggressive, though. That’s why training and socialization are so important.

On the other hand, female Border Collies can get along with their male counterparts. This means that they like boys more than female dogs. If you don’t socialize your female puppy well when it is young, there is a possibility that she will be more likely to fight for dominance and territory later.

Male Vs. Female Border Collie: Which Are Better With Children?

Teenage child with border collieTeenage child with border collie

Border Collies can be wonderful additions to your family, as long as they are properly trained and raised by taking care of their essential requirements. As a family-friendly breed, they get along with children, people, and other dogs and are known to have a strong bond with their owners.

However, an untrained Border Collie may develop excessive herding instincts that cause him to bite, nip and chase, but that can be fixed with appropriate training methods.

The Border Collie needs to understand that kids are kind and friendly. If your Border Collie gets a little too rowdy with children, make sure to let them know that’s not okay. And if the dog attempts to herd children, stop him or her immediately.

Your children, in general, need to learn how to act around all dogs. In other words, they must understand how to behave and treat the family dog. This will further minimize mishaps.

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If your children aren’t old enough to understand how to treat the Border Collie with respect, they should not be playing with the dog. Rough play from children can traumatize a dog. Plus, the dog may eventually “retaliate” out of fear.

In the context of male vs. female Border Collie and their behavior towards children, here is what’s important.

Generally speaking, male Border Collies are good with children, but it is important to instill leadership in your children beforehand. Male Borders are naturally playful. They can also be friendlier to strangers they meet. They are also gentle towards kids even if they sometimes don’t know what stop means.

Female Borders are extremely moody and grumpy. They are more likely to distance themselves when they do not feel like socializing. Due to their maternal instinct, they can be protective and more cautious of tiny kids around them.

Male Vs. Female Border Collie: Which Are Better With Other Dogs?

Border collie and sheetland sheepdog sitting next to each otherBorder collie and sheetland sheepdog sitting next to each other

In general, Border Collies tend to be good with other dogs, but this is not a natural trait for all Border Collies. While your dog may love to chase (and be chased) by other dogs, it can take time before your dog feels comfortable playing with others of his own kind.

When starting out with socialization, find a place where your dog can interact with others but won’t be overwhelmed by closed spaces or too many dogs. A busy dog park might be too much to start off with, but perhaps your local dog park isn’t as crowded in the early morning.

In the context of male vs. female Border Collie socialization with other dogs, males should be friendly towards any other dogs because that is what they are. They just want to play or run with them.

On the other hand, females are more likely to fight for dominance. But they can get along with their male counterparts. Female Borders have a higher chance of demonstrating dominance over some other breeds.

Male Vs. Female Border Collie: Which Are Better With Cats?

cute black and white adult border collie and little kittencute black and white adult border collie and little kitten

Border collies can certainly get along with cats as long as a good relationship is fostered between them. It is really up to you as the owner to encourage gentle play and interactions between your Border Collie and cat.

You must be consistent when training your Border Collie to behave well with the cat and not allow him to become bored, as this can lead to trouble. You can give your cat a lovely cat tree, where she can climb up to safety if things get too heated. Plus, cats just love looking down on other life forms imperiously from up high.

It is important to take note that in a household where you reside with both, these two animals are unique and therefore serve different purposes. Keep a close eye on both of them to prevent possible problems.

So in the context of male vs. female Border Collie and their interaction with cats, there is no straight answer. With a little training and patience, Border Collies and cats can be taught to coexist peacefully.

Male Vs. Female Border Collie: Health Issues

border collie dog lying down outdoorsborder collie dog lying down outdoors

All dogs have the potential to develop genetic health problems, just as all people have the potential to inherit a particular disease. Border Collies are no exception. They can develop the following health problems:

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• Hip dysplasia – With hip dysplasia, the balls and sockets of the hind legs don’t fit one another properly. The main symptom of this disease is discomfort in the hind legs, such as stiffness and lameness. Luckily, it can be treated easily with corticosteroids or anti-inflammatories. Dogs with hip dysplasia can also be given dog food that is nutritionally supplemented.

• Progressive retinal atrophy – This is an eye disease that involves the gradual deterioration of the retina. Early in the disease, affected dogs become night-blind; they lose sight during the day as the disease progresses.

• Epilepsy – This is a neurological condition that’s often, but not always, inherited. Epilepsy can cause mild or severe seizures that may show themselves as unusual behavior (such as running frantically as if being chased, staggering, or hiding) or even by falling down, rigid limbs, and losing consciousness.

• Collie eye anomaly – This is an inherited condition that causes changes and abnormalities in the eye, which can sometimes lead to blindness.

• Osteochondritis dissecans (OCD) – This orthopedic condition, caused by improper growth of cartilage in the joints, usually occurs in the elbows, but it has been seen in the shoulders as well. It causes a painful stiffening of the joint, to the point that the dog is unable to bend his elbow.

Not all Border Collies will get any or all of these diseases, but it’s important to be aware of them if you’re considering this breed.

Should I Get A Male Or Female Border Collie?

border collie dog lying down on the grassborder collie dog lying down on the grass

If you are thinking of bringing a Border Collie into your home and are still wondering if a male or female would best suit you, bear in mind that a dog’s behavior is influenced significantly by genetics and the kind of environment he/she is raised in.

Regardless of gender, every dog needs to be properly socialized with people, other dogs, cats, and others in their environment to minimize aggressive behavior.

All Border Collies are beautiful dogs and can easily become a part of your family. The male vs. female question is a very personal one. Think carefully before making your decision.

If you’re ready to provide loving leadership to your dog, train them consistently and fairly, and give him/her plenty of exercise and an outlet for their considerable intelligence, then yes, the Border Collie can be right for you. A good Border Collie can be the companion of a lifetime, but only if a dog is paired with a clever owner who can keep him/her busy with dog sports or who will teach him/her to do chores around the house or farm.

If you are having second thoughts about this breed, go visit the nearest animal shelter. Maybe you can find a dog who will become the best dog you ever had there.

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By Andy Marcus

Hello, my name is Andy Marcus, and I am a passionate dog lover and enthusiast. For me, there is nothing quite like the joy and love that a furry friend can bring into our lives. I have spent years studying and learning about dogs, and have made it my mission to share my knowledge and expertise with others through my website. Through my website, I aim to provide comprehensive information and resources for dog owners and enthusiasts. Whether it's training tips, health and nutrition advice, or insights into dog behavior, I strive to create a platform that is accessible and useful to everyone who loves dogs.

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