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Old 07-15-2006, 09:21 PM
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Citrus007 Citrus007 is offline
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Default Jobs for Border Collies

Ok I don't have a border collie and I won't be able to get one soon because they need so much work but in the future, (long, long time from now- several years) I want to get one. However I have no sheepies or anything so I was wondering. What other "jobs" can you give them to suit their drive. Every says they need a job but I don't know what that means. List as many things as you can please-
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Old 07-15-2006, 09:42 PM
~Tucker&Me~ ~Tucker&Me~ is offline
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You can try agility and flyball. You can also teach them to bring you toys on command and put their toys away .

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Old 07-16-2006, 12:07 AM
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colliewog colliewog is offline
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I agree with teaching the tasks at home. You don't have to keep them *running*, just keep their minds occupied. My Collies are like that, just not to the same extreme as a BC. Mine play interactive games - tug, fetch, pick the toy, etc. and it keeps them happy without having to do much strenuous work on my part (which for health reasons I can't do). A friend of mine taught her dogs to bring her a tissue when she sneezed - I'd say find a dog trick book and teach everything in it! That should keep any busy minded dog happy! lol
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Old 07-16-2006, 01:50 AM
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Citrus007 Citrus007 is offline
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Cool thanks I love all collies and its not that I don't want to have to do work but I don't have sheep or anything.
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Old 07-16-2006, 11:45 AM
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colliewog colliewog is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Citrus007
Cool thanks I love all collies and its not that I don't want to have to do work but I don't have sheep or anything.
I've never had sheep - we test at instinct tests, but they may never see them again! My Collies have herded iguanas (and those buggars are fast!), chickens, rabbits, tortoises (well, they watch them while I go in the house so no one escapes), and children (the hardest stock of them all).

The iguana herding was the most useful. Years ago, I did iguana rescue and had up to 20 at one time. Well, one day someone tore a hole in their pen and about 10 of my yearlings got out. Young iguanas run on their hind legs and are way too fast for a person, so two of my Collies worked together to bring them into the garage where I could corner them, usually 2-3 at a time (they don't bunch like sheep either).

The key is that these dogs need to be busy, but their instinct doesn't HAVE to be used on sheep alone. In the beginning, my family lived on a farm and had horses, chickens, ducks, and goats that our dogs worked daily. Then we moved to the 'burbs and they had to find other things to work.
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~American Hairless Terriers (coated)~
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UFR USR GRCH 'PR' "Spud" TT (UKC Total Dog Award winner)
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Old 07-17-2006, 12:43 AM
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Border collies will do just about anything. Most have such serious dispositions that they take something like a down-stay command as WORK. Even though it's a game for a lot of dogs, my border collie sees agility as work. when hes running a course, he is low to the ground, his tail is down by his hocks and his ears stand almost straight up. lol.

Most border collies are more than happy to help around the house. my BC will retrieve laundry baskets and collect socks for me, for example, when i am doing laundry.
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Old 07-21-2006, 11:50 AM
casablanca1 casablanca1 is offline
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Bearing in mind that my experience is with a BC mix and a Bearded Collie -

Agility is fun and suits collies down to the ground. You don't even have to do it officially, just set up some jumps and stuff in the yard, or sneak onto the children's playground at dawn and use those 'interactive' playsets with the hanging bridges, slides, etc.

One thing I do in the summer with my collie mix (BC or Beardie, I don't know which) is take her out into the yard and turn on the hose. She'll chase the stream of water (use a nozzle or your thumb to make a jet) for hours, leaping and snapping, and running from it and to it.

When they're very young (6mos-3yrs) they do need a ton of sheer physical exercise. After that, it's not so much the physical exertion as the mental satisfaction they crave. Collies want to do stuff all the time. Frequent walks to new places, taking them with you on outings, etc., makes them happy.
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Old 07-21-2006, 08:54 PM
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ihartgonzo ihartgonzo is offline
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The need for a job definitely varies from one dog to the next. I know people who came to my Obedience class, whose BC so needed to be worked that she found her own job - spinning in circles! She was overweight, high-strung, temperamental, and would spin for several minutes at a time through out the day. This is just one example of how neurotic some dogs can be without structure.

For Gonzo, schedules are the best thing for him. He gets 1 hour of exercise sometime in the morning hours, and 1 hour of exercise sometime in the evening, every day! I try not to keep it too rigorous as far as the time he gets to exercise so that in case of an emergency or if I'm sick, he won't go nuts without his exercise. Flyball & Agility are great for tiring them out, Gonzo collapses all day after his Flyball practice. You can also work on long-distance recall and home-made jumps every day on your own. Obedience is probably the most essential, because it creates not only an obedient dog but a mentally satisfied dog. You can start working on Obedience no matter what age the dog is (where as dog sports cannot be trained until the dog is done growing), and you can continuously teach 100's of commands and variations so neither of you will get bored. Even if it isn't pursued as a dog sport, probably Gonzo's favorite "job" is frizbee. He will play frizbee longer than he will fetch a ball, and just getting air and catching it is reward enough for him. There are sooo many fun tricks you can teach with a frizbee, and you can do it at home!

I think that, in the case of some one who is unsure what kind of time they have for an active working dog, rescue is the BEST option! There is at least one Border Collie rescue in every area of the US, and they all screen temperaments and activity levels of the dogs to suit your needs. When you're buying a puppy from a breeder, you can only estimate the activity level & drive of that particular dog based on parents, you have no guarantee. When you adopt a dog that is 6 months+, you have a much better idea of the dog's temperament.
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