Are you looking for a loving, loyal, and hard-working dog pet? Well, Border collie and Australian Shepherd both breeds are a good option. However, Border Collie Vs Australian Shepherd will be a difficult choice as we know choosing for a pet is more like choosing for your family.
Dogs as pets are more than just companions. They are your stress relievers, your bodyguards, your happy place, a first-hand friend and guard to your kids, and much more.
It’s quite natural for a loving pet owner to be keen enough about what dog breed he is adopting. Whether he be able to satisfy his needs, will the dog be able to adjust to his lifestyle? This article primarily focuses on providing you with enough knowledge to choose between Border collie vs Australian Shepherd. This is because the comparison between both the breeds is quite hard.
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The Australian Shepherd, often called Aussie or the Little Blue Dog, has also been bred for herding purpose in the Western U.S. It is quite different from what his name indicates. However, he is very good at doing what he has meant to do. For example, ‘keeping an eye’ on whatever it may be birds, kids, or sheep and hence known as a ‘Cowboy’s best friend.’
It is an average-sized, joyous, full of energy, and a job loving dog. This cute everlasting dog is one of the best pets that offer companionship. He is quite more than just loyal and caring to his owner as he seeks lots of attention. He doesn’t like being alone.
Nowadays, these little blue puppies have found their place in many areas. For example, he can be entertaining in rodeos, as a therapy dog breed, as a herder on farms, and above all, as family companions. However, if his energy and intelligence are not appropriately channeled, he may develop some behavioral problems.
The Border collie is an intelligent dog breed that is known for his herding capabilities. It has been purposefully bred to control and keep an eye over the herds of sheep. It has been trained to keep an eye, especially in the hilly area of the countryside between England and Scotland. They are very active dogs with lots of energy, to do work, and have a sweet, friendly, caring temperament as well.
They need a proper play area, so they may not be suitable if you tend to keep in an apartment like residence. The Border collie is known to be a healthy breed in general with a life expectancy of about 12-15 years.
Their intelligence makes them quick learners, which is why, under proper training, they may excel in their herding responsibilities. It may be a herd of sheep or a group of children. Furthermore, it can outshine the other breeds in various canine sports such as playing with frisbee, flyball, and agility, etc. The Border collie is of the popular choice among the dog lovers. This is because of its enchanting nature and work ethic along with stunning looks,
Border Collie Vs Australian Shepherd – Origin & History
Border collies are the descendants of a tri-color dog named Old-Hemp. They were originated in Northumberland when Adam Telfer bred old-hemps for the purpose mentioned above. Old-hemp was an active, smart, and quiet dog who was well-known for his herding capabilities among the shepherds around.
They were first called ‘Border Collie’ in 1915, and they were called because they were bred around the border region of Scotland and England. Border collie continues to gain the attention of dog lovers since 1984 after winning several good competitions.
However, the Australian Shepherd, unlikely of his name, is the descendant of the Border collie. There are some conflicts about its origin. Still, more likely, it is a cross between the Border Collies and some Shepherd like dogs. These may be the Spanish herding dogs, which are thought to be imported from Australia to America for breeding.
Border Collie Vs Australian Shepherd – Breed Comparison
A breed comparison between a Border collie and an Australian Shepherd is quite difficult. This is because both of these breeds are excellent and share similarities as well. However, below is a comparison between two breeds that can help you while making a choice.
Both Australian Shepherd and Border collie are intelligent dogs. However, the Border collie is more capable than the Australian Shepherd. Whereas Australian Shepherd is 42nd number in intelligence, and Border collie is the king in a matter of intelligence. If you want anyone of these dogs for home, their intelligence is enough.
The character of both Breeds:
The border collie is a little shy than the Australian Shepherd as it works from a distance. However, Australian Shepherd is an excellent option for the herding of cattle. They are loyal companions for their owners. Moreover, they also act as guard dogs and alarm their owner if they see something unusual.
The border collie is a little less watchful than the Australia shepherd, although it is equally active and alert.
Both of these breeds are hard-working as they come under the list of hard-working dogs. Even these dogs were bred for work, and they work hard. However, when we compare both these breeds, the Border collie is a bit harder working dog than the Australian Shepherd.
The border collie is included in the list of top 20 hard working dogs. But it depends mostly on the environment in which you have kept your dog.
Border Collie Vs Australian Shepherd – Health:
It is recommended that two merle colored individuals should be bred to avoid these genetic diseases. This is because off-springs of such parents are more likely to develop conditions such as deafness.
On the other hand, Border collies are healthy dogs, but they are prone to some health problems which you should be aware of. These diseases include Hip & Elbow dysplasia, Von Willebrand’s disease, Thrombopathia, and Hypothyroidism. So, as far as health is concerned, Collie is the one in Border collie Vs Australian shepherd comparison.
Australian shepherds are mostly bigger than Border collies in terms of both height and weight. The Australian Shepherd has an average height between 18 to 23 inches and an average weight between 35 to 70 pounds. However, it can vary depending upon gender. Male Australian shepherds weigh more massive than the females.
On the other hand, Border collie has an average height between 18 to 22 inches. There is a significant difference between the weights of both these breeds. Border collie weighs 27 to 45 pounds.
Training and educating both Breeds:
Both dog breeds behave differently when it comes to education and training. The border collie is an extraordinarily caring and obedient dog, and it learns everything very quickly. Only a few repetitions are needed while training this dog.
On the other hand, educating Australian Shepherd can be a little confusing. This is because you have to repeat a single activity several times to train it. You will get results on a gradual basis.
Border Collie Vs Australian Shepherd – Which Breed Is More Popular?
When it comes to popularity, Australian shepherds are more popular than Border collie. Australian shepherds are one of the top 20 most popular dogs. Whereas Border collie in the top 50 most popular dogs. Popularity doesn’t mean those Australian shepherds are better than Border collie. It’s just because Australian shepherds are easy to take care of.
Both breeds have a high level of energy. Similarly, they need a lot of physical training as well. Therefore, it is not an excellent option to get these dogs if you cannot give them proper time. Herding is an excellent activity for these breeds.
If you don’t live on a farm, you can play frisbee or other physical training activities with these dogs. If they are not given proper training, they will become restless.
Average Life Span of both Breeds:
Both of these dogs can live a long and healthy life if you take proper care of them. Border collies have a significant life span than Australian shepherds. On average, a Border collie has a life span of 10 to 17 years, whereas Australian shepherds can live between 13 to 15 years.
The loyalty of the two Breeds:
This is a similarity between both these breeds. Both Border collie and Australian shepherds will prove loyal and affectionate partners. They are loyal to their owners and protect them.
Border Collie Vs Australian Shepherd – 3 Major Similarities
Where there are differences between these two breeds, there are also some similarities as well that you can find in both dogs. You can find these similarities in their temperament, exercise, and their herding ability.
1. The ability of Herding:
Both Australian shepherd and Border collies are excellent dogs for herding purposes. The strength of herding also depends on the environment and all other variables. Both dogs have a different role regarding herding. Both work excellently, but Border Collies are considered best. This is because of their stamina as they can work for a long duration.
2. Personality & Temperament of Border collie & Australian Shepherd:
The breed info indicates that both the dog breeds are quite energetic, cheerful, social, and loving to their owners. Both seek attention; otherwise, they may develop behavioral and health disorders.
Both of them are purposefully bred for the herding. Therefore, they are most happy when they have some work or some canine play activities. Hence, both the breeds are not for a busy family or a lazy owner by any means. They are required to be trained in the early years of ages and daily exercises.
The Australian Shepherd is a dog with proud looks hates solitude and often clings to its owner, licking him all over. It is a socially tolerant breed that loves to be around. The virtues of a human-like devotion, loyalty, agility, and courage are found innate in this little creature that lets you confide in so well. Other than a herder and a family companion Australian shepherd is quite suitable for some other jobs such as his use in rescue and search, Canicross, and Cavage as well.
Border collies are quite similar to the Australian Shepherd in their tendencies to always hop around, jump over and dig the grounds. But Australian Shepherd wins the Border collie Vs Australian Shepherd in canine aggression. It means that if you could not keep a check on their social activity and fail to utilize their energies, they may get overwhelmed with shyness. It ultimately leads to aggression.
They may also get agitated with other pets and children if they are not socialized properly. They are very friendly and loving, but they are somewhat reluctant around strangers, unlike Australian shepherds.
So, as far as the temperament is concerned, the Border collie is best suited to families that have enough time to appease the attention demands of their pets.
3. Environment & Amount of Exercise:
Australian Shepherds has his ancestors in border collies. Therefore, they stand at the quite the same level in Border collie vs Australian shepherd comparison. Both the dog breeds require enough room for their physical activity. It means none of them is suitable for you if you live in an apartment or a small house.
They intently need a home at least with a backyard where they can run or jump around. They need at least 30 minutes of proper running every day and at least 30 to 60 minutes to catching a ball and Frisbee type of play activities.
However, if you are busy enough to provide this much activity, you should probably look for some other kind of breed.
Border Collie Vs Australian Shepherd – 3 Main Differences
Apart from similarities, there are also some significant differences between both breeds. Learning these differences will help you make a better choice between these two dogs.
1. Role as a Guard Dog:
Both Border collie and Australian shepherds can play the role of guard dogs. However, Australian Shepherd is better in this regard. There are very active and keep a keen eye on their surroundings. They immediately alarm their owner if something unusual happens. They also protect their owners and family from strangers.
Border collies, no doubt, are also equally energetic and active dogs. But they are less watchful than Australian shepherds.
2. Grooming of Both Breeds:
Border collie and Australian Shepherd requires general grooming. Grooming mainly includes the coat and tooth brushing, nail clipping, and bathing.
Border collie has two types of coats, either rough or smooth. Here again, Australian Shepherd wins the Border Collie vs Australian Shepherd comparison battle. This is because the hard rough double skin of Border collie demands much more care than the Australian Shepherd.
However, the Australian Shepherd is self-cleaning. They do not need regular baths and need brushing only once a week to avoid knots because they shed much less than Border collie. You must clean Border collie at least twice a week. However, in the shedding season of spring and fall, you should brush your dog regularly. This is so that you may not have to pick up hair everywhere in your home.
Moreover, you need to clip your dog’s nails if you hear his nails touch the floor. Also, you need to clean the ears regularly so that the wax may not accumulate. Teeth should be brushed 2-3 times in a week so that no tartar may accumulate. For an Aussie, regular bathing is not recommended at all, as it may harm the fur coat.
3. The Appearance of Border Collie and Australian Shepherd:
A comparison between two puppy breeds regarding their appearances is quite tricky because they both have heart-melting appearances. The size of both of the dog breeds is medium. However, the Border collie is shorter of the two but only by some inches.
They are slightly shorter than the length and have sharp ears that stand straight but are dropped on the tips. They have a coarse coat and feathery tail reaching to its hocks. His eyes may be brown, blue, or amber. Border collies are tri-colored and can be found in a combination of a wide variety of colors, such as red and white, black and grey, black and white red merle, lilac, brindle, blue merle, gold, liver, chocolate, and red sable.
Aussies have cute floppy ears with a straight or slightly wavy coat. They have feathers on back legs and a mane. The tail is mostly docking and short. The coat colors are varied with white or tan markings. The shades may be blue merle, black tricolor, red, merle, red merle, and red tricolor combination of these colors.
3 Ways To Find a Border Collie Or Australian Shepherd
These two puppy breeds are quite common and widespread. Therefore, you will not feel any difficulty in finding any of these. There are different options that you can look for while finding these breeds.
1. Animal Shelters:
It is always the best option to adopt dogs from animal shelters, especially in the case of these two breeds. This is because; these breeds need plenty of space for proper grooming. Animal shelters are usually small; therefore, these dogs can be unhappy in such a situation.
Although it is hard to find any Border collie or Australian Shepherd in an animal shelter, you can still look once.
2. Websites for Pet Adoption:
There are plenty of online sites available for this purpose. You just have to be patient, and you will find one. Petango, Adopt a pet, and Petfinder is the names of a few websites that you can search while looking for a dog.
3. From Reputable Breeders:
You can always buy a new dog for you if you cannot adopt one. For this reason, it is essential to collect information first. The best option is to search the AKC merit program that they have for reputable breeders.
You can search their database as well. There are some other platforms, such as Yelp or dog forums. These will help you to find an Australian shepherd and Border collie breeders.
We understand that for a dog lover, the qualities of both the breeds Border collie and Australian Shepherd are quite attractive. They are loving, caring, protective, responsible, and energetic. Still, we also know that pet is more like a family member, which means that we should be careful about who we let into our family.
So, while deciding for your dog pet, you need to keep in mind why did you choose to adopt a pet in the first place and select the breed accordingly.