Border Collie Puppy Training

If you want a well behaved Border Collie, then basic obedience training from the time it comes home is the key. Unfortunately, Border Collie’s are not psychic and do not come pre-trained, unless you are adopting an older Border Collie. Even then, your expectations will be different to what the Border Collie is used to so you will still need to put the effort in to have a well-balanced family member.

When training, you need to keep it fun and do several short sessions a day. Training should not be hard work. If you keep it fun, your Border Collie will go to the end of the earth and back for you. Be warned, if you feel you are getting frustrated end the training session on a positive note and come back later and try again....

Tips for Successful Border Collie Training

Here are some tips to always keep in mind when training your Border Collie:

  1. Always make your training fun. Yes, I may sound like a broken record but unless you do, you will never have true success. After all, the whole point of having a Border Collie is to enjoy life together.
  2. Make sure you have set goals in mind before you start any training session. This gives you something to measure your progress against and, if you have problems, you can analyse your progress and make the adjustments you need for success.
  3. Show patience and expect to progress slowly. Anything else is a bonus. Learn to know your Border Collie and work at its pace.
  4. Keep training sessions short. A few a day for a maximum of 10 minutes will be more productive than one 30 minute session. If your Border Collie has not done anything that warrants a reward, make sure you ask it to do something it knows so you can end on a positive note with a reward.
  5. Do use positive reinforcement as part of your training. Use treats, a toy, praise, anything your Border Collie loves.
  6. Do not be harsh or punish your Border Collie for not understanding you. Take a look at yourself to see where you can change your training methods to help you and your Border Collie as a team.
  7. Only teach one new thing at a time.
  8. Be consistent with your commands. Always use the same words and actions and make sure anyone else in the household does the same.
  9. It is important to get your timing right when you are training. Try to reward the instant your Border Collie does as you ask. Not a few seconds later.

Significance of Timing when Training Your Border Collie

Positive reinforcement is the best method of training your Border Collie and the difference between those who are successful and those who are not, is often timing.

Border Collie’s are born with a natural instinct to please. Getting your timing right helps you tap into your Border Collie’s natural instinct. You must always reward good behaviour, even with words such as ‘good girl’. Do not punish bad behaviour. Ignore it if it is not dangerous.

Your Border Collie is one smart animal and will soon learn to manipulate the whole household if you let it. For example, a Border Collie puppy loses its ball under the couch and you can see it is within reach if it works out how to get. Instead your Border Collie puppy barks at you for help. If you ignore the behaviour, your Border Collie puppy will either work out how to get it, or give up and find something else to do. If you get it when your Border Collie puppy barks, you teach your Border Collie puppy not to think for itself, and your Border Collie puppy is effectively training you to do whatever it wants.

It is just as easy for your dog obedience training to go wrong if you reward your Border Collie for behaviour you do not want. For example, you tell you Border Collie to sit and you reward and praise before it sits you a training it not to sit. It is the same for everything.

The window of association with something for your Border Collie is only about 2 seconds. You need to reward within that time for complete success so your Border Collie understands it is that particular behaviour you want it to repeat.

Your Border Collie will soon work out what behaviour is rewarded and what is not and stop doing the behaviour it gets no reward for.

What is a Reward?

Rewards come in many forms for your Border Collie. Just being by your side can be a reward. Good treats, especially natural ones like shredded chicken are excellent. Just make sure you factor the treats into your Border Collie’s daily food intake to make sure it does not put on weight.

Other rewards you can use in training include a favourite toy, a kind word, a happy ‘good work’ or ‘good dog’. Training is more successful if both of you are happy and relaxed. Spend training sessions bonding with each other having fun.

Through training you build up trust with your Border Collie puppy. Through trust and respect your Border Collie is going to be much more open to what you want it to learn than if you are shouting, yelling, or even hitting your Border Collie. Instil fear into your Border Collie and, be warned, one day it may turn on you or someone else out of fear.

Take time to get to know and understand your Border Collie. What it likes, what it dislikes, and what motivates it for what reason. Use this to your advantage to motivate and reward your Border Collie’s good behaviour.

Too often we may expect too much from our Border Collie’s too quickly. You need to ensure your Border Collie understands what you want from it in all situations so you need to ‘proof’ the behaviour. Once your training is successful at home, start proofing the behaviour outside of your home. Just because your Border Collie knows how to stay at home, does not mean it will stay in the middle of the park.

Socialise your Border Collie and practice your commands with new distractions so your Border Collie understands that you require obedience whenever you ask it no matter where you are or what is going on.

How to Train Your Border Collie to Come

One of the most important things you will ever teach your Border Collie is to come when it is called ... read more

How to Train Your Border Collie to Stay

If you have already taught Border Collie how to come, sit and drop then it is time to teach your Border Collie the ‘stay’ command. read more

How to Crate Train your Border Collie Puppy

Teaching your Border Collie puppy to accept being in a crate is one of the best things you can do. It comes in handy for all sorts of reasons and can become your Border Collie’s safe place. read more..

How to Teach Your Dog the Stop Command

Now your Border Collie has mastered the sit command you can progress to teaching it the stop command.

How to Reprimand your Border Collie

Think of your Border Collie as a child and talk to your Border Collie the same way when they do something they are not supposed to do

How to Train Your Border Collie to Sit

Teaching your Border Collie puppy to sit is one of the very first commands you will teach it ... read more

How to Train Your Border Collie to Walk on a lead

There is nothing better than a Border Collie that walks nicely on a lead. read more

Teaching your Border Collie Puppy to Enjoy the Car

One of the biggest things you want your Border Collie puppy to enjoy is riding in your car.

How to Teach Your Border Collie how to Fetch

Because your Border Collie is so intelligent, it is fun to teach it lots of things as part of playing together.

Socialising your Border Collie Puppy

Too many people wait too long before beginning to socialize their Border Collie puppy.