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Border Collie vs Australian Shepherd: Which One Is Proper for You?

Border Collies and Australian Shepherds are each improbable breeds of canines which can be filled with power and are well-known for his or her intelligence and trainability. Should you’re out there for an lively, sensible pup, you might have discovered your self torn between these two breeds.

Though typically in contrast to one another, these two breeds have notable variations between them, so it’s vital to grasp the variations when selecting between the 2. You’ll want to think about which breed will slot in greatest with your loved ones, your pets, and your way of life.


Visible Variations

border vs australian visual diff
Picture Credit score: Left – Border Collie (Helena Lucia Horvath Images, Shutterstock); Proper – Australian Shephard (Fotoschauer, Shutterstock)

At a Look

Border Collie

  • Common top (grownup): 18–22 inches
  • Common weight (grownup): 27–45 kilos
  • Lifespan: 12–15 years
  • Train: 2+ hours a day
  • Grooming wants: Reasonable
  • Household-friendly: Usually
  • Different pet-friendly: Usually
  • Trainability: Excessive

Australian Shepherd

  • Common top (grownup): 18–23 inches
  • Common weight (grownup): 30–65 kilos
  • Lifespan: 13–15 years
  • Train: 1+ hours a day
  • Grooming wants: Reasonable
  • Household-friendly: Sure
  • Different pet-friendly: Usually
  • Trainability: Excessive


Border Collie Overview

female border collie lying on grass
Picture Credit score: Elayne Massaini, Shutterstock


Border Collies are extraordinarily loyal canines that are inclined to bond very intently with their human household. They’re typically good with kids however might turn out to be nippy and poorly behaved if not given sufficient train. This breed is understood for being cautious of strangers, so it’s prone to be protecting of youngsters, however could also be uncomfortable with guests to the house, together with kids.

They’re extremely energetic and trainable, although, typically excelling in a wide range of actions and sports activities. They’ve a powerful herding intuition bred into them, so serving to appease this intuition by video games and actions will assist preserve your Border Collie’s social and loving nature.


This breed is exceptionally trainable on account of their excessive degree of intelligence. In truth, Border Collies typically rank among the many high most clever canine breeds. They’ve a powerful herding intuition, which might make herding work a snap to coach.

Whereas they’re trainable and clever, it doesn’t imply that each one coaching might be straightforward with a Border Collie. They usually intention to please, making them compliant and keen to take heed to instructions, however in addition they could also be distracted by issues that “want” herding.

Understand that this herding intuition can come out with something from lawnmowers to trash to kids. Typically, they could nip on the heels of youngsters or different pets. Some folks interpret this as an aggressive habits, and whereas it’s undesirable, it’s not aggression.

Border Collie
Picture Credit score: ForeverNaturalPhotography, Shutterstock

Train Wants

If you need a contented and cooperative Border Collie, intention to offer your canine no less than 2 hours of train on daily basis. They’re nice companions for jogging, biking, and mountaineering, making this breed choice for extra lively households. This isn’t a breed whose train wants are appeased with a stroll or two across the block.

As a consequence of their trainability and intelligence, Border Collies excel at primarily any sports activities and video games they’re skilled to do. They have a tendency to do very effectively in agility trials, however may do effectively with obedience, dock diving, cani-cross, and extra. If you are interested in search and rescue, Border Collies are additionally an acceptable breed for sure varieties of search and rescue.


Border Collies have a double coat that does require routine upkeep. It’s usually beneficial to get them a grooming go to each 4–6 weeks. Nonetheless, since they don’t often want haircuts, grooming can often be performed at residence for those who really feel as much as it.

A great bathtub and brushing can do wonders for a double coat. Plan to brush your Border Collie no less than as soon as per week, however extra continuously is right to take care of the coat between baths and grooming visits. Count on a rise in shedding and brushing wants in the course of the spring and fall when your canine’s coat is altering between seasons.

female border collie standing on grass
Picture Credit score: Arnold.Petersen, Shutterstock

Appropriate For:

Border Collies might be good canines for households, however they don’t seem to be the very best canine for numerous households. Their excessive train wants and power ranges, in addition to their standoffishness with strangers, could make them a tough canine to have in a house with frequent guests or a house that isn’t extraordinarily lively. A bored or under-exercised Border Collie is prone to turn out to be anxious and start to behave out.


Australian Shepherd Overview

black and white australian shepherd lying on grass
Picture Credit score: PxHere


Australian Shepherds usually have a no-nonsense persona that’s up for an journey. They are typically loyal and loving with their household and are sometimes good with different pets. They’ve an easygoing temperament, they usually typically love enjoying with folks, together with kids. They are typically tolerant of babies, though it’s vital to show your little one to correctly deal with the canine to keep away from any nipping.

Aussies are often pleasant and outgoing, they usually lack the wariness with strangers that the Border Collie typically reveals, though they could be a bit of shy with strangers at first. They’re fiercely loyal canines that often bond with all the folks within the household, and they’re recognized to be very protecting of their folks and their residence.


This breed is extraordinarily clever and extremely trainable, though its intelligence typically clocks in barely under the Border Collie. They’ve a powerful herding intuition that makes coaching herding fairly straightforward, however they’re additionally often fairly straightforward to coach with absolutely anything. They’re recognized to do very effectively at canine sports activities, they usually can discover ways to clear up puzzles and play video games.

Some Aussies have a bit of little bit of a cussed streak, which might make coaching a problem till you’re employed out an efficient coaching approach on your canine. They’re often motivated by high-value rewards, which might be treats or toys. They don’t are typically very distractible, however they’re curious and protecting sufficient that they could turn out to be distracted by what the opposite animals or folks within the residence are doing.

Australian Shepherds playing
Picture Credit score: Christian Mueller, Shutterstock

Train Wants

Aussies have barely decrease train wants than Border Collies, however this isn’t true of each Aussie. At a minimal, this breed wants 1 hour of train per day, however 2 hours or extra is right. They’re nice operating and mountaineering companions, and their sense of journey could make them enjoyable to have with you.

This breed does want high-energy exercise. Going for a stroll, even two or three walks per day is often not going to be sufficient. Nonetheless, there are some breeding traces of Aussies which can be rather less energetic than others. Should you’re trying into getting this breed, it’s possible you’ll ask your breeder what sort of power degree their canines usually have so you possibly can put together for the suitable quantity of train.


Australian Shepherds have a medium-length coat that’s considerably silky in texture. It requires routine brushing to take care of, and it might turn out to be tangled or matted in some areas if not correctly cared for. Plan to brush your Aussie no less than twice per week, however extra could also be crucial, particularly throughout shedding seasons.

You need to plan to get your Aussie to a groomer or give them bathtub each 4–6 weeks. It will assist preserve the well being of the pores and skin and coat, in addition to assist distribute the pure oils on the pores and skin throughout the coat. This breed hardly ever requires trims and it isn’t beneficial to shave them since their silky coat helps insulate them.

Australian Shepherd
Picture Credit score: Jan Havlicek, Shutterstock

Appropriate For:

Though there’s the potential for shyness with strangers, Aussies are usually pleasant and outgoing canines. They’re protecting of their folks however are recognized to be mild and loving with kids. This breed often will get together with different pets, and though they’re recognized to nip at heels and try to herd like Border Collies are, it’s usually much less widespread.


The Specifics of Proudly owning Herding Breeds

Each the Border Collie and Australian Shepherd are herding canine breeds. They have been bred for farm work and coping with livestock, like sheep and cows. It has been deeply ingrained of their DNA to herd, and in the event that they see some form of grouping or sample, they could really feel very strongly that they should begin herding.

This herding habits might be uncommon and complicated for somebody who has by no means owned a herding breed earlier than. Should you search the web, you’ll discover all types of movies of Border Collies and Aussies herding or making an attempt to herd machines, small animals, giant animals, different pets of their residence, folks, and even trash.

When they’re herding, they could nip on the heels of no matter they’re herding, which is how they might herd livestock. For folks unfamiliar with the habits, it may be horrifying the primary time they see their canine nipping at their kids’s heels. It’s a completely regular habits for a herding canine, but it surely isn’t a great habits to encourage.

In case your canine is skilled to carry out a herding job, then it’s vital to coach them to limit their herding habits to doing that particular job and nothing else. In case your canine is only a household pet with no herding job, you might need to get inventive in serving to them burn off their sturdy need to herd. Some folks favor to offer different shops for his or her canine’s power, like operating and doing canine sports activities. Different folks might attempt to give you issues for his or her canine to herd, with some folks discovering toys and balls to be efficient choices for offering a herding exercise.


Which Breed Is Proper for You?

When making an attempt to decide on between the Border Collie and the Australian Shepherd, it’s best to take a really sincere take a look at the exercise degree of your private home. The Aussie tends to be a greater match for extra households than the Border Collie, though each canines might be beautiful additions to properties which can be keen to satisfy their wants. With out correct train, each breeds can turn out to be bored, anxious, and damaging.

When taking an sincere take a look at your exercise degree, it’s possible you’ll notice that your private home isn’t acceptable for both breed, and that’s OK. They don’t seem to be appropriate for properties the place everyone seems to be gone for lengthy intervals. Should you’re keen to place within the time, each breeds are distinctive canines that may consistently amaze you with their trainability and intelligence. Though, for those who’re in search of a canine who can be taught new methods in seemingly no time flat, then the Border Collie could also be your high choose.

Featured Picture Credit score: High – Border Collie (volofin, Shutterstock) | Backside – Australian Shepherd (JitkaP, Shutterstock)

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