Collie vs Border Collie: Which One is For You?

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Written by: Celestine Gomez
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Collies and border collies are both great and popular dog breeds to be watchdogs and for herding. And with both of these dogs sharing the same name, one can easily assume that these dogs are the same. However, they are not!

There are some quaint differences between the two, even when it comes to their very different personalities. Knowing the distinctions and more about these dog breeds is important, so you can ensure you choose the right dog for you.

Thus said, this article gives viable information concerning the distinctions and other important information about collies and border collies. 

Differences Between Collies and Border Collies 

1. Their Appearances



Collies have a medium to large size with a graceful appearance. Also, the adult males stand at 24 to 26 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh 60 to 75 pounds.

The adult female, however, stands at 22 to 24 inches tall at the shoulder and weighs 50 to 65 pounds. Also, the most popular coat colors of collies include: 

  • Sable and white.
  • Tri-color, containing white, black, and sable
  • Blue merle
  • White

The collies with mostly a white coat have some colored markings. 

Border Collie

Border Collie

The border collie is a small collie breed. The males stand between 19 to 22 inches tall at the shoulder, and the females stand between 18 to 21 inches tall. 

The most common coat colors of these dogs are black and white. They also come in various color combinations and colors.

2. Their Temperaments

Both breeds are similar when it comes to herding due to both of them being smart and extremely trainable. However, their personalities are significantly different. 


Collies are more laid back than border collies. They can be loyal family pets and perform well in homesteads with other pets and with kids.

Border Collie

This dog is an intensified and high-energy breed, and it performs best when it’s active. So, border collies need plenty of stimulating play and exercise. Owners of these dogs enroll them in obedience trials, shepherding, and other activities, so they can remain amused.

On the other hand, these dogs can be happy yet destructive if they are confined with no training. Border collies are also not always friendly to other animals, and they have a tendency to bark a lot. 

When it comes to children and other people, they are sensitive and aware of their emotions. These dogs are also known to be affectionate around kids, energetic, and playful. 

3. Their Costs

The cost of purchasing a dog can be very unpredictable, and if you venture into the market intending to buy a Collie


The cost of collies is around $375 to $1450. Furthermore, some pure breeds with full documentation can be as much as $2000. The average price is $800. The total annual cost to raise collies is approximately $1865, and the complete lifetime budget of owning one is $25445.

Border Collie

The average cost of a border collie puppy is around $600. The price depends on various factors, such as the location and reputation of the breeders, the dogs’ pedigree, and the size of the litter. 

The price tag for a premium border collie puppy is between $1300 to $4500 and even more. The amount of the price tag is dependent on the superior lineage, proper documentation, and breeding rights. The price tag to train them can be as high as $7500. 

Exercise and Training These Dogs

Exercise and Training These Dogs

Continuous training and exercise are great for both dogs. However, you don’t have to exercise collies as much as you do border collies, and training them is optional.

For border collies, training and exercise keep these dogs mentally stimulated, and strengthen the bond between the owner and the dog. Also, only use positive reinforcement when training. Playing with both of these collies is also important. 

Also, even though collies don’t require as much exercise, it is recommended that this dog breed exercise a minimum of two hours of exercise. You should spread the exercise throughout the day in several walks. They also need mental training to maintain an active brain. 

Some physical exercises that either dog breed can do are as follows: 

  • Running
  • Hiking
  • Fetching
  • Frisbee
  • Swimming
  • Long walks

Some mental exercises include the following: 

  • Training and tricks 
  • Hide and seek
  • Episodes of agility training 
  • Long walks

Which Breed Makes a Better Pet?

Now, that you know the distinctions and other relevant information about collies and border collies, you can make the right choice. It may come down to your lifestyle. So, if you are not that active, a collie may be the right choice, for instance.

On the other hand, the border collie may be the breed for you if you are a dog owner looking for the challenge of sharing an active and intense life with that new best friend.

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Celestine Gomez

I'm Celestine Gomez, worked for 5 years in an animal shelter in Los Angeles, California. Having noticed the inherent passion and zeal in me to care for pets, I took a step further to create a team of I and like-minded individuals to provide an informative resource in order to broaden the knowledge base of a regular pet owners.