Can a Border Collie live in an apartment? My answer to that questions is- “it depends.” Because Border Collies have been bred to herd and work, you can not expect that they will be happy living in an apartment if they are left alone for 12 hours a day. However, if the Border Collie can go to work with their human companion (maybe at a construction site or if the person has an active job), living in an apartment could be ok.
A Border Collie may also be able to live in an apartment if they have a human companion that provides them exercise and MENTAL STIMULATION. Training, food toys, puzzle toys and games are all ways to provide mental stimulation to a working dog.
As humans, we often have our “favorite breeds.” For me, I love Jack Russell Terriers. Because these dogs were bred to hunt, they often are high energy dogs. Although I live in a neighborhood home, I provide my JRT with mental stimulation and exercise everyday so my dogs’ need to stay busy are met. Unfortunately, many people adopt breeds without considering what the dog was bred to do. This is when behavior problems can occur. Most of our dog breeds were bred for a purpose, we need to understand that these dogs have needs that are bred into them.
When choosing a dog, it is important to find a dog that has a temperament that matches your lifestyle.
If you are an active person that is looking for a dog to run with, you will want to find a dog that is active as well. If you prefer a quieter lifestyle, an active dog could develop behavior problems if they did not receive enough mental and physical stimulation. Believe it or not, you can find the right temperament within your favorite breed if you are willing to look around and be patient. I know a couple very mellow Border collies that prefer to nap over playing fetch or frisbee.
Overall it is important to realize that problems often occur when needs are not met.
If we adopt a dog with the intention of having a running partner but the dog does not like to run, we are disappointed. If we adopt a dog that wants to herd but we expect them to lay by our feet quietly all day, the dog will become bored and will often try to entertain themselves (which often leads to undesired behaviors.)Next time you adopt a dog, make sure you think about your lifestyle and what temperament/ breed would be the best match.
Shannon has been a pet lover all her life and a dog trainer for over 20 years. She has spent her life observing, caring for and training animals of all kinds. She has worked in the Bird Department at Marine World Africa USA, and worked as a handler and trainer for an African Serval Cat at Safari West, a private zoo in Santa Rosa, California. She has participated in behavior studies including observations of bald eagles and addax antelope through the San Francisco Zoo and Safari West. Her education includes a Biology Degree, specializing in Zoology from Sonoma State.
She is a "Registered Veterinary Technician," a "Certified Professional Dog Trainer" (Knowledge Assessed), a Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner, a member of the "Association of Pet Dog Trainers" and a member of the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants. Shannon is currently serving as President for the Society of Veterinary Behavior Technicians. Shannon's dog training philosophy revolves around force-free, positive reinforcement, however, her ultimate goal is for healthy happy relationship between pets and their people. Diet, exercise, environment and training all play a significant role in achieving this goal. Shannon is currently the owner of Ventura Pet Wellness and Dog Training Center in Ventura, CA where she works with anxious and fearful dogs privately as well as teaching agility classes (Venturapetwellness.com). Shannon has also started a training website called Truly Force Free Animal Training.