Border Collie vs. Collie

What's the Difference?

Border Collies and Collies are both popular breeds of dogs, but they have distinct differences. Border Collies are known for their high energy levels and intelligence, making them excellent working dogs. They are often used for herding livestock and are highly trainable. On the other hand, Collies are known for their gentle and friendly nature, making them great family pets. They are often seen as loyal and protective companions. While both breeds are highly intelligent, Border Collies require more mental and physical stimulation due to their herding instincts, while Collies are generally more laid-back and easygoing.


AttributeBorder CollieCollie
SizeMedium to largeMedium to large
CoatDouble coat, medium lengthDouble coat, medium to long length
ColorVarious colors and patternsVarious colors and patterns
TemperamentIntelligent, energetic, and trainableGentle, intelligent, and trainable
Exercise NeedsHighModerate to high
Herding InstinctStrongStrong

Further Detail


When it comes to herding dogs, two breeds that often come to mind are the Border Collie and the Collie. While they may share some similarities, these breeds have distinct attributes that set them apart. In this article, we will delve into the characteristics of both the Border Collie and the Collie, exploring their appearance, temperament, trainability, exercise needs, and health considerations. By understanding these differences, potential dog owners can make an informed decision about which breed is the best fit for their lifestyle and preferences.


Both the Border Collie and the Collie are medium to large-sized dogs, but they have noticeable differences in their physical appearance. The Border Collie typically has a more athletic build, with a lean body and well-defined muscles. They have a moderate coat length, which can be either rough or smooth. On the other hand, the Collie has a more elegant and refined appearance, with a long and flowing double coat that requires regular grooming to maintain its beauty. Collies are generally larger and more substantial in size compared to Border Collies.


When it comes to temperament, both breeds are known for their intelligence and loyalty. However, there are some distinctions in their personalities. Border Collies are often described as highly energetic and intense. They have an incredible work drive and thrive on mental stimulation. Due to their herding instincts, they may display a strong desire to chase and control moving objects, including children or other pets. On the other hand, Collies are typically more laid-back and gentle in nature. They are known for their calm and patient demeanor, making them excellent family pets and therapy dogs.


Both the Border Collie and the Collie are highly trainable breeds, but they may require different approaches. Border Collies are renowned for their exceptional trainability and are often considered one of the most intelligent dog breeds. They excel in various dog sports and obedience competitions. However, their high energy levels and intense focus may require a firm and consistent training approach to prevent behavioral issues. Collies, on the other hand, are also intelligent and eager to please, but they may have a slightly more independent streak. They respond well to positive reinforcement training methods and thrive in environments that provide mental stimulation and positive socialization.

Exercise Needs

Both breeds have substantial exercise requirements, but the Border Collie generally demands more physical activity. Due to their high energy levels and intense drive, Border Collies need plenty of daily exercise to keep them mentally and physically stimulated. They excel in activities such as agility, flyball, and herding trials. Collies, while still requiring regular exercise, are generally more adaptable to different lifestyles. They enjoy daily walks, playtime in the yard, and mental enrichment activities. However, they may not have the same level of endurance and intensity as Border Collies.

Health Considerations

When considering the health of these breeds, it is important to note that both Border Collies and Collies can be prone to certain genetic health conditions. Border Collies may be susceptible to hip dysplasia, epilepsy, and certain eye disorders such as progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). Collies, on the other hand, are known to have a higher risk of developing Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA), a genetic condition affecting the eyes. Additionally, both breeds may be prone to certain hereditary diseases, including certain types of cancer and autoimmune disorders. Regular veterinary check-ups, a balanced diet, and appropriate exercise can help mitigate these risks and ensure the overall well-being of these breeds.


While both the Border Collie and the Collie share some similarities, they have distinct attributes that make them unique. From their appearance and temperament to their trainability, exercise needs, and health considerations, understanding these differences is crucial for potential dog owners. Border Collies are highly energetic and intense, requiring an active lifestyle and mental stimulation. Collies, on the other hand, are more laid-back and gentle, making them great family pets. By considering these factors, individuals can make an informed decision about which breed aligns best with their lifestyle, preferences, and ability to meet the needs of these remarkable herding dogs.

Comparisons may contain inaccurate information about people, places, or facts. Please report any issues.