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Do Border Collies Need a Companion?

Have you ever wondered if your border collies needs a companion, a full time buddy?

Many owners do, and it’s a good question. Does your collie actually need one, or are they okay on their own with their owner?

This article answers everything you need to know about how border collies are with/without company.

do border collies need companions

Are Border Collies Better In Pairs?

To begin, let’s clear up a common query: are Border Collies better in pairs? It’s a question that isn’t black and white because it heavily depends on the individual dog’s personality, socialization skills, and training.

Studies reveal that it’s unlikely dogs recognize their own breed. So there’s no more chance of a collie being better with another collie over a different breed with similar traits.

Some Border Collies thrive when they have a furry friend around, while others prefer to be the only dog in the house.

However, generally speaking, Border Collies are social animals. They enjoy interaction, whether it’s with their human family or another dog.

If you have a Border Collie that shows signs of loneliness when left alone or shows positive responses to other dogs, it may be an indication that your pooch would benefit from a canine companion.

Do Border Collies Need a Companion

So, do Border Collies need a companion?

The answer is, they don’t necessarily need one, but they may certainly enjoy having one.

The main reason for this is their breed characteristics. Border Collies are highly intelligent, energetic, and active dogs. This combination often leads to them getting bored easily, and having a companion can help alleviate this issue.

Having a companion, be it another dog or an engaged human, can stimulate a Border Collie both physically and mentally.

This stimulation is essential to keep your Collie from getting bored, which can often lead to destructive behaviors. However, it’s crucial to ensure that the companionship you provide aligns with your Border Collie’s needs and temperament.

Does Your Collie Need Another Dog or Are We Enough of a Companion for Them?

Many Border Collie owners wonder if they are enough for their dogs or if another dog should be added to the mix. This heavily depends on your lifestyle and how much time and attention you can give to your dog.

If you’re an active person or family who spends a lot of time at home and loves outdoor activities, you may very well be enough for your Border Collie.

Regular exercise, mental stimulation through training, and playtime can satisfy their social needs.

However, if your Border Collie spends long periods alone while you’re at work or school, another dog might help them stave off loneliness and boredom.

4 Reasons Why a Canine Companion Is a Good Idea

Let’s run through the most important reasons why getting a companion for your border collie is a pretty good idea.

1. Reduced Separation Anxiety ✅

Border Collies, being social creatures, can sometimes struggle with separation anxiety when left alone. It’s a stressful condition that can result in undesirable behaviors such as excessive barking, destructive chewing, and inappropriate elimination.

Having a companion dog can greatly help in alleviating this stress. The presence of another furry friend often brings a sense of comfort and security. They can play together, keep each other company, and distract each other from the worry of their human’s absence. It’s like having a constant buddy around to share the day with.

2. Increased Exercise ✅

If there’s one thing that’s true about Border Collies, it’s that they have seemingly endless amounts of energy. They require regular and vigorous exercise to stay healthy and happy. When you have another dog in the house, playtime often becomes a big part of their daily routine.

This interaction can mean more running, jumping, and general physical activity. Essentially, they can help each other burn off that boundless energy, which is particularly helpful on days when you might not have as much time for long walks or active play.

3. Mental Stimulation ✅

Border Collies are incredibly intelligent dogs. They were bred for problem-solving in the fields, and that intelligence means they require mental stimulation in addition to physical exercise. Interaction with another dog provides a great source of this much-needed mental engagement.

Dogs communicate and negotiate with each other, figuring out who’s the boss, who gets the best sleeping spot, and who gets to play with which toy. These scenarios require them to think and make decisions, providing the mental stimulation they crave.

4. Social Skills ✅

Socialization is a crucial aspect of a dog’s upbringing. It helps them to be comfortable around other dogs and humans, making them more well-rounded and easier to handle. When a Border Collie has a canine companion, it gets constant socialization.

It learns how to read and respond to another dog’s signals, which can make it better behaved around other dogs outside the home. In addition, having two dogs means double the opportunities for training in manners and behavior, creating a more harmonious home environment.

10 Breeds Border Collies Get on With

We have an entire article on the best companion breeds for border collies, so be sure to check that out. But here’s a quick overview below!

  1. Labrador Retriever: Known for their friendly nature, Labs can make a great companion for a Border Collie.
  2. Golden Retriever: Their loving demeanor and playful attitude align well with a Border Collie’s energy.
  3. Australian Shepherd: Similar in energy and intelligence, these two breeds can keep each other busy.
  4. Poodles: Intelligent and active, a Poodle can match a Border Collie’s energy.
  5. German Shepherd: They share the working dog mentality and can form a strong bond.
  6. Belgian Malinois: Similar in energy levels and intelligence, they can make a compatible match.
  7. Beagles: Their social and lively nature can keep up with a Border Collie’s energy.
  8. Cocker Spaniel: Despite being a bit less energetic, their friendly nature makes them a good companion.
  9. Siberian Husky: They share the working breed characteristics and can engage in play quite well.
  10. Boxer: Their playful and energetic personality can make them a great friend for a Border Collie.

Consideration For a Second Dog…

Before making a big decision like getting a second dog, it’s essential to take a moment to evaluate your situation.

➡️ Is your Border Collie showing signs of loneliness or boredom? & why might that be?
➡️ Could it be that your house is often empty during the day due to work or school?
➡️ Are you confident that adding a second dog is the correct solution to these issues?
➡️ Is your Border Collie already well-trained and ready to accommodate another dog in the household?

These questions are crucial to consider and reflect upon…

If you’re noticing that your Border Collie spends too much time alone, it might be beneficial to explore options beyond getting another dog. Perhaps you could adjust your work hours or arrange for a dog walker or pet sitter to come by each day while you’re out. Modern problems require modern solutions, and there are many resources available to pet parents today.

It’s important to remember that you, as an owner, are enough for your Border Collie. However, it’s your presence they need. If your Collie seems to be missing you and longing for your company, introducing another dog might not entirely address that.

The bond between a dog and its human is unique and cannot be replaced by another pet. So, it’s crucial to genuinely think about your situation and how you might be able to adjust it for the better.

Adding a second dog to the family is a significant commitment and shouldn’t be taken lightly. But, if after careful consideration, you decide it’s the right choice, it could potentially bring a lot of joy and companionship to your Border Collie’s life and your own.

Last Thoughts

In conclusion, while Border Collies can thrive with a canine companion due to their social and energetic nature, it’s not always necessary.

If you’re considering adding another dog to your family, make sure to consider your current situation and the individual needs of your Border Collie.

Remember, every dog is unique and what works for one might not work for another. Happy pet parenting!


Before making any decisions that could affect the health and/or safety of your dog, you should always consult a trained veterinarian in your local area. Even though this content may have been written/reviewed by a trained veterinarian, our advice to you is to always consult your own local veterinarian in person. Please read our full dislcaimer if you have any questions.