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Male vs Female Border Collie: Which Is Best For You?

There are many differences between male and female Border Collies that owners are curious to know about.

As we receive this question a lot, we’ve put together this comprehensive guide highlighting all of the main differences between the two genders. And some of them are quite surprising!


6 Key Differences Between Males & Females

Whether you are just curious to learn the differences, or you are doing some essential research before getting a Border Collie puppy, this article has it covered. Let’s get into it!

1. Independency

Female border collies are known for being more independent than males.

What does this mean exactly? Well, it means she’ll be keener to lay down by her self, without coming to you for attention as much as a male does. But this doesn’t mean she will always leave you alone, she’ll just be more picky and choosy with her moments.

Due to having a closer bond with their pack mates, the males may come across as more “needy” and desire your attention more than females.

2. Showing Dominance

This is a unique one as the males typically show more dominance, but it’s usually the females that will end up being the Alpha of the pack.

This one matters more if you already have another dog in your household. If this is your first dog, the dominance issue isn’t really one to worry about.

If you already have a male dog, and you opt for another male, you will likely have many issues down the line with fighting, and the same goes for two females. Opposite sexes do better in this area.

3. Territorial Behavior

Males will typically be more territorial while they are young and before they have been neutered.

If your male border collie gets neutered, his testosterone levels will drop and his displays of territorial behavior will drop too.

A female, however, will remain territorial for her whole life and it won’t make a difference whether she has been spayed or not.

Due to this, overall, females tend to be considered more territorial than males.

4. Trainability

Females will typically be easier to train and won’t challenge your authority as much. But males can also be trained easily when motivated by treats…

Males are very food motivated and will respond better to positive reinforcement with treats… So, this one is a bit of a tie.

Let’s not forget that the border collie is the world’s most intelligent dog.

They absolutely LOVE to be trained, so you won’t have any issues here regardless of gender.

5. Affection

When it comes to showing affection and giving you love-filled cuddles, the males win this one.

Males tend to show more affection, will come to you for affection, and will be happy to receive it, more so than females.

Does this mean female collies aren’t loving? no, it certainly doesn’t, but it’s just that they can be a little more choosey as to when they show their affection.

6. Playfulness & Energy

The males seem to keep their puppy-like playfulness throughout their life, whereas the females become calmer and more placid as they mature.

However, this doesn’t take away from their exercise needs. Both males and females will still need a solid 1-2 hours of exercise per day. You may just find your male border collie bringing you their toy to play more than a female would.

Key Differences That Border Collie Owners Agree On

Through many hours of research, creating polls in forums, and personally asking other border collie owners who own both a female and a male, I found out the key points they all agree on.

What Border Collie Owners Agree On:

Females mature more quickly than males
Females prefer affection when they are the ones to initiate it
Females tend to remain territorial through old age
Females seem to be happier doing their own thing compared to males

● Males are more playful and actively seek out their owners to play with them
Males are open to displaying affection more so than females
Males are happier to share food
Males are able to calm down more if they get neutered
Males can be more obedient with strict training
Males grow to be bigger, stronger, and heavier than females

These are the main differences to consider while you are choosing your Border Collie puppy.

The next section is very important if you already have a resident dog.

Should You Get a Male or Female Border Collie?

If you already have a furry friend at home and are in the process of getting your second. The sex of the second dog becomes even more significant.

It’s usually the case that two males or two females will continuously fight to claim the alpha role. Whereas a single male and a single female will fight less. In the majority of cases, the female becomes the alpha.

So, if you have a male already or a female already, many people recommend getting the opposite sex.

What if you want two of the same sex?

Of course, there are many households with two or more of the same sex dog, and it works fine. This can be achieved if both dogs are extremely well socialized from a young age.

The importance of frequently meeting and being exposed to new dogs and people will widen a dog’s ability to get along with whoever. So, extra socialization is certainly encouraged for your first dog, if you intend on getting the same sex as your second.

One Very Important Point To Remember

Regardless of gender, with the right training, love, care, and attention, it doesn’t matter too much.

Whether you opt for a male or a female border collie, they will have the ability to be the best dog in the world for you, so long as you nurture them correctly.

So what’s the best way to pick? Go with your gut, and more than likely, you already have your personal preference.

Many females (owners) tend to have a special bond with male dogs and it’s said that male dogs do naturally gravitate towards females easily. Mans’s best friend can be a women’s best friend too.

Male Vs Female Border Collie FAQ’s

Let’s run through some quick and simple frequently asked questions surrounding the differences between border collies!

Can two male border collies live together?

Yes, it can be done, but it’s crucial that both border collies are well socialized separately before having to live and share the same space with each other. It is possible, but expect there to be some dominance issues and fighting for the alpha position.

Do male or female border collies shed more?

When it comes to shedding, both males and females are fairly equal. However, there are some links to the hormonal changes that females go through and increased shedding, but this hasn’t been exclusively proven. Whatever collie you get, you’re going to have shedding to deal with.

Are male border collies more cuddly?

It is said time and time again that male dogs tend to be more affectionate with their owners and human family than female dogs. So it’s usual to expect more cuddly behavior from a male. But this doesn’t mean a female border collie won’t give you cuddles. Females just seem to be pickier with their affectionate moments.

Are male border collies more hyper than females?

Males are more playful and excitable than females, but the difference might be minimal. This breed in general is a high-energy breed and both males and females need plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. If you have a male that gets neutered, he may calm down more than when a female gets spayed.

Are male border collies more protective than females?

While males will have an instinctive nature to protect their property and defend their owners, so too will a female border collie. Aside from males being physically bigger and stronger, both will display protective behavior and even aggression if the situation calls for it.

Popular Border Collie Articles:
Border Collies In Cold Weather, What You Need To Know
Can Border Collies Be Left Home Alone?
Which Breeds Best Get Along With a Border Collie

Last Thoughts

Should you get a male or female border collie? It’s a great question and certainly an important one. If it’s your first dog, the right answer is to just go with your gut and your preference. It honestly doesn’t matter too much, so long as your raise your puppy correctly.

If you already have a dog and this will be your second, it’s often recommended to get the opposite sex, as the two will naturally get along better. But if you are up for extra training and socialization practices, it’s possible to get the same sex.

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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.