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Border Collie Rescue - On Line - About Behavioural Problems

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In this section of our website we will try and explain some of the common behavioural problems associated with the Border Collie.
Because of the background of this breed and its many inbred and inherited instincts that make it what it is, we should expect some adverse reactions if we do not allow the dog to be and do what it has been bred for.
To summarise the root of many of the Border Collie's behavioural problems we first need to consider these inherited traits. Border Collies have been bred for hundreds of years to enhance certain characteristics.
They are bred to have strong instinctive abilities to - Chase, Herd, Bond, Watch, Listen.
They are bred to have particular sensitivity to - Movement and Sound.
They are bred to have enhanced - Intelligence and Ability to work on their own - following a combination of instinct and training
These are all qualities that are appropriate to their work as sheepdogs and conducive to carrying that work out in a quiet rural environment.
Many behavioural problems that occur to the Border Collie happen because the dog is being kept in a situation or environment that is conflicting with its natural instinctive behavioural drives or over stimulating its enhanced sensitivity or failing to satisfy its intelligence and working ability.
In addition, and often adding, to the problems arising from these factors are the general behavioural problems that all breeds of pet dogs suffer from due to poor handling, trauma and lack of socialisation and the fact that many simple, social, behavioural issues commonly reported are a result of errant behaviour being inadvertently encouraged by the dogs owners. Please use the link - Dominance in Dogs - below for more on these issues.
It is worth noting that working sheepdogs suffer very few of the common behavioural problems suffered by pets and when some do exhibit patterns of behaviour caused by poor socialisation, these seldom become problems to the dog or owner in a working environment.
It is only when we take these dogs away from environments that are compatible with, and that satisfy, their inherited drives and sensitivities, that we observe patterns of behaviour that can be called 'problematic' or 'anti - social', in that they are disruptive and difficult for their handlers to cope with in a domestic human environment and are often detrimental to the physical and psychological well being of the dog.
The links below will take you to pages that discuss broad behavioural issues and various specific behavioural problems common in the Border Collie.
Stress
Noise Sensitivity
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