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What Are The Best Games To Play With Your Border Collie? 12 Exciting Games!

What are the best games to play with your Border Collie

The Border Collie is a very active and extremely intelligent dog. If you are looking for an obedient pet, then the Border Collie may be perfect for you although to train this breed of dog takes patience and time. In order to get the best results with your training, it is important that both you and your Border Collie have fun in the process.

What are the best games to play with your Border Collie? The best games are fun for both dog and human. Frisbee, scent work, flyball, tug of war, swimming, fetch, agility training and brain games are some notable examples. These and other interactive games which can be played with your collie in order to keep them active whilst also ensuring that both you and your dog have fun and strengthen your bond together.

Some of these are interactive games will involve you playing alongside your Border Collie while others will involve just your dog carrying out a task independently. This article explores some of the best outdoor and indoor ideas for fun and games, neither of you will get bored any time soon (with Border Collies, this is very unlikely to happen in any case!).

Outdoor Activities for You and Your Border Collie

As the Border Collie is an active breed it requires daily exercise through an energy outlet such as walking, playing a fun game or agility training. Varying the type of game can help keep this intelligent breed happy and build strong bonds with their pet parents.

It’s important to remember that Border Collies originate from the northern Scottish borderland area and are essentially outdoor ‘working’ dogs. They were bred to herd sheep through mountainous terrain, which means they are supremely fit as well as being intellectually active.

The Border Collie’s outdoor games and activities of choice are those that include their natural instincts to herd, hunt and chase. Without these outdoor dog activities being fulfilled a bored Border Collie is likely to resort to destructive behavior in the home, such as excessive barking or chewing your favorite chair leg! That said, they can also make excellent family pets for outdoor-loving families, those with large outdoor areas and plenty of time to dedicate to outdoor dog activities.

As with most ‘working’ dogs Border Collies need a constant supply of outdoor activities, which will keep their mind stimulated as well as their body fit and healthy. It’s no secret that Border Collies have a strong herding instinct due to their origins – and they love ‘herding’ objects instead of animals too tofulfill their outdoor instincts. However, there are alternative outdoor dog activities for keeping your Border Collie mentally and physically fit.

8 Outdoor Games to Play With Your Border Collie

The following outdoor dog activities are excellent substitutes

1) Frisbee Dog Games – Border Collies love to chase and herd so why not give your outdoor dog a game of frisbee? It’s something most dogs find easy as well as fun, and the high level of fitness required makes it an excellent outdoor game for any breed. Plus, no one in your family needs to run after a slobbering doggie while it carries its prize around the garden with pride!

2) Agility Training – There are plenty of outdoor activities for Border Collies where training is involved, such as the outdoor dog activities above. If you regularly take part in any of these outdoor dog activities then it’s a good idea to enroll your outdoor dog in outdoor agility courses (most are also available indoors) – this outdoor game will help keep its mind active as well as the rest of it, making it an excellent outdoor activity for a Border Collie. They also may be available free of charge in your local park. 

3) Tracking/scent work – Most Border Collies are excellent trackers so tracking is an outdoor activity they will relish. Even if you don’t have outdoor space you can often enroll your outdoor dog into tracking classes, though they will be more suited to outdoor dogs in general. There are plenty of different outdoor activities for Border Collies that require mental rather than physical strength; outdoor games such as these will help keep your intelligent breed mentally stimulated.

4) Flyball – This is another outdoor game that requires outdoor space, and is very good for outdoor dog activities. Most Border Collies are extremely intelligent and will learn quickly; this outdoor game helps to fulfill their natural outdoor instincts as well as giving them plenty of outdoor games to keep their mind active.

5) Frisbee Golf – The outdoor dog activities for a Border Collie don’t stop there! Frisbee golf is an outdoor activity that will keep your outdoor dog mentally stimulated as well as happy. It’s also a very sociable outdoor game, and ideal for any outdoor dog activities involving family or friends.

6) Tug Toys – All dogs love tugs and Border Collies are no exception; if you incorporate outdoor dog activities such as tug into your outdoor games you will find that your outdoor dog is far less likely to get bored and revert back to bad habits like excessive barking or chewing.

7) Hiking – Border Collies are outdoor dogs and naturally thrive when they have plenty of outdoor space; hiking with your outdoor dog is an excellent outdoor activity. They will be able to run around and explore while meeting new outdoor dog friends, making it a fun outdoor game for both you and your outdoor dog.

8) Swimming and Water Games – Border Collies love water activities , and if you live near outdoor water then outdoor dog activities such as swimming will be a fun outdoor game for the both of you. 

If you decide to get a Border Collie then you should also be prepared to spend a lot of time with them – interactive games will ensure that both you and your pet enjoy this time together.

What are the best games to play with your Border Collie frisbee is always a good choice
What are the best games to play with your Border Collie? … Frisbee is always a good choice!

4 Indoor Games to Play With Your Border Collie

Doggie parents and Border Collies are always better off playing games that allow them to interact with each other in a meaningful way. It is a bit like the difference between a human parent playing interactively and giving their kids a tablet instead! These indoor games are for a rainy day or when your collie has already had enough excitement outside:

1)  Playing fetch with a tennis ball or cuddly toys

This is a great game as it is fun but also a useful way to exercise your Border Collie. Fetch is a great game for any dog that can be played indoors or out, it helps keep their mind busy and can help burn excess energy if they have too much! It’s also a great game because the fetch ball or toy can be used as positive reinforcement when training as they have to retrieve an object on your command. 

2) Playing a game of tug

Playing a game game of war with your Border Collie, while providing exercise and mental stimulation, can be quite the tug! In tug of war, you hold a tug toy in between your hands and as your dog pulls it towards himself, you tug back. This builds strength in their bodies and tire out their minds. Because tug is so strenuous on the body, it should be monitored and used as an exercise occasionally from time to time rather than a game to play every day.

3) Nose work games 

Games like Sniff & Seek are good because you are creating a game that exercises many aspects of your dog’s mind at the same time.  Nose work, searching, scenting & behavioral training can be played in many different ways. – Give the dog one of your old socks (or anything that smells unique). Put treats in it at intervals then hide it. The dog hunts down the sock while trying to find more rewards hidden inside. This is great for developing their sense of smell as well as training them not to give up until they succeed. 

When purchasing an interactive toy for your Border Collie you should be aware of how durable they are, as interactive toys can sometimes get damaged quickly when dogs are playing with them as well as chewing on the toy

4) Brain games 

Puzzle games are activities which require your pet to successfully solve a problem before receiving a reward.  These games will require your dog to use a puzzle toy designed specifically for dogs, such as a Kong or Buster Cube.

The puzzle toys are a great way to amuse and stimulate your pet while training them to be focused on the puzzle instead of barking at passers-by or chewing unnecessary items around the house.

Many puzzle toys also serve as comfort items for your pet when they are home alone and are even safe to use during travel. 

Training Games With Your Border Collie

Border Collie can learn very fast if the training is fun and engaging so games are an important aspect of behavior management.

Well-behaved dogs are a result of good socialization, early training, and positive reinforcement and owners spending quality time with their Border Collies. Dogs that aren’t trained properly or disciplined often create behavioral problems. If your Border Collie displays behavioral issues, you may want to consider hiring a trainer or going to group dog training classes. A behavioral problem or behavioral issues may be a result of the dog’s natural instincts to guard his food, territory and self-defense and result in destructive behavior.

Clicker Training – The Method of Professionals!

Some of your favorite games can be adapted for clicker training. Clicker training is a good way to teach your Border Collie new tricks. Clicker training can be done with hand signals as well and has other benefits such as helping you to train your dog for competition. Clicker training will help you to bond with your Border Collie and they will begin to trust you more while improving their focus on you. Clicker training helps you to teach your dog with just one word by using a clicker.

Clicker training is better than other types of training because the Border Collie learns that he/she will get a treat when obeying you and this allows more time for games without having to spend it on tricks and trick training which can be boring for both you and your Border Collie. Clicker training is also very good for helping your Border Collie to learn other commands such as coming when called or heeling. Clicker training can help you get rid of common dog behavior problems such as poor recall, chewing, and digging. Clicker training means that you will be able to understand and read what games appeal the most to your Border Collie.

Disobedience Training – Proactive not just Reactive!

Doing obedience training sessions can be a good way to bond with your dog and it is a great form of exercise for the dog. Basic obedience trials will require you to have control over your dog in distracting environments such as noisy areas,  environments with lots of other dogs or people. If you are interested in obedience training, it will be important to find a trainer that can teach you the basics and help you and your dog work together.

The difference between border collies and other obedience dogs is their speed and agility. They are also very intelligent; they want to learn, and love to do it. The kinds of games you play with your Collie can maintain this interest.

Playing with your Border Collie Puppy

If you have a puppy it is important that they socialize as quickly as possible however you still want to be able to give them enough attention so that they do not become bored. If you make sure that you have plenty of time for puppy obedience training and puppy agility exercises then you will be able to provide your puppy with the perfect balance of love and attention.

Try to develop a routine around your puppy’s training and physical exercise sessions. This could be in the form of a puppy exercise chart where you can record the type of training, the minutes of exercise and how engaged your puppy was in the activity you played.  If your puppy looks forward to playing with their family every day then he/she will be more willing to learn and grow stronger bonds with their caregivers.

See also our articles on activities for Border Collies and exercises for mental stimulation as well as Border Collie training!