I always get emails, comments and questions asking me about some good training methods that work well with the Border Collie breed. To answer those questions I always have to mention some of the common training methods which should NOT be used.
So in this article I’m going to cover some of the more common training mistakes that you should avoid when you train your BC. If you want to learn more about more about Border Collie training methods in general, you can do so by going to this page.
Common Training Mistakes
I’m not going to list them in any particular order and I’m probably forgetting a few. If you have anything to add to the list, please feel free to do so in the comment section below.
- Confusing Dominant behavior with excitement/playfulness – Dominant or aggressive behavior is very serious, but sometimes owner mistake such behavior for simple excitement or playfulness. Is your Border Collie growling at you because of dominance issues or is the puppy trying to play? Each problem has a different solution to it.
- Confusing the herding instinct for something else – Border Collies have a deep hardwired instinct to herd, and unfortunately sometimes they feel the urge to herd humans, not just sheep.
- Shouting or punishing the dog long after they misbehaved – Unless you catch your Border Collie in the act, being stern with the dog will have no effect. If you start shouting out of nowhere, the dog will be confused as to why you’re yelling and associate your frustration with whatever it is that he did.
- Being inconsistent – Consistency is very important when it comes to Border Collie training. Some owners forget about that and make their house rules different depending on their mood. If they feel nice then the dog is allowed on the couch. If they had a bad day then the dog can’t go anywhere near it. This will only cause confusion to your dog so don’t do it – always be consistent.
- Calling your Border Collie over and then scolding it for misbehaving – If your Border Collie is misbehaving and you plan to scold him for it, don’t call him to you! Otherwise next time you need to call him he won’t come. He will start associate the “Come” command with a scolding or a punishment.
- Hitting or being abusive with the dog – Now I really would like to think this mistake is not really common, but I know that there are people that still promote punishment based training. Punishment and correction are two separate things. Correcting bad behavior shows the dog what he should be doing and punishment just makes the dog fear you.
If you want to learn how to cure even some of the worst Border Collie behavior problems and the exact things you need for a happy, healthy and obedient dog, check out the Border Collie Owners Guide.