Are Border Collies Good Apartment Dogs?

Border Collies are highly intelligent canines that are amazing with families and children. These gorgeous dogs come in a variety of shapes and sizes, weighing anywhere from 30 to 60 pounds. Bred to herd sheep, this dog is responsive, keen, alert, energetic, and tenacious.

This breed originates from the Scottish borders (Wales, England, Ireland, United Kingdom, Scotland). Hence this is where the first part of their name comes from. The term Collie comes from the Scotch word which describes sheepdogs.

Is A Border Collie A Good Apartment Dog?

Any pet you have is an investment in time. They need to go to the vet on a regular basis for shots or when they are not feeling the best. They need to be given fresh water and food daily.

All pets require some love, and most pets need some form of exercise.

Many will say that a Border Collie is not a good pet for an apartment. However, if you ask me, someone who lives in a small apartment and who is the owner of a young Border Collie, this is simply not true.

Now before you argue with me, hear me out. Animal lovers say a Border Collie does not belong in an apartment due to space. While I will agree that lots of apartments are small, what really matters is the type of people that fill those apartments.

John and Jen (Border Collie owners)

Female Playing With Border Collie

Let’s say John and Jen live in an apartment and have decided to get a Border Collie. While the apartment is not huge, there is enough room for all three of them to live comfortably.

Every morning before work, John walks the Collie for an hour. On Jen’s lunch break, she comes home and plays with him for a while, then at night takes him for a walk again.

On weekends, they spend a few hours at the dog park, and a few days a week the canine goes to doggy daycare. John and Jen love this dog with all their heart, and spoil it rotten, making sure it has all it needs.

Albert and Andrea (Border Collie owners too)

Sad Border Collie Dog

Several miles away in the country live Albert and Andrea. They have a huge house with a fenced in the backyard. They too have a Border Collie.

Albert is a truck driver, so he is rarely home. Andrea works full time and then has to come home and take care of the kids, who often ignore the dog.

The Border Collie is taken care of but is never walked. He is lucky that he gets outside on the weekends for a few hours in the backyard.

Even if you know nothing else about Border Collies, decide which dog you would want to be. John and Jen’s, who lives like a king, or Albert and Andrea’s who is lucky to get a few hours outside on the weekends.

Border Collies are very active pets. They require a family that is going to be active with them. It is not fair to say that no one in an apartment should have this breed of dog.

Some people who live in an apartment make exceptional Border Collie parents as they are willing to work with the dog on training and distractions, such as people closing their front door down the hall or hearing the neighbors talking outside.

Things To Consider Before Getting a Border Collie

There are some things that you will want to consider before getting a Border Collie.


Multicolor Border Collie In MountainsThe Border Collie needs ample space to run around outside. If you do not have a big yard, a dog park can be used. You can always find areas to exercise your dog if you really want.

The space you have should not define if you get a BC. In fact, the main thing that should determine if you own this breed of dog is you and your family. If you have ample time, love, and commitment, this loyal dog will be able to endure living in an apartment.

Active Life

Border Collie Playing With OwnerIf a Border Collie does not have an active life, they can become very destructive. They do not like to be ignored and can not be left home for long periods of time by themselves.

The Border Collie prefers to live in an active home where they will receive both physical and mental stimulation. If you have an active lifestyle, a Border Collie will fit in with you. They like to be busy and have jobs.

Take them on plenty of walks or runs. Play fetch or frisbee in your backyard. Get them enrolled in doggy daycare a few times a week. Hire a trainer to help train them.

Free Time

Border Collie Relaxing With Owner Near VanYou as the owner of a Border Collie will need to spend a great deal of your free time training the dog. This will also involve taking the dog on walks or jogs, to the dog park, or just outside to play a game of catch or run free.

Also, think about how many benefits the extra activity can bring you. Too often we get caught with our work and we completely forget about how important is to have an active life for our health. A Border Collie is the perfect exercise buddy.

Certainly, this dog breed takes up a great deal of time, so if you are not committed to this, pass on getting a Border Collie. If you are not ready to give them 15+ years of your life, do not make the decision to buy or adopt one.

Know that every single day you will need to do some sort of activity with them. Agility courses are perfect for mental and physical stimulation and are often exhausting to them.


If you want to be a Border Collie parent, but live in an apartment, there is nothing wrong with that. As long as you take the time to exercise your BC every day, sometimes several times per day equally a few hours or more, and provide it with lots of love, fresh water, and food you can make this pet an apartment dog.

It will take a lot of time and effort on your part, but once you succeed, it will be so well worth it.

So what do you think, are Border Collies good apartment dogs? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.