Training For Border Collie Aggression Problems


Is your Border Collie aggressive to other dogs or children? Well, even though aggression is not a common trait in this breed, but still you never know because every dog has a different personality and nature. Aggressive behavior include actions such as growling, excessive barking, chasing and even biting, and reason behind such behavior may vary according to different situations.

aggressive border collie dogAlways remember when you’re training an aggressive Border Collie to correct behavior problems, be careful with your dog because he may bite you and that can lead to other serious consequences as well. If you think your BC is showing early sign of aggressive behavior such as growling and jumping, you must immediately act and train him to correct it. If you’ll let him behave aggressively and not having a check on him, it will get worse day by day and that will be very difficult to overcome.

Generally a Border Collie doesn’t get aggressive without showing early signs of aggression beforehand. For example, they all start with chasing, then nipping, then growling and then develop biting habit. Before biting or attacking you, they generally show aggressive signs to warn you that they don’t like what you’re doing. For example unless your Border Collie is in physical pain or maybe he is scared of something, he’ll never bite or jump on you aggressively. Other example of this situation could be, when accidentally or unintentionally you press their tail, they aggressively react and may bite you. Below are some signs that could lead to your dog’s aggressive behavior:

  • Refusing to obey your known commands
  • Staring at you when you take away his toys or food bowl
  • Showing teeth in anger or growling when you push him to get off the furniture
  • Showing dominant behavior
  • Aggressively barking at you and other dogs
  • Nipping at your children

If you want to learn about how you can correct disobedient and dominant behavior of your beloved Border Collie, you should definitely have a look at this “Border Collie Owner’s Guide”. It is one of the most in-depth and comprehensive information guide that helps you with step by step training methods to deal with bad behavior problems.

Reasons behind your dog’s aggressive behavior

So what are the most common causes that trigger aggression in Border Collies? Well there several of them and each one of them needs to be corrected before it’s too late. Some causes are easily identified and can be corrected; on the other hand some of them take time and require consistent behavior training to overcome the problems.

Dominant Behavior and Aggression: Neglecting your border collie’s dominant behavior make him believe that, to keep his dominance over you, he needs to be aggressive. If your dog has developed dominant behavior and thinks himself above you, he will not even hesitate to bark and growl at you, and he may also bite you. Therefore you have to be extremely careful when you are training your dog that is dominant and aggressive.

Suffering with Physical Pain: Just like humans when a dog is in physical pain, they become aggressive because he might be under a lot of stress. No matter how much your dog loves you, as a responsible owner you must carefully check his wounds to make sure you’re not unknowingly causing him more pain. If your dog is in serious pain and you accidentally touched his wound, he might growl, nip or even bite you to let you know that he doesn’t want you to touch him there.

Feeling Threatened: This is one of the most common aggression types in Border Collies and they generally show it towards people they don’t know or meeting for the first time. When Border Collies feels threatened by strangers or people they don’t trust, they generally growl or bark at them to let them know to stay away. Dogs barking at other street dogs, Newspaper delivery man, or at your neighbors are a perfect example of this type of aggression.

Aggressive for Food: Not only Border Collies but every other dog is possessive for his/her food and they are never sure if the food you give them will be there after some time. They think it is better to eat their food right now before someone will take it away from them. Therefore when they are eating and you go close to their bowl to put more food or take the bowl away, they growl at you distrustfully. However, not all dogs behave in similar way, but it’s their natural instincts that force them to behave in such a way to defend their food from others.

If you’re not sure about your dog’s behavior, never put your hand in his bowl while he is eating, because you never know when he’ll bite you to save his food. Just like that, never mess with a dog that is chewing a bone. However, what you can do is, take his attention away from his bowl or bone by calling him over for a treat he likes the most. That will also help him understand that leaving his food bowl or bone for sometime is okay, and his owner or other people won’t steal it.

Training an Aggressive Border Collie To Correct His Bad Behavior

Watch this video to understand even the most serious aggression problems in border collies can be corrected if you know how to do it:

Your approach to correct your dog’s bad behavior depends a lot on the original cause that forces him to behave aggressively. Therefore, before you start training him for that, you have to figure out the reason why he behaves aggressively. Ask yourself these questions:

  • When does he act aggressively?
  • For how long it has been going on?
  • What is he targeting?

If you have the answers of these questions, you’ll be in better position to understand why he does that and how you can stop him doing that.

While training him to correct his aggressive behavior if you feel he is getting more aggressive and things are about to go out of control, immediately stop it and leave him alone. In any situation you must stop escalating things if there is no need for it, because by making your dog angrier you will not solve the issue.

On the other hand if your Border Collie acts like a dominant dog, then you have to start over again with obedience training and regain your title of “Alpha Dog”. It means you have to show him that you are the boss and only you have the authority to command. Obedience training will him learn that you are the pack leader and he has to obey your commands.

Things To Avoid With An Aggressive BC

Before you begin with training, there are few imperative things that you must avoid with a dog that has developed aggressive and dominant behavior. Below are some of them:

When your dog is in lot of stress, never push him or pressurize. For instance, if your Border Collie is growling at you when you go close to him, stop right there because it’s not a good idea to do so. Growling is like a warning sign to do avoid getting closer to him and if you don’t stop he may bite you. Therefore you must respect your dog’s wishes.

NEVER EVER shout or hit your dog when he behaves aggressively at you. We are trying to make him calm and defuse the situation, not trying to make things worse. Yelling, shouting or hitting should be your last options when things go out of control and you feel you are in danger. In that case best way to defuse the situation is to go away from there and wait for him to calm down.

You should avoid playing games with your dog that encourage him to act aggressively. These games include tug of war, hide and seek, keep away, and games that involves chasing. Instead of these games, play games that keep him away from you, such as “Go fetch” game.

Taking Professional Trainer’s Assistance

Aggressive and dominant behavior is not a joke and specially if your dog belongs to a large breed. If you think your dog is out of your control and refusing to obey your commands, seeking help from your vet or a professional dog trainer is probably the best way forward. Border Collies are smart and they can sense when their owner is nervous or unsure and that could make them think that they have the control on you, not you on them.

If you think your dog is no more in your control and he might bite someone, you must immediately consult a dog trainer or look for “stop aggression” training guides. Never ignore your dog’s bad behavior and don’t wait until your Border Collie bites you, your children or other people.