Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: The land of Enchantment
I never had border collies, but I always had Kelpies until our current "rescue" dog. I only ever had them from pups, but I imagine it is similar w an adult. To risk sounding too simple - I always started thier training by teaching them to "listen" to me, and to always come when called. By "listen" I mean to hang on both your voice and body language. First thing, as wee babes...I taught them the words "no" and "okay" with salami. I put salami in front of them and don't let them have it until I say "okay". It starts them "listening". I taught them early they were never allowed in a horse/cattle enclosure unless invited. I always used the same commands for consistancy. Herd dogs are dying to work, so they will watch your every move to "get the signal" - so you have to make your signals unmistakable and clear. You have to teach them to follow the "direction" of your "pointing" in order to ask them to correctly select and take out or bring back a group of cattle in "x direction". Without a seasoned herd dog to assist them in thier lessons, you just have to be patient and consistant w direction. I think non-herd dogs hanging around w them during training can hinder the training process, though.
With kelpies you have to be gentle w your training methods b/c their feelings are so easily hurt. I don't know about border collies.
That's just my .02. Good luck w your training!
There is just as much horse sense as ever, but the horses have most of it.