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How High Can a Border Collie Jump? The Fascinating Answer!

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By Nicole Cosgrove

Black and White Border Collie Playing Catch

Border Collies are a special type of breed. In addition to the fact that they are fast and agile, they are also known to have incredible jumping abilities. They can clear hurdles that are as high as 6 to 9 feet in competitions.

How high the Collie jumps will depend on a couple of factors. For example, if you ask it to jump from a sitting position, the jump won’t be as high as the result that you’d typically get from a standing position.

Speed is yet another critical factor that you ought to take into consideration. As you’d expect, a slow-moving or stationary Collie won’t be able to jump as high as their fast-moving counterparts.

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How Often Do Border Collies Jump?

The Collie is an active breed that loves to spend time outdoors. If a day goes by without them getting the opportunity to run around, they’ll be miserable. Besides having fun, you’ll find them jumping out of curiosity, or while saying “hi” to their favorite human.

Also, seeing as these dogs are usually bred to help farmers herd large flocks of sheep (or goats in some parts of the world), they’ll instinctively use jumping as their first line of defense. In their minds, the more frequently they jump the easier it is for the sheep to understand which route to take or where to go.

Border Collie Bernard Dog
Image Credit: 825545, Pixabay

At What Age Does the Border Collie Start Jumping?

Border Collies are usually strong enough to jump small hurdles at 5 months, meaning by 18 months most of them are pros. That said, puppies shouldn’t jump in competitions until they’re at least 12–15 months old.

These dogs are very similar to humans, in terms of their abilities. Some of them jump higher than others, the same way we run faster or slower than our peers. In a competition setting, a confident Border Collie that has vast experience in the field can easily clear a 9-feet obstacle. Though rare, it’s very much possible.

Of course, most of them average 6 feet, as their abilities are normally influenced by age, joint health, and several other factors.

It’s important to remember that Collies are just dogs and not animals with supernatural powers or abilities. In other words, they can easily get injured if not protected or well-taken care of. If you’re looking to train a pup, don’t force it to hurdle an unusually large obstacle. The first jump must be low to help it build stamina.

To understand how talented the Border Collie is, here’s a comparison table of the jumping abilities of other popular dog breeds:

Breed Average Weight Average Height Jump Height
Rottweiler 77 – 110 lbs. 22 – 27 in. 3 – 6 ft.
Weimaraner 55 – 82 lbs. 23 – 26 in. 6 ft.
Belgian Malinois 44 – 66 lbs. 21 – 26 in. 8 ft.
German Shepherd 40 – 88 lbs. 22 – 26 in. 6 ft.
Greyhound 57 – 88 lbs. 27 – 30 in. 5 ft.
Pit Bull Terrier 30 – 60 lbs. 17 – 21 in. 5 ft.

Can Collies Jump Over Fences?

Even if your Border Collies aren’t trained to jump over stuff, they will instinctively try to jump over your fence the first chance they get if they so desire.

If you’ve realized that your furry friend is a notorious jumper or planning to get this particular breed in the future, make sure that the fence installed is at least 3 or 4 times its height. We’d recommend a fence around 10 feet high since we’ve never seen one clear such a hurdle.

We would also ensure that the fence’s foundation is a sturdy one, and at least 3 feet deep, to prevent the dog from digging his/her way out.

Blue merle Border collie catching frisbee
Image Credit: JitkaP, Shutterstock

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What Would Make a Border Collie Jump So Much?

To understand dog behavior, you have to think of them the same way you think of humans. They are easily triggered by various stimuli, the same way we are. That’s to say, there are so many things that could compel your Collie to resort to jumping as a reaction.

One of them is obviously boredom. And that’s why it’s important to get your dog a companion if you’re the kind of person who’s busy at work a lot. These animals also have a herding drive, so they’ll jump over the fence to chase animals they’ve spotted on the other side.

The need to satisfy their curiosity is another good enough reason, as well as the excitement to see a friendly face approaching.

Border collie sitting pretty
Image Credit: kajasja, Shutterstock

Can You Train a Border Collie to Not Jump on People?

Yes, you can. But you’ll have to find a way to show them that this behavior is not considered appropriate. First off, during your training sessions you have to ensure the dog has a leash on at all times.

The whole purpose of the leash is to not trigger any negative emotion. It’s to make it easier for you to restrict the dog’s movements while teaching them to obey different commands. Also, with the leash on, the dog will quickly learn who’s in control.

Like most breeds, the Border Collie responds well to positive reinforcement. So, any time they jump on you, gently push them away, and then firmly say “no”. Once they’ve calmed down, give them a few belly rubs and their favorite treat.

We find this type of training to be crucial, as their jumping habit can quickly become an issue if they start to jump on random strangers. Especially those who have dog allergies or just don’t like being around canines.

Are Border Collies Affected by Hip and Elbow Dysplasia?

Hip and elbow dysplasia is a condition that affects a significant number of dog breeds and not just Border Collies. It’s a developmental disorder that your dog will have to live with as a result of dysmorphic and lax joint formation.

While it doesn’t present itself as an acute case, this condition is not the kind that should be taken lightly, since it consequently leads to degenerative joint disease and arthrosis.

Can it be cured? No. But the good news is, we’re living in a world that’s so advanced that your dog can get a wonderful long-term prognosis.

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The Border Collie is a great companion for anyone who considers themselves outdoorsy. You’ll never get bored when they’re around, as they are full of energy and excitement. From a standing position, they can comfortably jump over a 6-foot hurdle. Some can clear 9-foot obstacles, but only if they are well-trained and experienced.

On the intelligence scale, there’s no doubt in our minds that they are extremely smart. We guarantee you that training one of these dogs will be a rewarding experience.

Featured Image Credit: Magda Ehlers, Pexels

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