These 10 Border Collie Mixes Are the Perfect Blend of Beauty and Brains
Once a dog lover falls snoot over tailtip in love with the captivating personality, intelligence, and zest of border collies, it's hard to consider any other types of canine friends—unless they're border collie mixes! While you can't always control the genetics roulette wheel (a bit on that momentarily), you can certainly learn more about common characteristics of active dog breeds like these and which crossbreed is a good fit.
What Border Collie Mix Is Right for You?
Patrick Singletary, DVM, owns Good Dog Veterinary Care in Marietta, Ga. He tells Daily Paws that the first deliberate hybrid pup was bred in 1989 to produce a hypoallergenic guide dog—a mix between a Labrador retriever and a standard poodle—which is now the widely loved Labradoodle. Thus, are you guaranteed all the best traits of both pup parents in border collie mix puppies? It's hard to say. "Dogs have 39 chromosomes. When a male and a female are bred, they have to pass along 20,000 genes that will be carried on all 39 chromosomes for each of their puppies," Singletary says.
So research mixed breed dogs extensively—Singletary advises doing so for at least a few months. "Additionally, responsible dog owners should also help to prevent puppy mills by researching the lines of the dogs they desire, and interviewing the right breeder to work with," he says. "Last but certainly not least, I recommend consulting your veterinarian about these complex subjects." This ensures you'll have a healthy border collie mix ready for any adventure!
Already sold on one of these pups? Check out our list of the top 10 most popular border collie mixes and see which one (or several!) might be the perfect choice to join your family.
Border Aussie (Border Collie Australian Shepherd Mix)
Batten the hatches, because the dynamic pup of an Australian shepherd and a border collie is smarter than the average toddler. Border Aussies have two speeds—stop and fast—and an innate desire to be busy. Dedicate yourself to their training, and you'll be astounded by all they can accomplish with the wits they inherited: painting, yoga, a job as official "bark ranger" … there are simply no limits for building the human–animal bond with this talented pooch.
Borador (Border Collie Labrador Retriever Mix)
Labradors have topped the American Kennel Club's most popular dog list for 30 years because the "L" in their name also stands for loyalty—they're truly a devoted breed. So a Borador, rich with steadfast genes from a border parent, will certainly keep the pace (or lead the way with vigor) during any excursion, especially hiking and swimming, as long as you're near. Each breed parent offers great longevity, too, with 10–15 years of lingering puppy love.
Coltriever (Border Collie Golden Retriever Mix)
A coltriever—also known as a golden border collie or golden border retriever because of her golden retriever parentage—overflows with cutieful charm and personality to share, making her a great family dog. Although this border collie mix is bright enough to skip puppy kindergarten, it's better to let her graduate from it with honors so she socializes well and channels her abundant energy into learning tricks with positive reinforcement training.
Shollie (Border Collie German Shepherd Mix)
If a brainy BFF (best furry friend) is on your must-have list, check out the shollie. His dashing and dedicated German shepherd parent provides an exceptional work ethic that meets or exceeds a border's, so don't skimp on skills training: a shollie is always ready for action! Puzzle games keep this pup healthfully engaged, too. But it's not all work and no play. Pet parents of a shollie might want to try activities like biking with your dog so the two of you can meet his hour or more exercise requirements each day.
Border Heeler (Blue Heeler Border Collie Mix)
What do you get when your border collie mix includes the herding instincts of an Australian cattle dog, also known as a blue heeler? Possibly one of the best cattle dogs on the planet. Spirited and true, these parent breeds are also affectionate, and fiercely committed to their people, which helps them fulfill the role of service dog quite well. Expect a lot of rambunctious energy with a border heeler—these training tools and puzzle feeder toys will help keep you both in sync.
Borsky (Border Collie Husky Mix)
We usually frown on judging a pooch on prettiness alone, but wow! When the cameras start flashing, a borksy (also referred to as border husky) will bring it. While we're most familiar with Siberian huskies and border collies in black and white, a spin of that genetics roulette wheel might present more merle coat patterns and of course, the possibility of exceptional eye colors. Frisky, talkative, and full of cheer, these pups cherish their humans, as this precious video shows.
Bordoodle (Border Collie Poodle Mix)
Poodles are the peanut butter to every other dog's jelly: they go together so well! The adorable bordoodle is a border collie mix that might not shed as much. A friendly doggie pal for children, keep in mind those instinctive collie herding qualities might apply to little ones as well, so early socialization for your bordoodle will be helpful. Athletic and smart (so smart!), the whole family will love romping with this pooch and teaching her tricks.
Borgi (Border Collie Corgi Mix)
On a ranch, a Cardigan Welsh corgi or Pembrook Welsh corgi herds 'em up, and a border collie tells 'em which way to go. So if you need a working dog for your stock, the crossbreed borgi with dual skills might be a winner. These parent dogs also gift their offspring with enthusiasm, intelligence, and a wee bit of mischief, so expand on these qualities for fun activities such as agility training or kayaking together to keep your borgi playfully engaged.
Border Beagle (Border Collie Beagle Mix)
A border beagle is sweet-natured and agreeable, but make no mistake: he's eager to be active and explore. Honestly, who wouldn't want to wander the woods with a sparky pup whose nose knows the way? Wise enough to almost pitch a tent, this vibrant hybrid would make a terrific camping buddy, kicking up dust as he races up the trails. Just remember to follow leash laws wherever you visit—even though he's a loyal pooch, it's best to be on the safe side anytime you're out in public.
Border Collie Pyrenees (Great Pyrenees Border Collie Mix)
A Great Pyrenees loves snow, baby goats, and their human and animal families with a quiet intensity. But they also have a strong sense of calm independence, fostered for years as a flock guardian. So how do you balance the zeal of a border collie with the mellowness of this mountain dog? Talk with a behaviorist for specific tips to understand their interesting qualities and the cues they respond to best. Interactive toys allow for terrific bonding time, too.