Border Collie Lab Mix – Your Ultimate Guide To The Borador Dog

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The border collie Lab mix is a cross between two of America’s most beloved breeds – the Labrador retriever and border collie.

Also known as a borador, or border Lab, this energetic and clever mix combines the best traits of its parent breeds. 

If you are looking for an affectionate and lively companion dog that loves children and can keep up with your active lifestyle, check out the border Lab!

Medium to large in size, these pups are best suited for active families and homes with access to securely fenced backyards. Take this to heart. We had a borador who was an absolute escape artist. He found his way out of our backyard and to the local park on nearly a daily basis.

Although they make wonderful pets and companions, boradors aren’t for everyone. This exceptionally smart mix craves attention and needs a lot of mental stimulation to stay on the best behavior. When bored or left to their own devices, border Labs can become destructive and resort to chewing or digging just to have fun. 

If you want an outgoing, eager-to-please, loyal, and smart mixed-breed dog for your family, read on! In this article, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about the border collie Labrador mix and help you decide whether this designer dog is the right choice for your home. 

Contents & Quick Navigation

Border Collie Lab Overview 

  • Size – 19 to 24 inches tall, weighs between 40 and 65 pounds
  • Coat – Short to medium-long double coat, color varies
  • Shedding – Moderate to heavy shedding
  • Lifespan – 10 to 15 years
  • Temperament – Eager-to-please, outgoing, clever, and energetic
  • Trainable – Highly trainable but can become bored if not mentally stimulated
  • Activity – Very active (needs around one to two hours of activity every day)
  • Best For – Active families and people, and homes with outdoor space 

What Is A Labrador Border Collie Mix?

As you may have guessed, the Labrador border collie mix is a cross-breed created by mixing a purebred Labrador retriever and a purebred border collie. 

While both parent breeds are officially recognized by the American Kennel Club, the borador is considered a designer dog breed. 

Border Collie And Lab Mix Appearance

Like all other mixed-breed dogs, no two border Labs are the same and there is no way of knowing exactly what you will get when mixing a border collie and a Lab.

Most, however, have a Lab-like build, although they are on the thin side. When it comes to the head and general features, this mix takes more after the Labrador, but they do have the slightly pointed nose of a border collie.

However, nothing is set in stone, and the only thing you can do is wait and see how your border collie and Lab mix puppy will grow up to be. 

With that being said, there are some things you can expect from your mixed breed, mainly when it comes to size and coat color. 

Size

As a mix between Labrador retriever and border collie dog breeds, expect your border Lab to be a medium to large size dog. Most border collie Lab mixes are between 19 and 24 inches tall at the shoulders and weigh between 40 and 65 pounds. 

Color

The border collie Lab can come in a variety of different colors, and their coats are usually a mix of their parents’ coats and colors. There are yellow, brown, black, and fox red Labrador retrievers, but border collies come in many different colors and markings. 

Most border Labs have brown, black, or tan coats and white markings like their border collie parent. The amount of white fur varies greatly from one borador to the next, with some dogs having completely solid coats and others having several white markings. 

Coat

Depending on which parent they take after, boradors can have short to medium-long coats. Regardless of the coat’s length, one thing is for sure – your border Lab puppy will most definitely have a double coat since this is a trait both Labs and border collies share. 

Having a double coat means your Lab mix is going to shed moderately all year round, and lose more hair during the shedding season. If you or anyone in your household has allergies, this mix isn’t the type of dog you’d want to bring home. 

Labrador And Border Collie Mix Character

While it’s hard to predict the exact temperament of any mixed-breed dog, both Labradors and border collies are highly intelligent, eager-to-please, and active dogs. So, it’s safe to say their offspring will inherit these traits.

Most border Labs are outgoing and people-loving dogs that make amazing family pets. In fact, this mix is so friendly that they will likely meet everyone with a wagging tail. This makes border Labs amazing family companions but poor watchdogs, so don’t get one to guard your property.

They generally become fast friends with children and are very gentle with them. However, thanks to their border collie ancestry, some boradors may try to herd and nip smaller children or other pets. If your mix exhibits this trait, know you can curb their nipping tendencies with training and positive reinforcement. 

As an offspring of the border collie – the smartest dog breed in the world – the borador tends to be pretty smart as well. While this makes training your pooch a breeze, it also means you’ll need to keep their clever mind stimulated and occupied at all times. Invest in interactive toys that will challenge your dog’s mind and keep boredom at bay! 

Activity Level

Considering that both Labs and border collies are highly energetic working breeds, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that border Labs are very energetic as well. A simple walk around the park won’t cut it for this mix, and most boradors will need around two hours of exercise every day. 

Aim to take your border collie Lab mix for at least two long walks every day and also include several playing sessions throughout the day. Games such as fetch, tug-of-war, hide and seek, and flyball are some great ways to exercise your borador and keep it mentally stimulated. 

Our Border Lab mix, Maffy was high, high, high energy. Obviously inherited from the Border Collie side of the equation. However, a Lab is no slouch when it comes to energy level.

Caring For A Borador 

As with any other dog, you should develop a care routine as soon as you bring a border collie Lab mix puppy home. You’ll soon find that your pooch is the happiest when they are involved in all family activities and properly exercised. Here’s everything you should know!

Exercise

Ideally, boradors need around one or two hours of exercise every day. As mentioned above, a simple walk won’t be enough, and you’ll need to really exercise your pooch to help them burn excess energy.

Activities such as running, swimming, jogging, cycling, and hiking are just some ways you can keep your mix exercised and in good shape. Boradors also excel at agility, which is a great way to keep your dog both physically and mentally challenged at the same time.

Intellectual Stimulation

Since they are very smart, border Labs do best with lots of mental stimulation. If not properly challenged, your mix will become destructive and turn to digging and chewing to relieve boredom. 

A word of caution, a bored Lab border collie mix might be a recipe for disaster! You might return home from work only to find your shoes, pillows, or carpets chewed and shredded to pieces. Making sure your border Lab is mentally stimulated is the only way you’ll prevent damage to your belongings and property.

Invest in durable chews, interesting puzzle toys to stimulate your dog, and spend some time every day interacting and playing with your pooch to keep them mentally stimulated.

YES! Our Border Lab got into all kinds of trouble in the yard digging holes and hiding treats throughout the yard. Another game he enjoyed playing was dropping his ball into the swimming pool. Then wait till it floats to the middle then jump in after it.

Without mental stimulation Boradors definitely invent their own games.

Companionship

Eager-to -lease, loving, and friendly border Labs are true companions and are happy as long as they are involved in all family activities. The Labrador border collie mix isn’t a type of dog that can stay at home alone while you’re working a 12-hour shift. 

These dogs crave attention and companionship, and they are best suited for homes where there is someone who can spend a better part of the day playing and interacting with them. When left at home alone a lot, this mix can develop separation anxiety and become destructive. 

Grooming

When compared to other Lab mixes, the borador is a fairly low-maintenance breed when it comes to grooming. Although they shed moderately all year round, their coats are easy to groom and need to be brushed two times a week.

Brushing your mix regularly with a slicker brush will help you remove loose hair and keep the shedding to a minimum. 

You’ll also need to bathe your pooch regularly to keep their coat clean and fresh smelling. A regular bathing schedule and a deshedding shampoo can help you reduce your pup’s shedding and lower the amount of time you spend vacuuming pet hair. 

To prevent painful dental problems and periodontal disease, start brushing your pup’s teeth from a young age. Check your borador’s ears once a week and clean whenever you notice waxy buildup and debris. Last but not least important, trim your dog’s nails every two months or when you hear they are clicking on the floor. 

Diet

An ideal diet for a border Lab should be formulated for medium to large size dogs with high energy. Make sure to feed your mix with age-appropriate high-quality dog food that contains all essential micro and macronutrients. 

Like their Labrador parents, boradors tend to overeat and can easily pack on the pounds if you aren’t careful. Avoid free feeding your mix and set up a regular feeding schedule to prevent obesity and health problems associated with it. 

Keep in mind, treats should only make up to 10% of your pup’s daily calorie intake, so be mindful of the number of treats your border Lab is eating in a day. 

Known Health Problems

Designer dogs are considered healthier than their purebred parents, but they aren’t immune to developing health problems. Although border Labs are generally healthy, they are prone to some of the same health problems that affect Labrador retrievers and border collies. These include:

  • Hip and Elbow Dysplasia: This condition affects both Labradors and border collies and occurs when hip and elbow joints don’t develop properly. This can be extremely painful for a dog, causing arthritis, difficulty walking, and lameness later in life.
  • Collie Eye Anomaly: This is a congenital eye disease that occurs in border collies and affects the retina, sclera, and choroid. CEA is caused by a recessive gene defect and can be a mild condition or cause blindness. 
  • Hypothyroidism: This is a condition in which the thyroid gland is no longer able to produce the hormone thyroxine. Since the main function of this hormone is to control metabolism, dogs with this condition can’t convert food into fuel at a normal rate. 

Life Expectancy

The border Lab has an average life expectancy of 10 to 15 years. When properly cared for and taken to regular veterinary checkups, some boradors can reach senior years completely healthy.

We had a Border Collie Lab mix that we rescued from our local animal shelter. They told us he was approximately 2 years old when we rescued him. He lived with us for 18 years! Add on the approximately 2 years he lived before he came to our home he lived a whopping 20 years!

How To Train Your Border Collie Lab Mix?

True to their parent breeds, border Labs are eager to please and very intelligent, which makes them highly trainable. Like all other dogs, the Lab border collie mix responds well to positive reinforcement and reward-based training. With the right approach and proper incentive, you’ll be able to teach your mix obedience and tricks in no time. 

Start training and socializing your borador puppy as soon as you bring them home when they are eight to 12 weeks old. While your pup might seem small, you can start potty training and teach them basic commands. 

Who Should Own A Border Collie And Lab Mix?

Border Labs make truly wonderful companions and pets to active people or families with children. Couch potatoes be warned; this designer hybrid needs a lot of exercise and will keep you on your toes. 

Don’t forget that these dogs crave companionship and attention, and they are best suited for large families and homes where someone can keep them company. If you have long working hours or are barely home, this isn’t the right dog for you. 

Due to their energetic nature and high exercise needs, boradors need a home with access to a fenced yard where they can run around and play. This isn’t to say you have to have a backyard to own a borador, but if you don’t, be prepared to take your dog out and exercise with them every day. 

Buying A Border Collie And Lab Mix Puppy

If you want to purchase a border collie and Lab mix puppy, find a reputable breeder and schedule an appointment to visit their facilities. A reputable breeder will let you meet the mother and all the puppies. make sure you and the puppy are compatible, and provide paperwork about vaccination and health screenings. 

Expect to pay between $200 and $500 for a borador puppy, depending on the breeder and your location.

Just because boradors are designer dogs doesn’t mean they don’t end up in shelters and rescue organizations waiting for a forever home. 

Check your local shelter and rescue groups to see if they have any border Labs. You can also contact Labrador retriever and border collie breed-specific rescue groups since they often take care of mixed-breed dogs too. 

History Of The Breeds

Labrador Retriever

One of the most popular dog breeds in the world, the Labrador retriever originated in Newfoundland where they helped fishermen catch fish. Universally loved for their kind, friendly, fun, and loyal nature, Labs make great family pets and companions.

Highly intelligent, gentle, and eager-to-please, Labrador retrievers are favored as service dogs and are often seen assisting people with disabilities to lead fulfilling lives. 

Border Collie

Developed in the border country between Scotland and England, the border collie is a working and herding dog breed. Originally bred to herd sheep, border collies are  a highly intelligent and very trainable dog breed. Naturally athletic and energetic, border collies need a lot of exercise and mental stimulation to stay happy and thrive. 

FAQs About Labrador And Border Collie Mix

Are border collie Lab mix good dogs?

Boradors are good companions and amazing pets to active people and families with children. They tend to be friendly, loving, eager-to-please, and smart, which makes training fairly easy even for novice owners. As long as they are properly exercised and provided with the attention they need, border Labs make wonderful pets.

Are boradors aggressive?

Boradors are rarely aggressive towards people or other dogs and tend to greet everyone with a wagging tail. Inherently friendly and kind, the collie Lab mix gets along well with children with whom they become fast friends. 

How much does a border collie Lab mix cost?

The border collie Lab mix puppies on average cost between $200 and $500. The exact price depends on many factors including the breeder, supply and demand, your location, and the puppy’s lineage. 

Conclusion

Extremely clever, eager-to-please, and friendly, the border collie Lab mix makes a great pet for active people and families with children.

True to its parent breeds, this mix has a lot of energy and needs lots of exercise and mental stimulation, otherwise, they can become bored and destructive. Boradors are best suited for:

  • Outdoorsy people and active families with children
  • Homes with securely fenced backyards
  • People who can interact and play with their pup every day

We told you a little about our Border Collie Lab mix, Maffy, but how about you?

Have you ever owned a Borador? What was your dog like?

Tell us about your experiences in the comment section below.

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Border Collie Lab Mix - Your Guide To The Borador - The border collie Lab mix, a.k.a borador, is a highly intelligent and eager-to-please dog that is best suited for active people and families with children.

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Border Collie Lab Mix – Your Ultimate Guide To The Borador Dog was last modified: June 27th, 2021 by LTHQ



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