Aussies vs. Border Collie I cannot possibly list all of the differences between Border Collies and Aussies, but can point out a few of the biggest differences that I have noticed in our personal dogs. Not all lines of Border Collie‘s are the same and not all lines of Aussies are the same, so this may not hold true for other breeders. For Aussie, this includes our Australian Shepherds, North American Shepherds, Miniature Australian Shepherds, and our Miniature American Shepherds. I will refer to them all as aussies from here on out. For size, I do not have border collies that are as small as our Aussies, but we do still get Border Collie‘s that are smaller than some of our Aussies. I will have many people say they’ve always had Border Collies but want an Aussie this time because they want a smaller dog, but not all of our litters of Aussies would be smaller than Border Collies. Once again, it completely depends upon which cross and which puppy you are looking at. Our aussies have been 12-20' with most being 14-17" tall and our Border Collies have been 15-22" with most being 17-20". The aussies are usually heavier built than our Border Collies, so they commonly weigh as much or more than the Border Collies. All of our Aussies are rough coats. I do not expect any of them to have easy coats. Some will be more medium than others, but even those tend to get pretty rough coated by the time they are four or five years old. Our Border Collies can be smooth, medium, or rough coated with most being medium. I personally love a rough coat in looks, but they are definitely more work for grooming. Our Border Collies Come in medium or high drive. Our Aussies can come in low to high drive. I have never produced a Border Collie that has low drive to my knowledge. Although some are less crazy than others and easier to live with and I would consider those a medium drive. They all have toy drive and love to play. Most of our border collies are high drive. We definitely have some Aussie’s that are very low drive and some that are absolutely insane so there’s a much wider range of personalities there. Not all of our aussies have toy drive, but they do seem to all be food driven. Assume that all Border Collies will need a lot of exercise and most aussies will as well, but some may not be as high of energy. I have always claimed my Aussies all come with a naughty gene. My Border Collies live to please. The Aussies have that exact same willingness, but once I leave the house they are much more likely to get in that garbage or pantry. Almost all of their naughtiness tends to be based around food because they tend to have a never ending stomach. They are the ones that will break into the pantry or hop up on the table to grab something. This is something that can easily be trained away from, but definitely seems to take a little bit more work than the Border Collies, who tend to not be as food motivated anyway. I do believe at least some of this is how they learn. I can leave the gate open and teach my Border Collies as puppies that they’re not allowed to go through that gate unless we give them permission. This teaches them to just stay in the fence even as we have a gate open and are going in and out. We can teach the exact same thing to an Aussie, but they will try twelve other ways of getting out of the fence before deciding that I mean that they have to stay in the fence. This means hopping over the fence, digging under the fence, trying to rip through the fence, going to another gate... They love to problem solve and escaping is just a fun puzzle to them. If something doesn’t work one way, they will immediately tried five different ways of doing it. They are not being naughty in their mind, but finding new solutions to a problem. My Border Collie’s are much more likely to try the same thing a few times before considering another option. This makes the Border Collies easier to live with for certain things because they are less likely to push my buttons when it comes to doing things I don’t want them to do. But this can also make them harder to train in other areas where I want them to do something other than the most instinctual way. My aussies are much better trick dogs and are much quicker at learning new behaviors. My Border Collie’s are extremely serious dogs. They have the goofy moments, especially the boys, and love to play, but they definitely are much more serious about their job in life. They are skulky and use their eye (also known as the Force in this house) to make things happen. Many people comment on how Border Collies always look like they are in trouble-head and tail down and skulking, but that can actually be their natural stance when relaxed or focused. They can hand you a ball and stare at it forever waiting for it to be thrown. My Aussies definitely tend to be more goofballs. They have a natural bounce in their step and love to bounce everywhere they go. They are always excited, happy, and vibrant. They can be very serious when working, but can also be goofballs when working as well. They work with more attitude, bite, and bark. They hand you a ball and bark at you to throw it. They tend to yell at you when excited and have much less patience than our Border Collies. We call aussies the class clown around here because they make us laugh so often. This is the trait that makes us always want an aussie in our lives. No other dog makes me laugh as often as my aussies do. They live for making a bad day better. Especially as they are laying across the back of the couch or trying to lay in some weird place because they think they are part cat. Based off of their climbing ability, they do seem to think they are part cat at times. They love proving they can get places that dogs shouldn't be able to get to-good or bad. They can stand in one place and bounce 6+ foot in the air repetitively. They are born with springs in their steps. Their frog style sleeping, excessive rolling in the grass or snow, and ability to body slam and roll with all contact make them a constant source of amusement and frustration. With the aussie attitude comes the bark. Aussies yell at you when they get excited or frustrated. Many aussies bark whenever they are playing ball, doing agility, herding, or just having fun. We often say they are yelling at us. Some aussies bark when excited, some when protecting their property, some when nervous in new situations or with new people... Our Border Collies do not bark very often and I don't even recognize their voice. I know every single one of the aussies barks. When playing, my Border Collies love to chase. It is all about that Border Collie line up, the eye, and then somebody taking off and the chase is on. I can throw a frisbee in the yard with ten Border Collies and not have a single one of them have each other because they weave in and out of each other effortlessly. Once I add in the Aussies, it all changes. If there are only 2 aussies playing, they find ways to run into each other. They love to play by wrestling and body slamming. I can put in one or two Aussies into the pack to play frisbee and they have learned that they can just hit the Border Collies full speed and they will drop the toy so they can steal it. Not a big deal when it’s a 15 pound Aussie, the Border Collies laugh at it. But when it’s a 40 or 50 pound Aussie, the Border Collies will quit playing. The Aussies have a hard time greeting you without doing a swimmers turn off of you or body slamming you when they’re coming at you full speed and running in the fields. That is how they played with each other and it is sometimes hard to teach them to not use their body to slam into us because my knees don’t appreciate it. I rarely get run into by a Border Collie because they will swerve and just barely missed me. They weave amongst each other with very few crashes. The Aussies are known for their wiggle butts. They have a whole body wiggle when they are happy or greeting people, which is why they are called wiggle butts. They commonly have their body shaped in a C and walk sideways as they wiggle. They live for a butt scratch and will always offer their back end for more scratches. This is not due to not having a tail, since the ones with tails do it as well, but seems to be a behavior bred into the breed. Aussies are usually very upright but can also be slinky when working. The borders are known for their slinkiness. They can get very low to the ground when they are working or playing, known as having a lot of style. The skulkiness is bred in and seems to come naturally to them, although some lines have more style than others.