Six years ago I adopted an incredibly adorable Border Collie mix puppy and named her Lilly. My childhood friend’s family had Border Collies so I thought I knew exactly what to expect when adopting a strong willed herding breed puppy. I very quickly found out that I was wrong. I had no idea how much energy these breeds have and how much attention she would require. I promptly sought out group obedience training classes which helped her learn basic commands and also socialized her with other puppies and humans. During these classes it became apparent that Lilly was extremely eager to please and highly food motivated. These traits helped her excel in obedience training and become a well mannered part of the family.
Obedience training was just the beginning of molding my deeply driven puppy into being a successful family member. If you have ever been around a Border Collie puppy you know it is next to impossible to wear out the young pup. Lilly and I would go on long walks and runs which was never enough. Soon, all the pent up energy was being displayed in inappropriate ways such as chewing, neurotic behavior, and disobeying simple commands. Then one day I noticed some children were playing soccer which caught Lilly’s attention. That same day I dug out my old soccer ball from high school and to this day it is the only toy that will keep Lilly’s interest. We would spend countless hours playing soccer with Lilly which provided the physical and mental stimulation she needed to live a balanced life as a growing puppy. Although we faced some challenges during puppyhood which required lots of patience and diligence, I cannot express that bond I have created with this unique personality which will last a lifetime.
Sherry Helle Registered veterinary technician