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United States

XManIII

I had a Border Collie some time ago, and her name was Sadie. She was one of the litter that had no chance to be a working Cattle dog so the Cattleman gave her to the lady that later would be My Wife.
I found her level of intellect was far above other Dogs that I have had when I was younger, Sadie could count, and modified a Milk jug (by flattening it) to hold up to 5 of her other toys when you asked for them, Smart Dog. She would take this game very seriously, and would only bring the number of toys that you asked her to bring. I would hold up three fingers, counting them as one would do with a child, 1-2-3. After much effort, She would present three items one was the milk jug and the others were her tennis balls, she would bring them back to me and we would play with counting the items, and she never did get the wrong number of items.
This was her "work" and she was needing something to do, it was her way of playing. She actually flattened the milk jug intending to use it as a tool, to carry her other toys, and bring them to me, dumping them in my lap and standing back, waiting for me to count them and tell her she had done right. I have never seen any animal get so excited by counting, she would intently watch for her instructions and bring just what you asked for1-5 toys at a time.
A Border Collie without a "Job" is bound to find something that will substitute for rounding up Cattle. They are so smart that they need some crazy thing to keep them occupied, and busy. She took great pleasure in working, and was depressed if not allowed to mentally exercise, if it was getting the ball and bringing it back or bringing you, or 4 toys to place on your lap and play, her mind was made to be a "Working Dog".
Simply following her Mom around was not enough, Sadie had to be running and interacting with us, just to feel happy at providing a service.
Certainly Sadie was not good for being in the city, and I would only recommend Working Dogs for rural, or country areas, since they need so much room to work. I would suggest a more relaxed breed for Apartment living, and a smaller Breed would be the smarter choice.
The best part is all Dogs are in a sense working dogs, it just differs as to what you need them for, so take careful consideration and get a Dog better suited to your needs, otherwise the Dogs are likely to develop odd behavior that not good for you or the dog.
Pick a Dog that will be happy wherever you are, and can "do their Job" it is much less stressful for the both of you.

XManIII’s animals

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