Border Collie being groomed with a bristle brush by a person in a blue shirt.

How To Groom a Border Collie?

Are you looking to keep your Border Collie’s coat shiny and healthy? Grooming is an essential aspect of keeping your furry friend happy and comfortable.

In this article, we will discuss the characteristics of Border Collies, their grooming needs, and provide step-by-step instructions on how to groom them.

We will also share tips for dealing with matted hair, preparing for competitions, and answer frequently asked questions. So, let’s dive in and learn how to give your Border Collie the grooming they deserve!

Grooming StepsDetails
BrushingUse a slicker brush to remove loose hair and mats. Pay attention to the thick fur around the neck, legs, and tails.
Bath TimeUse a mild dog shampoo and water to thoroughly clean the Border Collie’s coat. Rinse well and towel dry.
Nail TrimmingTrim the nails with a dog nail clipper to prevent them from getting too long and causing discomfort.
Ear CleaningUse a cotton ball and ear cleaning solution to gently clean the inside of the ear.
Tooth BrushingUse a dog toothbrush and toothpaste to clean the Border Collie’s teeth at least three times a week to prevent dental issues.

Understanding Border Collies

Characteristics of Border Collies

Border collies are known for their superior intelligence, active nature, and high trainability. They are one of the most intelligent dog breeds and can understand complex tasks with ease.

Border collies are incredibly active, and they need regular exercise and stimulation to prevent boredom and restlessness.

These dogs are highly trainable, and they thrive on mental challenges. Border collies have a distinctive look with medium-sized bodies, long hair, floppy ears, and an alert expression.

They are a herding breed, and they have a natural instinct to herd animals, including humans, which is why they need plenty of exercise to dissipate this energy.

Border collies are intense, alert, and focused, and they have a great work ethic that means they require mental and physical stimulation daily. These dogs are highly loyal and affectionate, but they also tend to be reserved around strangers.

The intelligence, energy, and mental stimulation requirements of border collies make them a challenging breed to care for, but they are incredibly rewarding pets for owners who are willing to put in the effort.

Understanding the grooming needs of Border Collies

Understanding the grooming needs of Border Collies is crucial for ensuring their overall health and hygiene. Border Collies have a medium-length double coat that needs regular brushing to prevent mats and tangles.

They shed heavily twice a year and require frequent baths during this time to reduce shedding.

Border Collies also need their nails trimmed regularly, their ears cleaned, and their teeth brushed to maintain their grooming. In summary, Border Collies have specific grooming needs that require regular attention and consistency to keep them healthy and looking their best.

Understanding these needs is the first step in knowing how to groom your Border Collie effectively.

Border Collie being groomed according to proper techniques.
A well-groomed Border Collie sporting a shiny fur coat.

Pre-grooming Tips

Preparing the dog

Before you start grooming your Border Collie, you need to prepare your dog first. Border collies love to be active and energetic, so make sure you take your dog for a walk or run before the grooming session.

This will help to tire them out and make them more cooperative during the grooming process.

Ensure that you have all the necessary grooming tools such as a slicker brush, a comb, nail clippers, and dog shampoo to avoid interruptions and distractions. Grooming can be a long process, so put your dog in a calm and relaxing environment.

This can be done by playing soft music or using aromatherapy.

It is also important to make sure your dog is calm and not agitated. Encourage your dog to relax by petting it and offering treats to reassure them.

Once you have checked that you have all tools needed, and your dog is ready, proceed to the next step.

Choosing the right tools and products

Before beginning the grooming process, it is important to have the right tools and products for your Border Collie. Some essential tools to have include a slicker brush, a comb, and scissors.

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It is best to choose tools specifically designed for dogs, as human grooming tools can cause discomfort or injury to your pet.

In addition to tools, it is important to choose the right products for your Border Collie’s specific needs. This includes a gentle dog shampoo, conditioner, and detangler for the coat, as well as ear cleaning solution, nail clippers, and a styptic powder in case you accidentally cut the quick of the nail.

When choosing products, it is important to read the labels and choose those that are specifically formulated for dogs with sensitive skin or allergies.

Avoid products with harsh chemicals or fragrances, and opt for natural or organic products whenever possible. Investing in the right tools and products can make all the difference in ensuring a successful and safe grooming experience for your Border Collie.

Grooming Steps


Brushing is a crucial step in grooming Border Collies. It helps to remove loose fur, dirt, and mats and promotes healthy skin and coat growth.

When brushing your Border Collie, you should use a slicker brush or a pin brush to get the best results.

Start by brushing against the fur growth direction, gently lifting the fur and focusing on the undercoat. This helps to remove excess hair and tangles.

Afterward, brush with the direction of fur growth to smooth the coat and remove any remaining debris.

Regular brushing will help to reduce shedding and keep your Border Collie’s coat looking shiny and healthy. Plan to brush your dog’s coat once or twice a week, depending on how much it sheds or how dirty it gets.

Remember, while brushing, keep it gentle and avoid pulling or tugging on your dog’s fur.

This way, you’ll make the grooming experience enjoyable for both you and your furry friend.

Border Collie being groomed by pet owner using brush and comb.
A well-groomed Border Collie stands proud and majestic with its fluffy fur and bright eyes.


To start off the grooming process for your Border Collie, bathing should be one of the primary steps. But, how do you bathe the dog correctly?

First and foremost, never use human shampoo.

They may contain ingredients that could harm your pet’s skin, making it dry and irritated. Instead, choose a mild shampoo that is specifically made for dogs.

Before getting them into the water, brush their coat to get rid of any mats or tangles.

Being a double-coated breed, Border Collies require a thorough scrubbing to ensure they get a deep clean. When bathing, make sure the water isn’t too hot or cold, and keep the dog’s head and ears dry.

You can use a washcloth to clean their face instead.

Always rinse well, as remaining soap can cause skin problems later on. As with all grooming processes, patience and a calm demeanor will make the process much easier.

Afterward, towel-dry your dog before using a hairdryer on low heat setting.

And there you have it- a clean Border Collie!

Border Collie being groomed according to proper techniques.
A well-groomed Border Collie sporting a shiny fur coat.


Drying is an essential part of Border Collie grooming. After bathing, use a large towel to soak up as much excess water from the coat as possible.

Avoid using a hairdryer as it can damage the skin and coat.

Instead, let your dog air-dry naturally, or help speed up the process by using a cool, low-velocity dryer, especially around the ears and other hard-to-reach areas. Take the time to ensure that your dog is thoroughly dry before moving on to trimming or brushing.

Remember to reward your Border Collie for good behavior during grooming and ensure regular drying maintenance to keep the coat healthy and clean.

Border Collie being groomed according to proper techniques.
A well-groomed Border Collie sporting a shiny fur coat.


Trimming is an essential part of grooming your Border Collie. It helps to maintain their fur’s shape and remove any excess hair.

Before trimming your dog, make sure that you have the proper tools, such as scissors and clippers, and that they are sharp and clean.

When trimming, start slowly and carefully, particularly around sensitive areas and joints. Always use rounded-tip scissors when working in sensitive areas such as the face, ears, and paws, as they reduce the risk of accidental injury.

Additionally, pay attention to the direction of the fur’s growth, and trim in the same direction.

Avoid pulling the dog’s fur and regularly stop to check the progress of your work. Remember to take breaks often to prevent your dog from becoming restless or uncomfortable.

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Additionally, applying treats during or after trimming can help your dog stay relaxed and cooperative.

Following these steps will help ensure a successful trimming session that will make your Border Collie look and feel great.

Post-Grooming Tips

Rewarding the dog

Rewarding your Border Collie after a grooming session is important since it strengthens the bond between you and your pet. Dogs love treats and positive reinforcement, so it’s ideal to give them a treat after the grooming session.

It could be a special treat like a small serving of their favorite food or a toy that they love playing with.

However, it’s vital to ensure that you don’t overfeed them with treats since it could lead to obesity. Another way to reward your Border Collie after a grooming session is to give them lots of praise and attention.

Dogs enjoy when their owners give them positive feedback, so patting, cuddling, or playing with them can be a great way to make them feel touchy and more relaxed.

It reinforces positive behavior, making them more comfortable with the grooming process in subsequent sessions. Rewarding your Border Collie after a grooming session is crucial since it shows them your love and care.

Dogs are intelligent and can quickly learn your grooming routine and the treat or playtime that comes after each session.

So, make sure you offer some praise, treats, or playtime after every grooming session.

Regular grooming maintenance

Now that you’ve finished grooming your Border Collie, it’s important to keep up with regular maintenance to keep their coat healthy and shiny. This includes regular brushing to prevent matting and tangling, as well as trimming any unruly hairs that may grow back.

It’s recommended to brush your Border Collie at least once a week to keep their coat clean and healthy.

This will also prevent excessive shedding and make brushing easier in the long run. Use a slicker brush and a comb to remove any tangles and mats, and give your furry friend a good once over to check for any underlying health issues.

Regular maintenance also means trimming your dog’s nails every few weeks to prevent them from getting too long and causing discomfort while walking.

This can be done at home with a specialized nail clipper or by a professional groomer. Lastly, don’t forget to reward your dog after every grooming session to make it a positive experience.

A treat or a belly rub goes a long way in building a strong bond between you and your furry friend.

Regular grooming maintenance may seem like a chore, but it’s an essential part of keeping your Border Collie healthy, happy, and looking their best.

Tips for Special Cases

Dealing with matted hair

Dealing with matted hair in Border Collies can be a challenge, but with the right tools and techniques, it’s manageable. Follow these simple steps to remove matted fur:

  • Use a slicker brush to gently remove any tangles in the fur.
  • Approach the mat slowly to avoid hurting the dog, and use your fingers to loosen the mat gently.
  • Apply a detangling solution or a conditioner to the mat and wait for it to soften.
  • Use a dematting tool or a pair of scissors to cut out the mat gently.
  • Once the mat is removed, brush the fur thoroughly to prevent further matting.

It’s important to remember that matted hair can be uncomfortable for your Border Collie. Make sure to address the issue promptly and avoid any unnecessary discomfort for your furry friend.

Grooming for competitions

Tips for Special Cases: Grooming for Competitions If you plan on showing your Border Collie, grooming will be an essential part of the preparation process. In addition to basic grooming, you will need to make sure your dog’s fur is in top condition before entering the show ring.

To achieve the perfect look for a competition, start by brushing your dog’s hair thoroughly to remove any tangles or mats.

Pay special attention to the areas around the ears, paws, and tail. Next, consider giving your dog a bath to remove any dirt or debris that may be lingering on their fur.

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Use a high-quality dog shampoo and conditioner to help your dog’s coat look shiny and healthy.

Afterward, allow your dog to dry completely before trimming the fur around their paws, ears, and other areas as needed. Make sure to use high-quality scissors and clippers, and take care not to cut your dog’s skin.

Finally, reward your dog for their patience and good behavior during the grooming process.

Consider a treat or a toy as a special reward, so your dog associates the grooming process with positive experiences and may be easier to handle the next time around. Overall, grooming for competitions requires a little extra time and effort.

However, these tips should help you create a winning look for your beloved Border Collie and hopefully bring home a trophy or two.

Frequently Asked Questions

How often should I groom my Border Collie?

How often should I groom my Border Collie? Border Collies have a thick and double-layered coat that sheds minimally throughout the year and heavily twice a year.

Therefore, it is crucial to groom your Border Collie regularly to maintain healthy and clean fur and avoid matting or tangling.

Ideally, you should groom your Border Collie at least once a week with a slicker brush to remove loose hair and dirt. Bathing is necessary only when your dog gets very dirty or smelly, as too much bathing can dry out its skin and cause irritation.

During the shedding season, which usually happens during spring and fall, more frequent grooming is necessary.

You should brush your Border Collie’s fur at least twice a week to remove the dead undercoat. Be sure to groom your Border Collie more frequently if it has been playing in the mud or rolling around in the grass.

Overall, the frequency of grooming depends on the age, lifestyle, and coat condition of your Border Collie.

Remember, consistent grooming not only keeps your dog healthy but also strengthens the bond between you and your furry companion.

Border Collie being groomed by pet owner using brush and comb.
A well-groomed Border Collie stands proud and majestic with its fluffy fur and bright eyes.

Can I groom my Border Collie myself or should I take it to the groomer?

Many Border Collie owners wonder if they can groom their furry friend themselves or if they should take it to a professional groomer. The answer is: it depends.

If your Border Collie has a short coat, you can groom it yourself with regular brushing and occasional baths.

However, if your dog has a long coat, it may require more specialized grooming, such as trimming or thinning, which is better conducted by a professional. Furthermore, if your dog has any special needs, such as mats or tangles, or if you’re entering the dog in a competition, a professional groomer may be the best choice.

Ultimately, the decision is yours and should be based on your dog’s individual grooming needs.

If you’re unsure, consult with a trusted veterinarian or professional groomer to determine the best course of action for your furry companion.

How do I prevent shedding in my Border Collie?

How do I prevent shedding in my Border Collie? Unfortunately, shedding is a natural process for dogs, and Border Collies are not an exception.

However, there are several ways to minimize the amount of fur your Border Collie sheds.

Firstly, brush your dog regularly using a slicker brush. This removes any loose hair before it falls off and spreads all over your house.

You can alternate with a comb if your dog has thicker hair.

Secondly, feed your dog with a well-balanced diet, including essential nutrients like Omega-3 fatty acids, which prevent excessive shedding. Ensure that your dog has access to clean water to avoid dehydration as it can affect their skin and coat health.

Lastly, ensure that your Border Collie is well-hydrated.

Proper hydration helps keep their coat and skin healthy and less prone to shedding. Ensure that they take plenty of water, especially during hot summer months.

By implementing these simple tips, you can prevent excessive shedding in your Border Collie and keep your home free from loose fur.

Border Collie being groomed according to proper techniques.
A well-groomed Border Collie sporting a shiny fur coat.


Grooming a Border Collie may seem like a daunting task, but with proper preparation and technique, it can be a bonding experience for both you and your furry companion. Remember to choose the right tools, understand their grooming needs, and use positive reinforcement to make the experience more enjoyable.

Regular grooming maintenance can also keep your Border Collie healthy and looking their best.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to having a happy, well-groomed Border Collie. So why not take the time to give your furry friend some TLC today?

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