Rough Collies

Can Rough Collies Be Left Alone?

By Abigail Bodeley on Jan 4, 2024 Reviewed by Mick Ford

Can Rough Collies be left alone?

Can Rough Collies Be Left Alone

Table of Contents

How long can Rough Collies be left alone?

Rough and Smooth Collies cannot be left alone for long periods at a time.

This is breed with tireless energy and a low threshold for boredom — most working dogs are. It is an unsuitable pet for owners with restricted space or a sedentary lifestyle.

Like all breeds originally intended as working dogs, the Rough Collie becomes restless when left alone for long periods, particularly when it is also under-exercised.

A vigorous morning and evening walk and a fast game of catch will keep most Collies happy. Even when well-trained, a bored Collie who is not exercised will get quite troublesome.

Another thing to keep in mind if you are considering leaving your Rough Collie alone is that all Collies (Rough and Smooth) tend to bark a lot.

While this makes them dedicated watchdogs, or alarm barkers, bored Rough Collies will almost certainly bark too much, which can be quite annoying to neighbors — although training can help temper this trait.

Another reason you might want to consider training, beyond basic obedience classes, is because through advanced training your Rough Collie will learn how to participate in dog sports.

The Rough Collie is an extremely athletic breed, though less athletic than the Border Collie on average. It is extremely eager for fun and will easily take part in canine sports such as agility trials.

With energetic daily exercises, Rough Collies can be kept in modestly sized houses or large apartments.

Do Rough Collies have separation anxiety?

Simply put, when your dog becomes emotionally distraught as a result of separation or as a result of being being left alone, it is said to have separation anxiety.

Hard scientific evidence on this topic is scant but some have theorized that separation anxiety may be more prevalent in herding dogs and companion dogs, such as Collies. This is because these dogs have been specifically bred to do jobs that require a strong bond of cooperation with, and therefore attachment, to particular people.

As mentioned earlier, Rough Collie make extremely loyal family companion dogs. Companion dogs are created to do exactly that, making a desire for constant closeness more than likely than in other dogs bred for other purposes.

Besides, the herding instinct has not been entirely bred out of Rough Collies. In fact, their sharp awareness of movement can trigger an impulse to “round up friends and family, which is sometimes a nuisance.

In any case, separation anxiety can affect dogs of any breed.

Common signs of separation anxiety

Some signs of separation anxiety when you are with your dog or close by include:

  • Hyper-attachment (shadowing you, clinginess)
  • Hyper-vigilance (needing to know where you are at all times)
  • Signs of distress (especially when visually separated)

Some of the signs of separation anxiety when you are away in dogs include:

  • Inappropriate urination and/or defecation
  • Destruction
  • Vocalization — whining, barking, yelping, howling
  • Pacing
  • Clawing and chewing at exit points
  • Extreme escape attempts
  • Shaking, drooling, panting
  • Hyperactivity
  • Manic greeting upon your return and many others

Most anxiety related distress as a result of being left alone can be treated with proper training, nutrition and — the big one, especially for active dogs such as Rough Collies — exercise.