Long time lurker, first time poster here. I was wondering if you could give me some friendly advice. My husband and I are planning for our next dog, and we've had our eye on Border Collies. We currently have a Smooth Collie; she is a wonderful companion and hiking partner - just an absolute dream of a dog, and we couldn't ask for a better friend and pet. However, for our next dog, we'd like a breed that has more drive, a bit more "oomph" and intensity, and more athleticism. Our Smooth Collie is a sweet, mellow weekend warrior with low-moderate energy and low drive.
I'm struggling with whether my husband and I would be a good fit for a Border Collie. I don't quite feel that I have "earned my stripes" for a BC just yet. While our Smooth Collie has her CGC, we haven't really worked beyond that despite my lofty dreams of getting her into agility or trying out herding with her. I would love to pursue trick training, agility, and herding with a future BC; however, the dog would be first and foremost a companion. I'm apprehensive about using our first BC to dabble in these sports without any prior experience with our current dog. I've heard so many stories about how it's easy to ruin a BC in that mistakes in training are not easily forgiven, and I'm concerned that our inexperience with dog sports will be a disservice to a BC. That said, I do think having a BC with which to dabble would be great fun! Am I wrong?
A little about us and what we can reasonably provide our future dog: We work full time and have two cats and the aforementioned Smoothie. My husband is a hardcore runner and would love to run long distances when our new dog is old and mature enough for that level of physical energy (our current dog loathes running, which saddens my husband). We would love to play fetch/frisbee with the future dog, and as I mentioned before, I would be very interested in pursuing trick training, agility, rally, OB, and/or herding with it. My current dog and I love off-leash hiking in the woods, so a solid recall and owner-orientedness is very important to me.We can provide up to 2 hours of exercise/training reliably every day, and more on the weekends. A good off-switch is an absolute must. We do plan on having a child, but hopefully at least a couple of years after we get our puppy.
I'm pretty sure that what I need to be looking at are working dog breeders; from my research, it appears that these lines have the steadiest temperaments and have good off-switches. Again, my main concern is that I am too novice in the Things I Have Done With My Current Dog department for a BC, but I would love to try those Things once we have one. The main thing stopping us now is that there are no facilities near us that offer classes outside of normal working hours, but once we're ready for our next dog, we will have moved to a location with many more resources for training. I'm also concerned that a working dog breeder will not sell a puppy to a home with no working experience or concrete working plans.
Am I overthinking things? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.