Collie Sleeping Habits Guide (Sleep Help and Training)

Despite being an active dog, collies require 12 – 14 hours of sleep per day. Working collies especially need lots of sleep to replenish their energy levels for the next days herding.

As active as your collie is they do enjoy resting their eyes and drifting off to dream land.

In this article, we’ll look at collie sleeping habits and explore some ideas to help your collie get a great sleep.

Why Sleep is Important for Your Collie

Just like humans, collies physical and mental health depend on them having a good nights rest. You should ensure your collie has their own special sleeping area where they can catch some Z’s.

1: Muscle Repair

Sleep and rest are important for your collies physical health. Like humans, when your collie is sleeping their body repairs itself. This is especially important for active breeds like collies.

2: Improved Concentration

Collies are the brain boxes of the dog world. They need a lot of mental stimulation to keep their minds occupied. Getting a good nights sleep is important for your collies brain function.

Quality rest has been proven to positively impact problem solving skills. This will mean your furry friend has better concentration to perform all the tricks and tasks asked of them.

3: Improved Athletic Performance

Getting a good nights sleep can improve your collies speed, reaction times and overall physical well being.

4: Low Mood

Poor quality sleep can result in poor mental health. Collies who do not get enough sleep can end up with a low mood and feel depressed. If you notice your collie isn’t their usual enthusiastic self and a bit mopey they could require more high quality sleep.

5: Social Interactions

Tiredness negatively effects your collies ability to interact socially with other dogs and also humans. A lack of high quality sleep lowers your collies ability to read humans body language and expressions of happiness or anger.

This can especially be noticeable in working collies as they may not be in tune with their master and their ability to interact successfully with their owner during herding is negatively effected.

Collie Puppy Sleeping Habits

Collie puppies need around 18-20 hours of sleep a day. Although they are bundles of energy, they need to nap a lot! Ensuring your collie puppy gets enough sleep is essential for their healthy growth and development.

How To Help Your Collie Puppy Sleep:

  • Leave your puppy alone while they are sleeping. Try to resit cuddling and clapping them whilst they are resting so they don’t become dependent on you to go to sleep.
  • Schedule naps. Plan in rest periods for your pup each day so they have plenty of time to sleep. Scheduling sleep time after play time or walks is perfect as your pup will likely be tired and want to rest.
  • Create a sleep spot for your puppy by providing a place they can go to rest undisturbed. If your puppy seems tired and ready for a nap guide them to go to their designated sleep spot such as a crate or a doggy bed.
  • Make their crate homely. Put lots of nice blankets and toys in your puppy’s crate and make sure its inviting for them. If possible put a blanket that smells like their mom in their crate as this will comfort and relax your pup.
  • Create a bedtime routine for your pup. Collie dogs especially thrive on routine and collie pups are no different. Do not feed your puppy right before bed time so they have time to fully digest any food.

    This means when you take them out for the last time they will hopefully relieve themselves and not need out in the middle of the night. This should allow your puppy (and you) a high quality sleep right through the night.
  • Don’t give in! During puppyhood collies may bark and howl at night to get your attention. Try your best to ignore them (unless they need to relieve themselves).

    They are experts at mind games and know how to tug on your heart strings to get what they want even from this early age. Try giving your puppy a high value treat for going to their special sleep spot and they will soon develop a love for snoozing.

How Long Before Border Collie Puppy Sleeps Through the Night?

Collie puppies usually begin to sleep through the night at around 16 weeks old. By this age your collie pup will sleep anywhere from 6-10 hours per night.

You can help your collie to sleep better by being near them, or letter them sleep in the same room as you so they feel safe.

Can Collies Sleep Outside?

Border collies were originally bred to sleep outside in the harsh Scottish weather so they could sleep outside if they really had to. Collies are emotionally sensitive dogs and are happiest when they are sleeping close to their pack. They would prefer to sleep indoors and be close to their humans overnight.

If you are going to have your collie sleep outside make sure to provide them with a sheltered area to escape the elements. A secured outdoor dog kennel would be a good option for keeping your collie dry and safe.

Can Collies Sleep in Crates?

Collies can sleep in crates, but not every collie will love being in their crate and it can take some training to get them used to it.

Crate training your collie while they are a puppy is the best option, but it’s doable when they are older too.

If your collie loves their crate, they may choose to go to their crate voluntarily, however if they don’t love their crate you may need to help them get used to it with some training.

How to train your collie to sleep in a crate

Some collies get stressed out inside a crate and can end up causing themselves an injury as they try to escape. Other collies will be too scared to even enter a crate and refuse entry.

If your collie doesn’t like their crate, try these tips to help them get used to it. These six tips for crate training will help your collie associate their crate with safety and fun, and show them there’s nothing to be afraid of.

1: Cover their crate with blankets

2: Never use the crate as a punishment or lock your pup in for long periods of time

3: Securing the door open for them.

4: Let them come and go as they please

5: Put some high value treats in their crate to encourage them inside

6: Throw their favorite toy in there so they get used to going in and out

7: If their crate is large enough, go in it yourself and invite them to come in beside you

Luna choosing the couch over her crate.

My Collie Sleeps on Their Back, is This Normal?

Collies may sleep on their back with their paws in the air for a few reasons, all perfectly normal.

1: Collies may sleep on their back To Cool Down

Collies have less hair on their tummy region so your collie may be exposing their belly to try to cool down. Unlike us humans, dogs can not sweat to cool down and only have sweat glands on their paws therefore exposing their tummy will help them expel some excess heat.

2: Sleeping on their back is Comfy for a collie

Sleeping on their back allows your collie to relax every muscle in their body. This means this awkward looking sleeping position is actually very comfy for your pooch and often is an indicator they are in a deep sleep.

3: Collies only sleep on their back when They Feel Safe

Collies who sleep on their back feel safe in their surroundings. A collies tummy region is the most vulnerable and when they expose their belly it shows they feel safe and secure. Collies who sleep outside will not be seen sleeping on their back because it leaves them vulnerable to attack and indicates they are in a submissive state.

Luna regularly sleeps on her back, preferably on the couch.

Can Collies Sleep on the Floor?

Your collie may enjoy taking a quick nap on the floor but it’s important that they have their own soft bed to lie in at night, to prevent them developing sore joints, especially for a senior collie.

You might wish to consider purchasing an orthopedic dog bed to ensure your collie is extra comfy.

It’s also important that your collie has their own sleeping area. Without this, they may not be able to calm down, and will never truly feel at home and could end up feeling like a second class citizen.

Providing your collie with a high quality dog bed gives them a place they can retreat to in order to get some alone time.

Should you Let Your Collie in Your Bed?

Letting your collie sleep in your bed is a much debated topic among collie owners. Lets take a look at some of the pros and cons:

Pros of Letting Your Collie in Your Bed:

  • Having your collie close by has actually been proven to help people relax and feel calmer. This can lead to a higher quality sleep for humans who share their bed.
  • You might feel safer if your collie sleeps with you. Collies are great watchdogs and will alert you to any noise or movement. This can especially comforting for people who live alone.
  • Sleeping with your collie strengthens your bond. It makes your collie think they are part of your pack and helps them feel more secure in the family unit.
  • Sleeping with your collie is like sleeping with your own furry hot water bottle. Collies body temperatures are higher than humans and snuggling together can keep you both nice and toasty, especially in cooler climates.

Cons of Letting Your Collie in Your Bed:

  • It can make allergies flare up such as asthma. Collies fur carries a lot of dander which has been known to worsen asthma. This can result in you coughing and wheezing more. If you suffer from allergies, its probably best to keep your bedroom a pet free zone.
  • Allowing your collie to sleep in your bed might make them think they are the alpha. If your collie already suffers from dominance aggression sleeping in your bed should be avoided.
  • Sharing your bed with your collie may lead to separation anxiety if they are spending every waking and sleeping minute with you. If you notice your dog seems anxious when you’re not around getting them used to being alone at night is probably a better idea and sharing a bed should be avoided.
  • Allowing your collie to sleep in your bed inevitably means there will be more dirt and bacteria in it. Any external ticks or fleas your dog may be carrying will be transmitted to you.
  • A collie in your bed means more snoring, wriggling and moving around to find that comfy sweet spot. This can result in disturbed and a poor quality sleep for you. If this is the case you will want to avoid sharing your bed with your collie.
  • A collie in a bed is not exactly a turn on and may effect any new romantic relationships. You will want to ensure your partner is on the same page about having your collie in the bed and if not its best your collie learns to sleep in their own bed.
Luna likes to be tucked in with her head on a pillow.

Should You Let Your Collie Sleep Upstairs?

If you don’t want your collie to sleep in the same room as you, perhaps keeping them downstairs overnight is a better option. They are creatures of habit and if you let them upstairs to sleep once they won’t understand why they aren’t allowed up every night.

The best thing to do is decide are you happy with your collie sleeping in your room. If the answer is no, keeping them downstairs away from the luxury of a double bed is probably a better option. This way, they don’t know what they are missing and won’t get upset when you leave them downstairs.

How to make your stairs safe for your collie:

If you have decided to let your collie upstairs with you but your stairs are made a slippery wood or laminate, this could pose a slipping hazard for your collie.

You’ll want to invest in some doggy stair grips to allow your collie to run up and down the stairs without hurting themselves.

Luna used to be terrified of going up my wooden stairs as she would be unsteady on her paws. The stair grips instantly made a massive difference and now she rampages up and down like she’s in the grand national.

Luna stealthily coming down stairs using her doggy stair grips

Should You Let Your Collie in Your Bedroom?

Letting your collie into your bedroom is pretty much based on owners preference. Lets take a look at some pros and some things to consider when letting your collie into your bedroom.


  • a dogs presence particularly at night can make humans feel safer.
  • it strengthens your bond with each other by sharing the same sleeping area.
  • you can hear when your collie needs out to relieve themselves
  • having your pooch close by can make you calmer and sooth you.

Things to Consider

  • dog dander makes allergies such as asthma worse. This can cause wheezing and coughing.
  • dogs carry parasites such as ticks and fleas. They could end up transferring into your bedroom.
  • your collie might steal some of your belongings such as socks or other items which have a strong scent of their owner.

Where do Border Collies Like to Sleep?

Border collies like to sleep in the comfiest spot they can find. A soft, quality dog bed will help keep them off your furniture. Some border collies like sleeping in an enclosed space, so a crate or a cave bed are good options for them.

Border collies are emotional beasts and generally like to sleep in close proximity to their owners rather than alone. Once sleeping, your border collie is likely out for the count and shouldn’t be a problem!

About the author:

About the author:

Hollie and Border Collie

 Stuart MacPherson

Colliepedia Editor

 Stuart MacPherson

Colliepedia Editor

I'm an experienced collie owner from Scotland. I started Colliepedia to share everything I know about collies. All the pictures you see on colliepedia are of my beloved collie Luna

Learn More about me and Luna's story on the about page!