Several weeks ago I was outside working in the yard when I heard our border collie mix barking like crazy. I immediately went in to see what was going on. I found our 11-year-old beagle mix lying apparently dead on the floor in the basement with scratches on her neck. Our border collie was barking at her and had apparently scratched her neck. Our beagle looked as if she had died peacefully in her sleep.

She had gallbladder disease & was generally slowing down. The scratches did not appear deep enough to have caused the death of our beagle, but I just curious about our border collie's behavior.

Have you ever heard of this happening before?

  • 1
    I'm sorry for your loss. That's so sad.
    – user6796
    Commented Aug 24, 2018 at 16:14

1 Answer 1


I can only speculate about what happened. Border Collies are extremely intelligent dogs. They were bred to herd sheep, and as a result, they can be very concerned about animals that appear to be in ill health or trouble. Perhaps when your collie realised that his beagle companion wasn't moving, he tried to wake her up. He may have tried to move her as a mother dog moves a pup, picking her up by the scruff of the neck. This might have caused the scratches. Or he may have simply pawed at her to try to wake her up, and caused the scratches that way. Or perhaps the beagle scratched herself because she was having difficulty breathing or feeling pain.

I agree that the scratches are likely not the cause of her death. You know your collie best. If he has never been aggressive before, then even if he did cause the scratches, it would have occurred after the beagle died, and as a result of the collie's concern or grief.


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.