Australian Shepherd Dog Breed Information


The Australian Shepherd has an amazing beauty. Her expressive look will drive even avid cat lovers crazy. In the Dog57 breed registry, we'll show you what an Australian Shepherd looks like, talk about his origins, personality, and physical characteristics as well as his training and the most common diseases he usually suffers from. Australian Shepherd below. Read more. 

He described Australian Shepherd

The Australian Shepherd is a harmonious combination of gentle looks and agile intelligence. Known the world over as reliable and loyal companions, these dogs will delight in their funny antics. For an Australian, there is no better entertainment than an active walk with the owner in a city park. Animals sincerely enjoy the company of their family and do not like to be alone for long. This shaggy charmer by his example will show you what it means to be an inexhaustible optimist and the ability to have fun all day long!

Breed Name: Australian Shepherd (Australian)

Country of Origin: USA

Weight: male 25-30 kg, 18-25 kg

Height (height at withers): Male 51-58cm, 46-53cm

Average life expectancy: 13-15 years


Despite the "crossing" name of the breed, the homeland of Australians is the United States.

Dogs are easily trainable and for this reason, they are often used for service or as guides.

Australians are famous for their friendliness, which allows them to get along easily with other animals.

The good looks of the shepherds do not detract from their ability to give a worthy rebuff to the offender.

Representatives of this breed need daily physical exercises for 60 minutes.

Australian Shepherds are not the best choice to keep them in an apartment, but frequent walks more than makeup for it.

These animals are very responsible and can take care of a baby, cat, or hamster for several hours.

An inexperienced owner will not be able to suppress the dominant character of the pet.

Australians need careful care (especially for wool).  

Australian Shepherd Breed History

Even though more than half a century has been devoted to the study of the Australian Shepherd, experts have not yet come to a consensus on the question of its origin. It is believed that the breed was bred in the United States, but the history of the appearance of the Australian still goes back to Australia and is associated with the name Eliza Furlong - the ancestor of merino breeding and production of high-quality wool in the southern continent.


In the 1830s, she and her family settled near Campbell Town - a small town in eastern Tasmania (Australia), where she emigrated from Scotland with her husband and two sons. Here the family founded the Winton farm, on which they began to raise sheep, which were bought in Germany and brought with them. Joseph Babts was appointed as keeper of the herds, who followed Furlong along with his herding dogs, tigers, now called Old German Shepherds. This is a sure version of how the ancestors of Australians entered the "country upside down".

According to another theory, the ancestor of the shepherd is the Australian cole, which is most similar to the modern Australian. Farmers and breeders tried to breed the perfect four-legged shepherd, for the sake of which they crossed cattle with Australian dogs. In addition, Tigers and Border Collies were involved in creating the breed. As a result of the selection, which exceeded all expectations, the perfect version of the sponsor was obtained. The animal had strength and endurance, and during its work was able to independently assess the situation and make a decision without waiting for the owner's instructions. One of the important positive qualities of the Australian was the lack of aggression toward livestock.

At the end of the 19th century, the intensive development of the wool market began in America. The focus was mainly on Australian sheep, brought by ships from Australia. Together with them, a breed of dogs was brought as a shepherd, which amazed local livestock breeders with their abilities. These talented animals quickly gained popularity in the western states, where sheep breeding was most developed.

America is the birthplace of the Australian Shepherd. The first officially registered breeder is Juanita Elle, who exported Merino from Australia. Together with one batch of sheep, a shepherd arrived with of bluish color. The first Australian Shepherd obtained was Juanita Elle, who made a significant contribution to the further development of the breed.


Its increase in popularity among the Australian Shepherds population is due to Jay Sisler, a farm owner in Idaho. The guy was an avid participant in rodeo competitions. Usually, there were performances in between. Jay Sisler entertained the audience with performances in which his Australian patrons - Queenie, Stobe, and Shorty - took part, causing the admiration of viewers not only in the United States but also in Canada. The Walt Disney Company invited furry artists to participate in the filming of two films. All this greatly contributed to the popularization of the Australian breed, because many wanted to have such a smart and cute four-legged friend.

The history of the development of the breed is associated with three generations of American farmers - Hartnagls. While raising sheep, they were also looking for a suitable assistant among the grazing. Their choice fell on the Australian Shepherd, who admired his practical qualities. By the way, two puppies - Budger and Goodie, bought from Juanita Eli - were "nephews" of Queenie, the famous dog of Jay Sisler. Goody gave rise to popular lines such as Wood and Flintridge. The Hartnagls, along with Juanita Ely and Jay Sisler, stand side by side on the list of famous breeders of Australian Shepherds. 

Australian Shepherd appearance


The Australian Shepherd belongs to medium breeds with gender differences in the size of individuals. The height of males ranges from 52-58 cm, in females, it usually does not exceed 46-53 cm.

The body is somewhat elongated in length, but the overall dimensions remain balanced so that the dog does not seem squat. Compared to males, she looks more elegant and graceful, but without a hint of thinness.

head and skull

The head is quite large, but at the same time, it looks elegant and light. It is proportional to the body, with a slight rounding of the skull. The forehead is slightly rounded or flat. In the occipital region, the presence of a small bump is allowed. The curve separating the forehead and the nose is quite pronounced. The cranial arch line is parallel to the bridge of the nose.


The conical snout narrows from the base to the back of the nose. The length is medium, corresponding to the length of the posterior cranial segment (or slightly shorter). The nasal lobe is dyed depending on the main color. Black color is found in marbling, blue and black dogs, and brown - in red and red marbles. At the same time, the color of the marble base allows small inclusions of pink color, provided that their total area does not exceed 25% of the entire nasal lobe in dogs of one year and older.



The ears are of medium length and have a triangular shape with barely rounded tips. Most often, an elevated (but not too far) location is observed, but a lateral location is also allowed if the following condition is met: the tip of the ear is “broken” and looks forward. The ears are semi-erect, at the moment of wakefulness they are raised. Erector fully floppy ears are a serious defect. Did not stop.

the eyes

The Australian appearance is very expressive and intelligent. They will look closely at the stranger, but some caution in the look is always accompanied by friendliness. The eyes have an almond-shaped slit, planted moderately obliquely, not very deep, but also not convex. There is a different color of the iris: amber, blue, green, and brown. Some marble in its color is possible with inclusions of different colors. There are even individuals with different eye colors, and this is not an unqualified flaw. Black, marble, and blue dogs, as a rule, have a black stroke around the eyes. Red and red marbling have brown "edges".

jaws and teeth


The jaws of the Aussi are strong, and the sting is scissor-shaped (a tick-like is also allowed). Snacks and bite reduction of more than 3 mm are considered disqualifying defects. Teeth are strong, white, represented by a complete set. The complete formula contains 42 teeth, of which 20 are in the upper jaw, and 22 are in the lower part. All teeth must be available, but the absence of some due to injury will not be penalized by reducing the score in exhibitions.


The neck of the Australian Shepherd is moderate in length and has a slight bend at the neck. Strong, muscular, well planted on the shoulders.


The strong body has developed muscles. The back is wide, in the normal stand of the dog it has a straight line from the top from the withers to the pelvis, passing more into a slightly inclined croup. The front of the case is equal in width to the back. Moderately deep breasts are distinguished by pronounced relief. The lower point reaches the level of the elbow joint. The long ribs have a regular oval shape. The abdomen is matched, with a moderately curved line from chest to thigh.



The Australian Shepherd has three options for tail length: long, naturally short up to 10 cm (when a puppy is born with a short tail), and size. When stopping the tail (unless prohibited by the laws of the country) of an adult, it must also not exceed 10 cm.

front limbs

Aussi's flat shoulder blades are close to the withers. The angle of their inclination is 45 degrees. The humerus is in length corresponding to the scapula and is located at right angles concerning its axis. Strong paws in the shape of the section are more like an oval than a circle. The elbow joint occupies an intermediate position between the ground and the withers of the animal. The forearms are perpendicular to the surface on which the dog is moving. The carpal metacarpal is of medium length, and slightly slanted. The fifth fingers (which have arrived) are removed at the request of the owner. Oval feet end with curved toes and are compactly gathered. The pads of the paws are elastic, with thick skin.

India's edges

Form the angle between the femur and the axis of the pelvis vertically. The knee joints are visible, and in the area of ​​\u200b\u200bthe ends of the hock are moderately curved. If you look at the Australian Shepherd from behind, its legs will be perpendicular to the ground and parallel to each other. They pass into a short instep. The hind fingers are usually missing. Oval feet are compact and have curved toes that end with thick, flexible pads. 

Movement method


The Australian movements are smooth. It is characterized by speed, lightness, and freedom. Despite the sweep, her stride is well balanced. Both pairs of limbs move parallel to the central axis of the body. A dog's claws come close to dropping its center of gravity when the animal speeds up its step. The backline remains straight while running. The Australian Shepherd, which is endowed with extraordinary agility, can quickly change its direction and way of movement.

fleece cover

The Australian Shepherd's coat is hard, medium in length, and medium in density. It can be straight or slightly wavy. The coat consists of a longer base coat and a short soft undercoat, which is completely replaced twice a year. Its density directly depends on climatic conditions: the colder it is, the denser the substrate. In the periods between the change of the undercoat, moderate molting is observed.

The head, ears, forelimbs, as well as the areas under the hock joints, are covered with short and soft hair. On the hind surfaces of the forelimbs and the buttocks, a hairline forms the so-called feathers - the longest in the area of ​​\u200b\u200bthe hind limbs. Shepherds have a moderately developed mane and collar, which are more pronounced in males.



Even though among Australian Shepherds there are individuals with a variety of colors, and the breed itself is famous for its uniqueness, only four types of color are recognized as the official standard: black, marble, blue (often associated with the Australian), red and red-marbled. In all cases, white areas are permissible, but without excesses. Note that the eyes should be framed by color. When the coat matures, it darkens a little.

There are also sable, graphite, golden, and dark gray colors, but they are not officially recognized.

Australian Shepherd Disadvantages

Almost any deviations from the above norm can be considered defects of the breed. The most serious and common defects include: 

ears flexible or fully erect;

Atypical coat.

The unqualified vices are as follows:

behavioral abnormalities manifested in shyness or excessive aggression;

deviations in the bite in the form of a bite or snack more than 3 mm (not closing the incisors due to their shortness is not considered an incorrect bite);

Incomplete dental formula (its loss as a result of injury is not taken into account);

white dots on the back in the space between the base of the tail and the withers, as well as on the lateral surfaces between the limbs;

Hanging testicles. 

Is the Australian Shepherd a good family dog?

Cheerful, affectionate, witty, and mobile - that's how you would describe any Australian Shepherd. By the way, this is one of the few breeds, whose representatives in a good mood can "smile" at all 42 teeth and at the same time shake backward. By their nature, these are bred shepherds who are called to observe the herd and bring back animals that have separated in time. This feature can be observed when walking with a pet: he will constantly make sure that no one is left behind in the company, and bring everyone together. Despite the constant desire to follow the orders of the owner, the dog in an emergency can make independent decisions.
Australians are very friendly and easily find a common language with their relatives while walking, and with other pets - be it a cat, hamster, cow, or domestic goose. It seems that the words from the famous song: "He does not bark, does not bite, does not rush at passers-by" are written about the Australian. The dog behaves perfectly at performances among barking brothers, on the street, and at home.

The Australian Shepherd never first bullies, but in case of unfriendly behavior of relatives, as well as when the owner or family members are threatened, he will always be able to give a worthy rejection. To do this, the animal has everything: both developed muscles and strong teeth.
The Aussie simply adores children and will become their tireless companion for outdoor games. The dog will gladly accompany the owner while jogging or riding a bike, and will actively participate in various competitions or hiking trips. For representatives of this breed, sitting all day in a confined space is unbearable. Motor activity is simply necessary for them to maintain muscle mass, well-being, and mood.

Australian Shepherd Education and Training

Being naturally born rangers, Australians, with improper upbringing, can sometimes show excessive aggression in defense of their territory. This point needs to be given special attention. Since Australian Shepherds are very friendly by nature, aggression, as well as cowardice, indicate behavioral deviations. From the first days of the appearance of the puppy in the house, it is necessary to explain to him the elementary rules of behavior and allocate a zone that will help the child quickly adapt to a new place. The dog needs to know who its owner is. Otherwise, the animal will strive to occupy a dominant position in the house.
The Australian Shepherd is very intelligent and talented, and easy to train and train. It is believed that he can carry out commands after 30-40 repetitions. Of course, it is worth starting at home from the first days of the appearance of the puppy and learning simple commands that ensure his safety while walking. Stimulating the pet is an important point in training, so always encourage the child in the case of the correct implementation of commands. Australians are treated, so you don't have to think long about the best way to do it.
After carrying out the initial commands at home, you should proceed to classes on the street to learn new skills and consolidate the acquired skills with distractions. It must be remembered that before starting training, it is recommended to give the dog a little walk and do all its “works” so that later nothing distracts the animal. The stimulus-inducing approach should become a primary method of learning commands. You cannot be rude to the pet or punish him: this can make the dog timid and timid. The help of a dog trainer therapist allows you to quickly integrate your general training path. Often, the Australian Shepherd has enough for several occupations.

Are Australian Shepherds high maintenance?

The Australian Shepherd is not a dog that likes to lie quietly on the sofa. Being very active, Australians need to walk long distances - at least 2-3 hours a day. In the summer, in the heat, it is better to reduce it or use it for this cooler time of the day - morning and evening. Of course, if you have a country house, then this is not a problem: the sponsor himself will find something to do on the site. However, the owners of a city apartment will have to devote a significant part of their time to the dog, and walk the pet. He will happily run past a stick, ball, plastic discs, or obstacle course. Of course, do not forget to train dogs while walking: the Australian Shepherd will gladly follow the owner's orders. During these activities, observe the pet's behavior. A workaholic by nature, the Australian is ready to work until he falls out of fatigue, which, of course, is undesirable to allow.
When keeping an Australian Shepherd in an apartment, it is necessary to allocate it a separate place away from drafts and heating devices and equip it with a bed. The dog must realize that this is his territory. Buy your pet some toys that he will be happy to have fun with. Put a drinking bottle next to it and make sure there is always clean water in it. The room in which the dog is kept should be periodically ventilated. The air should be fresh and humid enough, otherwise, the wool will constantly melt.
The Australian Shepherd feels great in a city apartment, provided that they walk with it for a long time and play active games. If you lock the animal in the apartment, it may begin to have behavior problems in the form of depression, barking without reason or howling, and unused energy will pour into soaked shoes and furniture.

In a private house, a pet can be kept in a cage, but this is undesirable because the Australian needs the owner's attention and constant communication with him. Otherwise, you can get aggressive or, on the contrary, timid. It is strongly not recommended to keep representatives of this breed on the chain.

The Australian Shepherd - the owner of a semi-long coat with a thick undercoat - needs to be combed 2-3 times a week, and during the molting period - daily. In the absence of this procedure, dermatitis, the formation of stings or the appearance of skin parasites are possible. It is better to comb the wool with a metal brush with a large rare tooth and a bouffant or a special minced. It is recommended to bathe the dog no more than once every two months.
The dog's claws grind naturally, but if he often walks on grass or soft ground, this does not happen. Therefore, using a special claw, they are cut twice a month, since long claws negatively affect the gait and cause a feeling of discomfort in the paws. In this case, you should try not to damage the pulp, where the nerve and blood vessels are located. If this happens, the wound should be treated with an antiseptic solution or iodine. It is necessary to monitor Australian dental health with the help of special means and devices - brushes, pastes, and artificial bones for removing plaque. In advanced cases, you may need an exfoliator - a dental spatula to remove stones. Before and after the procedure, it is necessary to disinfect the instrument and the oral cavity with a solution of peroxide or furatsilina.
One of the conditions for proper maintenance of the pet is to wipe the eyes with special medicinal solutions, ordinary tea leaves, or a decoction of chamomile. The dog's ears should be wiped 1-2 times a week, using ear sticks and cotton pads. To remove excessively formed sulfur, you can drip a 3% solution of peroxide into the ear canal and then let the pet shake his head to the fullest. Wipe the blood vessels with cotton pads.

Australian Shepherd Feeding Guide

Australians are very unpretentious in food. They can be fed both natural food and various feeds. For an adult pet, porridge (rice, oatmeal, buckwheat) and meat (chicken, turkey, beef, lean fish) are suitable. It is recommended that the puppy add cottage cheese mixed with kefir to the diet, as well as quail eggs. If necessary, milk should be started in small quantities. Australian Shepherds are happy to eat both raw and boiled vegetables and fruits: apples, carrots, zucchini, pumpkin, and turnip. In winter, the Australian Shepherd's diet should be enriched with vegetable and animal fats, which will allow you to better tolerate the cold.

If you decide to use dry food, you should choose premium products. Try to buy one that has less protein. It is strictly forbidden to give the dog the following products: raw eggs (except for quail eggs); Soft and alcoholic drinks and coffee. fried food and "food from the table"; small tubular bones Fruits with pits. raw river fish Sweets and chocolate. Raw meat and bones. Mushrooms and nuts. fatty meat citrus fruits.

Australian Shepherd Dog Health and Diseases

Australians who are given proper care, proper nutrition, and adequate physical activity are healthy. For the prevention of diseases such as rabies, the plague of carnivores, Lyme disease, and others, it is necessary to vaccinate promptly according to the vaccination schedule. Like many members of herding breeds, Australian Shepherds are at risk of developing juvenile cataracts. Among the most common diseases inherent in this breed are: autoimmune diseases (thyroiditis, allergies); Hip dysplasia. Optic atrophy. Oncological diseases. epilepsy; demodicosis.
Individuals of the color merle are predisposed to problems in the organs of vision and hearing. This is due to the recessive gene responsible for marble color, hearing, and vision. To avoid such a genetic combination and multiple increases in the risk of developing the above diseases (up to complete deafness and blindness), it is forbidden to cross two dogs of the color merle.

How to choose a puppy

Before you buy an Australian Shepherd puppy, visit the exhibitions of this breed, and talk to the owners to determine if this dog is a good fit for you in temperament and activity. If you still have made the final decision, it is recommended to visit several kennels. After deciding on the breeder, find out what examinations were carried out in males and females. It is necessary to conclude the absence of diseases in the organs of vision (retinal atrophy, cataracts) and the musculoskeletal system (dysplasia of the hip and elbow joints).
Only after that, proceed to the selection of future pets. A healthy puppy that looks like a plush toy will show curiosity without feeling shy. Clean wool should not have barbs or bald spots. Examine the abdomen (the rash should not be present on the skin), and make sure that there are no hernia protrusions. The nose should be moist and cool. Let the puppy walk to make sure there is no clubfoot. If you are satisfied with everything, it remains only to agree on the price.

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