Australian Shepherds have a strong physique and the ability to move quickly and flexibly. At first glance, this dog breed seems fierce and unapproachable, but few people know they are very affectionate and sometimes even whiny.
If you are about to adopt an Australian Shepherd, please join DailyPets.net to learn about this breed’s origin, characteristics, and care below.
Australian Shepherd Origin
An interesting fact about this dog breed is that although the name is Australian Shepherd, they originate from America. The name Australian Shepherd is because they are commonly raised in Australia, and their job is to raise cattle on the plains. This dog breed is also known as the Australian Berger or Aussie.
The Australian Shepherd dog breed resulted from crossbreeding between the Basque Shepherd and the Collie breed in the 1840s. Initially, people bred these two breeds together with the desire to create a dog breed that is both versatile and versatile. Active, agile, intelligent, and hard-working to take on the task of protecting livestock. Also, from these advantages, sheepdogs later became guard dogs or performed guard duties, mine detection, search, and rescue.
Appearance characteristics of the Australian Shepherd
The Australian Shepherd dog breed is a “distant relative” of the Border Collie breed with the following appearance characteristics:
Many often confuse the Australian Shepherd breed with the Australian Kelpie Shepherd breed because their ancestral origins are quite close. However, if you take the time to observe, you will see that this Australian shepherd breed has unique appearance standards.
This Australian Shepherd breed has a well-proportioned, strong, and muscular body:
- Males can be 52-58cm tall and weigh about 25-29kg;
- Females can be 46-53cm tall and weigh about 18-25kg.
The characteristic of the Australian Shepherd is that the head has triangular ears; the tips of the ears are slightly rounded and located on the top of the head. The face has a moderate fracture; the muzzle is slightly oblong. Sharp teeth that looked like nets. The eye color of this breed is quite diverse, usually brown, blue, amber, or sometimes two different eye colors.
With a deep, muscular chest, the Australian Shepherd dog has a more stable and balanced stance. The Australian Shepherd’s ability to move is quite fast thanks to its straight legs and strong oval-shaped paws with curved toes that create a firm grip.
The Australian Shepherd’s coat is medium length and slightly wavy. Moreover, the thick coat that covers the undercoat makes it possible to withstand harsh weather. The density of the fluff also depends on the climatic characteristics. The head, ears, and hind legs are parts with short, smooth hair. The fur on the front legs is longer and denser. The mane and chest are where the hair is longer and denser. The distinctive wavy curly coat is water resistant and retains heat in snowy conditions.
The main coat color of the Australian Shepherd is red-brown, black combined with unique white, brown, yellow, and cream patches. This breed sheds moderately, so the care is simple: regular brushing and washing. The tail of the Australian Shepherd is usually short naturally, or people will cut the tail when the tail is about 10cm long.
The average lifespan of an Australian Shepherd is about 12-15 years. Each litter of female dogs gives birth to about 6-9 puppies.
Australian Shepherd personality traits
Playful and hyperactive
The personality of the Australian Shepherd dog is quite friendly and open, and they are also very naughty. They also love children very much and can be friends with hyperactive children. However, when joking too much, they can hurt children, so you need to train and teach them to understand that they need to be “gentle” when playing with the baby.
Besides which comes from a herding dog breed, the Australian Shepherd is brave. They are very alert with the instinct to protect their owner; they are ready to fight for you at any time. The Australian Shepherd’s intelligence quotient is high, so training is also easier.
However, because of their active personality, Australian Shepherds easily feel bored if they are not allowed to exercise or in cramped spaces. They will feel “abandoned,” leading to more stubbornness and aggression. So, this Australian Shepherd is suitable for owners with an active lifestyle. Besides playing with them, you should also let them exercise to maintain a strong physique.
Some common diseases and how to prevent them
Compared to other imported dog breeds, Australian Shepherds are relatively healthy. However, they still have some characteristic diseases, such as rhinitis, cataracts, retinal atrophy, diarrhea, and CEA. To prevent these diseases, you need to pay attention to the following issues:
The Australian Shepherd’s coat sheds little, so it doesn’t need to be bathed too often. However, it is necessary to ensure hygiene where they live and sleep.
Clean eyes, teeth, and mouth regularly to prevent rhinitis caused by sun exposure or cataracts;
The genes of Australian Shepherds with brightly colored coats, when crossbred, have a risk of blindness and deafness in the next generation, which is often manifested during crossbreeding. Therefore, you should check regularly for these signs. At the same time as puppies, you should regularly check their hearing ability;
When the dog is young or when it has just been purchased, it should be fully vaccinated as prescribed by the doctor to prevent a number of other specific diseases;
If you detect unusual signs such as loss of appetite, lack of exercise,… Taking them to a veterinary clinic for a health check would be best.
How to care for an Australian Shepherd
Australian Shepherds are active and love freedom, so the raising space needs to be spacious and comfortable. If you are living in a place with limited space, such as an apartment or condo, you should take time to take them for a walk every day at the gym or park. But the ideal environment for an Australian Shepherd is still a house with a spacious garden.
Australian Shepherd dogs are relatively easy to eat; feed them at least two meals daily. Because they exercise a lot, they consume a lot of energy and often feel hungry and tired, so ensure they have enough nutrients in their diet. Drinking water bowls must be regularly replaced and cleaned.
How to hygiene for
The fur is moderately long, so it doesn’t require you to bathe too much; just a regular bath every week is enough. When bathing, use your hand or brush to remove dirt from the hair. Don’t forget to dry after bathing to prevent fungus on your dog’s skin, and use a comb to remove excess hair, limiting hair loss. The minimum brushing frequency for this breed is once a week.
How to train an Australian Shepherd
This dog breed’s intelligence quotient is high, so you don’t need to worry about training them to understand it. However, they are “hyperactive” dogs, so attracting their attention to your “lecture” will be difficult.
With puppies, training should begin when they are 13 weeks old. You can both teach and get to know them to increase intimacy. DailyPets.net will introduce you to a few simple but effective Australian Shepherd dog training exercises:
They have a lot of excess energy and need to “consume” all that excess energy. Otherwise, they will get tired and start destroying your house. The most effective way to burn excess energy is to let them play sports or exercise. It could be throwing a ball, finding objects, or jogging every morning. Just spend 30 minutes a day exercising at such high intensity.
Train your brain
Please take advantage of their intelligence by letting them participate in brain training games. Start by teaching them to put away their toys or ask them to get something for you. Finally, upgrade by teaching them to help you with housework. Of course, successfully training these exercises is not simple. If you don’t have much time or don’t have the patience to teach them, you can sign up for a training course.
Australian Shepherd price
The price of an Australian Shepherd puppy can vary widely depending on several factors, including the dog’s pedigree, breeder reputation, location, and specific bloodlines.
On average, you can expect to pay between $600 to $1,800 for an Australian Shepherd puppy from a reputable breeder. However, if you’re looking for a show-quality or champion bloodline Australian Shepherd, the price can be significantly higher, ranging from $1,800 to $3,000 or more.