Australian Shepherd

Other names:
  • None
Country/Date of origin:
  • United States
  • 1800′s
  • Females:  18 to 21 inches
  • Males:  20 to 23 inches
  • 35 to 70 pounds
  • Smart.  Uncannily smart.
  • Loyal and devoted to owner but wary of strangers.
  • Strong herding instincts.
  • Independent in nature.

In spite of its name, the Australian Shepherd did not originate in Australia.  It originated in the United States from stock that immigrating Basque sheepherders brought with them.  First and foremost, this is a working animal.  The majority of Australian Shepherds are worked with stock today.  The breed became stabilized in the early 20th century and was recognized first by the Canadian and Mexican Kennel Clubs and finally by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1993.

Body Type:
  • A medium-sized herding dog of the collie type.
  • Has a bobtail, either naturally or by docking.
  • The ears hang close to the head and are not altered.
  • Eyes may be brown, blue, or one of each.
  • Medium texture, weather-resistant coat is of moderate length.
  • Four colors are permissible:  blue merle; black; red merle; and, all red.
  • All can be with or without white markings and/or tan points.
  • White markings are not permitted on the body between the withers and the tail, on the sides between the elbows, or the back of the hindquarters.
  • A white collar is permitted.
  • Moderate grooming.
  • Seasonal shedding.
Health and Wellness:
  • Microphthalmia.
  • Collie-eye anomaly.
  • Congenital deafness.
  • Spina bifida.
  • Ivermectin toxicosis.
  • Discoid lupus erythematosis.
  • Cushing’s syndrome (PDH and AT).
What you should know:
  • A top choice for obedience competition.
  • Agility makes it a great Frisbee dog.
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