Australian shepherd

Other names: Aussie, Australian Shepherd

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The Australian Shepherd is an affectionate dog that does not lack character. Dog built for activity and work, the Australian Shepherd is endowed with all the physical and mental skills to fulfill various missions. Medium in size, agile and intelligent, he fits in perfectly with family life and adapts to a variety of living environments, as long as you don’t let him get bored. In recent years, this breed has enjoyed great success in the hearts of the French.



Photo: Australian Shepherd dog on Woopets
Hair type Half-long
Origin United States
Template Average
Head shape Square
Weight and size
Sex Weight Cut
Female From 19 kg to 26 kg From 46 cm to 53 cm
Male From 25 kg to 34 kg From 51 cm to 58 cm
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History of the breed

Contrary to what its name implies, the Australian Shepherd is not originally from Australia . Indeed, this breed was developed in the United States by farmers in the 1900s in order to have a dog capable of herding cattle. Even if many theories contradict each other, the true birthplace of this breed would be Basque . In fact, the ancestors of the Australian Shepherd were dogs of Basque origin imported to North America and then to Australia.

In the 19th century, in the Pyrenees region between France and Spain, many (especially pastors) would have had to move and leave the area for lack of work. Some would have gone to Australia at the time when the country was becoming a major producer of wool and therefore sheep. These pastors had dogs very similar to the Australian Shepherd and their skills were highly appreciated for herding. They would then have taken the road to the United States.

Across the Atlantic, the Australian Shepherd saw its popularity increase after WWII. He has therefore flaunted his versatility and intelligence to cattle breeders on the ranches . Today, if he continues to accompany shepherds and farmers, the Australian Shepherd is also an excellent companion for the whole family.

Video presentation of the Australian Shepherd

Australian Shepherd Pictures

Photo of lucky, Australian ShepherdPhoto of thunder, Australian ShepherdPhoto of RAYA, Australian ShepherdPhoto of GUN, Australian ShepherdPhoto of Maeka, Australian ShepherdPhoto of Truncks, Australian Shepherd

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Physical features

Behavior and character

Barks / howls

Behavior with others

Cohabitation with children
Sociable with other animals
Love strangers

This breed is made for action although it is not quarrelsome by nature. The Australian Shepherd is rather facetious and curious . Instinctively, he is quite capable of leading or keeping a herd. Not very fragile, it easily endures long days. He has no trouble adjusting to family life as long as he can get busy. The Australian Shepherd is a dog of remarkable intelligence .

He is also appreciated for his loyalty , energetic side and balanced temperament. A very pleasant companion for the whole family , he is a little more reserved towards people he does not know . At work, the Australian Shepherd demonstrates his versatility, his enthusiasm, his agility and his insight. Qualities that allow him to effectively lead the herds entrusted to him and to adapt to a variety of tasks.

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It can start at the age of 2 months if we want to properly discipline him to make a pet. On the other hand, it is very important to offer him an education that is at the same time firm, but without violence . Brutality is unbearable for him, the Australian Shepherd is educated by relying on rewards and encouragement . His permanent activity and his strong character require good socialization. It is also recommended to share a canine activity with him (agility, canicross, etc.) to ensure his development.

Living conditions

Suitable for apartment living
Good for new masters
Love it hot
Love the cold

The Australian Shepherd is not really cut out for apartment living. He prefers houses with gardens to give free rein to his sporting temperament . It is a breed that appreciates company and demands affection as much as action. You must therefore remember to take it out often enough and avoid leaving it alone for too long. If he needs authority, it should be conveyed to him gently. Rather resistant to bad weather thanks to its double coat, the Australian Shepherd must however benefit from a shelter protecting it from difficult climatic conditions.


Ease of gaining weight

The Australian Shepherd often presents eye defects (called MOHC: Inherited Canine Eye Diseases). Among these eye diseases , it is important to perform an annual screening test for progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), collie eye anomaly (AOC) and juvenile cataracts. In addition, he is prone to hip and elbow dysplasia and epilepsy . Skin diseases have also been noted in several individuals.

You should also be concerned about possible cases of epilepsy and hip dysplasia. Regarding deworming , it is recommended to do it 3 times a year . Attention, ivermectin (substance present in some dewormers) represents a real poison for the Australian Shepherd.

Hypoallergenic breed


Litter size

Between 3 and 10 puppies – 7 puppies on average

Major concerns
Collie’s eye anomaly (AOC)
Minor concerns
Pelger-Huët anomaly
Iris coloboma
Hip dysplasia
Occasional concerns
Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)
Willebrand disease
Persistent ductus arteriosus (PCA)
Lumbosacral syndrome
Suggested tests

To protect yourself from these risks and insure your companion in the event of health problems, Woopets recommends an Australian Shepherd dog insurance .

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Life expectancy

Minimum: 12 years old

Maximum: 15 years

The life expectancy of an Australian Shepherd is, on average, between 12 years and 15 years.

Calculate the human age of your Australian Shepherd!

To choose… 1 year 2 years 3 years Four years 5 years 6 years 7 years 8 years 9 years 10 years 11 years old 12 years 13 years 14 years old 15 years old 16 years old 17 years 18 years old 19 years old 20 years 21 years old

Maintenance and hygiene

Ease of maintenance
Cost of maintenance
Hair loss
Drool level
Ease of grooming

The Australian Shepherd requires some attention. Dewormers every 4 months are recommended in addition to an up-to-date vaccination. His nails must be cut regularly to rule out any risk of cracking. Ears should also be cleaned frequently to prevent wax from building up, and teeth should be brushed to stop tartar build-up. The Australian Shepherd moults twice a year , usually in spring and autumn. It can then lose a lot of hair . For the rest, maintenance remains basic, based on regular brushing .

Its self-cleaning coat, however, only requires one bath per year , it is recommended to use a dog shampoo to prevent dryness of the coat and skin.

Price and budget

Purchase price

700 €
1500 €

The purchase price of an Australian Shepherd is between 700 € and 1500 €.

Annual maintenance cost

€ 1300
1400 €

The annual maintenance cost of an Australian Shepherd is between 1,300 € and 1,400 €.

Name ideas for an Australian Shepherd


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The Australian Shepherd demands a balanced diet adapted to his activity. It is more common to provide it with kibble than homemade food, because the former – provided they are of quality of course – provide all the necessary nutritional contributions. Preparing the dog’s meals yourself carries the risk of causing deficiencies or excesses unless you are knowledgeable in the field. The daily amount of kibble obviously depends on your dog’s metabolism and activity. As an indication, we generally recommend between 280 and 320 grams of kibble (to be divided into 2 daily meals) for the Australian Shepherd.

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Physical activity

Energy level
Potential to play

The Australian Shepherd needs space. A daily walk could be sufficient as long as it lasts at least 30 minutes. It is also recommended to share a canine activity with him (agility, canicross, frisbee, obedience game, etc.) to ensure his development.

Obviously, puppies have a lower need in terms of physical activity compared to adults. An Australian Shepherd puppy   must not jump too much or play on too hard surfaces in order to avoid a bad development of the skeleton and all the harmful effects that this could cause on his health.

Famous Australian Shepherd Dogs


Classifications & Standards
(AKC) American Kennel Club
(ANKC) Australian National Council Kennel
(CKC) Canadian Kennel Club
(FCI) Fédération Cynologique Internationale
(KC) The Kennel Club
(NZKC) New Zealand Kennel Club
(UKC) United Kennel Club


Master character <span class="btnTooltip qTip2" title="- Calm: the master must be gentle and know how to show patience.
– Active: the owner must be energetic and dynamic to live in harmony with his dog.
– Hyperactive: the owner must be stimulating and very restless to suit the temperament of his dog.”>

We talk on the forum

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Australian Shepherd, “SHEPHERD” / genetic problem

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gives australian shepherd

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Which dog to choose between a Bernese Mountain Dog and an Australian Shepherd?

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How big should the cage be for an Australian Shepherd?

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Do you have a question about the Australian Shepherd?
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Owner’s words

Hello, I present to you Maddy, 6 months, ball of love and tenderness. She is a very intelligent dog who learns very quickly. If we have chosen the Australian Shepherd as a breed, it is because we are just starting out in the canine education of a large dog. We did a lot of research on this breed, which turned out to be ours. Maddy is pleasant to live with on a daily basis, she does very little silly things and has been clean at 2.5 months.

He is a clown who makes us laugh, gives us a smile every day and is overflowing with love for all our family (children, animals and friends). She always has a smile on her lips, ready to take a walk or play in the garden. She can spend long periods quiet or sleeping.

Nathalie MB (Luzinay)


Boby is a purebred Australian Shepherd. His parents are part of lines of Australian Shepherds who do agility. Boby is 10 years old, he is very playful and cuddly. My mother is a childminder and he is very affectionate with the children. During a long walk in the forest, it can be let go, it does not run away.

Australian Shepherds are very intelligent dogs. On the other hand, you should not be a homebody, but rather a good walker, because they are hardworking dogs who like to go out. I go out Boby 4 to 5 times a day and on weekends I go out 5 times, but 1 hour of walking. He gets tired faster today, but when he was younger I used to run every weekend with Boby. I don’t know if this is the case for all Australian Shepherds, but mine is very fearful, not dominant at all. He tries to intimidate by barking.

Regarding the maintenance of the hair, regular brushing is necessary to avoid knots. Otherwise I wash it once a year, usually in summer. These big doggies are intelligent dogs, you shouldn’t give in to their touching gaze. Its goal: to coax you for cookies, or when a place is forbidden …

I did not know this breed of dog before having Boby, and we share very good times. I became addicted to their boils, but also to their character and their way of adapting to different environments. With a lot of love and patience, we can teach them a lot of things, because they retain and understand very well.

Farida B. (Paris, France)


Abby has been sharing our life for a little over 2 years. A real ball of affection! She’s a little female with eyes full of mischief when it comes to having fun! A tolerant, intelligent and cuddly dog, who knows how to adapt his behavior naturally with his congeners or with children. He is also a sporty dog who loves agility and obedience sessions. We can teach him almost anything! A real member of the family.

Maxime De R. (Auby, France)


Breeders’ words

I first learned about the breed while working on an agricultural farm. By dint of rubbing shoulders with them on a walk, having an Australian Shepherd had become obvious to me. They are exceptional family dogs! They are very versatile: they really like to learn, they are always up for all kinds of activities …

With an indefinable kindness and desire to give, they are very close to their masters.Of course, they are beautiful, which does not spoil anything! But beware, they are also very smart and know how to play with their charming looks! They need rules and regularity, otherwise they can quickly become little imps.

Let’s not forget, they are dogs with great energy, so they need activity or presence accordingly! Linked by the passion of this breed, we, with my best friend, decided to breed it. Thus, we can help individuals find the right companion and let them know about the joy of acquiring an Australian Shepherd, while respecting the breed and its needs!

Aurore from Ghost of Freedom (Houdan, France)


FCI Information



FCI Group

Group 1: Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs (except Swiss Cattle Dogs)

Recognized by FCI

Since 1996


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