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About Australian Shepherd

If there is a dog that stands out in beautiful appearance, intelligence, agility, and working abilities, it is the Australian Shepherd. This dog breed is medium to large-sized and was designed for herding. Its beautiful appearance is contributed by its well-balanced body and a dense double coat of various colors. Besides herding, it can excellently accomplish other activities such as sports and being a therapy dog.

There is so much that can be said about the Australian Shepherd. This article will thus try to cover the important aspects of this dog breed, though we know we can’t cover everything.

If you want to make this dog a pet, scrutinize the ads above for Australian Shepherds for sale.

History and Ancestry of Australian Shepherd Dog

Despite its name, the Australian Shepherd has no roots in Australia. It is speculated that it was developed in the United States during the 19th century. It was initially bred for herding and massively gained fame in the Western states. Australian Shepherd’s exact lineage is unknown, though high chances are that it came from working dogs from the Basque region of Europe.

In the 1950s, the Australian Shepherd Club of America (ASCA) was established. Then in 1993, the American Kennel Club formally acknowledged the Australian Shepherd as a breed and classified it within the Herding Group. Currently, it is cherished for its intelligence, versatile working abilities, and others. 

In any case, another dog that belongs to the Herding Group is the Belgian Malinois.

Alternative names for an Australian Shepherd

Other names that are commonly used to refer to Australian Shepherds are:

  • California Shepherds
  • Blue Heelers
  • New Mexican Shepherds
  • Spanish Shepherds
  • Bob-tails
  • Pastor dogs

Overview of the Australian Shepherd Dog Species


United States


Medium to large-sized dog


12-15 years


High intelligence, good with children, alert, herding instincts, energetic, and playful


Australian Shepherd's price for puppies ranges between $800 and $2000. You can examine the ads at the top of this page to find an Australian Shepherd puppy for sale near me

Physical Appearance of the Australian Shepherd

Size: The standard Australian Shepherd size can be grouped under medium to large-sized dogs. They weigh around 40-65 pounds, and their shoulder height measures between 18 to 23 inches.

Head: Their head is proportional to the body, with a slightly rounded skull. The eyes are oval-shaped and come in various colors, including blue, brown, or amber, often with marbling or flecks. The ears are medium-sized, set high, and may be erect or slightly tipped.

Body: Australian Shepherds' body is well-balanced, sturdy, and muscular. They have a strong and agile appearance. Their neck is moderately long and leads to a tough and level back. Australian Shepherd's tail is naturally bobbed or docked to a short length.

Coat: This dog breed has a dense double coat that can be straight or wavy. The typical Australian Shepherd colors are blue merle, blue merle tri-colored, black and white, and black tri-colored.

Australian Shepherd Dog Temperament and Personality Traits

Australian Shepherds have several unique personality traits that make them stand out. Namely:

  • High Intelligence: They are quick learners who excel in problem-solving and mental stimulation tasks.
  • Energetic and active: Australian Shepherds thrive in environments that offer abundant opportunities for exercise and play.
  • Loyalty: Australian Shepherds form strong connections with their owners and are sternly protective.
  • Alertness: They quickly alert their owners of potential threats or unfamiliar situations.
  • Playfulness: This breed enjoys interactive playtime and can be quite entertaining with their playful antics. If you are a fan of playful dogs, consider looking at the Boxer
  • Herding abilities: Australian Shepherds have strong herding instincts as they were initially bred as working dogs. They are known for their ability to handle livestock, such as sheep and cattle.
  • Versatility: Apart from their herding abilities, they can also be trained for numerous activities and sports. It is common to see them participating in obedience trials, flyball, disc dog competitions, and even as therapy dogs.
  • Amazing with children: They are remarkably gentle and patient with children.

Essential Tips on How to Care for Your Australian Shepherd

Below we will look at three critical topics surrounding the caring of Australian Shepherds: Grooming and cleaning, diet and nutrition, and training and exercising.

Australian Shepherd Grooming and Cleaning

Here are some grooming and cleaning considerations for Australian Shepherds

Brushing and Bathing

Australian Shepherds have a medium-length, dense double coat that requires frequent grooming to keep it clean and healthy. Brush your Australian Shepherd at least twice or once a week to avoid tangles and get rid of loose hair. Increase the brushing frequency during the shedding season.

Bathe it occasionally or when it’s dirty or smelly, as too much bathing will damage its coat. Utilize a mild dog shampoo and rinse well to prevent skin irritation.

Nails, Dental, and Ears

Trim the nails of your Australian Shepherd once in 2-3 weeks to prevent overgrowth that leads to pain. Do not cut close to the quick, as it may result in bleeding.

Brush its teeth frequently to maintain good oral hygiene. This assists in preventing dental problems like gum disease and tartar buildup.

Check and clean your Australian Shepherd’s ears frequently to prevent infections. Examine changes like odor, signs of redness, or excessive wax buildup. Clean the ears gently with a vet-recommended ear cleaner.

Australian Shepherd Diet and Nutrition

A healthy balanced diet is important for the health and well-being of your Australian Shepherd. It means the food should be high-quality and contain proper amounts of protein, fats, and carbohydrates. The food should also be appropriate for their size, age, and activity level.

Don’t overfeed it as it is prone to obesity. Also, always make sure fresh water is accessible. Consider consulting a veterinarian if you are unsure how to handle the entire diet and nutrition issue.

Australian Shepherd Training and Exercise Needs

Australian Shepherds are easy to train because of their intelligence and eagerness to please. Some training techniques that work well for them are consistency, positive reinforcement, and fun training sessions.

Exercise is essential for Australian Shepherds. They are energetic; hence exercising will keep them mentally and physically stimulated. Lack of exercise may cause behavioral issues. In short, offer them ample exercise opportunities, more than 30 minutes daily. A tired Australian Shepherd is more likely to be content and well-behaved.

Examples of amazing exercises for Australian Shepherds are:

  • Walks
  • Playtime
  • Runs
  • Interactive games
  • Herding
  • Agility exercises, etc.

Common Health Issues in Australian Shepherd

Even though Australian Shepherds are normally a healthy breed, there are some typical health concerns to be aware of:

  • Hip Dysplasia: A genetic condition that affects the hip joints, causing discomfort and mobility problems.
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA): A hereditary degenerative eye disease that can result in vision loss and blindness.
  • Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA): An inherited disorder that affects the development of the eye, potentially leading to vision problems. This condition is also common in other dog breeds, such as the Border Collie and the Shetland sheepdog.
  • Epilepsy: A neurological disorder characterized by recurring seizures.
  • Autoimmune Disorders: These include autoimmune thyroiditis and allergies.

Regular check-ups with a veterinarian, genetic testing, a healthy diet, and regular exercise can help minimize the risk of these health concerns.

Is An Australian Shepherd What You Need?

Review the pros and cons below to determine whether an Australian Shepherd suits you.



● Intelligence and easily trainable

● Versatile

● Good for people with active lifestyles as they are highly energetic

● Loyal and dedicated to their owners

● Stunning appearance


● High exercise needs

● High mental stimulation needs

● Easily develop separation anxiety

● Strong herding instincts lead to behaviors like chasing and nipping if not properly trained and socialized



Australian Shepherd Price

An Australian Shepherd's price is dictated by several factors, such as the following:

  • Breeder reputation
  • Location
  • Pedigree
  • Dog age
  • Training

On average, an Australian Shepherd cost for a puppy ranges from $800 to $2000. It can be higher for rare colored or show-quality puppies. In case you are on a budget, consider an Australian Shepherd for adoption. Adopting fees are around $200 to $500.

Keep in mind that you can get Australian shepherd puppies for sale near me in the ads at the top of this page. You can find all types, such as the blue merle Australian Shepherd and the mini Australian Shepherd for sale.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Do Australian Shepherds shed a lot?

Australian Shepherds moderately shed their coats. Specifically, they shed year-round, though it increases in spring and fall.

2. What is the Australian Shepherd's lifespan?

On average, Australian Shepherd's life expectancy is around 12-15 years.

3. How Much do Australian Shepherds cost?

Australian Shepherd's price ranges from $800 to $2000.

4. Are Australian Shepherds smart?

Australian Shepherds are incredibly smart. Even American Kennel Club ranks them among the top dog breeds in intelligence.

5. What are the common Australian Shepherd names?

  • Fiona
  • Paisley
  • Alexa
  • Helena
  • Imani
  • Duke
  • Hugo
  • Tiger
  • Wallace

6. Are Australian Shepherds good with kids?

Australian Shepherds are amazingly good with children. They are patient and soft with kids and will entertain all manners of disturbances from the children.


This article examines critical topics of Australian Shepherd dogs, including their history, physical and behavioral features, how to care for them, and their pros and cons, among others. You can use much info from this article in case you are buying or want to pet an Australian Shepherd.

Speaking of buying, do you know there are several ads at the top of this page for Australian Shepherds for sale near me? Yes, there are. Check them out and choose your match.