Australian Shepherd or Australian Shepherd Dog

Australian Shepherd or Australian Shepherd Dog

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Australian Shepherd, do not think it comes from where it seems, because it is a shepherd made in the USA even if it is called australian shepherd dog as a middle name. Despite the confusion of names it is a breed recognized by the FCI and even considered valuable. L'Australian Shepherd it is an excellent working dog, particularly appreciated for its conduct of flocks, but it is also a good oneMedium-sized apartment dog.

Australian Shepherd: origins

The Australian has only one distant ancestor, the Australian Shepherd Dog, but as a dog develops in the United States, its predecessors landed in the new land between the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, in line with those who will become the Basque shepherds.

Not Basque but Vasco, pastor vasco, originally called Euskal artzain txakurra, is the dog from which the Australian Shepherd will then be obtained by crossing it with an unrecognized breed but which reveals its hidden Australian origin: the Smithfield, a mixed breed dog created by Australian Shepherds.

The first specimens obtained are small, in fact baptized "Little blue dogs" and conquer many local breeders who decide to devote themselves to their breeding by selecting and refining the type to obtain what will officially become a breed. L'Australian Shepherd precisely. Although engaged in many other more "current" and modern activities, this dog in the United States is still often used today to lead herds on ranches.

The first official breed club (ASCA) was founded in 1957 and the standard that still applies today dates back to 1976. It did not arrive immediately in Italy, theAustralian Shepherd, but she is quickly and happily winning many awards in canine beauty displays. And also the interest of quiet families looking for an aesthetically beautiful and original and temperamentally adorable puppy. Now let's talk about it.

Australian Shepherd: wait

Strong and resistant, with good but not exaggerated musculature, theAustralian Shepherd or Australian Shepherd Dog it is considered a medium-sized dog with its 51-58 cm of height at the withers, for the males, while the females are about 5 or 6 cm shorter. It is recognized for its very proud bearing, this dog, but above all for a coat that has colors all to tell.

Among the colors contemplated in the breed standard there is black and tricolor black, brown, blue merle, red merle and tricolor red. Absolutely not all "dilutions" are acceptable: sand (yellow), blue (slate-like) and lilac (purple). For white, its presence is tolerated but in a regulated manner with extreme precision. It fits on the neck, chest, limbs, lower parts of the muzzle and in a strip on the head that can extend for 10 cm.

In general, however, on the head there must not be too much white and the eyes must be strictly and completely surrounded by color. Not just for aesthetics: if you notice that your ears and eyes are not surrounded by pigmented hair, your Australian Shepherd might have problems deafness and blindness. Another anomaly, but not so serious, but always linked to the color of the hair, is that of the merles which, as they age, become darker.

Whatever color a specimen of Australian Shepherd it will have a medium texture hair, a little straight and a little wavy, always resistant to bad weather, of medium length but short and smooth on the head, ears, front of the limbs and under the hocks.

The breed standard of the Australian Shepherd Dog also provides for the presence of undercoat but the quantity depends on the climate that the dog has to endure, around the limbs however some appear fur culottes moderately fringed while on the chest and on the head a bib and a light one, both more typical of males than females.

Having described the coat, we see the other characteristics of this American breed: the eyes of the Australian Shepherd they can be brown, blue, amber or any combination of these colors, even with punctuation and marbling, which is more frequent when the hair has merle tints. When the color is a single color it does not happen often, it is an exceptionality. The ears, triangular, fall next to the head which has an almost cubic shape but harmonious and well proportioned with the rest of the body.

Australian Shepherd: character

Intelligent and docile, theAustralian Shepherd is a dog that is particularly fond of children and follows them everywhere. In general he is agile and alert, easily trainable so much so that he is also used as sport dog, drug dog, guide dog for the blind and rescue dog.

However, he remains a great life partner for families because he is very fond of the human beings with whom he lives, in particular to "his" master who then follows in every room. Not that he is more cheerful than others but you will hear the callAustralian Shepherd also "Dog smiling" for its particular aptitude to raise the lips showing the teeth. It's not a growl: naturally not even a smile, let's say it's a tic.

With other dogs he gets along easily: given his somewhat shy nature, it could be a little shy but then it becomes balanced and does not impose itself but neither does it suffer. With his boss, however, he shows himself very dependent, he needs company every minute of his life.

Australian Shepherd: breeding

The puppies of Australian Shepherd Dogin Italy: if in 2004 the ENCI counted 163 puppies, in 2012 we reached 1005: it is gradually making itself known and success is near. In addition to being a companion and shepherd dog, even as a champion of sports such as Agility Dog, Freestyle, Obedience. Or alongside the Civil protection or rescue patrols.

Australian Shepherd: puppies

The puppies of Australian Shepherd they must be educated very well so that they do not grow too dependent on their master, whoever he is. Otherwise it becomes a shadow dog and does not lose even a minute. For the rest when looking for a puppy of Australian Shepherd it is good to be careful of some intersections of colors and characteristics.

Let's start with the tail: some puppies can be born with one tail 10 cm long, in this case the specimen is called NBT: making couplings between two NBTs can lead to serious malformations. Other mating to avoid are those between two Australian Shepherd merle, both blue merle and red merle.

There litter in general it is usually composed of 25% of the tricolor puppies, a 50% merle but the remaining 25% would be puppies with a prevalence of white or almost completely white and truffles, mucous membranes and depigmented eye contours. It is a very serious defect of standards and it is not a question of aesthetics, which is also personal, but of health. This original aspect brings with it serious risks: hearing defects, serious problems with the eyeball up to the blindness of one or both eyes.

Australian Shepherd: price

A puppy specimen of Australian Shepherd can generally cost from 400 euros to 700. The price is not "firm" because we have seen how the number of dogs of this breed is growing rapidly in our country, therefore very likely that the prices of the Australian Shepherd Dog change over the next few years.

As for the "maintenance" costs of this dog, being rustic, it does not require special care, just pay attention to the coat and that it remains in one good state of health if not great. Let's remember to brush it every now and then, not to let it lack movement and a periodic check-up by the vet also to understand if there are external parasites. How breed the Australian Shepherd tends to suffer from some hereditary diseases, the most frequent being hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia and oculopathy. After 3 years, epilepsy can occur.

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