Australian Shepherd

also known as Little Blue Dog, Aussie

Pros History

The Australian Shepherd, is a medium-sized breed of dog that is believed to have originated in the western United States, specifically in the western state of California. The breed's history is not entirely clear, but it is believed to have been developed by Basque shepherds who immigrated to the western United States in the 19th century, and brought with them their working dogs.

The breed's name, "Australian Shepherd," is somewhat misleading as the breed is not actually from Australia, but rather from the western United States. The breed may have been named this way because of the Basque shepherds who brought them to the United States, and possibly due to their resemblance to the Australian Kelpie, another herding breed.

The Australian Shepherd was a popular breed in the western United States during the 19th and early 20th century, and it was often used as a working dog for herding and as a companion. The breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1993, and by other kennel clubs around the world.

Breed Information


Is Australian Shepherd a purebred?



What were Australian Shepherds originally used for?

Livestock Herding


How Long Do Australian Shepherds Live? What is average life expectancy for an Australian Shepherd? How long can Australian Shepherds live?

12-15 years

The average Australian Shepherd lifespan is somewhere between 12-15 years, provided they aren't beset by any exceptional health issues or injuries.

Australian Shepherd Height & Weight

How big is a full grown Australian Shepherd?

What is the average height of an Australian Shepherd? How big is an Purebred Australian Shepherd height? Australian Shepherd dog height:
Average 6 months 12 months 18 months
Male 20-23 inches (50.8 - 58.4 cm) 14.0 inches (35.6 cm) 19.5 inches (49.5 cm) 21.5 inches (54.6 cm)
Female 18-21 inches (45.7 - 53.3 cm) 12.5 inches (31.8 cm) 17.5 inches (44.5 cm) 19.5 inches (49.5 cm)
What is the average weight of an Australian Shepherd? How much should Australian Shepherds weigh?
Average 6 months 12 months 18 months
Male 55-70 pounds (25 - 32 kg) 28.5 pounds (13 kg) 52.5 pounds (24 kg) 62.5 pounds (28 kg)
Female 35-55 pounds (16 - 25 kg) 19.5 pounds (9 kg) 37.5 pounds (17 kg) 45.0 pounds (20 kg)
Weight Gain Potential

Do Australian Shepherds get fat easily?

The Australian Shepherd is a breed that has an average to high tendency to gain weight if their weight is not closely monitored. It is important to maintain a balance between exercise and food intake to keep them at a healthy weight. This can be achieved by scheduling at least one daily walk and engaging in regular playtime with them.


Are Australian Shepherds Hypoallergenic?


Unfortunately, the Australian Shepherd is not hypoallergenic, making it not a good choice for a dog lover who suffers from pet allergies.


What is an Australian Shepherd personality? What are Australian Shepherd dogs best known for?


Shedding Level

Are Australian Shepherds heavy shedders? How Much Does an Australian Shepherd Shed?

Australian Shepherd dogs are not heavy shedders, but they will lose a significant amount of hair each year. To decrease the amount of shedding, you can regularly brush your Australian Shepherd. This will remove loose hair and keep his coat growing in the same direction.

Watchdog Ability

What is the watchdog ability of an Australian Shepherd dog?

The Australian Shepherd dog is one of the best choice if you want a good watchdog. This breed will keep watch over you and your family at all times. This breed takes this task seriously and will typically perform its guarding duty with little to no training. This dog will require obedience training, or you can consider guard dog training to sharpen its skills.

Breed History


Where do Australian Shepherds come from?

United States


What are Australian Shepherds descended from?

Basque Shepherd

Breed recognition

What organizations or kennel clubs recognize/register the Australian Shepherd breed?

American Canine Registry
American Kennel Club
America's Pet Registry
Dog Registry of America Inc.
North American Purebred Registry, Inc.
American Canine Association, Inc.
Continental Kennel Club
National Kennel Club
New Zealand Kennel Club
United Kennel Club
Australian Shepherd Club Of America

Date of Birth

When were Australian Shepherds first bred? How old is the Australian Shepherd breed?


Breed Group

What Breed Group is an Australian Shepherd?

Herding (AKC:1991 & UKC)

Australian Shepherd Appearance

Eye Color Possibilites

What color are Australian Shepherd eyes?


Nose Color Possibilites

What color can Australian Shepherd nose be naturally?


Coat Color Possibilites

What color can Australian Shepherd coat be naturally?


Coat Length

How long is an Australian Shepherds coat?

The coat of an Australian Shepherd is longer than that of the typical dog.

Coat Density

How Dense Is The Australian Shepherd Coat?

Coat Texture

What is the texture of the hair of an Australian Shepherd?


Litter Size

How many puppies can an Australian Shepherd have in a litter? How many puppies can an Australian Shepherd have in her first litter?

12-15 puppies per pregnancy

An Australian Shepherd can have a litter of 12-15 puppies on average. However, it's worth noting that the size of the litters can vary greatly. Factors that can influence litter size include the health of the mother, breeding history, and genetics.


Australian Shepherds are known for their adaptability and versatility, they are capable of adapting well to a wide range of lifestyle changes and living environments. They are a highly adaptable breed, and make great companions for families and individuals of all lifestyles.

Australian Shepherd Health Issues

Health Issues

Do Australian Shepherds have a lot of health problems?

The Australian Shepherd is generally considered to be healthy. However, like all breeds, they are susceptible to certain health issues and it is important to keep an eye out for them and address them with your veterinarian as needed.

Major Concerns

What are the major health concerns to be aware of when owning an Australian Shepherd?

Progressive Retinal Atrophy
Hip Dysplasia
Von Willebrand's Disease

Minor Concerns

What are the less significant issues to keep in mind when it comes to Australian Shepherds?

Nasal Solar Dermatitis
Patent Ductus Arteriosus

Occasional Tests

What are the occasional tests recommended for Australian Shepherd breed?


Australian Shepherd Needs and Activities


Do Australian Shepherds have a lot of energy?

Australian Shepherds are high-energy dogs, thus an active lifestyle suits them well.

Social Needs

Do Australian Shepherds need socialization? How social are Australian Shepherds?

Australian Shepherd have above average social needs compared to other breeds.They thrive in environments where they have a lot of interaction with humans and other dogs.

Exercise Needed

How much exercise should Australian Shepherds get?

The Australian Shepherd needs a high level of physical activity to maintain a healthy lifestyle. They also make great companions for people who lead an active lifestyle and enjoy running, hiking or other outdoor activities. These breeds are not suitable for people with sedentary lifestyle or those who live in small apartments

Sleeping Need

How much sleep should an Australian Shepherd have? Do Australian Shepherds sleep a lot?

Australian Shepherds are active dogs that don't require as much sleep as other breeds. However, they still need enough sleep to stay healthy.

Drooling Tendency

Does an Australian Shepherd drool a lot?

The Australian Shepherd is a breed of dog that is characterized by its minimal drooling, making it an ideal choice for people who dislike drool marks on their clothing.

Tendency to Bark

How much does it bark?

Australian Shepherd dogs tends to bark less frequently than most other dogs. They tend to be quieter and less vocal than other breeds. They may only bark when necessary, such as to alert their owner of something or to communicate something. They do not bark excessively, and may not bark as much as other dogs in certain situations, such as when they are left alone.


Do Australian Shepherds exhibit aggressive behavior to safeguard their home and territory? Do they possess a natural tendency to guard?

These dogs are known for being extremely protective and make excellent guard dogs. They possess a strong instinct to defend their territory and owners and have a high level of vigilance and alertness.


Are Australian Shepherds mouthy?

Roaming urge

What is the likelihood of an Australian Shepherd running away? Do they have a tendency to explore or wander frequently?

Prey Drive

Do Australian Shepherd dogs have a high prey drive?

Past times

What do Australian Shepherds enjoy doing? How do I keep my Australian Shepherd busy?

Go to Beach, Walk, Frisbee, Hike, Backpacking, High Five, Speak, Walking, Petting, Sniffing, Tug-of-war, Play, Run, Chase, Jogging, Being chased, Tug of war, Running, Walks, Fetch, Sticks, Toys, Fetching, Napping, Kissing, Jumping, Heel, Squirrel gazing, Stare, Greet humans

Activity Level

What is the energy level of an Australian Shepherd? How much energy does an Australian Shepherd have?


Australian Shepherds are high-energy dogs. They need mental as well as physical exercise. These dogs require a lot of your involvement and without it they can, and will, become problematic dogs.

Tolerance of being left alone

Walks per Week

How far should an Australian Shepherd walk each week? How many miles should an Australian Shepherd walk every week?

14 miles / week

There's really no limit to how far you walk your dog as long as they're comfortable. For Australian Shepherd, it's at least 14 miles / week. Just remember to build distance and stamina gradually over time.

Activity per Day

How much an Australian Shepherd should exercise a day? How much activity does an Australian Shepherd need?

90 minutes

In general most Australian Shepherds usually need at least 90 minutes of exercise daily. This can be spread across the day and include all sorts of high-energy activities, like walking, running and playing.


What level of grooming should be provided for an Australian Shepherd?

The Australian Shepherd is a breed of dog that requires an average amount of grooming effort.

Brushing Frequency

How often should you brush an Australian Shepherd?


Australian Shepherd should be brushed at least once a week. Of course you can give them more frequent brushes if you find that they are still shedding a lot

Brushing Tools

What are the most commonly used brushing tools for Australian Shepherds?

Pin Brush
Nail Clipper



How many cups of food does an Australian Shepherd eat?

2.5 cups

For an average 55-70 pound (25 - 32 kg) Australian Shepherd feed 2.5 cups daily. But, keep in mind, the amount you feed is going to be dependent on the quality of the food you are feeding.

Daily Cost

How Much Does an Australian Shepherd Cost Daily?

$1.70 - $2.00 / day

The average cost of an Australian Shepherd is somewhere $1.70 - $2.00 per day.

Monthly Cost

How Much Does an Australian Shepherd Cost Per Month?

$48 - $63 / month

The average per month expenses of an Australian Shepherd is between $48 - $63. This makes an average of $576 - $756 per year. It will be on the higher side when the dog is still small because it will need more frequent visits to the vet, shots.

Australian Shepherd Characteristic


How intelligent is an Australian Shepherd?

The Australian Shepherd breed is considered very intelligent and easy to train.

Sensitivity Level

How sensitive is an Australian Shepherd dog?

This dog breed is particularly attuned to its environment and the emotions of those around it. It can be easily overwhelmed by loud noises, new environments, and unfamiliar people or animals. This dog is best suited for individuals or families who are patient, gentle, and understanding of its sensitive nature. It may also benefit from a calm and stable home environment, with a consistent routine and plenty of positive reinforcement training.

Affection Dependance

Are Australian Shepherd dogs affectionate?

Apartment Friendly

Do Australian Shepherd do well in apartments? Are Australian Shepherds good indoor dogs?

Australian Shepherds are dogs that do well in apartments with sufficient exercise, but they would really appreciate a small yard.

Child Friendly

Are Australian Shepherds good with kids? Are Australian Shepherds good around children?

A Australian Shepherds typical characteristics indicate that this breed of dog is an ideal companion for kids and makes them family pets. Their gentle and protective nature and calm mentality make them gel along quickly with the younger humans


Are Australian Shepherds good for elderly?

Cat Friendly

Are Australian Shepherds good with cats? How friendly Australian Shepherds are toward cats?

Australian Shepherds are an average cat friendly dog. They do well with cats, even more if raised together from puppyhood,

Dog Friendly

Do Australian Shepherd dogs get along with other dogs? Are Australian Shepherds OK with other dogs?

Australian Shepherds are average friendly towards other dogs. If they are raised with other dogs, they are likely to get along with them. And, if they are socialized properly from a young age, they will usually be great with other dogs.

Pet friendly

How do Australian Shepherd dogs interact with other pets? Are they considered pet-friendly?

Stranger Friendly

Are Australian Shepherds friendly with strangers?

Australian Shepherds are below average friendly around strangers. Keen of eye and sharp of tongue, most Australian Shepherds are very quick to announce strangers at the door. Once the visitor comes in, some Australian Shepherds will be friendly and outgoing. But many others have the standoffish or suspicious towards strangers.


Do Australian Shepherds like to play? Are Australian Shepherds playful?

Australian Shepherds are known to be highly playful dog. So if you're not up for all that, think about adopting a slightly older Australian Shepherd for a mellower experience.


Are Australian Shepherd easily trained?

The Australian Shepherd is a breed of dog that is known for being very easy to train. They are highly intelligent and eager to please, which makes them a great choice for both experienced and novice dog owners.

Pros Pros & Cons


  • Highly intelligent
    Australian Shepherds are known for their trainability and ability to learn commands quickly.
  • Versatile
    This breed excels in a variety of activities, including herding, obedience, agility, and search and rescue.
  • Rarely barks
    If you're looking for a breed that doesn't make a lot of noise, the Australian Shepherd dog could be a good pick as they are known for being quiet.
  • Good with children and other animals
    Australian Shepherds are typically good with children and other pets, making them a suitable choice for families.
  • Loyal and protective
    Australian Shepherds are known for their loyalty and protective nature towards their owners.


  • High energy
    Australian Shepherds have a lot of energy and require regular exercise to prevent them from becoming bored and destructive.
  • Tendency to gain weight
    Failing to monitor a Australian Shepherd's weight can lead to unwanted weight gain.
  • Not suitable for office environment
    An office is not the best place for a Australian Shepherd.
  • Not Hypoallergenic
    While beloved by many, Australian Shepherds may not be appropriate for those with allergies due to the possibility of allergic reactions.
  • Grooming
    Australian Shepherds have a double coat that requires regular grooming to maintain their appearance.