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Australian Cattle Dog

 

Australian Cattle Dogs are strong, brave, and determined to do their jobs—whatever those jobs might be. They are adventurous and fearless. Australian Cattle Dogs were bred to drive cattle across vast distances. While yours might not be herding cattle, it'll definitely be on the go!

Originally from—you guessed it—Australia, this medium-sized and high-energy breed can grow to between 35-50 pounds and lives an average of 12-16 years. The breed is recognized by the American Kennel Club and classified as a member of the Herding group.

 

AKC RecognizedY
Average lifespan12-16 years
AKC Ranking73
Date of origin1800s
OriginAustralia
Area of originAustralia
Original function Cattle herding
Today's functionCattle herding, Herding trials
Average size of femaleHeight: 17-19 Weight: 35-45
Average size of maleHeight: 18-20 Weight: 35-45
Breed groupHerding
Breed's original pastimeHerding
FamilyLivestock, herding

 

Affection level Very affectionate
Cold tolerance High tolerance
Ease of training Moderately easy to train
Energy level High energy
Exercise needs High
Friendliness toward other dogs Friendly
Friendliness toward other pets Friendly
Friendliness toward strangers Friendly
Grooming needs Low maintenance
Heat tolerance Medium tolerance
Other nameNone
Playfullness Very playful
Protection ability Not very protective

BEHAVIOR & TRAINING

WHAT IS AN AUSTRALIAN CATTLE DOG'S PERSONALITY LIKE?

Australian Cattle Dogs are affable and very energetic: this dog is a triple espresso on four legs. They're most comfortable with adults or older children, not as much little kids, and play best with other dogs when supervised.

This breed is very intelligent, very playful, and can be affectionate. American Cattle Dogs are typically friendly with other dogs, but they're reserved with other pets, small animals, and strangers.

WHAT IS AUSTRALIAN CATTLE DOG BEHAVIOR LIKE?

This is a very vigilant breed; Australian Cattle Dogs are motivated and willing to protect you and your home. They are tireless and tenacious and can be somewhat prone to barking.

HOW EASY IS IT TO TRAIN AN AUSTRALIAN CATTLE DOG?

These dogs know their own minds and can be challenging to train. You'll want to discourage their nipping early and often. Australian Cattle Dogs are very smart and easily bored, so you might consider agility training, hunting, dog sports, or other rigorous activities to keep their agile minds and restless bodies stimulated.

An under-exercised Australian Cattle Dog is prone to mischief around the house. Keep your furry friend physically and mentally active, though, and they'll respond and obey like a champ.

CARE & HEALTH

HOW MUCH DO AUSTRALIAN CATTLE DOGS SHED AND WHAT ARE THEIR GROOMING NEEDS?

An Australian Cattle Dog's smooth double-coat is odorless and can be red or blue. They shed their dense undercoats seasonally and require occasional grooming — plan for weekly brushings and baths as needed. Check those prick ears frequently for wax buildup and debris, which can cause infections.

WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS DO AUSTRALIAN CATTLE DOGS HAVE?

Responsible breeders should be testing for hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy, and genetic deafness. Vets may also screen for other congenital eye diseases.

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