Herding Dog Breeds

Herding Dogs

In the herding dog breed center you will find a list of dogs that instinctively desire to control the movement of other animals. Whether these dogs are in a flock of sheep, or in a home environment, their instinct to herd will prevail. Owners of herding dogs commonly remark that their herding dogs will try and steer their movements, and if available, other family members. These intelligent dogs make great companions, and react well to instruction and exercise.

Featured Herding Dogs

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Herding Dogs | Australian Shepherd

Introduction

The Australian Shepherd, also known as Aussies, are a breed of dog in the Herding Group, and they were recognized by the AKC in 1991. Due to their hearding skills they became very popular in the U.S., and they have played many starring roles in numerous Western TV shows, horse shows, and rodeos.

The average Australian Shepherd is about 2 feet tall, and they have a medium body size. On average the males weigh between 45 – 75 pounds and the females weigh between 35 – 55 pounds. They have a thick, medium length, coat which requires regular grooming, and their average life span is around 12 years. Aussies are at an increased risk for some health problems which owners should be aware of.

Temperament

The Australian Shepherd has two distinct personalities: one is that of a friendly family dog, and the other is that of a highly alert, and sometimes defensive, hearding dog. Aussies that are bred solely to work as herding dogs usually have more of the ‘working instinct,’ and Aussies that are bred as human companions have more of a relaxed attitude. Regardless of their personality, Aussies are high energy, intelligent, hearding dogs that need plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. Without enough activities they can easily become bored and develop destructive habits and bad behavioral temperaments.

Aussies will bond very closely with their families and owner, and even though they are hearding dogs this breed needs human companionship. They are extremely faithful, and they make good watch dogs. Early socialization and training are a must with these dogs, because their protective and faithful nature can lead to aggressive attitudes towards strange people, children, and animals.

History

The history of where the Australian Shepherd came from is not exactly clear, but despite its name it did not come from Australia. Today’s Australian Shepherd was developed in the United States, and its ancestors are believed to have come from the Basque region in Europe. Aussies were bred as hearding dogs to herd cattle and protect livestock from predators.

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