Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
BCM
User Panel

Posted: 10/29/2010 4:18:33 AM EDT
Family wants a puppy. I want a GSD, but the wife says too big. So we have to look for a smaller dog. Have been looking at Austrailian Shepards but have never had one before and don't know anything about them. What can you tell me about the breed? How big do they get? Good family dog? Sociable? Good protector? Smart? easy to train? High Strung? History of illnesses or disease or prone to certain types...etc. Give me the pro's and con's. I've got to be able to sell it to the wife to get her buy in..... She wants to get a Shitzu.... I'd have to turn in my man card if we got one of those. (No offense intended to those owners of Shitzu's... just not my kind of dog) Help me out here...
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 4:25:12 AM EDT
[#1]
neighbor has 2..  great family dogs...  both piss constantly when excited
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 4:30:39 AM EDT
[#2]
Aussies are very energetic. I have two mutts. Half Aussie and half something else. They want to herd everything and everybody. Nice dogs. They (mine) are diggers as well. Mine are noisy and protective, just like a guard dog. They love to run. I am fortunate that mine can "exercise" in my yard and in the pastures around me... with the horses and cows. They get jealous too. Mine are on the BARF diet and seem to do fine. They will catch squirrels and chickens and anything else they can run down. My male weighs in at about 65 pounds and his sister weighs 45ish. She is the speedster of the two. He plods along like a tank. They are smart and can be trained if you want to take the time. I just wanted dogs. Nothing fancy. Mine have not been raised around small kids so their high pitched screams set the dogs off. Small kids are very erratic. I would say they are not necessarily small child friendly. Not without serious socialization. A lab, retreiver or irish setter might be a good idea but they are larger dogs as well. Mine are from a no kill shelter. A litter was brought in by an older lady. She could not raise them.

Hope this helps a bit.

Sam
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 4:35:29 AM EDT
[#3]




Quoted:

Family wants a puppy. I want a GSD, but the wife says too big. So we have to look for a smaller dog. Have been looking at Austrailian Shepards but have never had one before and don't know anything about them. What can you tell me about the breed? How big do they get? Good family dog? Sociable? Good protector? Smart? easy to train? High Strung? History of illnesses or disease or prone to certain types...etc. Give me the pro's and con's. I've got to be able to sell it to the wife to get her buy in..... She wants to get a Shitzu.... I'd have to turn in my man card if we got one of those. (No offense intended to those owners of Shitzu's... just not my kind of dog) Help me out here...


I had one for about 10 years. She was a great dog. Very sociable, great family type dog. She was about 50lbs.  Extremely intelligent and excellent watch dogs. Mine would alert on anything out of the norm, but wasn't too aggressive towards strangers.



Very high energy and I wouldn't recommend the breed for apartment dwellers or folks that can't exercise them. They are working dogs and need something to do.

Link Posted: 10/29/2010 4:51:01 AM EDT
[#4]
In the USA specific breedings or bloodlines have become more important when choosing a dog than the breed itself. This is because the primary breed registry (the AKC) does not require dogs to pass any testing before breeding.

What this means to Joe Public dog buyer is that just because a dog is a particular breed it may or may not have the traits the breed is supposed to have. For example the AKC will paper a German Shepherd Dog even if the dog is shy or fearful. The AKC will paper a Labrador Retriever that can’t swim. In the USA you can get a “purebred” Dobermann that won’t bite. Etc, Etc.

So, choosing a dog in this country means you must find a breeder who is producing the kind of dog you want. With the AKC registry being what it is, just because you hear about someone else’s dog of a certain breed doesn’t mean that if you buy the same breed of dog it will act the same.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 4:53:35 AM EDT
[#5]
check to see if you have a Aussie rescue in your area, these organizations usually check the dog out for temperament around kids and people, before allowing adoption.  I have one, she's great. smart, barks at strangers but stops when you tell her to, easy to house train, they are usually very good around kids and very protective.  Have a lot of energy for running around and will wear a kid out.  My 11 year old niece will throw a ball until her arm falls off and the dog will chase it forever. My sister has had at least two aussies for the past 30 years and thinks they are the best. good for a jogging buddy, walking buddy, etc. some shed worse than others.  mines been a blast to have around and the best companion you could ask for.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:01:23 AM EDT
[#6]
We had one and she was great. Very smart. Lots of energy. Make sure you exercise the dog. She would stay near my daughter all the time. I guess that was the herd instinct. She would alert on anything out of the ordinary but would not attack. I think she would bite if she felt someone was threatening our daughter. We got her from a breader in Georgia. If you are near Atlanta let me know and I will try to find the info. We had to interview with the breader to make sure we were right for the dog.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:01:40 AM EDT
[#7]
My son has one that they literally found roaming the interstate highway during a storm.  Turned out it had heartworms (probably why it was "dropped") but was young enough to treat and, apparently, cured.

The dog is quite energetic but has been easily trainable.  Seems very well mannered but my son, and his wife, have no small children.  It stands about 14" from backbone.

My son took to the dog because the two bosses each own several AS's and love them.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:06:00 AM EDT
[#8]
It's "shepherd", not "shepard".
I have an Aussie.  She's 10 now, and you'd never know it.  She is the most awesome dog I've ever had the pleasure to know.





I've met quite a few Aussies and they all share similar characteristics.





They are friendly,  but very loyal to their human pack.   They DO need to be socialized to other people and other dogs at an early age,


but that applies to most dogs.    If they're raised in isolation from other dogs, they will have a little trouble getting along with other dogs


when they are introduced to them later in life.  





They have excellent memories.





They are extremely smart,  and highly trainable.
They are very good with children.
Highly recommended!
CJ
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:09:50 AM EDT
[#9]
Quoted:
It's "shepherd", not "shepard".


I have an Aussie.  She's 10 now, and you'd never know it.  She is the most awesome dog I've ever had the pleasure to know.

I've met quite a few Aussies and they all share similar characteristics.

They are friendly,  but very loyal to their human pack.   They DO need to be socialized to other people and other dogs at an early age,
but that applies to most dogs.    If they're raised in isolation from other dogs, they will have a little trouble getting along with other dogs
when they are introduced to them later in life.  

They have excellent memories.

They are extremely smart,  and highly trainable.


They are very good with children.


Highly recommended!



CJ


Hey, what happened to your membership?? Renew man!
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:10:35 AM EDT
[#10]
One useless bit of trivia is that if memory serves, Austrialian Shepards are not Austrailian, but an American breed.  Don't know if they're official recognized yet by the AKC.  Its not unusual to see one with one blue eye, and another brown or black or whatever.  We see a lot of them around here, as they're popular with the horse folks and are good with livestock.  Very smart and protective––probably as least as much as a GSD.  Those that have them, love 'em.  The only dog that ever came after me with malicious intent was a Aussie.  I was carrying a saddle at the time, and cold cocked him with the saddle. I think they'd be a fine family dog, but need to be "supervised" when around non-family or strangers.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:22:03 AM EDT
[#11]
Quoted:
One useless bit of trivia is that if memory serves, Austrialian Shepards are not Austrailian, but an American breed.  Don't know if they're official recognized yet by the AKC.  Its not unusual to see one with one blue eye, and another brown or black or whatever.  We see a lot of them around here, as they're popular with the horse folks and are good with livestock.  Very smart and protective––probably as least as much as a GSD.  Those that have them, love 'em.  The only dog that ever came after me with malicious intent was a Aussie.  I was carrying a saddle at the time, and cold cocked him with the saddle. I think they'd be a fine family dog, but need to be "supervised" when around non-family or strangers.


Every one I've ever seen has two different eye colors.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:24:26 AM EDT
[#12]
Family has had several, they are one of the smartest breads there are. Like others have said, you better be able to give them lots of attention and work. Also they are fantastic guard dogs but maybe not attack dogs.

BIG PROBLEM IN THIS COUNTRY––––there has been a lot of inbreeding with the dogs in this country and it turns up about 8 years into the bread. They have lots of unusual problems crop up such as blindness at a earlier than normal stage. I forget the exact disease but you have to remove the eye when it goes bad. They also are very prone to cancer and tumors. Another big problem is epilepsy with the bread.

What this means is you will find a very loyal, sociable, lovable, smart dog that you will most likely have to put down in 10 years, when the life expectancy should be around 15 if the breading had been done correctly.

If I could find a line with proven very low problems it would be the type of dog I would get in a split second.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:28:26 AM EDT
[#13]
I had one growing up (he was put to sleep 3 years ago,  age 13. ),  and I couldn't ask for a more loyal dog.
Very easy to train,  good with kids,  wary of strangers (provided good audible alerts,  would growl at people approaching that he didn't recognise).  Loved going on walks.  

The only downside at all,  is the amount of shedding.

If I'm ever in a position that I can have a dog again,  I will look at the Aussie first.  
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:33:25 AM EDT
[#14]
Best dog you will ever have!!  I've had mine for 9 yrs and although this type of dog is a working dog, mine was raised indoors.  My dog has never been "officially" trained, but if you see her you would think she was.  Great running partner as well.  Did plenty of 5 & 10k runs with me.  Great with kids, and overall protector of the family.  Life expectancy for this breed is about 12 yrs, so I really dread the day she's gone.  I don't think I will find another as smart as she is.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 5:56:55 AM EDT
[#15]
I love the breed, but no for everyone. My sister has had her share of terrorist Aussies and I ended up with one. I first got a male from a show dog line that is the perfect dog, though shedding is hardly tolerable. He's 14 now and I'm not looking forward to the inevitable. I also have a 5 y/o Las Rocossa (sp?) working blood line that is a holy terror. Extremely hyper until he was about 2, and now viciously aggressive toward me and the other Aussie at certain times involving food or being out in "his yard". They shed like a son of a bitch and I won't have another one probably for this reason alone. They NEED to have a job, or they will find one. They are awesome at security and usually great family / kid pets.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 6:02:52 AM EDT
[#16]
A great breed....we have 3 and they are great dogs. Smart, loyal, and highly protective of thier human and thier territory. They require ALOT of excercise/playtime and the only

downside I have experienced is that being a herding dog, they like to "herd" things....you, kids, and are hell on outside cats.

Heres Dakota


Uploaded with ImageShack.us

Heres Cochise and Cheyenne


Uploaded with ImageShack.us
I love my Aussies
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 6:35:42 AM EDT
[#17]
Here's my Aussi pup at about 7 months.








Link Posted: 10/29/2010 6:35:57 AM EDT
[#18]
We have one that is eleven now. Very intelligent, high energey, high alert to everything outside of the house. You really need some room for this dog and it helps alot if you can run them a few miles a few times a week.
My dog has tried to heard kids and cats which is very funny to see. Very loyal and protective of the immideate family but suspicious of everyone else.
Heavy coat needs brushing often.
My dog would go over a six foot stockade fence bark at the neighbor for cutting his lawn and being too close to 'her ' yard. Then she would go back over the fence. So I would get home in the evening and she would be in the back yard and I would think that she had been there all day.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 12:39:53 PM EDT
[#19]
We inherited one from friends who moved out of state.  Cassie has been the most loyal and well behaved dog that we have ever owned.  We have two children (13 years old and 19 years old) and my wife watches children in our home and I would trust Cassie around any baby or child.  Did I also mention that she is very smart?  

The only problem that we had with her is that apparently a UPS driver kicked her one time and now she HATES UPS drivers.  Oh well.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 12:44:17 PM EDT
[#20]


Max when he was a pup. Great dog, lost him at 5 yo though
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 12:56:01 PM EDT
[#21]

Link Posted: 10/29/2010 1:03:52 PM EDT
[#22]
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 1:09:09 PM EDT
[#23]
Great dogs, very friendly, very smart.  



Another breed to consider should be the Shetland Sheepdog aka Sheltie.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 2:09:23 PM EDT
[#24]
I picked up a mini Aussie / Corgi mix along the side of the road.  The Corgi part hardly shows at all except that his hair is a lot shorter and he ain't got no tail.

He also took the visible and breed traits of the Aussie and left the Corgi at home.  He herds me all the time and loves to run and play.  I didn't know that the breed was made miniature and can only think that should lead to trouble but up to now he has been a jewel.

Link Posted: 10/29/2010 2:27:26 PM EDT
[#25]





Quoted:



Hyper, very noisy, they bark a lot, they are herders, if you have kids they will herd the kids, which quite often includes nipping at their heels.  They need a strong pack leader or they can be very troublesome.



Not always true.





My Aussie doesn't bark without good reason.   However, she does think that a squirrel or opossum within sight of her territory is good reason.





Fortunately, she does obey instructions to shut up and get inside.
I would not characterized my buddy as "hyper".   Quite the contrary, she's as willing to take it easy as most dogs I've known.  





She IS the most laid-back Aussie I've ever met, but I've never met one that was any trouble at all.   Never had any trouble with nipping at


your heels or showing the slightest shred of aggression toward a human being other than engaging defensive on an intruder.  That's


when I first heard her BIG bark.   For a moment I thought I had a 200 pound dog!
CJ






 
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 2:40:42 PM EDT
[#26]
Hyper sometimes, shed a lot, damn smart and eager to learn.


Wally, he's almost 2 now. Not sure if he's full blooded or a mutt, but he's mostly Aussie if anything.

Link Posted: 10/29/2010 2:43:16 PM EDT
[#27]


We have a Border Collie/Aussie mix.  He's a great dog.  Not that much more hyper than most 6mo old puppies.  Very smart and good with our kids.  We've just started training classes and they've made him a much better dog.  Very glad we got him.

















Link Posted: 10/29/2010 2:44:21 PM EDT
[#28]
PS: We have a 4 yr old, 2 yr old and a 5mo old.  All boys.  He's great with the kids.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 2:44:36 PM EDT
[#29]
E N E R G Y  L E V E L

H I G H
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 2:46:57 PM EDT
[#30]
I'd go for the GSD.  We've got both, and although the Aussie is a GREAT dog, they're extremely protective, require lots of attention and exercise, and just a little crazed.  They're almost over-protective of whoever they bond with, to the point where they'll be aggressive to others - even family members - if they think you're talking to their "chosen one" in too loud a voice, etc.  A GSD can be a good protector without all the baggage.

A Shitzu???  I had a cross between a Shitzu and a Bichon Frise.  It was a genuine Bicho-Shit...  BWAHHHH HAA HA I kill me.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:13:45 PM EDT
[#31]


He haz a cool nose yo
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:20:30 PM EDT
[#32]
Had a one mixed with Rott. Best dog I have ever had. When I went to look at her at a foster home, all the dogs got out the door into the front yard. She was the only one who came when called. All the rest had to be rounded up. At first I didn't like her looks, her hair was kinda weird ( between the puppy hair and adult, and seemed to be bald around her eyes). After a bit her coat filled in. I don't have any kids, but my nieces and nephews would all be herded up any time I left the room. I would come back to find the dog standing there all proud of what she had done. She never went to the bathroom in the house and held it for three days while we moved. I did not know she would not take a crap on the leash, as we rarely had her on one.

do it, you won't regret it. Besides a dogs behavior is related to the owners training.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:30:16 PM EDT
[#33]
Best dog we had was Aussie and Collie mix. He was a good watch dog.  The meter reader asked my Mom if she would be home once. she asked why?" The dog." she said"He wouldn't hurt anybody" . The meter reader said "Lady you don't know what He's like when your not home"
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:35:17 PM EDT
[#34]
I believe a very qualified Aussie breeder is a member here, I'll see if I can dig up the info.





ETA:



Member name & Mod: Muschelig  Website http://www.shalakoaussies.com/



Aussie thread in the pet forum:



http://www.ar15.com/forums/topic.html?b=1&f=154&t=1037166&light=

Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:41:02 PM EDT
[#35]







Quoted:




I believe a very qualified Aussie breeder is a member here, I'll see if I can dig up the info.




Muschelig is the Mod of the Pets forum and is extremely knowledgeable when it comes to Aussies, she has had several beautiful litters.



Our Aussie:


















 
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:42:47 PM EDT
[#36]
I had one as a kid, dumb as rocks.  finally ran out in traffic and got killed, after about the 10th time of trying to chase and bite car tires.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:45:10 PM EDT
[#37]



Quoted:


I had one as a kid, dumb as rocks.  finally ran out in traffic and got killed, after about the 10th time of trying to chase and bite car tires.






My aussie has never shown the slightest proclivity towards chasing cars.



I saw that you had posted in this thread and just had to read it, knowing it was going to be some negative comment. Nailed it.



 
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:48:10 PM EDT
[#38]



Quoted:





Quoted:

I had one as a kid, dumb as rocks.  finally ran out in traffic and got killed, after about the 10th time of trying to chase and bite car tires.






My aussie has never shown the slightest proclivity towards chasing cars.



I saw that you had posted in this thread and just had to read it, knowing it was going to be some negative comment. Nailed it.

 


just telling the truth...sheesh.



 
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:56:33 PM EDT
[#39]
Stand your ground and hold out for a GSD, your wife will come around and one day thank you for it. It will be fun for you as you watch her realization that German Shepherds are the very best that dogs can aspire to be.
For full disclosure, I currently have a full blooded red merle Australian Shepherd. My wife and I found her abandoned out in the country about two years ago.

We named her Alice (after Alice Springs – a raggedy arsed town where I once lived) The Aussie is intelligent, but high strung, energetic and sweet, but in all honesty, she’s just a dog.
GSD’s are just so much more….

I've had GSD's in Australia, at home in the UK and IRE and over here in the states, make sure you get one with German or European bloodlines, stay away from the American bloodlines and you'll be amazed at how quick your wife fallas in love with the breed.
Link Posted: 10/29/2010 3:57:21 PM EDT
[#40]
This is our dog Snuzz.  Great loyal dog and loves to swim.  Only problem is she hates guns and thunderstorms.  





Close Join Our Mail List to Stay Up To Date! Win a FREE Membership!

Sign up for the ARFCOM weekly newsletter and be entered to win a free ARFCOM membership. One new winner* is announced every week!

You will receive an email every Friday morning featuring the latest chatter from the hottest topics, breaking news surrounding legislation, as well as exclusive deals only available to ARFCOM email subscribers.


By signing up you agree to our User Agreement. *Must have a registered ARFCOM account to win.
Top Top