Aussie FAQs
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Australian Shepherd Trivia & FAQs

Q.  What is the best wormer for my Aussie?

A.  Make sure that you and your vet realize that the Australian Shepherd is considered to be a Collie type breed and that they are extremely sensitive to the drug, "Ivermectin".  This drug can cause reactions in the Aussie severe enough to kill them before they can receive treatment.  I personally know of several horror stories of expensive show dogs being given Ivermectin and dying as a result.  To all you horse people ~ keep your syringes of horse wormer away from your dogs ~ the difference in price could cost you your dog's life.

Q.  Do the Australian Shepherds make good house dogs?

A.  Aussies have what most consider to be a high energy level and most need a job (herding, Frisbee, flyball, agility, utility) to be happy.  This confuses some people in thinking that they don't make good house dogs.  I've found that my dogs have an endless amount of energy outside, constantly running, playing, herding, etc.  But once they come into the house they plop down in their spots and become very quiet dogs.  I've also discovered that many of the smaller breeds of dogs are much more energetic & demanding in the house than my Aussies have ever been.  Remember too, that the Aussies natural instinct is to herd ~ and they will consider cars fair game and HAVE to be taught against this very deadly activity! ~ so be forewarned.

Q Are the Aussies good with small children?

A.  Aussies, like many breeds, that are raised with children are excellent with them.  They will become very protective of these children, so you would need to know your dog and his behavior around someone that he perceives is harming that child.  Aussies that are strong working dogs that haven't been raised around children will sometimes try herding children as they run in the yard.  ALWAYS watch any dog that has puppies - the mothering instinct is to guard and protect those puppies from EVERY one.

I've always said that having dogs will keep me healthy (mentally & physically).  I take long walks with them in the fields and woods that neighbor my land.  In the winter, I do cheat and ride the golf cart a lot of times to exercise them, but I'd much rather walk.  When I still had trail riding horses (instead of show horses), I would ride these fields instead.
The Australian Shepherd probably originated in the Basque region of the Pyrenees, mountains between Spain and France, but was dubbed the Australian Shepherd because of its association with Basque shepherds who came into the United States from Australia in the 1800s.

 

The Australian Shepherd was initially called by many names, including Spanish Shepherds, Pastor Dogs, Bob-Tails, Blues, Heelers, New Mexican Shepherds and California Shepherd.
In 1989, The Australian National Kennel Club granted permission for the Australian Shepherd Club of America (ASCA) to use the name "Australian Shepherd" so long as it was always made clear the breed had not been developed in Australia. 

 

The Australian Shepherd is an intelligent dog with strong herding and guarding instincts. He is an agile dog who has the stamina to work all day. One distinguishing characteristic of the Australian Shepherd is its tail, which is usually a naturally bobbed tail or it may be docked.  The Australian Shepherd is an intelligent, active dog who requires regular exercise.  He is good natured and even tempered, although he may be initially shy with strangers. He makes a loyal companion. 
The Aussie is considered to be a collie type breed and they are sensitive to the drug Ivermectin - it can kill them - DO NOT use this drug as a wormer for the Australian Shepherd.

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