The kids have been nagging and driving you crazy. “Mommmmm, Pleeeeeze can we get a dog? Pleeeeeze?” As any parent knows, nagging works, so you have been researching different options and breeds, and you have decided on a Mini Australian Shepherd. But you only have a small yard. How big do Mini Australian Shepherds get? They are smaller than their ancestors, the Australian Shepherd, but bigger than any of the toy breeds.
Where Do Mini Australian Shepherds come from?
The Mini Australian Shepherd has an interesting background. They are descendants of the Australian Shepherd, and originated in – you guessed it – Australia. However, you may be surprised to learn that they are no longer actually considered to be an exclusively Australian dog, and are actually bred mainly in the USA, in California.
Are Mini Australian Shepherds good as family pets?
These dogs were originally bred as farm dogs and were used for herding cattle. They are highly intelligent and were good working dogs. But the breed has evolved over time.
Mini Australian Shepherds are very playful dogs and absolutely adore romping and running around. They have a wonderful temperament and are lovable and loyal. Therefore they are excellent with children and are one of the most perfect dog breeds to keep as a family pet.
Are Mini Australian Shepherds very active dogs?
These dogs are highly energetic. They need a lot of attention and plenty of exercise. They should be taken for long walks – a minimum half an hour – at least twice or three times a day. They also enjoy playing games such as running after a ball and jumping up to catch things.
Mini Australian Shepherds love company. If left alone all day, they may bark incessantly, because they are lonely. They are quite destructive and can do a lot of damage when left to their own devices for most of the day.
For this reason, they are not the most ideal dogs for people who work and are away from home all day. No-one wants to arrive home after a long, hard day to find that Charlie has completely destroyed the new couch because he was bored! Despite his small size, Charlie could potentially wreck your whole apartment.
How big do they get?
As with almost all breeds of dogs, the Mini Australian Shepherd female is smaller than her male counterpart. Females will usually grow to a height of between 13 -17 inches, while a fully grown male will probably be between 15 – 20 inches tall. They can weigh anything from 25 to 40 pounds.
Do Mini Australian Shepherds have health issues?
A Mini Australian Shepherd can be expected to live for 12 – 15 years. They are prone to certain health problems. A common difficulty for this breed is hip trouble. They often suffer from hip dysplasia. This is a condition in which the ball and socket of the hip joint do not fit together properly, causing them to grind harshly, rather than sliding easily against each other. This causes severe pain with movement.
Cataracts of the eyes are also a common problem with Mini Australian Shepherds as they age. As with humans, the cataract is a cloudy film that forms over the lens of the eye, and over a period of time, it causes vision loss.
Do They need a lot of grooming?
These dogs are long-haired, usually having a double-layered coat. As a result, they shed a lot. Charlie will need frequent brushing with a good quality dog brush to ensure that his coat remains in top condition and does not become matted.
These playful pups love rolling around on the ground, so their hair tends to knot easily. You will want to brush the knots out immediately because they can be very difficult to remove if they are left for a long time, and sometimes have to be cut out carefully with sharp scissors.
Mini Australian Shepherds usually love water, so it is fairly easy to bathe them. This is just as well because they can get quite dirty with all that running around outdoors. A good guide is to bathe Charlie about once a month if he plays and runs around outside every day. If your Charlie is mostly an indoor doggie, once every two months will probably be sufficient to keep him clean and healthy.
Even though Mini Australian Shepherds don’t usually get very big, they can be quite a lot of work. However, they make wonderful pets.
Credits: Photo by Jeremy Tremblay on Unsplash