You ask of my companions. Hills, sir, and the sundown, and a dog as large as myself that my father bought me. They are better than human beings, because they know but do not tell. ~Emily Dickinson
Hi to all,
Those of us who love Australian Shepherds can't imagine a more perfect breed of dog. Unfortunately, the very characteristics we value in these dogs make them unsuitable for some owners. This is why I am posting this blog entry. Recently I had inquiries about my dogs and I had to tell the folks that they just were not suited for this type of dog.. Folks please consider carefully if your lifestyle can accommodate the type of dog you choose, exspecially with the exuberance of a Aussie.
Here are some breed specifics of the Aussie;
Moderate sized, intelligent, all-purpose stock dog. Many Aussies today still do the work they were bred for, and even those that have never seen sheep or cattle usually have a strong herding instinct. This means that Aussies need fenced yards and leashes, as the temptation to herd dogs, children, and traffic can simply overwhelm them. Being bred to work hard all day means that most Aussies are not content to be couch potatoes, Being bred to work hard all day means that most Aussies are not content to be couch potatoes, although Aussies have individual characters and some are more sedate and quiet-natured than others. For the most part, however, these are high energy dogs who need a purpose in their lives-a job as it were. Owners must be committed to give these dogs the time and attention they require through play and training, for as with any dog, undirected energy can turn towards destructive behaviors such as digging and chewing. Running, jumping, and rough-housing are all a part of being a normal Aussie.
The intelligence of these dogs, necessary to out-think and control livestock, can be detrimental when left untrained and unused. Aussies are quite capable of out-thinking their owners. Obedience training is highly recommended as a means of teaching owners how to channel the typical Aussie's innate desire to please into appropriate behaviors.
Although many Aussies are friendly with everyone, the Australian Shepherd as a breed tends to be somewhat reserved and cautious around strangers. With Aussies of this nature, owners should encourage the dog to meet people but not force encounters. Aussies are often quite protective of their family and property, a desirable trait in some situations but not acceptable in others, and some dogs never accept strangers. As with all dogs, poorly socialized Aussies may become aggressive without proper training. This is so very true, I tell visiters this always-->My saying is" You must reapply with my Aussie's every time you come to my home. My dogs are not mean, But they make you reapply with them before you can come in.. My beloved Nick was this way too! So a un-socialized Aussie can be a BIG problem!
Aussies are perfect for people wishing to own a highly trainable, versatile, super-smart dog that can work/play "till the cows come home". If you have the time and commitment for an Aussie, you won't be disappointed. These special dogs deserve special owners. Their loyalty, drive, character, and whimsical sense of humor place them in a class by themselves.
So that's the long and short of it.. Please always chose carefully when getting a pet..
It is a life long commitment..
Puppy kisses to all