Miniature Australian Shepherd Dogs
If you’re an apartment dweller who loves boisterous Australian Shepherds, take a look at Miniature Australian Shepherds, which deliver all of the Aussie’s easygoing, dependable playfulness in a much smaller package.
Miniature Australian Shepherd Pictures
- 20 - 40 pounds
- 13 - 18 inches
Ideal Human Companions
- Active singles
- Outdoorsy types
- City dwellers
Miniature Australian Shepherds on Dogster
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What They Are Like to Live With
When it comes to their love of play, Miniature Australian Shepherds never really outgrow the puppy stage. They are superb with children—the more active, the better. But they have a gentle nature that prevents playtime from ever getting rough. They are also eager to work: Give them a job and they’ll finish it with loads of energy to spare.
Miniature Australian Shepherds have excellent guarding instincts and a strong sense of loyalty to their families. They will definitely cause a ruckus if anything suspicious happens around the house.
Things You Should Know
Left alone indoors for too long, Miniature Australian Shepherds can go a little batty. Take them out for a long run as often as possible—the activity and mental stimulation will result in a very content Miniature Australian Shepherd.
A healthy Miniature Australian Shepherd can live as long as 13 years. Common health issues include hip dysplasia and cataracts. Some may be born deaf, so test puppies early. Miniature Australian Shepherds don’t shed very much, and they only need occasional brushing.
Miniature Australian Shepherd History
The modern Australian Shepherd has no real connection to Australia. Originating in the Basque region (between Spain and France) as a working dog and sheepherder, the breed drew the name “Australian Shepherd” because many of the Basque shepherds came from Australia. North American breeders developed Miniature Australian Shepherds from a group of small Aussies. Their intention was to create a more compact version of the dog without sacrificing its dependable character and keen instincts. They succeeded with flying colors.
The Look of a Miniature Australian Shepherd
Miniature Australian Shepherds are a hardy and rustic breed—a little longer than tall. They have slightly rounded heads, medium-length muzzles and almond-shaped eyes. Their ears are triangular and set high, their chests are deep and their tails are straight. They have a medium-length, weather-resistant coat that’s slightly wavy, creating a little bit of a mane. Like their larger cousins, Miniature Australian Shepherds can be found in black, blue merle, red merle, solid-red or red with white and/or tan markings. Overall, Miniature Australian Shepherds have a rugged but cuddly look.
Talk About Miniature Australian Shepherds
A smart and playful companion
I have had Sophie since spring of 2009, and she has brought an amazing amount of joy into my life. I was warned that she would be somewhat difficult for a first-time dog owner, but that hasn't been the case at all.
Sophie is energetic, but she is an indoor (duplex with a small backyard)dog and does just fine as long as we get our daily walk. She was just a little destructive as a puppy, but has absolutely been a dream to train, since she is such a fast learner and eager to please.
I don't have any children, but when she meets them on our walks or at the pet store, she absolutely loves them and is so sweet and gentle, even if they pet a little rough, tug on her ears, or do any of the usual kid stuff! Sometimes, however, she is a bit cautious among adult strangers, especially men (probably because I'm female and the only person she lives with).
Overall, I can't imagine having a more perfectly balanced dog in terms of obedience, intelligence, energy, and loyalty. I strongly recommend this breed for anyone with limited space who wants a loyal, playful companion who also happens to be a genius! If you get a Mini-Aussie, lots of love and good times await you!
~Ana T., owner of a Miniature Australian Shepherd
Make time for training with this breed!
I have a Miniature Australian Shepherd named Luka. She is the sweetest soul I have ever met, always wanting to give kisses and play with anyone who comes near her. When she sees someone new her entire body wiggles, and she is just as enthusiastic when seeing someone she knows and likes! Living with Luka is like having a permanent sidekick. She is always following anyone around. When everyone is busy, however, she entertains herself with her toys (she can even play "soccer" and fetch with herself!). If you are thinking about getting this breed, make sure you have plenty of time to train your dog properly! They are very easy to train, but when not trained, they can be a little crazy!
~Alicia T., owner of a Miniature Australian Shepherd
Affectionate and puppylike
I have a 7-year-old male Miniature Australian Shepherd named Buddy. He is my first childhood dog, and I love the little guy to death! He always wants to give kisses and love you.
They are extremely smart too. He learns quickly. He gets extremely excited and jump as soon as anyone says "Walkie" or "Dog Park." And if he is all dirty from being outside, all I have to do is put a towel down in front of the door, and as soon as I let him in he lies down on the towel ready for a rub down!
I love my dog with a passion. I really think this is one of the best breeds, and a perfect size. Everyone thinks he is a puppy, because these dogs stay cute and small forever! Also, if he has done something bad, you can tell. His facial and body expression tell you everything.
~Amanda B., owner of a Miniature Australian Shepherd
A lovely, devoted companion, but NOT an apartment dog
My Mini-Aussie, Rethy, is my service dog. She is completely devoted, my shadow. I started obedience training early, then went through public access and work/task training before graduating her.
Several things she has taught me: Mini-Aussies need lots of exercise, running, and mental challenges. Like their larger counterparts, keeping them indoors without a "job" of some sort can make them nutty. Many people who meet me say their mini-Aussies are hyper, why is Rethy so calm? It's because she runs every day. Her life has purpose. She knows that I'm her leader AND that I won't let anything harm her. She not only works for me and is with me 24/7, she does agility on weekends (noncompetitive, no pressures) and periodically participates in advanced training classes.
I have never had such a smart, funny, playful, and devoted dog -- AND I have never put so much time into researching a breed, exercising, training, and challenging a dog to make sure all her needs are met.
~Ellen M, owner of a Miniature Australian Shepherd, Rethy