Taking care of your dog and keeping him in good health is one of the responsibilities of any family. To succeed in this mission, it is essential to know your faithful companion in order to better understand his needs. The Australian Shepherd, unique in its coat and character, is the focus of our attention today.
Learn more about the Australian Shepherd
Also known as the Aussie, this shepherd was born in the Basque Country. Following the various migratory movements, it is first found in Australian territory, land of sheep breeding. Around 1900, he was found in America where his agility and his ability to herd cattle, inherited from his time in Australia, were greatly noticed. He was named Australian Shepherd, in reference to his adopted land. The breed was developed by American ranchers and farmers, who were captivated by its alertness and perceptiveness.
A shepherd dog by nature, it reappeared in France in 1980, where it was officially recognized in 2007.
The Australian Shepherd is recognizable by its coat, which can be black, red, blue merle or single-colored merle. It offers a great variety of colors with the insertion of the white color. We can admire the Australian shepherd blue merle, red merle, black tricolor and red tricolor, remarkable for the presence of silver tufts white and tan. The blue merle Australian shepherd is one of the most widespread in Europe. The shepherd’s tail is long or short while its ears are triangular, set high on its skull and drooping.
The male measures between 51 and 58 cm for a weight between 22 and 35 kg, while the female measures between 46 and 53 cm with a weight that varies between 19 and 26 kg.
It is a very active, energetic and tireless dog. It is perfectly suited for long-distance activities such as surveillance and herding.
In an urban environment, he adapts easily to life in an apartment, but he feels the need to expend his energy regularly with his family, around activities such as jogging, or cycling. Known for its endurance and speed, this dog excels in dog sports such as agility, flyball, canicross and frisbee.
Intelligent and intuitive, it understands and assimilates very quickly and is able to decide: these are the qualities that make it an excellent working dog, able to guard and lead a herd. He feels the need to be useful, is tolerant towards other animals and supports very well the cohabitation, provided that this one starts from his young age.
He is curious, gentle and playful with children, as long as they respect him. He hates solitude, he is very endearing and truly affectionate, a little too much so in truth. He can be sticky at times. He is not made to keep an apartment or a house, he is suspicious in the presence of strangers and he barks when an unusual situation arises. Its life expectancy varies between 12 and 15 years.
The Australian Shepherd’s diet
Knowing the behavior of your Australian Shepherd allows you to correctly evaluate its nutritional needs and provide it with a diet adapted to its energy expenditure. It is important to pace your dog’s life and help him acquire good habits by keeping fixed times for his meals. However, it is important to take into account his age, weight and condition (neutered dog), the environment in which he lives, and the diseases to which he is exposed.
The Australian shepherd puppy will be fed with puppy food, meticulously chosen to provide him with the essential elements for his growth and the constitution of his bones. He’ll get three servings of kibble a day until he’s six months old. After that, he can be given two portions a day until he is twelve months old. It’s a good idea to hydrate your puppy’s kibble if he’s just been weaned.
From the age of twelve months, his diet will consist of adult dog food in one or two meals. When the puppy is subjected to a change of environment or owner, it is important to make a gradual dietary transition over a period of ten days to avoid stress, which can lead to nutritional deficiencies.
An active male Australian Shepherd needs an average of 300 to 400 grams of kibble per day compared to 250 to 300 grams for the female. These rations can be divided into two portions and enriched according to the dog’s physical activity. It is important to remember that the portion for a livestock dog will be more abundant than that of a family dog.
Kibbles have the advantage of being economical, easy to store and prevent tartar build-up on the dog’s teeth. Specially designed by specialists, they contain the necessary nutrients, in sufficient proportions according to the life stage of the dog. Finally, they are the ideal solution when traveling. It is essential to choose premium kibbles, rich in proteins, to compensate for energy losses. A bowl of clean water or a fountain near his meal will quench his thirst.
For your Australian Shepherd puppy, opt for complete, protein-rich kibbles to ensure he grows well. Once he has become an adult, kibbles specifically adapted to his weight, age and physical activity will suit his harmonious development, offering him protection against pathologies.