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Types of Australian Shepherd Dogs

Updated on December 30, 2015

The Australian Shepherd, or Aussie, is becoming a very popular dog breed in America. This dog is well known for its agility and high performance in dog sports such as Frisbee and Fly-ball. Likewise this dog is also known for it's eagerness to please it's owner and being easy to train due to their high intelligence. Because Aussies are easy to train they are often used as therapy dogs, rescue dogs, and are classically used as herding dogs.

Size

The Australian Shepherd is a medium to large sized breed.

  • Males stand between 20-23 inches.
  • Females stand between 18-21 inches.
  • It is important not to overfeed you Aussie and to give it proper exercise because Australian Shepherds have a tendency to become overweight easily.

Temperament


Australian Shepherds have one of the best temperaments you will find among any dog breed.

Common traits of Australian Shepherds include: Protective, intelligent, good-natured, loyal, active, kind and attentive.

Four Standard Australian Shepherd Colors

Black Aussies

Black Australian Shepherds can appear all black or have either a white or copper trim.

A black Australian Shepherd with white paws
A black Australian Shepherd with white paws

Red Aussies

Red Australian Shepherds come in a variety of shades of red. Some are so dark red that they can even be mistaken for a black Australian Shepherd. Red Australian Shepherds can be all red or have either or both white or copper trim.

An all Red Aussie playing Frisbee.
An all Red Aussie playing Frisbee.

Blue Merle

The Merle gene causes a mixing of blue and black (or red and tan in the case of red Merles) patches in the coat, this pattern is always individual and unique to the dog. This also applies to red Merles. Blue Merle Australian Shepherds include a mix of blue, white, tan, and white coats. Blue Merle Australian Shepherds tend to be the most recognized type of Aussie and most desirable puppies from a litter which is perhaps due their striking, ice blue eyes and beautiful coat markings.

A Blue Merle Australian Shepherd
A Blue Merle Australian Shepherd

Red Merle Aussies

Red Merle Australian Shepherds have a patchwork coat of any combination of red, white, black and/or tan. Red Merle Australian Shepherds typically have brown colored eyes, although rarely the do have blue eyes. Just as with Blue Merles, Red Merles are very desirable among people looking to adopt an Australian Shepherd due to their beautiful coat markings.

A full grown Red Merle Aussie sitting down.
A full grown Red Merle Aussie sitting down.

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