Australian Cattle Dog

by AboutAustralia

The Australian Cattle Dog is intelligent, loyal, and hard working.

The Australian Cattle Dog - Overview

The Australian Cattle Dog is intelligent, loyal, and hard working. They have been bred for life on the land and their main purpose is to assist a farmer to round up his cattle. This can be a daunting task considering Australian Cattle Stations are measured not by the acre or hectare, but due to the sheer size of them they are measured by square kilometres.

A fit and healthy cattle dog will have no trouble running and herding cattle for 6-8 hours per day. It goes without saying that a dog with this level of physical exertion will need to be well cared for and fed a balance diet to maintain maximum nutrition and health.

The Australian cattle dog comes in two varieties: blue and red and this refers the color of their coat. The blue is the more prevalent of the two and can range from light blue-grey to dark blue-grey over the entire coat. There may also be patches of white on either the blue or red coat. The red coat also varies from light red-grey to dark red-grey.

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Australian Cattle Dog Puppies

Like any puppy an Australian cattle dog will take time to grow up.  The first 2 years are going to be a challenge but at the same time it is your perfect opportunity to do some early puppy training and progress to more advanced training. There is almost no limit to what you can teach an Australian cattle dog. They are highly intelligent animals.

Puppy training can be fun, and it shouldn’t be looked at as a chore. Your best option is to do it regularly for short periods leading up to longer time frames as the dog gets a bit older and learns more of your commands.

Before buying this breed, remember that they have been bred to run long distances. It is in their bloodline to exercise strenuously and they absolutely love to do so. If you can’t, or don’t intend to make the effort to exercise your dog, you should seriously consider another less active breed.

You should also consider that because they are so intelligent, they are likely to become bored, and may get up to mischief like digging holes under your fence to get out into the big wide world for some excitement and to stimulate their mind. They are just doing what comes naturally, so be prepared. This can be avoided of course by regular exercise, an interesting environment and contact with humans.

R. I. P. Bluey

I once owned a red cattle dog myself. Her name was 'Bluey', and she was the most loving dog I have ever been fortunate enough to spend time with. Sadly she passed away in June of 2009, and I miss her still. Although I didn’t have any cattle for her to round up, she did love to run at full speed along the beach chasing sea birds that had landed for a rest. It was her favourite thing to do, apart from riding in the back of my ute. I would like to dedicate this article to Blueys memory.

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Updated: 02/05/2012, AboutAustralia
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