All About Aussies & Us
Purchasing an Aussie from our Family
*We spend a minimum of 8-10 weeks with your new puppy before they are placed in your home-In the process of watching our pups grow and loving our pups- I am home- My job is to be with your pups everyday- I work hard to train them to potty on command on the grass- No accidents on the patio by the time they go home- We have a unique way of acclimating our pups to the outdoors. The pups are whelped in a box made specific to birthing puppies- this box then becomes their safe spot for the next 8 weeks- My husband has designed the box to be a perfect warm and cozy place for the pups with their moms at birth and then transitions into a cozy warm den that they will share with each other for the next 8-10 weeks- We have a wonderful safe back-yard where the pups rule- They get to play until they wear themselves out- We have an abundance of safe puppy toys that they play with daily- Once you visit you will see how good they have it here-
*All pups are De-wormed 3 out of the 8 weeks they are here with us
*All pups begin their wellness care by getting Nuvet Vitamins daily
*All pups receive 1 wellness shot at 7 weeks and if they stay with us longer they will receive their 2nd wellness shot at 10 weeks
*All Puppies go home when the family is most ready for their new arrival-not just because they are 8 weeks old- Timing is very important so I am happy to place the pups when their new forever home is most ready!!!
*We use a high quality grain-free food specially formulated for puppies- Natures Domain Puppy Food-
*All pups go home with a toy, samples of Nuvet Vitamins, current shot record and whole lot of LOVE.
*All pups are register-able with AKC-ASCA-NSDR. We require our new owners to register their pups- this is to ensure the legacy of their lineage continues.
*We are a responsible breeder and expect exactly the same from our new owner.
*All pups have a sales contract-this can be requested at any time.
Adopting an Adult Aussie from our Family
We have had such great success in the placement of our adult dogs- What do you get when you get one of our adults- The list is long so be prepared:
1. A spayed/neutured dog that is current on all shots and has had the best of medical care throughout the years with our family-
2. The dog is Micro-Chipped and ready for the NEW OWNERS
3. Placement is a slow process that is meant for the best out-come- I will come visit your home and you- You come and visit us- I come over with our adult dog and stay for the meet and greet and visit and I will tell you all about your aussie and their puppy life with us-
4. *** There are NO MONETARY COSTS involved with the placement of one of our adult dogs-
5. Our dogs are: crate trained-potty trained- leash trained- All basic commands are understood-Our dogs are well behaved , loving loyal companions
6. Finally- The documents provided- A copy of their pedigree along with all certifications that have been completed throughout the dogs life with us :) A complete current shot record and a current Rabies vaccination from our Vet-
*** When placing a younger dog or rescue we as the owner reserve the right to require an "Adoption Fee"
*** Every one of our dogs are like people in that they have "likes" and "dis-likes" I am here to explain and help to find the BEST placement for our adult aussies
~Here are a few pictures of where the puppies grow up while they are with us. In the background you can also see our air conditioned kennels for our adult dogs! (the green and white building in picture two)
General Information About the Breed
The Australian Shepherd is an intelligent, medium-sized dog of strong herding and guardian instincts. He is also a delightful and loyal companion and a great family dog. He loves to be part of the daily hustle and bustle, and enjoys riding in the vehicle just to be with his beloved master. As a farm dog, he diligently carries out his responsibilities, be they bringing in the stock or finding that stray one that got tangled in the brush. He is easy to train, easy to housebreak, and eager to please. Aussies have been used as seeing-eye dogs, as utility dogs to the physically handicapped, hearing aid dogs, police and narcotics dogs and search and rescue dogs. In the northern areas they have also been used as sled dogs. Many go with their masters as volunteers to children's homes and nursing homes to do therapy work. Truly, the Australian Shepherd is a highly versatile dog. One of the most frequent reasons Aussies are also quite demanding of their owner's time and attention and want to be constantly with them, following them from room to room in the house, and going along in the car or truck on errands. They all need love to make them whole which is a good thing for a family environment. So they should never be left in the back yard alone for long periods of time. They love to be active and learning new things all the time.
The Australian Shepherd comes in four acceptable colors: black, blue merle (a marbling of gray and black), red (ranging from light cinnamon to liver), and red merle (marbling of red and silver or buff). A variety of white and tan markings may appear on the face, chest, front and rear legs. The outer coat is of moderate length, with a texture that is straight to wavy and weather resistant. The undercoat is soft and dense, and the amount varies with climate. Tails are naturally bobbed or docked. Ears are moderately sized, and break forward and over, or the side as rose ears. Males weigh approximately 50 to 65 pounds, measuring from 20 to 23 inches, and females weigh about 40 to 55 pounds, measuring from 18 to 21 inches.
The eyes of the Australian Shepherd are perhaps one of his most commented on features because of the variety of colors. They may be any color or combination of colors from glassy blue, amber, hazel, to all shades of brown.
Occasionally a dog appearing to be solid black or solid red is a merle. One or two flecks of lighter merling on a solid dog will make him genetically a merle. These dogs will produce like any other merle and have been referred to as "phantom merles".
IDEAL coloring on a blue merle should be a base color of jet black with all merling patches some shade of gray. Merling that has a rusty appearance is not desirable.
IDEAL coloring on a red merle is a base color of liver or dark mahogany with all merling patches some shade of lighter red.
While there are many theories as to the origin of the Australian Shepherd, the breed as we know it today developed exclusively in the United States. The Australian Shepherd was given its name because of their association with the Basque sheep herders who came to the United States from Australia in the 1800's. The Aussie rose rapidly in popularity with the boom of western riding after World War II, becoming known to the general public via rodeos, horse shows, movies and television. Their inherent versatility and train-ability made them useful on American farms and ranches. The American stockmen continued the development of the breed, maintaining the versatility, keen intelligence, strong herding instinct and eye-catching appearance.
Australian Shepherds have been registered by various registries since the early 1950's. In 1990, the United States Australian Shepherd Association was established as the parent club of the Australian Shepherd representing the breed to the American Kennel Club. On September 1, 1991, the AKC recognized the Australian Shepherd breed and on January 1, 1993, accepted them into the Herding Group.
Should I get a male or a female?
Although male and female Australian Shepherds share many of the same characteristics, there are also many distinct differences between the two sexes.
The female Australian Shepherd will typically stand between 18-21 inches at the point of her withers and will on average weigh around 35-55 pounds. She does not usually carry the density and length of coat as a male, and her personality will generally be more sensitive and laid-back. Females will come into season approximately every 6 months and will need to be confined for 2-3 weeks during this time. If you are not planning on breeding your female, you should consider spaying her to avoid this inconvenience and to prevent any unwanted breeding.
The male Australian Shepherd will usually stand 20-23 inches and will weigh around 50-65 pounds. As with most animal species, the male Aussie is the showier of the two sexes, carrying longer hair, heavier bone, and a more masculine head. He typically has a very regal air about him. Males do have a tendency to be territorial and do not always take well to having to share their space with other male canines. You should think about having him neutered to make life easier for all parties concerned.
Most of the personality differences between the two sexes are minimal or non-existent if the animals in question are raised to be social and have been to Obedience classes.
Should I get show/breeding quality or companion quality?
Companion quality puppies are those which are healthy and happy but are less than perfect when compared to the breed standard. Often these imperfections are minimal and are things that the novice would not notice. Nonetheless, these animals would not be likely to do well in the conformation show ring, and they should NOT be used for breeding since they will not contribute to the improvement of the breed. Companion quality animals are eligible to be shown in both obedience and herding competitions, even if they have been spayed or neutered. It is important to remember that just because a puppy is termed a "companion", it should not have any health or temperament defects.
If you have any thoughts of either showing or breeding your pup, advise the breeder of what your intentions are. In this situation you are going to want to buy the pup that comes the closest to the breed standard. Not every pup is a future champion and no one can guarantee you that any puppy will grow up to be a perfect specimen of the breed. But a knowledgeable breeder can spot puppies with potential qualities and will be honest with you in evaluating their puppies as future show or breeding prospects.
Bringing Your Puppy Home
It is always an exciting time when you welcome a new puppy into your home. You need to remember, though, that it can also be a stressful and confusing time for the new pup. You should provide a sleeping area, preferably near the activities of the household, but also quiet and out of the way. A dog crate would be a good investment at this time. Let the puppy know this is his bed and a safe place to be. If there are children in the family, they will want to play with the new puppy a lot. While puppies play and are active, they also require a good deal of sleep. Do not fall in the trap of going to the puppy to comfort him for making noise. He will learn that crying is a good way to get attention. You might take him out to play with him and tire him out just a little before bedtime so he will be ready to sleep.
Nutrition & Good Health
A name brand puppy food is the best choice for your puppy until he is over a year old. It is a good idea to feed what the breeder has been feeding and not change his diet, since changes can lead to digestive problems and diarrhea. Also, your puppy does not need table scraps, which may likewise cause problems. Never give your puppy bones or chocolate. You may either free-feed (leave food out) or put down food for the puppy three, decreasing to two times a day as the puppy matures. Fresh water should be available to the puppy at all times. Watch your puppy to make sure he does not get too fat. A fat puppy is not a healthy puppy and obesity is hard on developing bones and joints. Be sure you keep your puppy's vaccinations up-to-date. Distemper and Parvo are both killers and if your puppy should survive these dreaded diseases, they may still ruin his health for the remainder of his life. Talk to your vet about heartworm preventative.
Aussies generally housebreak quite easily. The key to good house habits is consistency by the owner. The puppy should, if he must be left alone, be in the yard (with shelter and water) or in an area where he is not expected to refrain from relieving himself. When the puppy is in the main part of the house, the owner should be present. When the puppy wakes from a nap, he should go outside and be praised when he relieves himself. Watch the puppy for sniffing and circling in the house; this probably means he is looking for a place to go. Take him outside and again praise. If you catch him too late, "in the act," do not spank him but scold him slightly and take him outside or to a place where he is allowed to potty. Soon the puppy may go to the door and "ask" to be let out. Praise the puppy for this action. A crate is a handy tool for housebreaking. Most dogs do not like to relieve themselves where they sleep and this teaches some control. Remember that a puppy does not have a great deal of control and use the crate only for short periods of time. When he comes out of the crate, he should be immediately let outside and, after he relieves himself, allowed to play in the house.
To some people, a dog crate seems like cruelty to the dog. However, if presented correctly, it is just the opposite. It gives the dog a place that belongs to him, a safe den where he can go if he wants to be left alone or rest. It also gives you a place to keep your dog at the times when you do not want him underfoot, like a dinner party or a cookout, and a safe way of traveling your dog. If you crate your dog in the car, he can be left with the windows completely down. It is extremely dangerous to leave your dog in a closed car in warm weather or riding loose in the back of a truck. Also if you should have an auto accident, your dog is not likely to be thrown out of the car or escape in the confusion. Motel rooms generally prefer crated dogs. To crate train your dog, first select a crate that will be large enough to fit him as an adult. The puppy should be encouraged to sleep in it with the door open. He may be left with the door closed for short periods of time once he is used to it. Avoid leaving a puppy in a crate for extended periods of time. NEVER use the crate as a punishment. The location should be out of the way but near family activity.
The Aussie is by nature a one-family or one-person dog. They do not accept all people as their natural "friends" as do some breeds. They are selective. This is not a fault. It makes them a better protector of their home and their family. Because of this part of their nature, it is a good idea to expose them to different situations and strangers often and at an early age. While they may not go tail-waggingly up to every stranger on the street, they should be taught to be mannerly and accept the presence of non-threatening people and situations.
The Australian Shepherd is an easy dog to train. Being a working stock dog, he has been bred to learn to take directions and listen to his owner. He is also bred to be able to think on his own and make decisions for himself. It is up to you, the owner, to teach the dog what is, and is not, allowed. When he is a puppy, he must learn to look to you as his leader or you could be in for trouble when he becomes an adult. This does not mean you need to treat your puppy roughly. If trained correctly, Aussies readily accept the authority of their masters and a harsh word is often as effective as physical punishment. While he is eating, your puppy should allow you to be present and to take away his food. They should not growl or nip at you when you try to make them do something. A good method to show a puppy who is boss is to put them in a sit position and look them directly in the eyes- Calming them and being firm are two ways to control your puppy and adult dog- Praise is an excellent tool when teaching new things as well as reinforcing what you love about your pup/dog. Aussies are very intelligent and will test you from time to time. You should be firm and let them know who is in charge. The earlier you do this, the less trouble you will have later.
It is highly recommended that you teach your puppy some obedience. It is much more enjoyable to have a well-mannered dog that can go out for a walk than a lurching, wild dog that pulls you along or runs away when off lead. It is also a satisfying experience to train your dog and have a dog that listens to you and minds you. The Aussie is an extremely quick learner and enjoys the attention and the mental challenge of learning what you have to teach him. Even a young puppy, if taught in a positive manner, with no force, can learn basic obedience. Look for obedience training classes in your area or read some of the many good books on this subject. For your peace of mind, and your dog's safety, he should know at least these basics: sit, down, stay, come, and be able to walk at your side.
Are Aussies good with children?
Australian Shepherds are basically very good with children if they have been raised with children, and sometimes even when they have not been around them. One of the basic prerequisites for your children and your puppy to have a good relationship is to teach the child, as well as the puppy, what is allowed. Babies and toddlers should not be left unattended with your dog, no matter what breed. A child should learn not to handle the dog roughly or tease him. The parent, not the child, should be responsible for correcting the puppy if he gets too rough. Puppies and dogs have a tendency to look at children as "siblings" in the social order of the family, and the dog should never be allowed to get the upper position over the child. Something that sometimes occurs with puppies and kids is that, in play, the puppy may chase and nip at the heels of the child. This is because the dog is bred to herd and he is trying to "herd" the child because it is natural to herd something moving. In this situation, it is a good idea to have the child stop running and tell the dog "no bite." This should not be confused with actually trying to harm the child, but the game should not be encouraged.
Can an Aussie live in town?
Unlike many breeds, Aussies don't need a lot of space to run or a big yard to play in but having the extra space is a win win for the new puppy. What they DO need is LOTS of social interaction and things to do. They need to be a member of the family, as they are very pack-oriented dogs. In short, they need a job to do, whether that job is working livestock, protecting the family, or going to obedience/agility classes. The more time you spend with them, the better companions they will be. As long as these needs are met, Aussies can make wonderful suburban pets.