Australian Shepherds are herding dogs and thrive on activity. According to the American Kennel Club, they are intelligent, work-oriented, and exuberant.
Mini Aussies need activity almost more than they need sleep. They’re an excellent choice for first-time dog owners and are good with children. They may be wary of strangers, though.
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Find a Good Breeder
Finding a mini Australian shepherd for sale is essential to owning a dog. Mini Australian Shepherds are affectionate, cuddly dogs who form strong bonds with their owners. They are intelligent, eager to please, and make great companions for people of all ages. These energetic pups love to play, hike, and run. They also enjoy games of fetch, tug of war, and swimming.
When choosing a breeder, look for one with a reputation for producing healthy, well-mannered puppies. A good breeder will ensure all the litter’s parents have passed genetic screenings and health exams. They will also be able to answer any questions that you might have about the breed.
A good breeder will also be committed to providing you with a puppy that matches your lifestyle. For example, if you live in an apartment, they will find you a miniature Australian shepherd suitable for your living space. They will also provide you with the training and socialization your new dog needs to thrive.
As a double-coated breed, Mini Aussies shed a lot. However, daily brushing can help to reduce this shedding. Moreover, this breed is known for its herding instincts. A good breeder will focus on breeding dogs with exceptional herding abilities, excellent temperaments, and sound structure. It will produce dogs that are a true representative of the breed. They will also be likelier to have a desirable coat color, such as black or reddish brown.
Choose a Good Puppy
When selecting a puppy, observe and interact with the litter to ensure all appear healthy. You should also see where the puppies were born and raised to assess cleanliness, safety, and socialization.
Ask about the health history of the parents and the breeder’s adherence to responsible breeding practices, such as preventing the inheritance of genetic diseases. Puppies from reputable breeders are usually less likely to develop inherited health conditions than those from puppy mills.
Australian Shepherds are brilliant and eager to please, making them highly trainable. Early, consistent training is critical to developing a well-mannered dog. They are lively animals that thrive on exercise and may become bored or destructive without adequate mental and physical stimulation. They protect their families and property, so proper socialization is essential to help them accept strangers.
Australian Shepherds are double-coated, with a thick outer coat and downy undercoat. They shed seasonally, and daily brushing is recommended to minimize shedding. They are naturally clean and dirt-resistant, but regular bathing is needed to stimulate the skin and distribute coat oils.
They can be susceptible to cold weather and should be kept warm with blankets and sweaters. Lastly, their large eyes require regular cleaning to prevent irritation and infections. They are also prone to degenerative eye disease and should be evaluated by an ophthalmologist every two years.
Take Care of Your Pup
As with any new puppy, it will take some time for your MAS to adjust to his new home. Give him lots of love and attention to help the adjustment go smoothly. Show him around your house room-by-room, and let him explore the yard on a leash. Introduce him to children and other dogs slowly and carefully.
Puppies are intensely curious about their new environment and can quickly get into trouble if not kept on a leash. It is essential to teach them basic obedience commands like “wait” and “leave it” before they can be left alone. Please set up a dog bed or crate in your bedroom to ensure they have a safe and quiet place to sleep at night. It will also establish boundaries and help prevent separation anxiety down the line.
These puppies are high-energy, so make sure to provide plenty of exercise. It means daily walks and playtime. These dogs can be quickly bored and become destructive if not given enough.
Schedule your pup’s first vet visit when he is six to nine weeks old. The vet will perform a thorough physical exam to look for common issues like hernias, luxating patellas, and soft spots on the head. The vet will also begin your puppy’s vaccination series and discuss spaying or neutering.
Train Your Pup
Australian Shepherds are brilliant dogs and respond well to reward-based training. They’re not afraid of hard work and can be quick to learn tricks if they see you getting excited over their progress. Make sure to practice basic commands often and in a variety of settings. These dogs like to be mentally stimulated, so you should challenge them with increasingly complex orders.
As herding dogs, Australian Shepherds are naturally drawn to movement. They can become herding machines if they are taught to space themselves and use their herding instincts in a more controlled manner. Joggers, children, cats, birds — whatever moves in their herding zone of perception can cause an Aussie to act on impulse and possibly get into trouble.
Introducing your puppy to herding toys and other tools as early as possible is a good idea to help curb her instincts. You’ll also want to teach her her name and the basics of calmly sitting down, staying, recalling, and walking on a leash. Since herding dogs are used to wide open spaces, your Aussie will need lots of exercise, a long walk, and dedicated play sessions that last at least 30 minutes each. Without this physical and mental stimulation, Aussies tend to be bored quickly and can turn to destructive behaviors. If left unattended, your Aussie will likely herd the kids in the house, the cat, the mail, and anything in her path that doesn’t belong there.
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