Finding Great Breeders of Miniature Australian Shepherds

The miniature Australian Shepherd has many of the same character traits as the full-sized Australian Shepherd, but is only about 14″ to 18″ in height. They are a fairly new variety of the standard Australian Shepherd, but are quickly growing in popularity.

These extremely smart and athletic dogs are not a cross between an Australian Shepherd and another breed of dog. The miniature Australian Shepherd was actually developed in the late 1960’s by breeding the smallest dogs of the litter. This constant breeding back to the smallest of the litters produced a consistently small breed that is being even further reduced in size to the toy and teacup varieties. The miniaturizing of this breed was mainly in response to the desire for a well-behaved herding type dog with the coat variations found in the Australian Shepherd, but more suited to smaller living spaces and yards of cities.

When you’re looking for a great breeder of miniature Australian Shepherds, you need to be aware of several important points that make a miniature Aussie a quality dog. First of all, the minis should have been bred down from champion standard Australian Shepherd lines. This helps to maintain the good bone structure and characteristics of a working dog. Is the breeder testing their dogs for genetic faults? Good miniature Aussie breeders try to ensure the integrity of the breed by having their breeding dogs’ eyes certified, as well as their elbows, hips, patella’s, and thyroids checked for problems prior to breeding. They should also do MDR1 Drug Sensitivity testing and send their breeders in for genetic problem evaluations.

What is the breeder looking for in you? Good miniature Australian Shepherd breeders want their dogs to be loved, happy, and appreciated at their new home. These types of dogs need attention and exercise, so breeders want to be sure that you can provide these things before they sell you a puppy. Miniature Aussies are very intelligent and they may find ways to entertain and exercise themselves if you don’t have time for them. They may do this by excessively barking, chewing, digging, or escaping. Miniature Australian Shepherds also come with a strong herding instinct. These dogs are bred to chase and herd livestock. They will even be attracted to the noise and excitement of people and resort to herding them by nipping at their heels if they are not properly trained. In your daily life, are you able to keep your Aussie busy enough to stay out of trouble? You should be committed to giving your new dog daily exercise such as walks or throwing a ball or Frisbee for about an hour or so. Plus, you must be prepared to give your Aussie proper socialization. Miniature Aussies inherit a strong guardian instinct and they could become too reserved with strangers without early socialization.

With the help of a good breeder, you can be sure that you’ll be able to find a quality puppy with good structure and the right temperament for you and your family. Mini Aussies love to go — whether it’s riding the range, barrel races, horse shows, dog shows, or just a trip to town. These loyal dogs make the perfect breed for anyone looking for an energetic companion.