A lot of people enjoy the company of dogs. They are great companions and can, to a certain extent, make us happier and aid us in our fight against depression and loneliness. In a way, they can also make us much healthier persons, depending on how much physical activity they bring to our lives. But it is true that the moment we become a dog’s owner, we have to take care of them to the best of our capabilities. That is why, before even becoming an owner, we should make sure to understand what we are getting into. If you are interested in becoming a dog owner of an Australian Shepherd, for example, you have to understand what it implies and some of the things you will be dealing with.
That is why in this Australian Shepherd beginner guide, we will discuss various aspects of its personality, what are some of its most regular needs, and how recommended they are as pets for different types of people.
Understanding the Australian Shepherd’s Personality
First of all, let’s talk about the Australian shepherd temperament and how it can influence your coexistence with one. Right away, we can tell you that an Australian Shepherd is a great choice for families with kids. This is because they are very friendly and can get along with almost every member of the family. It is important that they are treated nicely, including other dogs and pets.
They can be incredibly affectionate as well, and have it easy when it comes to developing bonds among the family members. This is great because they, at some point, can turn protective of the ones they care about. Even though they are not aggressive by nature, they will try their best to protect themselves and their family.
Give Them Attention
Ideally, they should receive a certain level of attention and love, since they can get lonely if left alone for extended periods of time. This is especially common in adopted dogs since they can suffer from something known as separation anxiety, which makes them act chaotically when left alone.
Smart and Easily Trainable
Because of their active nature, they are better when managing specific tasks, and they enjoy physical activities, exercising, and training. Since they are very smart dogs, ranked as one of the 50 most intelligent breeds of dogs, training them is fairly easy, but it can be a challenge for first-time pet owners or owners that have never trained their dogs.
How It Looks and What It Needs
The Australian Shepherd is generally medium in size. Their height goes from 45 to 58 centimeters, depending on gender. They can weigh from 18 kg to 32 kg on average. Their fur usually has a combination of colors that range between merle, black, white, and red.
Because of their size, they might require a certain level of space to be comfortable in your home. This is because of the amount of energy they usually store as well as their physical frame. They do require daily exercising, or at least a training routine 5 times a week. During the days you can’t go outside with your dog, you can try these games and exercises.
Whenever they store too much energy and don’t release it with proper training and exercising, they can become chaotic and destroy things near them, and might even become depressed or anxious at times.
Grooming and Baths
Since they are very gentle dogs, training them to be bathed is not that hard, but thankfully, they don’t require as many baths as long as they don’t dirty themselves while going out. It is recommended to bathe them every 7 weeks, just because of their sensitive skin.
However, if you find the right products, you can easily overcome this characteristic. Finding products for dogs with sensitive skin is very easy to do, so you might want to consider doing so.
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Grooming them might also be something you want to take care of. Although they don’t have as much undercoat, they do have particular fur which can be straight, curly, or wavy. It tends to require a certain level of care, and learning how to groom can greatly reduce your expenses in grooming service.
Luckily, you can learn how to do it with this guide from Dummies. You will have to invest in specific grooming tools and equipment, but it will be a really good long-term investment.
Of course, you can rely on professional grooming services from time to time, and it is actually recommended to do so at least once a year if you are regularly grooming your dog. If you are not, a monthly appointment, or one appointment every two months, is recommended.
The reason grooming is so important with Australian Shepherds is because they are likely to have mats if their fur is ignored for too long, and this can cause damages to their skin and can worsen in the blink of an eye.
Some Things to Note
If you are considering getting an Australian Shepherd, it would be wise to engage in physical activities on a regular basis that involves your newly adopted dog, and also, you should be at home or have a family to take care of and give attention to your dog, because it can get lonely and stressed if it doesn’t engage in physical activities or receives attention.