Australian Shepherd Breed Description
The Australian Shepherd has been around sine the 19th century where they were used as ranch dogs that could do just about anything. They were used in America and needed to be tough in order to keep up with the rigorous demands that a ranch of that time would provide. The typical work load of a sheep dog like these ones would require the dog to move large amounts of sheep or cattle after they were done grazing and needed to be put back in their normal housing. Although they are not used as much as they were back then for ranch work, they are still one of the best choices among ranch owners.
Which Category Are They Considered Apart Of?
The Aussie can be located in the section of Stockdogs of the Loose-eyed variety. They are much different than the Strong-eyed breeds and they have a style that is all of their own. Their ability to work in unison with their owners and drive herds of live stock and sheep around makes them one of the most valuable dogs. These dogs quickly master the requirements of herding and learn everything they need to become extremely efficient at what they do. The Australian Shepherd that is working will use a combination approach of grip, wear, and even the loose-eye when they need to. All of that is of course paired with a commanding bark.
The Wear & Grip
The Aussie will move seamlessly at the back of the heard and will move around with what looks like little effort. Their goal is to keep the herd moving in the direction that they should and all together. This is one of the movements that the Australian Shepherd can hold for quite a long time, which is what makes them so valuable. They may turn to the grip if they are dealing with stock that doesn’t want to move in the direction that is necessary or that is moving away from the herd. They will swoop in and either grip the bottom ankle area or the near the head, depending on the situation.
The Bark & Eye
The bark of the Australian Shepherd will be used when they are dealing with one or more of the animals not moving in the right direction or following the right path. It will be a very distinct bark that will command the attention of those animals. This is usually the case when it is a very small area that the dog can’t control any other way. They won’t often use the eye unless they have to, and they much prefer to use the other tools in their arsenal first. But, when they have no other choice, they will.