When you think of Australian wildlife, your mind goes to kangaroos or curious koalas. But the Australian land has also seen the growth of various dog breeds, unique in their appearance and temperament. In this HealthyAllips article, we invite you to learn about the 10 most famous Australian dog breeds.
Australian Dog Breeds – Our Top 10
Continue reading to discover all the characteristics of these beautiful Australian dog breeds :
1. Australian Shepherd Dog
The Australian Shepherd Dog, better known as the Cattle dog, is one of the best-known breeds of dogs native to Australia at an international level. However, it should not be confused with the Australian Shepherd (sheep), which is instead a breed created in the United States but of Spanish origin.
If you look at them at first glance, they seem to have just come out of Hiroshima: their fur is very strange with thick streaks and irregular spots. They are currently not as popular as companion dogs, probably due to the care and time that their education requires. The Australian Shepherd dog, being so intelligent and active, requires a high dose of daily exercise to keep its body and mind well stimulated.
It seems that the first examples of the Australian Mountain Dog or Cattle Dog were the cross between the Dingo and the blue merle Collie (those with very particular fur). However, the Cattle dog as we know it today is the result of further crossbreeding with other dog breeds such as the Dalmatian, the Bull Terrier, and the Australian Kelpie. The end result is a dog with a very particular beauty, notable intelligence, great courage, and inexhaustible energy.
2. Australian Silky Terrier
The Australian Silky Terrier is an Australian dog created from specimens brought from the United Kingdom. Given its appearance and character, it is assumed that Yorkshire was the main breed of English terrier used in selective crossbreeding with the Australian terrier.
Like its predecessors, the Silky Terrier was originally created as a hunting dog, especially for rats and other small rodents. Nowadays it has increased its popularity as a companion dog, thanks to its affectionate and devoted character to its guardian. However, he is a dog with a strong personality and can be very wary of strangers and strangers. For this reason, early socialization is key for these dogs to have a healthy and normal social life, and to avoid possessive behavior and separation stress.
3. Australian Kelpie Dog
According to the FCI classification, the Australian Kelpie is a herding dog breed. Its current appearance is the result of various selective crosses made using in particular English dogs. Its first ancestors were obtained by crossing Collies from the north of England with native Australian dogs. Some speculate that the Border Collie and Dingo were also used in crossbreeding to create the Australian Kelpie.
It is a robust, resistant dog with well-developed muscles, and demonstrates a great predisposition to work and training. The head is somewhat reminiscent of that of a fox, although the eyes are much more almond-shaped and the expression is tender. Large, pointed ears are the trademark of this breed, highly respected for its inexhaustible energy, its good ability to learn, and its willingness and good disposition to carry out various tasks and activities.
4. Australian Terrier
As its name indicates, the Australian Terrier is a native dog of the island and belongs to the terrier family, the burrowing dogs. For its creation, various terrier breeds of English origin were used, such as the Yorkshire, the Cairn, and the Dandie Dimont.
They are small dogs, with elongated bodies, short legs, and well-proportioned extremities. The fur is hard and can take on different shades of grey, blue, or brown. His temperament is lively, courageous, and active, an excellent companion dog, and he has been socialized and educated correctly since he was a puppy.
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5. Australian Stumpy Tail Cattle Dog
The Short-tailed Australian Shepherd is known internationally by its original English name: Australian Stumpy Tail Cattle Dog. Although they are related to the Australian Sheepdogs, they show notable differences in appearance (starting with their short tail), temperament, and history. Unlike their ‘cousins’, Short-tailed Australian Shepherds are native dogs of Australia.
Information on their origin is not very reliable, but it is believed that the first specimens were the result of crosses between Dingo and Smithfield (an English sheepdog of the Collie type that sported a thick black and white coat and had a short tail ). They later interbred with short-haired collies native to Scotland, and perhaps, with Australian sheepdogs brought from England.
Currently, the Stumpy Tail has been officially recognized by the Australian, New Zealand, British, and US Kennel Clubs. The FCI also granted him provisional recognition.
6. Australian Dingo
The Australian Dingo ( Canis lupus dingo ) is a very particular canid species that is considered the intermediate point of evolution between the first wild dogs and the current domestic dogs. In reality, dingoes are not native Australians, but in that land, they have found the optimal conditions for their development and survival.
It is currently estimated that dingoes have lived in Australia for more than 4,000 years, and have participated in the creation of many Australian dog breeds. It should also be noted that their export is prohibited.
It is also called the ‘Australian wolfdog’.
7. Australian Koolie
The Australian Koolie, also known as the German Coolie, is an Australian dog breed that has not yet been recognized by the FCI. These dogs are very popular in rural Oceania, although they are virtually unknown outside their homeland. Koolies originally developed as field working dogs, and have a powerful herding instinct.
Very little is known about their origins and the breeds used to obtain the Koolie we know today. But its appearance reveals the diversity of its roots, revealing a certain resemblance to the Kelpie, the Merle Border Collie of the Highlands, and the Australian Sheepdog. His character is energetic, attentive, and very intelligent, a characteristic that makes him suitable for learning various tasks. When they receive adequate physical and cognitive stimulation they show balanced and loyal behavior with their family.
8. Bull Arab
The Bull Arab, despite its name, is a breed of dog originally from Australia that was created with the aim of obtaining a good mastiff dog that combined intelligence, agility a good temperament, and great physical resistance. For its creation, crosses were made with bull terriers, greyhounds (Welsh hounds), and pointers.
These are very beautiful dogs, which combine agility with the typical power of mastiffs.
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9. Tenterfield Terrier
The Tenterfield is an Australian terrier-type dog breed, probably created from the miniature Fox terrier (mini-foxies), very popular in Australia during the 19th century. Despite their modest size, they are very bold, energetic, and resistant dogs who usually enjoy good health, with a very high life expectancy of around 18 years.
The Tenterfield continues to be a widely used dog in Australia for hunting small rodents and has also become very popular as a companion dog in recent years. They are dogs with a strong personality and a strong hunting instinct, which make correct education and early socialization essential.
10. Jack Russell Terrier
The Jack Russell Terrier is a breed that can be considered to have a mixed origin, given that it was created in the United Kingdom by the Reverend John Russell, but then developed in Australian territory. As a good example of the Terrier family, this little dog has a strong personality and stands out for its courage and inexhaustible energy. We cannot define it as a completely Australian dog because it was born in England, but its development and popularity as a breed occurred entirely in Australia.
Thanks to its highly developed senses and its intelligence and predisposition to work, the Jack Russell is very suitable for positive training. Today it is used a lot as a search dog, such as the truffle dog.
They are loyal animals and excellent as companion dogs, with a balanced temperament if socialized from puppyhood.
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