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Australian Kelpie - Fun Facts and Crate Size

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Australian Kelpie - Fun Facts and Crate Size

Australian Kelpie

Quick Facts:

  • Not yet AKC recognized
  • Life Expectancy: 12-15 years
  • Size: Medium
  • Energy: High
  • Recommended Crate Size: 42” dog crate*

Return to main Dog Crate Size Breed Chart.

Introduction

Intense!  If there’s one single word that describes the Australian Kelpie to a tee, it’s “intense”.  He’s a go-getter, full of vigor and vitality.  He’s a devoted dog - devoted to his work and his family. 

Lithe and athletic, willing and able to work from sun up to sun down, this dog is alert, eager, and very energetic.  He can work in the roughest weather conditions too like the harsh heat in dry arid rugged terrain his homeland, Australia has to offer in the wide open spaces he championed.  You simply could not ask for a better herding dog than this guy from the Down Under.  

If you are thinking you’d like to give this Awesome Assie Kelpie a place in your heart, hold on until you read the rest of his resume.  He’s an excellent employee and companion with the utmost in work ethics but you’ll want to read the fine print too.

Breed

The Australian Kelpie, also known as Barbs (a term of endearment specially reserved for Black Kelps) or Kelpies, originated from Collie like dogs that were imported into the Down Under from Scotland.  It all began when the vast open areas of land were opened up in Victoria and New South Wales in Australia.  Sheep were the obvious livestock to grace the land so they were placed there by the scores.  They thrived a little too much and properties were overrun by them with over a quarter million sheep to two million acres. Something had to be done in order to keep the sheep in line.

It was a no-brainer that sheep herding dogs were needed.  The problem was, they had to be excellent, self-sufficient workers who could withstand the rugged terrain and unforgiving hot climate.  Not just any dog would do.  That’s when the Kelpie came in to save the day with their tireless working ability and their incredible endurance.

The origin of the breed is not completely cut and dry, like is the story of many other dog lines.  They definitely are offshoots of working dogs imported from Scotland that were black and tan, medium in size and of the Collie type.  Some dogs in the mix were Collie kinds with erect ears and smooth hair.  The puppies born from these dogs were liver-brown (red).  This lineage is thought by many to be the start of the red Kelpies.  There are black and tan ones as well though and red and tan ones too.

Another theory many hold to is that the ancestors of the Kelps were British Collies who were brought over to Australia for working with stock in the early 19th century.  They were great sheepherders and were coveted for their ability to work without much or any supervision.  They were bred with other types of dogs in the area which most likely eventually had much to do with the Australian Kelpie.

But, there is more to the story.  Kelps are actually partly dingoes.  It has been proven the somewhere between 3-4% of their genes are directly from dingoes, Australian native dogs.  Breeders most likely intentionally bred the dingo in although few would admit it because dingoes were known to be sheep killers plus, it was illegal during those days to even possess a dingo.  But, science tells us that the two became one, complete with the dingo look and coloring.  Within time, the dogs were registered as Kelpies and due to their uncanny similarities, some dingo owners even snuck their dingoes in to be falsely registered as Kelpies.

As far as the first traceable Australian Kelpie goes, she was a black and tan beauty born in 1972.  She had floppy ears and was owned by Jack Gleeson who was of Scottish descent.  The name Kelpie was given due to Celtic folklore involving the shifting of mythical waters.  As the legend would go, the Kelpie was fathered by a dingo but that is not for sure.  “Gleeson’s Kelpie” was how the dog became known and her daughter was “King’s Kelpie” who was black and tan too.  King was the name of the owners who were brothers.  King’s Kelpie was fathered by a sheepdog named Ceasar who hailed from Scotland although some believe there was dingo in the picture rather than two sheepdogs. 

The Forbes Trial, held in 1879 brought newfound popularity to the up and coming breed.  They became commonly known as Kelpies or Kelpie’s Pups.  The King brothers hooked up with McLeod, another breeder, and partnered to bring trial champions who dominated from 1900 to 1920.

It became almost customary to name a red Kelpie “Red Cloud”.  There were a number of well-known Kelpies with the name, the first being John Quinn’s who came alone in the early 20th century.  Eventually, red, red and tan Kelpies were dubbed “Red Cloud Kelpies”, especially those bearing white chests.  The 2011 movie “Red Dog” was about Kelpie mix.

Kelpies made their way to all parts of the globe and can now be found in the United States, Argentina, Italy, Korea, Canada, New Zealand, New Caledonia, the United Kingdom, and Sweden.  They are herding dogs that are so adaptable, they make fine work dogs for most any job, including scent dogs, rescue dogs, and tracking dogs.

These workaholics don’t mind which type of animal they herd.  They have been known to work with cattle goats, pigs, chicken, and other poultry, sheep, and most any other two or four-legged breathing being.  Their signature move is to jump onto the backs of the flock they are in charge of and to literally walk across the backs of them in order to get to the other side to break the jam up.  They are quite versatile and seem to have no limits to how long they can work or under what kind of conditions.  They can also work most anywhere from keeping stock in line in a pin to herding them throughout the countryside.

They have not yet received membership into the American Kennel Club but do hold an honorary position as they are listed in the Foundation Stock Service as Working Kelpie and Australian Kelpie.  When they do become recognized, they will be in the Herding Class in the AKC.

Other clubs have recognized them, however.  The FCI has them down as Working Kelpies and Sheepdogs.  The UKC notes them in their organization as Herding Dogs and the Canadian Kennel Club recognizes him as well.  Both the UKC and CKC allow the Kelpie to compete in their events.

There are actually two kinds of Kelpies, The Australian Kelpie and the Working Kelpie.  While the Australian variety is more for show, where features and distinctions are very important, the Working Kelpie’s worth is found in his ability to do his job rather than in his appearance.

Working Kelpie breeding is done with the goal of perfecting the litter’s ability to perform their jobs like herding sheep or protecting the livestock.  Less, if any, importance is placed on such details as coat colors and markings.  Working Kelpies are not allowed to be shown.  Australian Kelpies who are bred to be shown have emphasis placed on coloring and other particulars.  For them, solid colors are much preferred.

Another difference between the Australian variety and the Working Kelpie is that Australian Kelpie breeders refer to their establishments as “kennels” while working Kelpie breeding establishments are deemed “studs”, in keeping with such establishments as there are for cattle and sheep.

There is, of course, a higher standard for the appearance of Australian show dogs of the Kelpie kind.  Along with the coloring requirements, their ears must be pricked and their coats must be double.

It is estimated that there are around 100,000 Kelpies who are actively working in their native land of Australia.

Kelpies are courageous and strong.  They are known to be happy, pleasant dogs.  They are intensely focused and serious about their work.  They do have a strong bond to their humans though, making them the ideal working dog slash companion.

Appearance

The Australian Kelpie has a dingo look about him.  He is soft coated with prick, erect, slightly curved ear.  His ears are set wide apart and are ever alert and finely in tuned to all that is going on around him.

He’s a medium-sized, very compact dog, typically weighing in around 31 to 44 pounds and stands anywhere from 16 to 20 inches tall at the withers.  He is very athletically built with hard, toned muscles and supple limbs which speak of his untiring willingness and ability to work.  From his fore-chest to his buttocks is a straight line and his chest is quite broad.  The legs of a Kelpie are noticeably strong.  Show Kelpies tend to be a tad heavier than Working Kelpies.

The Kelpie head is narrow.  His nose is black and his eyes, medium in size, almond-shaped and very expressive.  Their eyes are usually a shade of brown ranging from light to dark and every hue in between.  His tail is medium in length and tends to have a slight curl, especially when he’s resting.

Generally, a Kelpie is double coated that is weatherproof. The show dog Kelpie has a coat that is nice and soft.  The Working Kelpie’s coat may be rough, soft, or in between.  Common solid colors are chocolate, red, and black.  Other colors and color combinations include blue, blue and tan, red and tan, black and tan, fawn, fawn and tan, white and gold, black and blue, fawn and tan, and yellow/cream.  Australian Kelpies must be red and tan, black, chocolate, fawn, black and tan, or smoky blue.  There is limited registration for blue and tan, cream.  Working Kelpies can be any color or any color combination.  Some Kelps have white points and/or a white blaze on their chests.

Everything about the Australian Kelpie’s appearance screams of the ability to do his job well.  From his alert, erect ears which can hear predators from long distances away to his finely tuned, muscular frame and his agile legs used to run, jump, and even balance on the backs of his fold, this dog was designed for his work and it is evident in everything he does.

Pet Crate Size

Pet Crates Direct recommends a 42” dog crate* for most adult Australian Kelpies.

More Information

Personality

While the Kelpie is a great companion for humans, they are best when in their element. They make a great combination of work and companion dogs more than straight up companion dogs because their desire and need to work is overwhelming and all-consuming.  When taken out of their working environment, problems may arise because they were simply born to work.  That is what they do and who they are.

When a Kelpie is to be a pet, part or full time, they will need ample socialization and will need it on a constant basis.  Socialization will help them tell the difference between real threats and assumed threats like mailmen and friends who come to call. 

Kelpies are independent and very intelligent.  They have eternal energy and extremely excellent focus and drive.  Although they are at home on the range, they do enjoy the interaction with their family. 

While not aggressive by nature, they are loyal almost to a fault.  A Kelp will not hesitate for one moment to protect those he loves or the home front, the flock, or even other dogs or cats who he lives with.  He will, in fact, protect to his death, he’s so devoted.

Kelpies are not lapdogs and never will be.  They have little desire to cuddle.  But, they do like to be petted or shown attention, however.  When raised alongside humans, including children, they do well with them.  You will want to supervise around young children, of course.  They can also be good with other pets if they are brought up with them.

They tend to be suspicious of strangers.  You can work on this during training and socialization time though.  Their mindset is to protect so you’ll need to convey and variance of that instinct. 

If your Kelpie isn’t going to be a working dog, you’ll need to make him think he is one.  Having him do tasks around the house or in the backyard will help use up his energy and keep him out of trouble.  A bored Kelp will tear things up and chew on everything in sight. 

A bored Kelp will also find creative outlets to get attention and exercise that seemingly suit the purpose but aren’t socially acceptable.  He might take off out of the backyard, if lonely, and head down to the nearest park or elementary school where, to him, he is solving his own problem.  The dog catcher will have different thoughts, however.  He might miss herding and chasing after sheep and goat so badly that he herds cars, which is certainly unsafe.  It is up to you, his pet parent, to make sure that if his job skills are not being utilized, that there be a substitute for them because if you don’t...he will.  That’s a given.

While Kelps are apt to want to be outside and are in their element there, don’t think he wants to be cooped up in a fenced backyard with no human intervention. He will not thrive that way and shouldn’t be expected to. He’s much too smart to not get any stimulation and he’s a lover of people so he should be able to interact at least some each day.  He longs to be a part of the family so do him and yourself a favor and let him be.

Australian Kelpies are not good candidates for first-time dog owners.  They are bounding in energy, independent in nature, and have proven to be too much for those who are green at training and setting boundaries.  Many a Kelp has ended up in a shelter or rescue facility because inexperienced prospective owners have taken them on without realizing all the facts surrounding what the breed requires. 

You definitely don’t want to subject this energetic dog to apartment or small space living.  He would not be happy to be confined.

If you have any question as to if this dog is too much for you to handle, do him a big favor and pass him up so he has a fair shot at the right person and the right place for his personality.

Exercise

Being a working dog, it is imperative for the Kelp to get tons of exercise.  He’s built to work from morning to night in very stressful conditions.  For doing so, he had to have endless amounts of energy and tons of drive.  To take that away from him would be like pulling a fish out of water. 

When out in the wide open, the Kelpie will generally take care of his own exercise needs.  You may want to incorporate some devoted walking time just to bond and instill your pack leadership role.  And, by the way, regardless of if he is an active working dog or not, he will require you establishing yourself as his pack leader, the alpha.  Walking him will help because you can do things like “invite” him on the walk, have him walk beside or behind you, and set the pace and the route for the walk. 

These things may sound minor but they aren’t when setting your role in place as his leader.  Being his leader is important, even if he’s herding sheep and working because there will be times his independent nature may clash with what you need or want from him.  In that event, he should have no question as to which way he should go, his way or your way.

Interactive exercise time is good for the Australian Kelpie too.  He will love playing fetch, Frisbee, and chase with you. He also can’t get enough of any activity that involves a stick.  Toys are right up his alley too so make sure he has plenty of durable ones.

As independent as he is, he still has a soft spot in his heart for his humans.  And, he loves to go with you on hikes or jog alongside you when you bike.  He’s very athletic so...let him roll.  Do be sure you bring a leash along if you’re going where there may be other people or animals.  This dog might have a good mind to herd them into shape if you don’t contain him.

The Kelp is a good swimmer.  He loves to just dog paddle around in the lake or a pond.  He will go after sticks or toys you throw in the water too and with a little luck (and coaxing), he might even bring them back to you.

This breed is extremely bright.  He will need plenty of mental exercise in his routine too.  He must be challenged.  If he is a working dog, he’ll probably have enough stimulation keeping the flock flowing properly and warding would-be-threats away.  But if he isn’t working, you’ll need to simulate his stimulation with plenty of brain game activities.  The more you mimic the things he was born and bred to do, the better he will respond.

Exercising your Australian Kelp is a must but his enthusiasm for physical and mental stimulation is contagious.  You are likely to find yourself having just as much fun as he is.

Training

Kelps are fairly easy to train.  The one stumbling block might be his keen sense of independence.  But, once that is conquered through establishing yourself as his pack leader, the rest should be a piece of cake.  This dog is very intelligent so he’ll catch on quick.  He’s apt to want to please you and athletic enough to tackle most any request you throw his way.

Plenty of praise and lots of love does the trick for training the Kelp.  A few treats for a job well done from time to time will be the icing on the cake for him.  Using harsh tones with him will never do so don’t even try it.  He will sport his stubborn side and training will come to an abrupt halt, guaranteed.

If your pup is strictly an outdoors pooch, there won’t be much potty training required.  You may want to teach him where an appropriate spot to do his business is but other than that, nature will suffice.  If you Kelp is going to be indoors some or all of the time, housebreaking will be a must.  This breed is usually very good about catching on and is not very bothered by weather conditions like heat or cold so you’ll be able to let him out when he needs to go.

Socialization is ultra-important for the Kelpie.  He is naturally turned to be a protector so it is up to you to expose him to a variety of situations and let him know who and what is a real threat and who and what is not.  Take him around all types of people, places, and things.  Make sure some scenarios are quiet, requiring him to keep silent and not bark.  Also take him to busy, noisy places where there is a lot going on.  The more he gets used to different settings, the better he will be his entire life long.  Be sure to take him around other dogs, some cats, and maybe even some small critters.  Watch him carefully though.

Manners are very vital for him to learn.  He must not be allowed to herd other animals or people unless his job entails doing so.  Teach him not to jump on people, especially children.  His barking will need to be curbed as well.

When it comes to obedience, remember that the Australian Kelpie was born to do a job.  Ultimately, that job was designated and overseen by human owners.  The art of obeying is instilled in him but so is the quality of being an independent self-starter.  Finding a happy medium is what training him is all about.  Positive means are the only means though.

Obedience training is for his sake as well as for yours and any humans or animals that will come in contact with him.  He must master the basics such as sit, stay, and come.  But he’s too smart to stop at those.  You will find he’s a great student who is a pleasure to teach because he’s like a sponge, soaking it all in.  The prouder you are of him, the prouder he’ll be of himself and he is hard working.  He’ll train for hours on end but don’t push your luck.  You want to keep it simple and keep it fun.

Agility training is ideal for the A.K.  He is so athletic it’s almost pathetic.  He can do most any agility exercise you ask of him.  You can take him to formal classes with pro courses or build him his very own in his backyard or open range.

Lure course training is another one that is exceptionally great for this breed.  He loves to do anything that combines his intelligence and athletic ability.  You might be surprised how well he takes to this type of training.  He is a Herding Dog, for sure, but his skills don’t end there.  He can follow lures and do many other things besides.  He’s an all-around champ.

Trick training is a breeze if you keep it limited to his areas of interest.  He will have a great time showing off his skills.  He does like attention and affection so if he gets plenty of those things, he is likely to do most anything and think of some of his own things to add to the mix as well.  He will be pleased to give you a high five greeting and might even roll over and play dead for you. 

Field and trail training is absolutely perfect for this Herding Dog champ.  You can find all sorts of activities online which you can have him do that bring out the worker in him.  He’ll be ecstatic to show off his skills to you and you’ll be re-enforcing your leadership in an area where he is usually left to rely on his own decisions and independence like when to herd and what to herd.  You can have him herd a ball to you or circle around the yard herding an object.  Have him halt when you say to and start again at your cue.  This is very good for his obedience instincts too because he can get so focused on his job, he can barely hear you when you tell him to do something.  Plus, it is a great way to bond...right in his element.

This dog is a happy dog.  He is a hard worker but he likes to have a little fun time too.  If you make training classes light and pleasurable for him, you couldn’t ask for a better student.  If you find there is difficulty in training him, no offense, but the problem could lay with the trainer.  You can read up on training techniques and tactics and make sure that your teaching skills are up to par.  Be sure you are being his leader.  With those things in place, the sky will be his limit, for sure.

Nutrition

When it comes to feeding your A.K., it is recommended that you consult with his veterinarian or breeder for advice on the amount of food to feed him and the frequency as well.  You’ll want to give him top quality feed that is specially formulated for medium-sized dogs with high energy levels.  He’ll need protein, vitamins, and minerals to fuel him.

When he’s a puppy, you may need to feed him small meals frequently but that should change as he matures and grows because he’ll have more space in his tummy for his food.  Do be sure to limit between-meal snacks and treats so he can focus on his dog food which is the source of his nutritional requirements. 

While the Kelpie should be getting plenty of exercises to burn up all his calories if he’s not a working dog and tends to overeat or snack, he might show signs of becoming overweight.  That is not a good thing for obesity in dogs is every bit as dangerous as it is in humans.  It can lead to heart problems, bone and joint issues, Diabetes, and a ton of other medical problems.  Make sure he eats the recommended amounts and gets ample exercise.  If you still feel he is overweight, talk about it with his vet.

As with all animals, you’ll want to keep plenty of fresh, clean water readily assessable to him at all times.  If he’s outside, you may want to have a bowl near a water hook-up to ensure he has a good source that is convenient for you to fill and easy for him to get to.

Grooming

The A.K. is very low maintenance when it comes to his grooming needs.  Since most Kelpies are outside much or all of the time, it’s a good thing not much has to be done for them.  They don’t like a lot of primping nor do they require it.

Aussie Kelps have short, soft, double coats, for the most part.  They tend to shed moderately throughout the entire year but more so in the spring and fall.  A gentle brushing once a week will help reduce their shedding and will make their skin healthier and their coat shinier.  They usually really enjoy the attention.  Look for any cuts or scrapes, stickers or burrs, when you are brushing him up.  Also, check for fleas or ticks.  Pay special attention to his paws and clean off any glass or small rocks that have gotten embedded and any dirt or mud as well.  Since he’s a working dog, look for any signs of barbed wire scrapes or other injuries from occupational hazards.

As far as a bath goes, if he gets extremely muddy or stinky, such as having a close encounter with a skunk, he will need a bath.  Other than that, if he comes inside much, like for night times, he could use one every 3-4 months.  If he is strictly an outside pooch, once or twice per year should be the extent of his shampooing.  You can even bathe him in the lake or a pond or with the garden hose.  Be sure to use a dog-friendly, hypoallergenic product on his coat.  You don’t want to bathe him too often.  His coat is constructed to be weatherproof and you’ll wear it down if you suds him up too frequently.  Also, be sure to fluff his coat back up with a towel to keep it functioning like it is supposed to.

Chances are good that the Kelpie will wear down his toenails naturally.  If not, give them a nice, short clipping every month or so.  If he has worn them down on his own, you’ll still need to check them for splits, cracks, and chips.  In the event that he has any, tend to the situation immediately so they don’t get worse. 

A good look in his ears once every 3-4 weeks is a good idea too.  Keep his ears clean and dry.  If he is pawing at them or if they look red, inflamed, or irritated, you’ll want to take him in to have them checked out by his vet.  Because this breed’s ears stand erect, they are prone to get dirt and debris in them which can lead to an infection.  An untreated ear infection is very dangerous and can result in the need for surgery or even, at the most extreme, in deafness.

Once a week you should clean his teeth with a good doggie toothbrush and toothpaste.  Also check his teeth, mouth, and gums for any problems.  Keeping his teeth and gums clean will help cut down on tartar which is a leading cause of tooth decay and also will help prevent gum disease.  If you use a fun doggie flavored toothpaste, chances are he will cooperate with great enthusiasm and look forward to his tooth brushing time.

Health

The Australian Kelpie is a healthy dog.  He’s athletic and hardy so he tends to have good health and a general life expectancy of around 12-15 years on average.  There are some problems they are prone to have though. Some are of the genetic, hereditary nature and others are because they work so hard it is difficult on their poor bodies.

To start life out right for your AK, be sure to acquire one from a responsible breeder who comes with lots of verifiable references.  The temptation to make money off this breed hits hard when breeders are greedy. You will want to see the paperwork on your prospective pup as well as paperwork on his parents.  Don’t overlook the option of finding a good Aussie Kelp at a rescue either.  Many people get them but cannot handle them so...give a guy a second chance if you can.

Some of the medical woes this breed is subject to are:

Hip Dysplasia is a problem that this breed is sometimes born with. It can get worse due to the way they love to jump from great heights and run on rugged terrain. This problem entails a deformity in the hip bone and socket.  The two don’t fit together correctly so the hip bone can easily pop in and out of place. The condition can range from irritating to being excruciatingly painful. If your dog is limping, favoring a leg has trouble getting up from a sitting or lying position, or is not walking at all, it is a good idea to have him checked.  There are several treatments available that your vet can talk over with you.  They range from pills for the discomfort to surgery.  The severity will help you determine which is best for him.

Luxating Patella is basically a slipping kneecap.  It happens when a dog’s kneecap, or patella, is not positioned correctly in the groove of his thigh bone, or femur.  The problem can occur from environmental factors, like constantly running on rough and rocky terrain, or it can be a genetic problem that the pup is born with.  In the case of the Australian Kelpie, typically he is born with the weakness and his time working in rugged conditions aggravates it to the point of pain or inability to walk properly. 

When the kneecap has slipped out, the only way in which he can get it back in the correct anatomic position is to relax and lengthen the quadriceps muscles.  You might notice him holding up his leg to do so or you may even note him limping, favoring another leg, or not walking altogether.  If such symptoms arise, be sure to take him in for an examination at his vet clinic.  In the event that he has the condition, your vet will discuss treatment options with you.  It is imperative to get him in right away though. The condition can range from discomfort to excruciating pain.  It won’t get better without some form of treatment.

Cryptorchidism is a medical issue that entails the failure of a male dog’s testicles to drop.  Not only does this situation warrant the need to neuter him but also causes him to be more prone to testicular cancer within the retained testicle.  You will definitely not want to breed him and should seek medical attention but he does have to potential for an otherwise normal and happy life.

Cerebellar Abiotrophy, also referred to as Cerebellar Corticalbiotrophy or Cerebellar Degeneration, is a neurological disease that is genetic in nature.  It can affect dogs, horses, cats, and other animals as well.  The problem involves the neurons which are located in the cerebellum area of the brain.  They are also known as Purkinje cells.  They start dying off, sadly.  This condition cannot be prevented and can’t be cured.  Much research is currently being done on the problem, however.  Genetic testing is available to determine if a dog has Cerebellar Abiotrophy or not which is helpful.  Signs of the disease are uncontrolled trembling, inability to balance, jerky movements, head bobbing, high or stiff gait, and an awkward wide-legged stance.  There is usually also a diminished or inability to judge distances.  If you believe your dog is exhibiting any, some or all of these symptoms, contact his vet immediately.

Deafness is not at all uncommon within the Kelpie family.  The most prevalent type is hereditary.  Sometimes it can be caused by untreated ear infections, however.  If you note that your dog is not responding when you call or isn’t reacting to loud, sudden noises, you’ll want to have a hearing test run on him.

Untreated injuries are a widespread problem with AKs.  They are such diligent workers, they don’t stop working long enough to let anyone know they have an injury, be it a cut from a barbed wire fence, a bite from a predator they were keeping at bay from the flock or any other type of ache or pain.  Injuries that are left ignored can develop into severe problems so be sure to examine your Kelp from time to time to make sure he’s not sporting a silent injury.

Just because there are a number of potential health risks for the Australian Kelpie by no means is an indicator that yours will get any of them.  The information above can be very helpful though so you can keep an eye on him and take him to the vet at the first sign of any problem.  Speedy diagnosis and treatment is worth the world and can get your Kelpie back on track in no time so he can be the happy, healthy herder he was intended to be.

Is an Australian Kelpie Right for Me?

Kelpies are unique dogs.  From their handsome, athletic looks to their unyielding work ethics, this breed is like none other.  They were born to work.  They work to live and live to work.  Not all Australian Kelpies are herding sheep in the pasture or keeping cows in line, however.  But, shhhhh...don’t tell him that.  If you bring this working dog into your life and don’t intend to have a job for him to do, you’ll need to keep that a secret.  He has the need to at least feel like he is earning his keep.

If you are smitten with this dashing dog from the Downunder, there are some things you’ll need to ask yourself before rushing out to get him.   This is a dog that is adored by many but only a few are actually qualified to own one.

If this is your first rodeo with a dog, chances are this guy would be too much for you to handle.  He’s a good dog but he requires tons of exercise.  If you are planning to work him, he’s an excellent self-starter, however.  Still, he’s headstrong too so owning one is best left to those who are more familiar with dogs in general.

In the event that you live in suburbia and want a dog to decorate your backyard with, forget about the Kelpie being “the one”.  He is far more active and intelligent than one who would be content to just twiddle his paws all day.  No way!  This guy’s got to be on the move, working up a storm, pushing his abilities to the limit in all that he does.

If you have a farm or ranch and a herd of cows or flock of sheep that need to be shepherded, you’ve possibly met the best hand you could ever find.  This fine specimen is a tireless, relentless worker.  He’s affectionate and loyal too.  He requires little maintenance and will happily do most any job you ask him to do.

Are you still head over heels about this lad from Downunder?  If you think he’s the dog for you, even after reading up on what he’s all about, then...congratulations.  he’s “defo a great mate” who will work the ranch and warm your heart all at the same time.

* Links for crate sizes will bring you to the most appropriate Amazon page.



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Segugio Italiano - Fun Facts and Crate Size
Segugio Italiano Quick Facts: Not AKC recognized at present Life Expectancy: 10-12 years Size: medium Energy: high R...
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