The Ultimate Guide to Mini Australian Shepherds (Mini Aussies)

The Ultimate Guide To Mini Australian ShepherdsThe Ultimate Guide To Mini Australian Shepherds

Considering keeping Mini Australian Shepherds as your pet? Intrigued by its demeanour and size? These lovable dogs certainly make good family pets. Not only that, this breed of dog appeals to trainers too. The mini Australian shepherd is a highly intelligent dog and is recognised by the FCI.

These dogs are fantastic herders. They pick up tricks fast and can be a handful to have in the house.

Read on to know more about the Mini Australian Shepherd to decide if it is the perfect pet for you.


As the name implies, the mini Australian Shepherd is just a smaller version of the Australian Shepherd. Just like the Australian Shepherd, the mini version is as intelligent, active and most importantly, loyal to its owner.

Mini Australian Shepherd Size and Origin

It can reach weight of up to 40 lbs and 18 inches. These features make it a more perfect fit for those who prefer smaller breed of dogs. Many years back, large dogs were preferred by owners. However now, the trend has reversed. Owners prefer keeping smaller dogs that would not take up too much space in their apartments. The Mini Australian Shepherd size certainly makes it a great option to consider it as a pet.

Wondering where did this breed come from? Did I hear Australia? Nope. Contrary to its name, this breed originated from the United States. This breed is related to the Border Collie and also the Shetland Sheepdog.

Qualities of the Mini Australian Shepherd

This breed of dog is a hardworking dog and has been used widely to herd livestock like chicken. It is highly energetic and bubbly, making it a perfect pet for owners who love spending time walking their dogs. Do not be surprised if it ends up herding your little ones!

playing fetch with a mini aussie
Wolfgang Hasselmann SUu4Oh0YrIY Unsplash

What does the Mini Australian Shepherd look like?

The Mini Australian Shepherd coat comes in many colors. It posseses an attractive double coat, wavy and long. It has a black or brown base, with colors like beige, tan and white in patches.

Its beauty is further accentuated by its toned and muscular body. A broad chest is a distinct feature of the Mini Australian Shepherd.

Their eyes can be of many colors. They can have eyes that are brown, blue or heterochromia. Feature and color wise, they are a real headturner, often appearing in countless posts on Instagram. Mesmerizing and even seen as sacred by American Natives.

Mini Australian Shepherd Temperament

Temperament of an animal is a very important quality to consider before deciding on it as a pet. If you intend to keep one as a pet, you must be committed to spend a lot of time with it. Keeping the mini Australian Shepherd occupied with tasks and activities will definitely keep them active. A sign of concern to look out for is when it is aggressive and grouchy. A simple solution would be to provide it with more tasks to burn off their excess energy.

Afraid that it might cause disturbance to your neighbours? Does the Mini Australian Shepherd bark loudly? Well, not much of a concern here. It tends to be of a quiet nature, not known for barking excessively unless something is bothering it.

Another question to consider is, can it get along with other pets? Unfortunately, no. As they are meant to herd, they do not get along well with other pets. It will be seen as bossy and is better kept in solitary, surrounded only by its human owners.

Adding on, due to its careful and focused nature, a lot of trust needs to be built up between it and its owner. Do not expect the Mini Australian Shepherd to be warm and friendly towards your relatives at the first instance. These smarties are too focused till they need time to warm up and get to know others.

Are Mini Aussies Good Family Dogs?

Absolutely. They get along very well with children and are very playful. Perfect for families but not quite for those staying alone as the Mini Australian Shepherd requires a lot of attention and playtime.

These dogs are affectionate creatures and will be definitely be well-liked by children as well as adults, making it a great choice for a family dog.

Is it easy to train Mini Australian Shepherds?

The Mini Australian Shepherd is well-known for its great intelligence and obedience in carrying out tasks and commands. Train it with love and patience, and it will surely reward you with its mastery of tricks.

Do Mini Australian Shepherds require high maintenance?

They do shed quite a bit and regular maintenance of their coats is required. Frequency can be as common as three days once or weekly, with brushing and trimming to keep them well-groomed and healthy.

It is especially important for you to check for fleas and ticks daily when the weather is warm. The Mini Australian Shepherds only require it to be bathed for a few times in a year. Make sure that the soap residue is washed off entirely, else dirt will stick to it.

Also, in terms of walks and exercises, yes, the mini Australian Shepherd can be considered of high maintenance. On average, it requires more than an hour of walk a day. So if you are busy and do not have time or family members who do not mind taking it for a walk, please consider other less active or low maintenance dogs. They can be described as clingy or needy, so be prepared to spend your free time with it when you are home.

Exercising definitely improves their mental and keep their emotions in check. Go and bring it out for a game of tug, fetch and also run up and down the stairs.  

Running out of ideas on what to do with your dog? Here’s a list to try out.

  • Food dispensing puzzles
  • Canine sport such as Freestyle, Herding, Scenting, Dock Diving, Flyball, Agility, Disc
  • Retrieve
  • Exploring your neighbourhood

What does the Mini Australian Shepherd Eat?

It definitely is a big eater and always appears hungry. Mix the dog food with vegetables like carrots and mixed veggies. Spread its meal throughout the day, for example 1/3 cup of Kibble and some vegetables for every meal, three times a day.

Some owners find that their Mini Australian Shepherd does not consume enough water. You can overcome this issue by feeding it with ice cubes.

As a general rule of thumb, it needs to consume around 30 calories of food per pound of its weight.

If you are for the idea of homemade dog food, keep the ratio of meat to fiber and carbs to 4:3:3. It is a guideline that many pet lovers have recommended in order to make your own homemade dog food.

Please refer to foods to avoid feeding your dogs and do a thorough research before preparing the homemade food.

Otherwise, opt for the following off-the-shelf food for your Mini Australian Shepherd.

  • Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Puppy
  • Blue Buffalo Wilderness Puppy
  • Nutro Wholesome Puppy Formula
  • Wellness Core Puppy Recipe
  • Canidae Limited Ingredient Puppy

List of Mini Australian Shepherd Health Issues

  • hip dysplasia (CHD)
  • Collie Eye Anomaly (CEA)
  • Cataract, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)
  • lumbar sacral syndrome
  • Persistent Pupillary Membrane (PPM)
  • distichiasis
  • von Willebrand’s Disease (vWD)
  • nasal solar dermatitis
  • epilepsy


The common health issues are related to their eyes. Issues such as blindness are very common. Underdeveloped eye can be quite a problem with ones that have the beautiful double merle coat.

Some other health issues are hip dysplasia, spinal defects and epilepsy.

Schedule for regular health inspection at your preferred vet. Remember, dogs are like us too! Their health have to be monitored closely.

Monitor Mini Aussies’ Dental Health too

Dental health is also important. Foul-smelling breath indicates that it is in need of a dental check-up at the vet. Brush its teeth twice a week using a dog toothpaste or a simple baking soda paste. A child toothbrush would be appropriate to get rid of the plaque in your Mini Australian Shepherd’s mouth.

Female Mini Australian Shepherds should be spayed and males neutered before they turn half a year old. Spaying before maturity reduces the chances of them getting breast cancer while neutering males before maturity rids the chance of them getting testicular diseases.

Price of Mini Australian Shepherd

Typically around USD800-USD1000, depending on its coat color. If you are looking for the merle-coated one, be prepared to pay at least USD1000 for it. Despite its relatively high price, the Mini Australian Shepherd is popular among dog owners who are looking for a loyal and active companion.

Life Expectancy of a Mini Australian Shepherd

The Mini Australian Shepherd lifespan is typically 10-15 years. Life expectancy and quality can be dependent on how well it is treated since it requires a lot of attention from its owners.

TLDR! (Mini Australian Shepherds)

Perfect for committed and seasoned owners, who will truly be devoted to it. If you do not mind a clingy and bossy dog, go for it. Its size is a perfect fit for small apartments.

In terms of looks, not much needs to be said. It is very well-known for its beauty and charm and possesses such a beautiful set of double coat. A highly intelligent and energetic dog, perfect for those looking to teach a dog a trick or two.

Other FAQs on Mini Australian Shepherds

Do mini Aussies shed a lot?

Yes, Mini Australian Shepherds do shed a lot. Each possesses two coats which are thick and the undercoat is shed two times in a year. To reduce shedding, brush its coat at least once a week to keep the coat and skin healthy.

What is the difference between a mini Australian shepherd and an Australian shepherd?

Well, difference is in the size. Much shorter and lighter for the mini version as compared to the standard Australian Shepherd.

Do Mini Australian Shepherds like to cuddle?

Definitely. This is one of the reason as to why they are so well-liked. They are loyal and affectionate creatures, more so with owners who love and treat them well.

Can Mini Australian Shepherds be left alone?

No, not recommended. They will get bored easily and will look for ways to expel their energy for example, tearing your sofa and causing a mess in your house and also loud barking.

Are Mini Aussies hard to potty train?

Possible but exhausting, as with other dogs. A lot of effort and proper set up for the area is required.

Are male or female Mini Australian Shepherds better?

This answer may surprise you! Males are more affectionate and attentive to their owners. Females are of a stubborn nature and are territorial.

Do Mini Australian Shepherds stink?

Generally, the Mini Australian Shepherd is clean and dirt easily falls off its coat when it is dry. When it smells, just give it a good shower and scrub. Always dry it thoroughly after that.

How do I stop my dog from herding behavior?

This requires training of your Mini Australian Shepherd. Teach it commands like ‘Watch Me’ and ‘Leave it’. It takes time but your Mini Aussie will learn and stop its herding behavior.

How do you punish a Mini Australian Shepherd?

The key here is positive reinforcement. Reward its good behaviour by providing it with treats. If it does something undesirable, there is no need to punish. Just do not reward it.

Why don’t Mini Australian Shepherds have tails?

Mainly used as a herd dog, ranchers intentionally breed mini Aussies with short tails to avoid accidents during herding e.g tail being trampled by sheep etc.

Do Mini Aussies like to swim?

It may appear that they are not able to swim. However, Mini Aussies are more tha capable of swimming. In fact, they excel at it. They are very hardy and love physical exercises, swimming being one of them.

Hope this guide has been a great help in deciding if a Mini Australian Shepherd is the right dog for you! Feel free to comment or share my site with fellow dog lovers, Mini Australian Shepherd potential owners in particular.