Border Collie and Australian Shepherd are two of the most popular herding dogs nowadays. You might put the Australian Cattle dog in there, but those are the favorites. Now, you might be thinking, why a Border Collie Australian Shepherd mix? Why not get one of the two?
Well, this puppy has inherited some of the best traits of both parents. We will try to give you a complete guide on what to expect from this offspring.
Meet The Breed
This mixed breed dog can be called Border Aussie or Aussieollie. In any case, it is an extremely capable herding dog.
You combine the smartest dog, Border Collie, with the incredibly focused Australian Shepherd, and you have an amazing working dog.
This mixed puppy thrives when given a job to do. It is a fairly new designer breed. While it is not recognized by The American Kennel Club, it is recognized by The American Canine Hybrid Club and Designer Dogs Kennel Club.
Its parents are of similar build and temperament, meaning we can guess most of the personality traits.
Meet the Parents
We have two herding breeds here, but how are they different? Let’s take a look.
Border Collies are medium-sized dogs that can grow up to 22 inches and weigh around 45 pounds. Females are a bit smaller. Compared to the Australian shepherd dog, they look lighter-weight. They have a feathered tail that reaches to the hocks, with a slightly more athletic body.
This active and working dog thrives in country living. When it is confined and without activity, Border Collies will become destructive and unhappy. It is a highly intelligent dog breed topping the list of smartest canines.
Because of its herding instinct, this puppy is protective of the family and territory they occupy. Border Collies make excellent watchdogs and will also look out for the children in the family. They get along with other pets and children but can be a bit snappish and reserved with strangers. They nip at the heels the same way they would nip at sheep. That is their herding instinct kicking in.
Let’s summarize the personality traits of Border Collie:
- Extremely energetic that has to have a job to do
- Loves to run and needs ample attention from its owner
- Can be shy around strangers
- The smartest dog in the canine world, can pick up any command
Now let’s take a look at the second parent breed, the Australian shepherd dog. This medium-sized dog looks a bit larger than Border Collie, but it is because of the coat and hair. They grow between 18 and 23 inches, weighing between 40 and 60 pounds.
They have a lush and medium-length coat that can be straight or slightly wavy. Aussies are active, yet easy-going. They love to play and romp with children and get along with other pets.
Unlike the Border Collie, Aussie comes in more coat color options, including blue merle, red merle, or black tricolor. Highly intelligent, they love to train and work. They too retain their herding instinct and can be protective of the family and territory.
With that in mind, here are some common personality traits:
- Active dogs that need to be busy
- When left alone, they can develop separation anxiety and destructive behaviors
- Independent, yet loving and loyal canine
- Open to strangers, playful, and considers most people friends
Border Aussies resemble the Border Collie parent breed more than the Australian shepherd. They usually have floppy ears, and eyes that can be green, blue, or brown.
This canine is of medium build, growing between 19 and 23 inches and weighing between 35 and 60 pounds.
They are prone to complete heterochromia, one eye has a different color than the other.
Their coat hair is long like the Border Collie, but with the texture of the Australian Shepherd. That means a double coat that is dense and waterproof.
Since both parents have a wide range of colors, the offspring can have varying shades. The Border Collie Australian Shepherd mix can be black and white, gray, red, tricolor, red merle, blue merle, and even sable.
One of the reasons why people want an Australian Shepherd Border Collie mix is temperament. Border Collies are amazing dogs, one of the smartest and most focused. But they can be a bit aloof around strangers, which is minimized thanks to the friendliness of the Aussie.
Both parents are high-energy dogs. And their offspring, the mixed puppy is curious, lively, assertive, and hard-working. When given space to burn their energy, they can be impressive.
The big challenge is to provide that amount of physical exercise and mental stimulation. Without it, the Border Aussie mix can resort to obsessive chewing, destructive behaviors, and even barking.
They can also try to outsmart you. So step up your game if you want to have an obedient dog. The good news is they are family-oriented, calm, loyal, and obedient. Do not worry about barking or howling. This Collie mix is a quiet breed.
They are great companions, but due to their herding instincts, they can herd members of the family, even adults.
The most important thing in training a puppy, the Australian Collie mix included, is to understand its nature and instincts. With that in mind, you are dealing with a herding dog here. And it is a dog that loves to work and sniff around.
So, make sure to include a lot of games and give your dog something to do. For example, carrying something on walks.
What you have to remember in the back of your head is you are dealing with an extremely intelligent Aussie mix. Do not be fooled easily. Once your puppy picks up the basic commands, you need to increase the challenge.
If you do the same stuff over and over again, your puppy will get bored and try to outsmart you. For example, your dog might do a slow recall just to mess with you.
Positive reinforcement is the best way to train this active dog. And when it comes to rewards, they respond well to both dog food and toys. Start with food, and then reward with toys and play more games. The more you play and work, the happier your dog will be.
Herding dogs have a boundless amount of stamina and endless energy. You are dealing with an immensely active dog here. Both parents are working dogs, and if you intend to snuggle on the couch with your Border Collie Australian Shepherd mix, forget about it.
You can do that after an intense playing and training session. These dogs are suited for an active lifestyle, not for someone staying at home.
Ideally, they should get 90 minutes of exercise per day. If you have the time, they can go up to 120 minutes. But the bare minimum is 60 minutes.
You must meet the physical requirements and mental stimulation requirements of your canine. Otherwise, Border Aussies will be bored and find something else to entertain themselves. And you do not want that.
Both parents are generally healthy, with their offspring living between 13 and 15 years. The big challenge is the collie eye anomaly, a genetic mutation affecting many breeds. It can lead to vision deficits.
But the good news is that with a crossbreed, the degree of risk is lowered. Another genetic problem is deafness, linked to the merle gene. Puppies do not show health issues related to the merle gene until they are four years old.
You might look at the Australian Shepherd dog and think my gosh, that is a lot of dog hair. But the good news is that Aussies are average shedders.
The shaggy fur of this mixed breed needs regular grooming, at least 2 to 3 times per week. Yes, they do not shed a lot, but grooming and brushing help prevent matting and tangling.
Why Shouldn’t You Get One?
- The big challenge with the Border Collie Aussie mix is energy, if you cannot provide exercise, do not get one
- They need a moderate amount of grooming to keep their hair shiny and untangled
- Need firm and consistent training to prevent their herding behavior
Why Should You Get One?
- Their loyal nature and high intelligence will make them a great addition to your family
- Quiet for the most part, barks only when overly excited
- One of the most intelligent dog breeds, making training quite easy