The Kennel Club





Australian Shepherd




The sequence follows FCI breed standard.

DATE OF PUBLICATION OF THE OFFICIAL VALID STANDARD

: June 2010

CLASSIFICATION

: Pastoral

GENERAL APPEARANCE

: Well balanced, length slightly greater than height. Medium sized, muscular with moderate bone. Expression alert and keen. Masculinity and femininity well defined.

IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS

: Intelligent working dog with herding and guarding instincts. Great stamina, loyal, attentive and animated. Lithe, agile and able to change speed and direction with ease.

BEHAVIOUR / TEMPERAMENT

: Even disposition. May show initial reserve, never shy or aggressive.

HEAD

: In proportion to body. Clean cut. Dry. Muzzle equal to, or a little shorter than length of skull, tapering slightly to a rounded tip. Skull flat to slightly rounded, approximately equal in length and width. Moderate, well defined stop. Nose and eye rims: black in blue merles and blacks; shades of brown in red merles and reds. Poor pigmentation undesirable over one year of age.

FACIAL REGION

:

Muzzle

: Jaws strong with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. the upper teeth closely overlapping the lower teeth and set square to the jaws.

Eyes

: Expressive, almond shaped, set obliquely with tight fitting rims. Brown, blue or amber, or combination including flecks and marbling.

Ears

: Triangular; of moderate size and thickness with a slightly rounded tip. Set high on the side of the head. When alert, brought forward and carried semi-erect, with half to three quarters of the ear breaking forward or to side.

NECK

: Clean, without throatiness. Moderate length, strong, slightly arched; fitting smoothly into shoulders.

BODY

: Length from point of shoulder to point of buttock slightly greater than height at withers. Strong, with firm level topline. Chest deep, of moderate width, with brisket reaching to elbow. Ribs well sprung and carried well back. Loin strong and broad. Croup moderately sloping. Moderate tuck-up.

TAIL

: Previously customarily docked. Undocked: Set on following the line of the croup. Of moderate length, not kinked. In overall balance with the rest of the dog. Moderately feathered. May be naturally bobbed.

LIMBS

:

FOREQUARTERS

: Shoulder blades long and flat, well laid back. Upper arms of comparable length and angulation. Height to the elbow is half the height of the dog at the withers. Forearms straight from all sides with moderate oval bone. Slightly sloping pasterns of medium length.

FEET

: Oval, compact with well arched toes and thick pads.

HINDQUARTERS

: Approximately equal in width to forequarters at the shoulders. Angulation of pelvis and upper thighs reflects that between scapulae and upper arms. Stifles moderately angulated. Hocks well let down, with rear pasterns perpendicular to ground and parallel when viewed from rear.

GAIT / MOVEMENT

: Agile, smooth, free and easy, with moderate length of stride without any exaggeration. Fore and hind limbs move straight and true but should converge at speed. Topline should remain firm and level.

COAT

:

HAIR

: Medium length and texture, straight to slightly wavy, weather resistant with undercoat. Short hair on head, ears front of forelegs and below hock joints. Back of legs moderately feathered. Moderate mane, more pronounced in dogs than bitches.

COLOUR

: Blue merle, black, red merle, red, all with or without tan points. All colours should be strong, clear and rich. White should not dominate the head. On all colours the areas covering and surrounding the ears and eyes are dominated by a colour other than white. May have white as follows: full or part collar not extending beyond point of withers at the skin * chest * muzzle * moderate blaze * underparts * on fore-legs * on hind-legs, preferably not extending above the hock joint

SIZE

: Dogs: 51-58 cms (20-23 inches). Bitches: 46-53 cms (18-21 inches).

FAULTS

: Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work.


Anatomical Features of the dog

N.B.:

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.