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How Big Do Australian Shepherds Get? The Surprising Answer!

Jaimie Wisniowski

By Jaimie Wisniowski

Blue Merle Australian Shepherd

Coming in at #15 on the most popular breeds list in the United States, Australian Shepherds are quickly becoming the breed of choice for many. Between their fluffy coats and eager personalities, it’s no surprise that these adorable herding dogs are taking over the pet world. They’re even more irresistible as puppies, which can lead people to get one without knowing how big they’ll eventually get. Thankfully, Australian Shepherds are not as big as Great Danes and won’t weigh over 100 pounds. But how big do they really get? The answer may surprise you:

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Australian Shepherd Size – How Big Do Australian Shepherds Get

Australian Shepherds (aka “Aussies”) are a fairly new breed that began as a stock type of dog for herding livestock, which is why their working mentality is so strong. Once the breed became more organized and eventually accepted into the American Kennel Club, the breed formed into what we recognize as the Australian Shepherd today.

As purebred dogs, Aussies have a set weight and height range that is standard for the breed. Males and females have different size ranges to adjust for the female’s smaller, slimmer bodies. It’s also important to note that Australian Shepherds are medium-sized dogs, but there is an AKC-recognized breed with ties to the original Australian Shepherd: The Miniature American Shepherd.

Red Merle Australian Shepherd
Image Credit: Eve Photography, Shutterstock

Male Australian Shepherd Height & Weight

Male Australian Shepherds have a set range of 20–23 inches and 55–70 pounds, or 51–58 centimeters and 55–70 kilograms. Males are heavier and taller than females, with overall bigger body sizes. They’ll outweigh the average female, but they shouldn’t weigh more than 70 pounds. If your Aussie is bigger than the size range, your dog may either have a weight problem or may not even be a purebred Australian Shepherd.

Female Australian Shepherd Height & Weight

Female Australian Shepherds have a set range of 18–21 inches and 35–55 pounds, or 46–54 centimeters and 16–25 kilograms. Females are leaner and lighter than males and will visually look smaller. They can weigh as little as 35 pounds, though on average, they usually weigh around 45 pounds. If your Aussie is smaller than the set range for females, you may have a miniature Aussie or not a purebred dog.

Growth Rate from Puppy to Adult–What to Expect

Australian Shepherds are medium-sized dogs, so it will take some time for growth to reach their natural adult size. Aussies are fully grown in around 16 months, though some don’t top out until a full two years. The exception is the Miniature Australian Shepherd, which will reach full size at a faster rate. Keep track of your Aussie’s growth patterns to make sure you are providing enough daily nutrition. Puppies are constantly going through changes and need a diet that supports their rapid growth.

Australian Shepherd dog puppy
Image Credit: gesango16, Shutterstock

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Frequently Asked Questions

Are Australian Shepherds Good Apartment Dogs?

Mother and daughter relaxing with australian shepherd
Image Credit: Altrendo Images, Shutterstock

With their compact size and generally weighing under 60lbs, Australian Shepherds can potentially be apartment dogs. But there are a lot of caveats, including frequent daily exercise and the ability to run in an open area. They can grow bored easily and become destructive while also needing space to burn off energy. Aussies are herding dogs that need room to run around physically, so it’s important that they get plenty of exercises to be happy in an apartment.

Are Miniature Australian Shepherds Real?

toy australian shepherd
Image Credit: John Hoehn, Shutterstock

In the world of trending dog “sizes” and “breeds,” it can be tough to figure out what is real and what is a scam. Thankfully, Miniature Australian Shepherds are very real and recognized by the American Kennel Club. Their official name is the Miniature American Shepherd, but many people call them Miniature Australian Shepherds due to their origins and resemblance to their bigger variant. However, it’s still important to be careful when looking into any kind of “miniature” or “teacup” pet to ensure that it’s not a money-grabbing scheme or poor breeding practices.

Are Australian Shepherds Easy to Train?

australian shepherd dog training for dog show
Image Credit: LRuss, Pixabay

Yes and no- it depends on your experience as a dog handler. Aussies are working dogs with high levels of intelligence, so training them is technically easy to do. The problem is usually a lack of hands-on experience from the owner, which can translate into “bad” behavior. Aussies do best in an active household or farm with an experienced dog owner, but they can easily excel in obedience training in the right hands.

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Featured Image Credit: Vera Reva, Shutterstock

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