All About the Breed Australian Kelpie

Have you recently fallen for the Australian Kelpie? Learn all about the breed here. Information included: Breed History, Personality Traits, Train-ability, Benefits and Disadvantages of the Breed, and Common Health Concerns.

The Australian Kelpie is a relatively rare, energetic, and athletic dog.

But how do you know whether you are ready to purchase a Kelpie and if this is the right breed for you?


The origin of the Australian Kelpie is documented only as far back as 1890. Due to the distinctive facial features of the Australian Kelpie, enthusiasts believe that this breed is an historic cross between the modern day wild Dingo and the Border Collie. This has never been scientifically determined.

It is clear that the Australian Kelpie was bred from specific standards seen in the Rutherford strain of English North Country Collies of the 1800's, in hopes of creating a superior working and herding dog.

It was the early 1900's before these dogs were imported to Australia and the official name was given to the breed. Kelpies remain active in herding and working in Australia to this day.

Unfortunately, this breed is rather rare outside of its native Australia and can be rather difficult to obtain.

Personality Traits

The Australian Kelpie has been bred purely for its extreme work ethic and herding abilities, thus making these dogs a very active, energetic, and athletic breed.

While the Kelpie is most widely known for its impressive reputation as a working and herding dog, when in their home environment the Australian Kelpie is calm and relaxed. This breed makes a nice pet and companion and has a generally timid temperament with people and is known to adore children.

Australian Kelpies can be rather territorial and with the proper training, can make excellent guard and watch dogs.


Having such an amazing attitude towards work, Australian Kelpies can be rather quick to pick up initial training. However, due to their intelligence and high energy levels, these dogs can grow somewhat bored of overly repetitive tasks and commands. It is very important to keep training interesting and switch things up when it comes to this breed.

Benefits and Disadvantages

There are many benefits to owning an Australian Kelpie. These dogs are a very natural looking breed and attractive in appearance. Kelpies are tough, energetic dogs that love to work and stay busy. This breed makes an excellent guard dog and is the perfect addition to a family farm.

Unfortunately, there are also disadvantages to owning an Australian Kelpie. Being such energetic and hard working dogs, Kelpies need large amounts of daily exercise and room to run freely. Anyone wishing to purchase an Australian Kelpie that lacks the adequate time and space to devote to the dog is strongly advised against doing do.

A Kelpie without the right amount of exercise can become quite the nuisance, damaging property and ignoring training and commands.

Due to their herding instincts, an untrained Australian Kelpie can be a danger to small children, other pets, and most anything that can trigger their urge to chase.

Kelpies need to be groomed on a regular basis, especially those that are often outdoors. This breed has a short but thick coat and is known for heavy shedding.

As previously mentioned, the Kelpie is still relatively rare outside of their native Australia. Anyone wishing to purchase an Australian Kelpie outside of the area may come across various difficulties, such as high price and being placed on a waiting list.

Common Health Concerns

While the Australian Kelpie is a fairly tough breed, they are known to suffer from a few common health problems, such as: Progressive Retinal Atrophy (vision problems progressing to blindness), Hip Dysplasia and other joint issues, Cerebellar Abiotrophy (a genetic disease that affects balance and coordination), and Patellar Luxation (a dislocation and movement of the knee cap).

So now that you've learned all about the Australian Kelpie, do you think you are ready to purchase a puppy?

Remember, purchasing a dog is an important decision and should be discussed thoroughly with your entire family.