Australian Cattle Dog
The Australian Cattle Dog was originally a manufactured breed, dating back to the first recorded Dingo x blue merle Collie mating in 1840 by Thomas S. Hall of the Hunter Valley. The aim and purpose of this mating was to produce a tough, hard working dog which could herd and drive livestock throughout Australia's dry, dusty and extremely hot terrain.
Throughout this breeds history many other breeds, including the Smithfield, the Bulldog, the Dalmatian and possibly even the Kelpie have had their 'blood' put into the 'mix' in order to perfect the now recognised Australian Cattle Dog.
The general appearance is that of a strong, compact, symmetrically build working dog, with the ability and willingness to carry out any allotted task, however arduous. Their combination of substance, power, balance and hard muscular condition gives them great agility, strength and endurance. You will NEVER exhaust a Cattle Dog, so don't try. Their tenacity incredible, their loyalty and devotion of equal measure.
Cattle Dogs do not respond well to aggression in any form, firm, positive reinforcement training is essential from a very early age in order for them to live a well balanced life with their human family. Mental as well as physical stimulation should be part of their daily routine or they just might 'invent' something for themselves. Cattle Dogs have a 'wicked' sense of humour with a 'butter wouldn't melt' look, if caught in the act of mischief.
Cattle dogs in general are very healthy animals, they are a 'long lived' breed. You can expect to make more than a decades commitment if you choose to live with an ACD.
As all pups are born white they should be BAER hearing tested at between 5-7 weeks of age. They are also prone to the prcd form of PRA (progressive retinal atrophy) and so can be 'pattern' typed by either blood or buccal swab with Optigen in the USA, this test is carried out to ensure that any progeny being produced can expect a healthy life if compatible Geno-typed parents are used.
ACD's are hip and elbow scored for Dysplasia as they are with most other breeds. Front dew claws are not removed and if not maintained can 'in-grow'.