Australian Kelpie

Breed Information


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Australian Kelpie

Other names

Australian Sheepdog, Australischer Kelpie, Kelpie, Barb



Breed Group


Herding (UKC)





Life Span

10-14 years










17-20 inches (43-51 cm)


25-45 pounds (11-20 kg)


Black, Black & Tan, Chocolate, Brown, Blue, Red, Fawn

Litter Size

4-7 puppies

Puppy Prices

Average $1200 – $1600 USD

The cost of Australian Kelpie varies greatly, highly dependent on the source. The average cost of the Kelpie puppy is between $1200-$1600. However, the price can go higher depending on the quality of the breeders.

Disclaimer: While the characteristics mentioned here may frequently represent this breed, dogs are individuals whose personalities and appearances will vary. Please consult the adoption organization for details on a specific pet.

Breed Characteristics



Apartment Friendly


The Australian Kelpie is not recommended for apartment life. They are working dogs that need plenty of open space to run and will be happiest with a job to do. Their all-weather coat allows them to live where it is hot as well as where it is cold. They will be content to live outdoors with adequate shelter.

Barking Tendencies



Cat Friendly


Child Friendly


Good with Kids: This is a suitable breed for kids and is known to be playful, energetic, and affectionate around them. It is also friendly toward other pets.

Dog Friendly


Exercise Needs


The Australian Kelpie is a working dog that demands a great deal of exercise, preferably with some kind of job to do. Their energy levels are extremely high!! They are workaholics and will run until they drop!! They need to be taken on long daily walks. Makes an excellent jogging companion. Do not allow this dog to walk ahead of you on the walks. He needs to be beside or behind you to re-enforce the human is alpha.



Low Maintenance: Infrequent grooming is required to maintain upkeep.

Health Issues


Hypoallergenic: No

Kelpies are a hardy breed with few health problems, but they are susceptible to disorders common to all breeds, like cryptorchidism, hip dysplasia, cerebellar abiotrophy and luxating patella. Current research is underway to find the genetic marker for cerebellar abiotrophy in the breed.



Ranking: (N/A) Full Ranking List



Shedding Level


Moderate Shedding: Routine brushing will help. Be prepared to vacuum often!

Stranger Friendly




Easy Training: The Australian Kelpie is very intelligent and easily trained. It is a natural herder. Australian Kelpies excel at competitive obedience events and dog agility, but also enjoy simple games of fetch.

Watchdog Ability


The Australian Kelpie dog breed is renowned for its incredible agility, intelligence, and boundless energy. Originating from Australia, this breed has captured the hearts of dog enthusiasts around the world. In this article, we will delve into the various Australian Kelpie dog breed characteristics, shedding light on their history, temperament, physical attributes, training requirements, and more. Whether you’re considering bringing an Australian Kelpie into your family or simply curious about this remarkable breed, read on to discover everything you need to know.

Australian Kelpie Dog Breed Characteristics

The Australian Kelpie dog breed characteristics encompass a range of aspects that make these dogs truly exceptional companions. From their origins as working dogs to their distinct appearance and temperament, Australian Kelpies possess traits that set them apart.

Origin and History

The history of Australian Kelpies dates back to the late 19th century when they were developed for herding livestock in Australia. These dogs were bred for their remarkable herding abilities and endurance. Their lineage is believed to include Collies, Dingoes, and Border Collies, which contributed to their versatile skills.

Appearance and Size

Australian Kelpies typically have a well-proportioned, athletic build that reflects their agility and strength. They come in a variety of coat colors, including black, red, chocolate, and blue. Their coats are short and weather-resistant, suited to Australia’s diverse climate. In terms of size, males usually stand around 18 to 20 inches tall at the shoulder, while females are slightly smaller.

Temperament and Personality

Known for their unwavering loyalty and intelligence, Australian Kelpies make excellent companions for active individuals or families. They are incredibly energetic and thrive on mental and physical stimulation. Due to their herding heritage, they may sometimes display a strong instinct to chase and corral, even in non-working settings. This breed is also recognized for its strong bond with its owner and its eagerness to please.

Energy Levels and Exercise Needs

One of the standout Australian Kelpie dog breed characteristics is their boundless energy. These dogs have high exercise requirements and excel in various activities such as agility, obedience, and herding trials. Regular exercise is essential to keep them mentally engaged and physically fit. Without adequate exercise, Australian Kelpies may become restless or exhibit undesirable behaviors.

Training and Intelligence

The intelligence of Australian Kelpies is truly remarkable. They are quick learners and thrive on mental challenges. However, their intelligence can sometimes lead to stubbornness, so consistent and positive training methods are crucial. Providing them with tasks that simulate their herding instincts can be highly rewarding for both the dog and the owner.

Grooming and Care

Grooming Australian Kelpies is relatively low-maintenance due to their short coats. Regular brushing helps keep their fur healthy and minimizes shedding. Additionally, routine dental care, nail trimming, and ear cleaning are essential aspects of their overall grooming routine.

Health Considerations

Australian Kelpies are generally robust dogs with a life expectancy of around 12 to 15 years. However, like all breeds, they can be prone to certain health issues. These may include hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), and epilepsy. Regular veterinary check-ups and a balanced diet are key to maintaining their health and well-being.


In conclusion, the Australian Kelpie dog breed characteristics highlight their exceptional qualities as intelligent, energetic, and loyal companions. From their history as skilled herders to their remarkable agility and trainability, Australian Kelpies continue to captivate the hearts of dog lovers worldwide. If you’re seeking a dynamic and devoted canine partner, the Australian Kelpie might just be the perfect addition to your family.


Do Australian Kelpies get along with other pets?

With proper socialization, Australian Kelpies can get along well with other pets. However, their herding instincts might lead them to chase smaller animals, so early training and introductions are important.

Are Australian Kelpies good family pets?

Absolutely! Australian Kelpies can make wonderful family pets, especially in active households. Their loyalty and playful nature can create strong bonds with family members, including children.

How much exercise do Australian Kelpies need?

Due to their high energy levels, Australian Kelpies require at least 1-2 hours of vigorous exercise daily. Engaging in activities like fetch, agility training, and long walks can help meet their needs.

Can Australian Kelpies adapt to apartment living?

While Australian Kelpies are better suited to homes with yards, they can adapt to apartment living if provided with ample exercise and mental stimulation. Regular outdoor activities are still essential.

Are Australian Kelpies prone to excessive barking?

Australian Kelpies are known for their alert nature and protective instincts, which might lead to barking. Proper training and socialization can help manage and minimize excessive barking tendencies.

Are Australian Kelpies easy to train?

Yes, Australian Kelpies are highly intelligent and eager to please, making them relatively easy to train. Positive reinforcement techniques and consistency yield the best results.

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