Miniature Australian Shepherd

The Miniature Australian Shepherd is a dog breed. Miniature Australian Shepherd was developed by selectively breeding small Australian Shepherds.

Miniature Aussies are rapidly increasing in popularity among those interested in a compact dog with a strong work ethic. They are especially popular in dog agility, and do well in other dog sports including herding, obedience, disc dog, and many other activities.


Miniature Australian Shepherds range in height from 14 to 18 inches (35 to 46 cm) at the withers and weigh between 17 and 35 pounds (9 to 14 kg). Toy Australian Shepherds range in height from 10 to 14". Coat colors are the same as those for Australian Shepherds; blue merle, red merle, black, and red, all with or without copper and white trim. Eyes may be any combination of brown, amber, hazel, blue, or marbled.


Miniature Australian Shepherds are notoriously eager to work. They are very fun to play with and can be easily trained, but their intelligence and drive require obedience training and plenty of interesting activity. Once given a clear job to do, like guarding or companionship, they will thrive in a variety of environments, provided they have an adequate outlet for both physical and mental energy. If they are not allowed adequate room to play, they may become destructive. They are social dogs and form close attachments to their owner. As a result, some may suffer separation anxiety. Mini Aussies function well as a family dog, but their excessive energy may need to be checked around small children.

MDR1 Gene

MDR1 Gene mutation has been found in a variety of herding dogs: Australian Shepherds (both miniature and full sized), Shetland Sheepdogs, Old English Sheepdogs and German Shepherds. Testing is the only way to determine if an individual dog has the mutant gene. Washington State University is one facility that provides such testing.

Dogs with the MDR1 gene mutation may have adverse reactions when given certain drugs. The documented list includes drug types for: antiparasitic agents, antidiarrheal agents, tranquilizers, pre-anesthetic agents and chemotherapy agents.

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