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How Big Do Australian Shepherds Get? (Size + Growth Chart)

Australian Shepherd with different eye color

Australian Shepherds are energetic and protective of their families. They’re hard workers and are often used as service dogs. They’re affectionately known as Aussies, and you might recognize them for their bright blue eyes.

But what can you expect as your puppy grows into adulthood? How big will this breed get, and how fast will it leave puppyhood behind? We’ve got all this information and more, so if you want a better understanding of how to keep track of your puppy’s growth rate, you can do that here!

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5 Facts About Australian Shepherds

1. The Australian Shepherd Isn’t Australian

This breed came from the Basque region of Spain. The name was developed when Basque shepherds first took the dogs to Australia, then the States. So, Americans ended up calling them Australian Shepherds.

blue eyed Australian shepherd_eather Skau_shutterstock_
Image Credit: eather Skau, Shutterstock

2. The Dog of Many Names

Australian Shepherds have also been called Spanish Shepherds, Bob-tails, Pastor Dogs, California Shepherds, Blue Heelers, and New Mexican Shepherds.

australian shepherd enjoying the outdoors during autumn
Image Credit: dodafoto, Shutterstock

3. They Became Popular Thanks to Rodeos

Australian Shepherds were great herders, which is what American ranchers loved about them. But their popularity with the general population grew because of their appearance in rodeos. Not only could they herd bulls, but they also performed tricks.

toy australian shepherd
Image Credit: John Hoehn_Shutterstock

4. They Have Amazing Eyes

This is one of few breeds that commonly have two different colored eyes, which is known as heterochromia. Aussies can have any combination of blue, brown, hazel, green, or amber eyes. They sometimes even have more than one color in the same eye.

toy Australian shepherd dog portrait
Image Credit: John Kuehnle, Shutterstock

5. Native Americans Considered Them Sacred

Native Americans called Australian Shepherds “ghost eyes” and considered them sacred.

Australian Shepherd
Image by Rebecca Schönbrodt-Rühl from Pixabay

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Australian Shepherd Size and Growth Chart

These charts show, on average, how your puppy will grow. They include the average weight and height of an Australian Shepherd. Every puppy will grow at different rates, so don’t be worried if your puppy doesn’t fit into these categories. As long as you have been keeping up with your veterinarian visits and they are assured your puppy is healthy and happy, you have nothing to worry about.

australian shepherd puppy_Wolfgang_Pixabay
Image Credit: Wolfgang, Pixabay

Australian Shepherd Puppy Growth and Weight Chart (Male)

Age Weight Range Height Range
8 weeks 5–7 pounds 3–5 inches
9 weeks 7–12 pounds 5–8 inches
10 weeks 15–19 pounds 7–11 inches
11 weeks 18–23 pounds 9–12 inches
3 months 20–25 pounds 11-13 inches
4 months 27–32 pounds 12–14 inches
5 months 34–39 pounds 13–15 inches
6 months 40–46 pounds 15–17 inches
7 months 45–52 pounds 16–18 inches
8 months 45–55 pounds 17–19 inches
9 months 50–58 pounds 18–20 inches
10 months 50–60 pounds 19–21 inches
11 months 50–60 pounds 20–22 inches
12 months 50–65 pounds 20–23 inches
24 months 50–65 pounds 20–23 inches

Australian Shepherd Puppy Growth and Weight Chart (Female)

Age Weight Range Height Range
8 weeks 4–8 pounds 3–5 inches
9 weeks 6–11 pounds 5–8 inches
10 weeks 10–15 pounds 7–11 inches
11 weeks 12–19 pounds 9–12 inches
3 months 15–21 pounds 11-13 inches
4 months 20–25 pounds 11–14 inches
5 months 25–30 pounds 12–14 inches
6 months 30–35 pounds 13–15 inches
7 months 35–39 pounds 14–16 inches
8 months 37–41 pounds 15–17 inches
9 months 38–42 pounds 16–18 inches
10 months 40–45 pounds 17–18 inches
11 months 40–45 pounds 18–20 inches
12 months 40–45 pounds 18–21 inches
24 months 40–55 pounds 18–21 inches

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When Does an Australian Shepherd Stop Growing?

Generally, Australian Shepherds stop growing around the 16-month mark. While they often reach their full height around one year old, they will fill out when they’re 16 months old, and you’ll still notice changes. You’ll see rapid growth at first, which will slow down when they are around 8 months old.

Males tend to be bigger than females, but certain factors affect the size of your dog, which we’ll go more into depth about next. You’ll find your Aussie will behave like a puppy until they’re a year old, they’ll start to mellow, and by the time they’re 2 years old, they will act like an adult.

Factors Affecting the Size of Australian Shepherd

Australian Shepherds differ in size for various reasons, like genetics, insufficient nutrition, not eating enough, too much exercise, breeding,  and health issues.

There is also a difference between a dog that is small and one that is skinny. A small dog will be shorter in height and weight, but these two characteristics will be proportionate. A skinny Aussie is underweight for their age and height. If you suspect your Aussie is skinny, it could be that they’re not eating enough food. Food refusal or a dietary issue should always be taken seriously because lacking the proper nutrition can negatively impact their growth and development.

Their small size might also be a sign of a health problem. Australian Shepherds are prone to a genetic condition called Cobalamin malabsorption (vitamin B12 malabsorption). It is when vitamin B12 can’t be absorbed into the gut, which leads to weakness, blood problems, and poor growth.

While their size difference might be due to something completely innocent, there are other more worrying alternatives. If you are ever concerned, contact your vet immediately.

Australian Shepherd at a Dog Show
Image Credit: LRuss, Pixabay

Ideal Diet for Maintaining a Healthy Weight

Starting with a high-quality puppy or adult food will ensure that your Australian Shepherd’s nutritional needs are met. Aussies are energetic dogs, and you must make sure you choose food that will keep up with them. Choose a brand that contains high fat and calorie content to fuel your Aussie’s energy and higher protein to support lean muscle mass.

Additional factors to be on the lookout for are:

  • The food carries an AAFCO statement of nutritional quality: This ensures the recipe will meet the minimum dietary requirements for your dog.
  • Natural ingredients: Avoid foods that contain by-products, artificial additives, and fillers.
  • A high-quality source of animal protein: Protein is essential in building strong muscles, and it should come from reliable animal sources to maximize digestibility and provide essential amino acids.
  • Moderate-to-high fat content: Aussies are energetic, and fat provides a concentrated energy source.
  • Digestible and nutritious carbohydrates: Keep this content low, but starchy vegetables and fresh fruits are nutritious and excellent for the digestive system. They provide essential dietary fiber, nutrients, and energy.

How to Measure Your Australian Shepherd

When you’re measuring a dog, it’s done from the ground to its withers, which is the highest point of a dog’s shoulder blades. You will have to get your Aussie standing steadily for this and try to get its stance as square as possible with its legs evenly spaced out.

Locate the withers behind the base of the dog’s neck.

This next part is easier if your dog is against a wall because you can use the wall as a reference. Using a level or a ruler placed on the dog’s withers, either mark the wall with a pencil or use your finger to mark where the bottom of your level or ruler is on the wall.

You can use tape to keep your spot if you’ve just used your finger because you don’t want to mark your wall. You can now allow the dog to move away and measure from the ground up to the mark. A tape measure or a yardstick would work.

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Conclusion

Tracking the growth of your young Australian Shepherd can be tricky. Keeping an excitable, energetic puppy in one place is not always easy. If it is something your puppy just won’t allow, you can get the information from your vet during one of your visits.

Remember, this information is based on averages, and just because your dog doesn’t fit into that neat average, doesn’t mean something is wrong. As long as you are maintaining your recommended visits with your vet, you can feel confident that your Aussie is healthy and happy.


Featured Image Credit: otsphoto, Shutterstock

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