The Australian Retriever: A Complete Guide

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Coming from a herding background, the Australian Retriever makes for an enjoyable and adaptable pet that is loyal to its owners.

This is an adorable and frivolous pet that will take over your heart and your home with its quirky antics.

Safe to have around children, the Australian Retriever will love and protect its family with all its energy.

That being said, the Australian Retriever is notorious for being extremely protective about its family, to a point where it could get aggressive, which is why supervised interactions with toddlers and new, smaller pets are advised.

The Australian Shepherd and Golden Retriever mix are full of energy, keeping its owners busy in playful activities that not only ensure a healthy lifestyle but are also a delight to watch.

Being a hybrid, however, has one downside in terms of the reliability of the breeder as well as the uncertainty of what temperament the Australian Retriever will develop.

Luckily for you, in this guide, we will walk you through each step, from finding and visiting a good breeder to taking care of your lovable Australian Shepherd.

So if you’re looking to add a new, furry companion to your family, get ready to get an insight into what it will take to live with the Aussie Golden Retriever.

The Australian Retriever Puppies – Before You Buy…

A cute small Australian Retriever
The Australian Retriever is an obedient family dog.

Ask yourself the following questions to test what you already know about the Australian Retriever:

  • Will I be able to afford an Australian Retriever puppy?
  • Where and how can I find trusted breeders for an Australian Retriever?
  • Is my lifestyle suitable to cater to an Australian Retriever and its needs?

If you’re unable to answer these questions, do not fret over it. This guide is meant to answer such concerns and queries for you and aid you towards making an informed decision about your new pet.

What price are the Australian Retriever puppies?

The cost of buying an Australian Retriever puppy can be as low as $200 to as much as $700.

It is important to note that mixed breed puppies are usually less expensive than their pedigree parents.

Hence, considering that an Australian Shepherd puppy normally costs about $600 to $800, an Australian Retriever hybrid should not cost you more than $800.

How to find reputable Australian Retriever breeders?

While it’s always better and nobler to adopt mixed breed dogs from rescue shelters, breeders for the Australian Retriever can also be found.

However, there are not a lot of options for such breeders available online.

The best way to reach a breeder is through contacts, like friends, friends of friends, or family.

What you will need to be very aware of is mass-scale breeding that happens in puppy mills.

Any breeder that is associated with a puppy mill is bound to be in the business only for the profit, and will not care about the quality of the puppy, or even about its future home.

When looking for breeders online, be aware of some red flags. These include:

  • Payment via credit card
  • Availability of multiple litters
  • Availability of the exact kind of puppy that you’re looking for
  • The breeder is in a hurry to make the deal with you
  • The reluctance of the breeder to provide proof of the health of the parent dogs

The aforementioned factors are all associable to irresponsible and greedy breeders.

A good breeder will be patient, and instead of coaxing you into purchasing the puppy, will do a lot of research on your life to ensure that you’d make a suitable candidate for the Australian Retriever pup.

In addition to that, it isn’t hard to deduce that a good breeder will confidently answer all your queries about the dog and its background.

He/she will also willingly provide certifications of all important health checkups on the parents of the puppy, as well as inform you of any health ailment that either of the parents might have been treated for in the past.

3 Little-known facts about the Australian Retriever puppies

The Australian Retriever on a lead
The Australian Retriever is an attentive watchdog.

The following are some handy pointers to keep in mind about the Australian Retriever that will help you once you decide to bring one home:

  • Socialization and proper training is key to developing a well-mannered personality

The combination of the hunting and herding instincts from either side of the Australian Retriever’s family makes it imperative for this dog to be trained from the very first days of its lives.

Provide your pet with ample opportunities to interact with different people and animals while it is still a puppy, for this will go a long way when it comes to its social skills later on in life.

  • The Australian Retriever has a knack for picking up on commands very easily

This hybrid puppy is very easy to train and will be eager to take orders from you.

When training the Australian Retriever, ensure that firm coaching goes hand-in-hand with a reward-based approach.

The dog responds best to verbal appreciation, along with a consistent environment that induces its pack-leadership nature.

  • This dog has moderate grooming requirements

The Australian Shepherd isn’t that big of a shedder; it won’t shed as much as its Golden Retriever lineage, but you can expect some level of seasonal shedding.

Therefore, it would do you best if you brush it regularly, not only to tame its fur but also to keep it tangle-free.

To guarantee that your pet looks its best, bathe it a decent number of times so it doesn’t look dirty.

Physical Traits of the Australian Retriever

Australian Retriever tends to inherit a coarse, wavy fur coat that can be found in a range of different shades of colour.

The big and expressive bright eyes of the Australian Retriever are set perfectly in its firm, sturdy build.

But how big can these dogs get?

How big is a full-grown Australian Retriever?

The Australian Retriever is large in size, measuring between 30 and 60 pounds in weight, and standing up to 30 inches tall.

What is the life expectancy of the Australian Retriever?

The average Australian Retriever has an expected lifespan of 12 to 15 years.

The life expectancy rate can be attributed to that of its parents since the Golden Retriever tends to live about 10 to 12 years, while the Australian Shepherd has a relatively long lifespan of 13 to 15 years.

Intelligence, Temperament and Personality Traits of the Australian Retriever

A brown and white Australian Retriever
The Australian Retriever is perfect for a range of different kinds of lifestyles.

The Australian Retriever ranks very high on the intelligence scale. Since it is a herding dog by blood, it has a strong, inherent drive for guarding its possessions, families included.

Having said that, it is not uncommon for the herding instinct to die out as the dog reaches old age.

The most appealing characteristic of the Australian Retriever is its unconditional love towards its owner and family.

A little bit of affection and appreciation will be enough to make the Australian Retriever your most faithful and devoted companion.

The Australian Retriever can mingle with strangers easily, however, any suspicion of a hint of doubt will lead them to instinctively be on guard and ready to defend the family that it is loyal to. Such occurrences may also result in the dog acting out by barking.

These hybrid dogs are most comfortable around the environment and people they are fond of.

This is a highly well-mannered dog that inherits both its friendly nature and its exceptional intelligence from its parents of working breeds. The boldness and brevity of the Australian Retriever have added bonuses to its personality.

Although they are excellent with kids, their excitement can lead to some unwanted accident when merged with rowdiness. Therefore, it is best to supervise their interactions with children and smaller pets in the house.

Australian Retriever Diet

Considering the high activity levels of the Australian Retriever, a nutritious diet is crucial to keep this dog healthy and energetic.

During the dog’s growing years, give it a diet that is rich in protein. Consult the vet for additional nutrients that need to be fed to your pet to prevent it from suffering from any deficiencies.

Additionally, try to avoid feeding carbohydrates, for these are fillers that may lead to obesity or overeating.

Do not compromise on the quality of the kibble that is being fed to your dog.

Feed your Australian Retriever dog food that is specifically designed for its breed and fits other specifications.

A feeding routine of two to three meals a day will be beneficial to regulate the dog’s eating habits., rather than free-feeding it.

How much Exercise does an Australian Retriever need?

The Australian Retriever is a largely active dog that will need at least a few hours of long walks and playtime every day.

If you already have an active lifestyle, consider the Australian Retriever your new favourite companion during your exercise routine.

As the name suggests, the retrieving instincts of the Australian Retriever make it fond of games like fetch, Frisbee, and ball games.

Swimming is also another physical activity that this dog enjoys indulging in. It helps that the Australian Retriever is adaptable to changes in climate and will not be affected by most kinds of weather.

It should be noted that the hunting instincts of this hybrid make it go after any unfamiliar scent that comes their way. Therefore, it is best to keep it on a leash during walks.

However, you should not constrain it during playtime, so let it roam freely in a fenced-in yard.
Take your pet to the dog park frequently to stimulate socialization and activity.

The Australian Retriever needs to be engaged and exercised, without which it could get easily bored and act out in frustration.

If not exercised as much as it should, the dog will display irritability and destructive habits, like chewing.

The Australian Retriever Health and Conditions

All hybrid breeds tend to be at risk of some health ailments that their parent dogs tend to develop.

The Australian Retriever is genetically predisposed to elbow or hip dysplasia and is prone to allergies of the skin and ear, and other infections.

Skin issues can act up due to certain food allergies as well as their thick fur coat.

The Golden Retriever has a tendency towards cancer, as it is one of the leading causes of death amongst the breed. That automatically puts your Australian Retriever at risk of cancer as well.

Other joint issues and vision problems can be inherited too.

However, these health issues should not discourage you from getting an Australian Retriever, for they can easily be prevented via regular visits to the vet, a proper health plan for the dog to follow, and the administering of important vaccinations.

What are the best types of toys?

Despite the love you keep showering on your dog, it needs interesting toys to keep it occupied and drive away boredom in your absence.

Since an Australian Retriever is a very active dog it would want to play around most of the time which means it might even start playing with useful household items.

By giving your dog its own toys, you can ensure the safety of the important objects in your house. Toys are also an easy way to reduce your dog’s stress or anxiety.

An Australian Retriever stands up to 30 inches tall and can weigh anywhere between 30 to 60 pounds.

This means that the dog is tall and strong enough to play with heavy and large toys along with the smaller and more lightweight ones.

You can get your Australian Retriever a Dog Puzzle Toy as this breed is very intelligent and loves a good challenge.

In addition to this, Bungee Rope Toy is a simple and inexpensive option that will let your dog burn off its excess energy and play outside for hours.

Moreover, a football toy or a frisbee is an entertaining toy that never goes out of style for an Australian Retriever as this dog loves running around and chasing after objects.

Another entertaining pick is a Wishbone Dog Chew which is a bone-shaped toy that looks exactly like a bone and smells like peanut butter – your Australian Retriever is bound to love this one!

Furthermore, dental chews or balls are also a great idea for this dog but make sure it does not chew them too roughly or spill the stuffing inside them as an Australian Retriever has very sharp teeth and powerful jaws.

Also, try cleaning your dog’s toys regularly so that it does not get sick by chewing or licking dirty toys.

Special Treats

These gorgeous dogs have big appetites and are good looking enough that they seem to find it easy to coax treats and snacks out of almost everyone they meet.

Because of how easy it can be to accidentally overfeed dogs, this can prove problematic – it’s best to have the treats you do give these dogs be extra special, to make them memorable and something that really matters when it comes to training and behaving well.

Naturally, specially made dog treats are always welcome in the eyes – and of course mouths – of the Australian Retriever.

Yet many dog owners are looking a step beyond still to find the goodies that will do the most kindness to their pets.

Fresh fruit chunks of apple or melon are growing in popularity thanks to the high content in both vitamins and fibre, as well as a flavour that dogs tend to appreciate.

While dogs tend not to digest plant-based food well, a little special treat of this kind can do them some good.

Avoid sugar wherever you can in the treats you do decide to hand over though.

While it’s tempting to make stuff extra tasty to highlight it’s a treat for your dog, this can be harmful in the long term for both teeth and the weight gain potential.

Look to nature again for a tasty flavour enhancer that’s also full of vitamins though – by this, we mean honey.

Adding a touch of honey to an otherwise more bland threat can make it sing in your dog’s senses, while not overloading them with the processed sugars dogs so struggle with.

My final thoughts on the Australian RetrieverThe Australian Retriever laying on the grass

Apart from the basic qualities that people look for in a dog, like loyalty and friendliness, the Australian Retriever is blessed with a plethora of other delightful traits due to its versatile genes.

Truly giving us a taste of the best of both worlds, the Australian Retriever combines the charm of the Golden Retriever and the alertness and agility of the Australian Shepherd.

The easy adaptability of the dog makes it perfect for a range of different kinds of lifestyles, the only prerequisite being enough time and attention given to it by the owner.

The Australian Retriever makes for a devoted, furry friend that is not only easy to live with but will make your life colourful with its adorable quirks.

By now, you would have been able to decide for yourself whether or not the Australian Retriever is the pet for you.

In summary, this is an attentive watchdog as well as an obedient family dog that will shower its love on its family in return for the slightest gestures of affection.

If our final word helps, it is that the Australian Retriever will undoubtedly steal your heart and gel in perfectly with your family in no time.

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