The Australian Cattle Dog is an independent thinker and once trained, is capable of carrying out routine tasks without supervision. They are highly intelligent, making them self directed workers capable of complex problem solving. They are adept at picking out and punishing trouble makers, while at the same time they can be gentle with calves, lambs or ducks. It is this rating ability that makes the Australian cattle dog versatile enough for different classes of cattle as well as trial or farm work with sheep, hogs and fowl.
The general appearance is that of a strong compact, symmetrically built working dog, with the ability and willingness to carry out his allotted task however arduous. Its combination of substance, power, balance and hard muscular condition must convey the impression of great agility, strength and endurance.
The Cattle Dog’s loyalty and protective instincts make it a self-appointed guardian to the Stockman, his herd and his property. Whilst naturally suspicious of strangers, must be amenable to handling, particularly in the Show ring.
The preferred height for males is 20-23 inches, females 18-21 inches. Quality is not to be sacrificed in favor of size.
Color (Blue) – The color should be blue, blue-mottled or blue speckled with or without other markings. The permissible markings are black, blue or tan markings on the head, evenly distributed for preference. The forelegs tan midway up the legs and extending up the front to breast and throat, with tan on jaws; the hindquarters tan on inside of hindlegs, and inside of thighs, showing down the front of the stifles and broadening out to the outside of the hindlegs from hock to toes. Tan undercoat is permissible on the body providing it does not show through the blue outer coat. Black markings on the body are not desirable.
Color (Red Speckle) – The color should be of good even red speckle all over, including the undercoat, (neither white nor cream), with or without darker red markings on the head. Even head markings are desirable. Red markings on the body are permissible but not desirable.
Learn more at the Australian Cattle Dog Club of America.