How Common Is Aggression In Australian Shepherds?

After looking through the questions in this forum I am feeling a bit nervous about getting my Aussie this weekend. I have seen many comments about aggression. I am really wanting a sweet companion. Do you find that Aussies are commonly aggressive or is this just seen in some Aussies? Just want to be sure that Aussies typically have good personalities to reassure me that an Australian Shepherd will be a good fit for our family.

Thanks guys!

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Not Common, from what i've experienced
by: AussiePuppyMom

I wouldn't say that aggression is COMMON in Aussies. I have a 5mo Aussie pup and know several people with Aussies and none of them have been very aggressive. Mine nips occasionally and is quite sassy when she doesn't get what she wants, but she would never lash out or bite to hurt someone. As long as you raise your dog well and put him/her through obedience classes and really take the time to train him/her, you should be fine.

by: Hannah

I just adopted my first Aussie in July and he's a sweetheart! They do have strong herding instincts which sometimes involves nipping but I found ways for him to exercise that instinct and it hasn't been a problem since. They need exercise and they love to learn so training is fun but important. Anything that involves mental and physical exercise makes them happy. I'm thinking about getting another one!

by: Hannah

I just adopted my first Aussie in July and he's a sweetheart! They do have strong herding instincts which sometimes involves nipping but I found ways for him to exercise that instinct and it hasn't been a problem since. They need exercise and they love to learn so training is fun but important. Anything that involves mental and physical exercise makes them happy. I'm thinking about getting another one!

Aggressive towards some dogs
by: Alicia W

My Aussie is one year old jan 6th. She is the sweetest little thing to me and my fiancé. She has never been aggressive towards us or any other person. She has been aggressive towards other dogs. She gets along really well with some dogs and others just rub her the wrong way. She has never biten another dog, she just growls and barks and lets some
Dogs know she is angry. I hope you decide to get your Aussie. I don't think you will regret it.

best breed ever
by: Anonymous

I have a toy Aussie. He is a sweet, friendly, and playful dog. My vet's staff declared him their friendliest client ever. I think the secret to success in raising an Aussie is early training, frequent socialization with people and other dogs, and daily exercise. Chase is my second Aussie. My first Aussie was just as wonderful. She was a total sweetheart. Best loved dog ever! Wonderful with children and elderly neighbors.

Warry of strangers not aggressive
by: Anonymous

Assuies are not aggressive but rather warry of strangers. They will not love everyone and it is important not to force them. If your puppy wants to walk away from people you will need to let it. And let the puppy come to new people rather then the other way around, this can be hard because people like to rush at the cute little puppy

The most important thing starting from day one is to socialize to as manny different situations as early as possible.

Also be sure you and you family are the boss and the puppy does not always get what it wants no matter how cute it looks

What you will get is a dog that will be deathly loyal to you and your family and will probably be supper cuddly with your family

mine isn't
by: Anonymous

I am no expert but I can tell you our aussie is not aggressive. She is 1 we got her as a baby. She has a lot of energy and took a lot of training. Sometimes she is protective like the first time she went with us to take our daughter school she was pretty sure the principal was kidnapping our daughter. She has never bit anyone and everyone in our neighbor hood loves her she makes friends everywhere we take her. Good luck and you will be happy you choose an Aussie as long as you put in the time and effort to train

no aggression
by: Anonymous

No aggression in ours towards family. They are very protective though, if they feel you or a family member is threatened, then they can be very defensive. I wouldn't call it aggression. Exactly the way I want it.

Non agressive Aussie
by: Anonymous

I have two and neither is agressive. One is extremely friendly and likes everyone. the other is somewhat timid. He does bark at strangers until he see who it is and then he starts to warm up, but he is timid, shy a skitish until he gets to know someone.

by: AussieLoveAT

My Aussie has never shown any sign of aggression. I also did alot of research before deciding on an Aussie. And I do believe they are great family dogs and will prove to be a loyal companion you could later no longer imagine not having around. Good luck!

Aussies are amazing
by: Anonymous

I had an Aussie for 15 years. I picked him up when I was 5 and grew up with him. He was the sweetest dog you'll ever meet. He rarely barked, (only when he thought my family was in danger), never attacked, never bit, and never showed any type of aggressive behavior. In fact, I have a younger brother who has autism and couldn't quite understand that it's not exactly comfortable for the pup when you're laying all over him or tugging at his fur to get him to cuddle closer. Despite all of that, our Aussie was so patient and sweet and never once growled or became aggressive. Any dog breed has the potential to be aggressive. What matters is that you as an owner treat the dog with love and make sure to train it! If it begins to exhibit unwanted behavior there are ways to let it know that what it is doing is unacceptable. Don't be nervous about getting an Aussie! They're the best dog breed out there and that pup will love you unconditionally.

Loveable auzzies
by: The Young' s

We have had our boy for 6 years , he is very loyal and loveable and protective of the family but never have had a issue with aggressiveness, they are one of the best breeds, he had a rough collie for a brother and get alone beautifully, get one you won't be disappointed

Australian Shepherd Aggression
by: Nick

I have had two Aussies so far in my life and neither have been aggressive towards members of the family and friends if you train them correctly. Since they are independent herding dogs, they will try to take control of the house if you do not establish your dominance in the beginning and nipping any unfavorable behavior as soon as it happens. They are territorial dogs and defend you and your home, however if I call them back or to "leave it" they typically will let it go and roll over for someone to pet them. Remembering to play with their paws early on, play around in their mouth so they are familiar to you doing that. It's all about training. If they are trained correctly, you could not have a sweeter and more loving companion. When we were young, I have a picture of my baby sister basically picking our dog up by the lips and my dog just letting her while still looking at me for help. You should have no worries with aggression other than defense if you remind them who is in charge. I hope this helps.

by: Pat

I've had three. Two are from an excellent breeder, who has fine show and companion Aussies. They love people. I had one from an Aussie rescue group. He loved people, too, but had lots of health problems from random breeding practices.
Some Aussies are not friendly, but if the puppy seems friendly, as an adult he will be, too, if he is treated lovingly.

by: Anonymous

Go get your baby!!
Before we were smart enough to adopt we purchased our first red tri, Lily Lou Lohan aka Meatball Sub the show dog (so she thinks). About a year later we got our blue murle Bubba Jake our agility dog. Different breeders different personalities puddles of love! Should have got them at the same time because Lily is a little jealous and insecure but the sweetest and smartest dogs. TONS of energy. Bubba jumped our 6 foot fence so we got a radar fence that he occasionally runs through. But seriously amazing dogs!

Aussie Owner with small child
by: Anonymous

I don't believe Aggression is anymore common in Aussies than other breeds. With that being said, Aussies are very intelligent and will try to run the house if you let them. You will have to make your Aussie understand who is boss right from the get go. I am a male and I have always made it clear with my dog who is the boss. He gets time outs if he is corrected multiple times. They are very social dogs so time away from the family is a good punishment for behavior. Also only reward positive behavior. Don't just throw treats at them to get them to calm down. My Aussie is a 4 year old male and we had growing pains with him. They for sure require a lot of work, but I can tell you the pay off is amazing. We have a 15 month old little girl and she tortures our poor guy, but he loves her and is nothing but sweet with her. He is a 50 lb lap dog and my daughter's best friend. Good luck!

Syd's mom
by: Anonymous

Our is Aussie is such a sweet heart. She wouldn't hurt a fly. Love her so much. She is the perfect family dog!!! Good Luck.

Aggressive Aussies
by: Jody B Zion ' s mom

My 6 yr old Zion nips at kids but he wasn't raised with kids either. Outside of that the only time I have ever seen him aggressive was when he was protecting his momma from another aggressive dog. That was a little scary but needed at the time!

Jody B

Can be defensive/leash aggressive
by: Anonymous

My Aussie is absolutely unbelievably sweet with all people, especially children. She has been known to "protect" my friends' children from their own dogs, and to run up to kids at the dog park to lick their faces instead of playing with the other dogs. However, she is very leash aggressive, and while she does not start fights at the dog park, she is very reactive with dogs who are also reactive, and she sometimes gets into trouble because she finds one (usually small) dog and fixates on herding that dog. So I think Aussies can be iffy with other dogs, but mine is wonderful and sweet with every single person she has ever met.

by: Tiffany


I just wanted to share with you about my Aussie. Yes, some of them do have some aggression but usually never towards their family members. They are extremely LOYAL dogs. I have had my girl for almost 6 years and she is a big, sweet baby. Now, on the other hand if she senses that I am uneasy she will react with some aggression towards whomever is causing to me feel uneasy. This happened mostly when I lived alone in an apartment in a college town and would take her out and walk her. She tends to be territorial over her bones, toys, etc. My mom has four Aussies and all of them have their very own personalities. I do believe the females are more temperamental than the males. Over all, they are the most loyal and loving dogs. My girl just loves to be loved. Keep in mind they need LOTS of exercise. I hope this helps. Good luck with your new baby!

Aussie's are amazing
by: Anonymous

My fiancé and I actually just got our first Australian shepherd, her name is laveau and she's a red Merle. We got her at two months old and now she's five months, she has an amazing personality that I can't even really explain because she literally sees herself as more human than dog. She does have some flaws that are just natural with the breed, like her aggressive nipping and very hyper at times,but over all if you give your Aussie and time and attention it needs you should be able to control most of that.

Lots of Socialization
by: Anonymous

I'm not a expert on the breed by any means, I am answering according to what I have found with my own 1 year old Aussie. I can definitely see where this could become an issue, since Aussie's tend to cling to one person in the family more than the others. In our case, I am the love of my girls life. There are 3 in our household, my 85 year old mom, my husband and myself. My husband works, my mom is handicapped so she cannot do things for the dogs, so it is me, because I am in charge of the feeding and play etc. If someone comes to visit, Dixie (my Aussie) will show some shyness and hide behind my legs until she see's that I am ok with the person. This shyness could actually turn to aggression, if they feel a threat to their master, or out of their fear. I see that in Dixie, with other dogs. My friends came to visit, and Dixie was fine with the humans, but they also brought their dog, and Dixie was fine, unless their dog tried to come near me. She did nip at the other dog, trying to keep her away from me. We also have a 15 year old Cocker and a 10 year old Golden, who Dixie gets along with just fine, except she gets very jealous if I pet, brush, talk to or play with them. She will always come and try to "heard" them away from me, getting between us. If this doesn't work, which I don't let her get away with doing, she will sit and just bark because she is not the center of my affection at the moment. Before we got Dixie, we read that this breed needs a ton of socialization, to ward off the shyness. I take her to doggy day care once a week and drop her off for the day to play with other dogs of her size and energy level. That seems to help with her socialization with other dogs, and on walks in our neighborhood. It also helps to get her around other people. I have just recently started taking her into Town, we live just outside of Gatlinburg TN, so there are always people out walking along the streets in the evening. She is doing a lot better with meeting people and having people walk by me as I am walking her, it seems to have been taking that fear of strangers, and calmed her some. This will be an ongoing effort to keep her socialized, and will require dedication on my part to keep her social throughout her life. I do not want an aggressive dog, and with this breed, I can see that being an issue, if they are allowed to remain unsocialized with other humans and dogs. I do not think its aggression like you would see in your typical aggressive breed, as it is their shyness and fear in the Aussie. Shyness is their enemy...this requires tons of socialization and dedication on the part of the owner, to combat that shyness, and that will be a lifelong commitment for the life of your dog.

Aussie temperament
by: rudy's mommy

I don't know about everyone else but my dog is the best family dog but very suspicious of strangers. He has to be introduced the right way and I have to tell people not to touch him, let him sniff, and then he wiggles his butt and is their best friend. The introduction is very important with Rudy. My brother also has an Aussie with similar issues. My Rudy is fiercely protective of his family. He is amazing with small children and small animals and is the most affectionate dog I ever met. I think socialization would have prevented the issues that he has, but when I am alone at night I am very grateful he is the way he is!

Aussie temperament
by: rudy's mommy

I don't know about everyone else but my dog is the best family dog but very suspicious of strangers. He has to be introduced the right way and I have to tell people not to touch him, let him sniff, and then he wiggles his butt and is their best friend. The introduction is very important with Rudy. My brother also has an Aussie with similar issues. My Rudy is fiercely protective of his family. He is amazing with small children and small animals and is the most affectionate dog I ever met. I think socialization would have prevented the issues that he has, but when I am alone at night I am very grateful he is the way he is!

We LOVE our Aussie!!! ❤️❤️❤️
by: Michelle Hamby

We have a 6 year old male Aussie and he is the best natured dog we have ever had. We have 6 dogs total 4 Jack Russell's, a St Bernard mix and the Aussie. Our Aussie has never shown any type of aggression towards any other animal or anyone not ever our 4 year old grandson that tries to ride him like a horse, lays on top of him and does anything he wants to him when he giving him love.

agressive?. No way!
by: Donna

my Aussie shepherd Baxter is 1.5 yr old and the biggest love I've ever had! He hugs (yes, he hugs!) and kisses everyone all the time! If there is any yelling or,raised voices, he heads to his crate and stays there till it's quiet....he's by far the furthest from aggressive I've ever had! He's my baby boy who honestly believes he's a lap dog! Enjoy your new baby!

by: Anonymous

Aussies seem to be a more laid back and gentle dog but that doesn't mean one can't be aggressive. They are cattle dogs and will need regular excersize and boundaries. Some are shy and can get fear aggressive but responsible owners know their dogs limit and don't put them in situations where they'll fail. I have one Aussie I would take ANYWHERE with me and be fine letting him off leash and doing his thing (though I don't) but another that I really don't take anywhere (especially without the other) because of how nervous he is. I've seen him snap a little so I just don't put him in those situations. Any dog has the ability to be aggressive but dogs that belong to responsible owners usually don't have issues.

Aussie Agression
by: Bessie

i have an Aussie and he is the sweetest dog I have ever had. He is even tempered and he loves everyone.He especially loves our Grandchildren and they love him!!

My aussie
by: Anonymous

My aussie Is the kindest most gentle creature ever. Hove loves everyone and all animals big or small

by: Patti

They are protective of their family, NOT aggresive. Best friend I ever ever had. They have to live inside with you. They do herd by nature so know what that means plz. Just lost my Buddy of 12 yrs. Would get another once heart heals.


Aussie's and Aggression
by: Patrick

We have had 7 Aussies in our family over the past 19 years. We have children and grandchildren and they have always "ALWAYS" been wonderful. They are super loving and will do anything for your happiness and love.

They do need something to do as they will bore easily and eat your house. lol.

Though there have been moments for our family there is not one time I ever regretted having them in our family. Plus, They will look after your kids better than you and never let any harm come their way.

my aggressive Aussie
by: Study

my 5 year old Edgar, is aggressive so to speak. I've taken him to trainers and spent a lot of time socializing him. When he hit one year old it didn't matter. Let me clarify though, it is fear aggression. While it takes extra management and caution when he travels with me I will say he has never ever been aggressive towards anyone within my family. I'm s only strangers coming into my house or walking down the fence. He is very protective. My first Aussie Argus (a tri color)was the same way but not as severe as Edgar(a Merle). My vet says she sees it more in Merle's. I wish you luck, and will add I wouldn't trade Edgar or my experience with him for the world.

Aussie's and Aggression
by: Patrick

We have had 7 Aussies in our family over the past 19 years. We have children and grandchildren and they have always "ALWAYS" been wonderful. They are super loving and will do anything for your happiness and love.

They do need something to do as they will bore easily and eat your house. lol.

Though there have been moments for our family there is not one time I ever regretted having them in our family. Plus, They will look after your kids better than you and never let any harm come their way.

by: Anonymous

Our Aussie is only aggressive to other dogs. We have a golden and he has grown up with her and loves her but other dogs in the yard are NO WELCOME !! He attacks with no warning. The vet told us that he is protecting us and our home. He LOVES people, never aggressive and very sweet. He is a great dog other than the dog aggression.

aggression in Aussies?
by: Sharon

I have two aussies and am "friends" with lots more. This breed is smart, kind, gentle and protective. That said, they require LOTS of exercise. My guys, 8&7, get at least one hour a day in active play, not in the backyard - but at the park, beach or farm. I have had them both in agility classes - not to compete - just to mix up how we play. My younger guy is very vocal if a stranger is approaching - he has never "gone after" anyone - but can sound aggressive, which isn't a bad thing for me. If you can be there for your aussie, he will be there for you. Because, if it isn't an Aussie, it's only a dog

Aussie moods
by: Anonymous

I never ever feel like my Aussie is aggressive towards me. He is very loyal, follows me everywhere. If i am alone, he does get a little to protective... but he hasn't bit anyone. His bark is a scary, not his bite.

Be consistent with training and observe parent's personalities
by: Katie


I think your concern is definitely a valid one but it also depends on the owners consistency with training/discipline and also the dog's personality.

Our Aussie is 5 and she has never been aggressive. However, she has never been a high-energy Aussie and is pretty content snuggling with you. She could care less about agility. She'll chase a ball twice then lay down because she's bored with it. We leave her home alone for sometimes 12 hours because of our work schedules and I'm pretty sure she never leaves her one spot in the living room. She's certainly not destructive when we're gone that long.

So onto the aggression note...
We made it a point (and continue to) to socialize her from day one. We bring her with us to just about every family and friend gathering. We actually brought her to our family Thanksgiving this year where there were probably 50 people crammed into a small house and she did just fine. We don't have any kids ourselves but she's been around our young nieces and nephews and does just fine with them. I'd say she tolerates kids (doesn't run around and play with them) but she certainly never gets aggressive with them. She'll lay down and let them pet her belly no problem.

However, she is a little protective with new people coming into our house and is standoffish when people pet her when going for walks. I've never been worried about her biting anyone in any of those situations but we also don't let her get away with the behavior either. I have met other Aussies in passing that I was honestly nervous they would bite me.

We don't take her to dog parks because she doesn't do well with high energy dogs. She will nip at other dogs if they upset her. We call her the "old maid" because she'll try putting them back into line. We also intervene quickly when we notice this behavior so it doesn't escalate, which it never has escalated.

I think if you're getting a puppy it's a good idea to observe the parent's personalities. Our dog's parents were super calm and laid back. Both of the parents were super sweet and sat down next to us and let us pet them. We also got her when she was 4 months old and her sweet, calm personality was already showing through.

So if you like having a Velcro dog, are okay with working with them on their shyness consistently, and if you think your family and friends wouldn't mind having a furry companion visit from time to time - I think an Aussie is great for you!

Best of luck! I LOVE our Aussie and would never change a thing.

by: Anonymous

We have an Aussie and I have not seen much aggression with him. You must let him know that you are the boss and if you see any sign of it, nip it in the bud. They are extremely smart, loving and loyal. I can shut him down with just an open mouth incredulous look. He's 4 1/2 years old. They must have a lot of exercise and stimulation but I wouldn't trade him for anything. They don't share well so start while they are young teaching them that you are the boss and if he has a treat or toy and you want to take it from him he needs to let you. But he also needs to know that you will give it back. That way he trusts you too.

All for Aussies
by: Dakota Girl

I've have had two Aussie's over the years. Both were protective of family and my current one is an angel with babies. She watches over them and entertains them, its quite adorable. She has always been the perfect companion!

by: Buck's Mom

Any dog can have aggression issues. The key is training, socialization and exercise.

Best dogs
by: Anonymous

I have also seen comments regarding aggressive Aussies and I was very suprised. We have had our blue Merle girl for almost 2 years now and she is the sweetest dog ever. We have never had a problem at all. She is great with puppies, babies, children, men, women, and even though she is not a fan of cats she would not hurt them (she is more afraid of them). She will bark at people who open the door but then she showers them with kisses.
Make sure you get your puppy from a good breeder and socialize a lot. Good luck and they are wonderful dogs!

by: Henrietta

We have two brothers. One has aggression towards other dogs so we don't go to dog parks and stay aware of his posture while on walks. His brother cries when we approach other dogs but he sometimes shows some aggression. We do not have little children in our house but we had out great nieces and nephews over at Easter and one of the little ones separated from the group and the dogs wanted to herd her back in. It scared the little girl because they will nip not bite to get the herd moving. So we will definitely be more cautious around children.. However the immediate household family they are so loyal and loving. Sometimes think they are lap dogs and think our bed is there bed. We have a cat and they will try to herd him too. But then the cat eggs them on. They need a lot of exercise and train easily. Overall I find them to be great companions. Good luck!!!

Aggressive Aussies
by: Anonymous

i have owned several Aussies over the years. They are lovely family dogs, but should be socialized. Our Aussies travelled with us everywhere, in fact people would come up to them at rest stops to pet them. They are no more aggressive than any other breed if not trained and socialized. These dogs will be the one to wait at a bus stop for the child to get off the bus, they will help clean the house, as the shadow you from room to room. They are so devoted to their people.

by: Anonymous

Aussies are the perfect dog for a family. We have six children and they are his favorite. Inside, he listens very well and isn't aggressive at all. Once he's outside, he's a "crazy man" he loves to run and may herd children. Lol. He does obey his master outside and loves to jump on other adults that he knows but don't live at the house. If that makes sense? Overall, I love my Aussie, and they do have amazing personalities. They love to please their master in return for appraisal for doing a good job.

by: Anonymous

my brother has three ! They are the most affectionate, lovable, dogs ever!

by: Sydney Michelle Wade

I have had an austrailian puppy for a year now, and never once have i seen agression. He gets really excited, which will cause him to jump on everyone hehe. But never once has he tried purposely biting someone. Now for some reason he is really nervous around men. When he first meets them they MUST pet him or else he will be barking at them every time they enter a room. but he never tried to attack. hes very territorial about me, if hes laying with me he will sometimes slightly growl. and if anyone is to hit me or try and hurt me he will bark at them. Sometimes bite their sleeves. but never try and draw blood. He is very energetic, so they require ALOT of exercise. I take him on three mile runs on my bike. Because a walk just wasnt doing it. if you dont keep them busy they will get into trouble.

If you have any other questions feel free to find me on facebook :)

sweet dogs
by: Anonymous

I've had 2 Aussies and never had a problem. My first one was an absolute powder puff...he wouldn't engage in any aggression even when another dog tried. My female Aussie will growl or bark back if provoked, but she's a total sweetheart otherwise. I will say now that I live in a part of the country where Aussies are usually raised to herd on ranches, the ones I encounter are much tougher. So I think it comes down to how are they raised? (Neither of mine have much herding instinct...they just love to play!)

sweet dogs
by: Anonymous

I've had 2 Aussies and never had a problem. My first one was an absolute powder puff...he wouldn't engage in any aggression even when another dog tried. My female Aussie will growl or bark back if provoked, but she's a total sweetheart otherwise. I will say now that I live in a part of the country where Aussies are usually raised to herd on ranches, the ones I encounter are much tougher. So I think it comes down to how are they raised? (Neither of mine have much herding instinct...they just love to play!)

Socialize, Socialize, Socialize!
by: Anonymous

Aussie's are amazing dogs. Smart, fun, sweet, and loyal. They are a herding dog and need a job to do. If not, they will begin to act out to spend energy. Exercise and Socialization is key. Spend their energy on appropriate "jobs" and socialize in many different situations with positive associations (treats, love, etc). I have two well bred Aussies (make sure you are using a knowledgeable and reputable breeder) and both are sweet, energetic, and fun dogs.

Aussies are the sweetest dogs
by: Anonymous

My Aussie is the sweetest dog I have ever met. Even when we rough-house she only pretends to bite! She is the happiest dog around and the only times I have ever gotten hurt is when we don't trim her nails :) because she likes to jump on us and we accidentally get scratched (which of course is easily avoided by trimming her nails like we are supposed to)

by: Anonymous

Aussies are herding dogs. It is in their nature to be bossy and nippy. Early socialization and training is a must. My Aussie is 7 years old and still acts the puppy. Plenty of exercise, regular agility or manners classes, and trips to open air malls with lots of people were key in keeping him an even- tempered, well-mannered gentleman. That being said, Aussies are really good family dogs however many (including my own) do not do well with small children or other small animals. Again, herding breeds have high prey drives needed to do a specific job.

aggression in aussies
by: Anonymous

I would say just make sure as a puppy your aussie gets exposed to a lot of places, people, and other dogs. Aussies will get territorial of their home and people. You need to make sure the puppy knows you are the pack leader, not them. My Aussie is wonderful and sweet. She's the perfect family dog. She has also had a lot of training from a young age. They are great dogs, you'll be happy just be educated.

by: Anonymous

Most Aussies are very non-aggressive. However, like most everything there are exceptions. I have one now and he isn't aggressive at all.

by: Anonymous

I have two a Male Zeus, and a Female Rumor.

Zeus is the best and would Only be aggressive if attacked.

Rumor must be watched is Aggressive but trained to take it Down when told.

TRAINING,and LOVE, is the key.

Aussie owner
by: Penny

I have 3 Australian Shepherds, 2 are brother and sister and the 3rd is a 2 yr old rescue, they are beautiful, smart and very active dogs! Maylea is a black tri female, Marshall is red tri male and Bella is a blue merle. Maylea is a sweet loving little girl who loves people and kids however can be very aggressive towards other dogs. You always have to be on your toes with her if there are other dogs around but she do listen really well and is easy to control as long as she knows your the pack leader/boss all the time. Marshall is a sweet boy with absolutely no aggression towards people or other animals, he's a momma's boy, very calm and loving. Bella is also a sweet very active girl with no signs of aggression, she loves to play and romp and get too rough on times but is not mean in any way, she is a real cuddle bug ! I'm no expert but with an Aussie you have to ALWAYS be their leader, keep them active and keep their minds working by giving them little jobs to do, set boundaries and stick by them and they will give you years of loyal companionship. Hope all works out with your new puppy!

Aussie owner
by: Penny

I have 3 Australian Shepherds, 2 are brother and sister and the 3rd is a 2 yr old rescue, they are beautiful, smart and very active dogs! Maylea is a black tri female, Marshall is red tri male and Bella is a blue merle. Maylea is a sweet loving little girl who loves people and kids however can be very aggressive towards other dogs. You always have to be on your toes with her if there are other dogs around but she do listen really well and is easy to control as long as she knows your the pack leader/boss all the time. Marshall is a sweet boy with absolutely no aggression towards people or other animals, he's a momma's boy, very calm and loving. Bella is also a sweet very active girl with no signs of aggression, she loves to play and romp and get too rough on times but is not mean in any way, she is a real cuddle bug ! I'm no expert but with an Aussie you have to ALWAYS be their leader, keep them active and keep their minds working by giving them little jobs to do, set boundaries and stick by them and they will give you years of loyal companionship. Hope all works out with your new puppy!

Define Aggressive
by: cntry_rose

My Aussie is not quite 2 years old. We've had him since he was 8 weeks old. Aggressive? Not to anyone in the family!!! But don't come through our door if you're a stranger...Kai may be small, but he's going to defend me with his last breath. That's NOT aggressive in my mind...that's loyality. I made sure to take Kai wherever I could that would allow dogs...Lowes, PetCo, PetSmart, walking...and traveled with him for a week recently staying at hotels each night. He DOESN'T want someone to approach him, or stare into his eyes...but he does approach people, after accessing them, and likes to be petted. He climbs onto my moms bed, she's an invalid, and lays there quietly while she lets him.

If you want a dog who will love you with every breath, who will know what you're feeling before you feel it, who will watch you want an Aussie! I want more...someday I rescue a few more.

by: Anonymous

I have had three Australian Shepherd's two females and one mail. I have never had an issue with aggression mother towards humans or other dogs. One of all been sweetie pies

aggression in auzzie shepherds
by: Jodi

We have a 20 month old female Australian shepherd and she is the gentlest, sweetest natured dog I know. I have never seen her be aggressive ever.

Australian shepherd
by: Chantal

I got my aussie about a year ago and we have had aggression issues with him, we found that the more exercise he got, the less agressive he has been and we have taken his crate away and the aggression as significantly dropped. He has been an amazing dog and has the best personality in a dog that I have ever came across, they are a great family dog aswell, he has been very protective in times that he needed to be and extremely loveable and loyal. My advice is, Give lots of exercise and maybe even get a trainer in to work with your aussie right from a puppy and up as they always need to have their mind stimulated and this should help with any aggression issue that your aussie may or may not form. There are times that I think my boy reads my mind as he is right there before me trying to do exactly what is on my mind. You will absolutely love your aussie, but just like any other dog they do need their space and time alone too. Good luck!

by: Alex

They can be protective of the family but most of the time they are just posturing when they bark at new people. As for aggression towards you or your children I would say that is not likely at all my Aussie is just a 65 pound teddy bear. They are very eager to please and are great family dogs just keep them busy as best you can because they are a working dog as well.

No aggression
by: Tiffany

I also have a Aussie puppy. She's a wonderful big girl. She's 3 months old & 17 lbs. She is quite a nipper. But is not aggressive. I met her parents, siblings, & even her aunt, which in all were 10 dogs & not one of them was aggressive. Don't mistake the nipping or herding abilities for aggression. Sometimes the two can be confused.

No aggression.
by: Anonymous

I got my Aussie from a reputable breeder. I asked about the parents temperaments and I was able to see that she raised the puppies in her home around other dogs, kids, and people. When I got him, I made sure to socialize him with as many people, places, and animals that safety would allow, that meant play dates, puppy obedience, and a lot of carrying his heavy self. He has never shown any aggression, or even fear, and is friendly towards everyone, even with my own young kids constantly bugging him. He used to nip while he played, but he's 6 months now and he stopped doing that a while ago. I think puppy class helped. However, his brother, although sweet, was not socialized as early (vets can be intimidating and the other couples' vet was really strict), and although he's not aggressive, he is more fearful and intimidated in new situations. But he warms up after a little while. I think aggressive behavior can be prevented if you know how the family history and also if you just raise him right. Plenty of exercise, structure, and love.

Aussies are hands down my favorite.
by: April B.

I have TWO Aussies, I would never go back to another breed of dog. They're smart, LOYAL, quirky and energetic. This being said: all dogs can be aggressive. Every breed, every dog. It all depends on how well they're socialized. Yes, some Aussies nip or herd children/adults.. But, like I said, they're smart as all hell and will learn insanely fast. The only time I've seen either of my boys (2yrs old and 3yrs old) get angry is with each other, over "brother" stuff (fighting over a toy). I have NEVER seen my two boys even flinch around a human. But, I spent HOURS bonding with and training my dogs. HOURS. Aussies might be a TON of work, but if you invest that time, they're beyond worth it.

not any more common than any other dog with out boundaries.
by: Terri

Aussies can have strong opinions about various situations, and need clear rules and leadership. If you don't do the the thinking they will. Socialise as much as possible as a puppy with other humans and dogs. Exercise and enrichment is the key to a happy confident dog. My dog is maybe not so typical in that he LOVES people, he has never had a bad experience with them, everybody loves him and I would say he flirts with passersby to get attention, he is brilliant with children and takes direction from a 3 year old. He gets along with most dogs just fine, but will try and be boss, if he can be. I think the most important thing is to develop a strong bond between you and your dog, teaching him tricks and obedience is good for this and aggression will not be an issue.

The best dog I've ever had
by: Debbi

I love my Aussie more than I can ever express. She is the light of my life. I would never want any other breed if dog! They are amazing companions, loyal, loveable but they need discipline just like anyother dog. They are exceptionally bright therefore they tend to anticipate our every move. They are a handful though. They are a high energy dog so they should not be kept in an apartment or left home alone while you're at work. They are completely devoted to you to the point of obsession. Raise them right, give them the correct environment and you'll be the happiest Aussie owned person out there. Because remember, they own you not the other way around.

by: Jenny

Aussies are like potato chips. You can't own just one. My husband and I have owned 3 and would never think about owning any other breed. They are the best friends you could ever hope for!!

Aussie Agression
by: Jeff

My Aussie is over 13 years old and to my knowledge has only eaten two children.
Just kidding. I can't speak for all Aussies but I have know a lot of them and just don't see agression in them. I suppose mine would be agressive (or I like to think he would be agressive) if he were defending one of us but otherwise he is the sweetest, friendliest dog I have ever known. As a matter of fact, I am starting to look for another one.
You will not regret your choice.

by: Anonymous

As far as mine goes, he just barks at new people. But he has gotten into several fights with intact dogs which lots of people, including my vet say is common. He adores kids and would never intentionally hurt somebody.

Guards my home and heart
by: Anonymous

My Aussie is 2 years old. He can be aggressive if he feels he is protecting the home. When people come over (which isn't often), I have to make sure that he knows the people are "allowed." He tends to get a little jealous of my other dogs seeking my attention. The key with my dog is that I socialized him very early. I was constantly taking him to places and asking people to pet him. He is extremely friendly and we are working on getting our therapy dog certification. Bandido flies regularly to Mexico with me and is wonderful. He even helped an autistic boy get on the plane who was terrified. He is a celebrity in our town in Mexico. I can't stress enough the importance of early socialization. We even took 5 private obedience classes (not a bad price at Petsmart). We have found that Bandido acts very friendly and outgoing when we are out and about in public. At home, he is more protective of his turf. Good luck and love that dog!

Just like kids... no two are alike
by: Anonymous

I think many things need to be addressed to decide something like this.
#1 Do your research and talk to many people who have worked, showed and competed w/ the breed. I read what info I could find online and got a basic care book, and I still can say that I didn't know enough before getting my 1st (who turns 8 on Christmas eve). She has provided me w/ lots of challenges over the years and is still continuing to teach me....
#2 If you learn there is a challenge... are you able and willing to dedicate the time to find out the reason and the best way to work on it per the dog(They are individuals and have individual needs to be met)? I have learned my dogs do better w/ increasing their physical exercise as well as mental stimulation. It seems to do A LOT for them. I may not have a big yard for them to run free but I continue to find things for them to do.
Over the last maybe 4 yrs(?) I had started experimenting w/ different sports such as Rally-O, Obedience, K-9 Nosework and Agility....There are SO many things out there you can do w/ your pets. I myself have more things I want to learn and experience but unable due to having a work schedule. Since I don't have the same available time I have also started to do Trick Training w/ all of the dogs so they still are having the mental and physical exercise on a daily basis.
Sometimes the lack of activity can be a cause of the behaviors we don't like. I do have to say that when I brought my 1st Aussie home as a pup I started playful learning w/ her after a few days and then took her out after about a wk for people visits where I work and to the vet etc. Only good situations and don't push into an uncomfortable situation for the dog. Start learning the your pups signals/cues it will help in the long run to better understand what you pup is telling you.
<3 With any issues I had/have/may have I love each as they are an original. To love the breed is to understand the breed and would do it all over again from the beginning.<3

Aggressive? Not.
by: Diana J

We currently have our fourth Aussie and not one of them has ever been aggressive. They are very protective/possessive but even with that it is more getting between their human and the perceived threat.

Not common
by: Adams

We have had Australian Shepherds for 30+ years. My husband's 1st Aussie was a working cattle dog. Very friendly and loyal to him. We've had many as just pets over the years. They are great with kids, we had four and never worried about them with our kids or the many others that came to play! They are very protective of their "family" and can come off sounding aggressive when a stranger comes around. With the proper training they are fine once they know the person is not a threat to their family. We've only had one instance of one that was not trustworthy with children, and we took her in as a 4 year old and don't know what her life was like before we got her. All of the ones we've raised from puppies have been fine. They are loyal and a wonderful companion. They are also high energy because they were originally a "working" dog for livestock. So you need to be prepared to play and have space for them to run! They are happiest when on the move!

All in how they are raised
by: Andrew Greenway

It's all in how you raise them... Our little butter ball wouldn't hurt a fly

Aussies are the best
by: Kelly

I have 2 aussies and will have pups next fall. They are not aggressive. However, they are pack animals and territorial. They are high energy. As long as they have plenty of exercise and ways to expend their energy then no worries! They will love you unconditionally. Great with kids and other animals. All my cats and aussies are family and get along poetically. They do however bark at strange folks-mail man, trash man, plumber etc. But they are just alerting you of a disruption. Go get you wonderful new edition and enjoy immensely!

They are the best!
by: Anonymous

I have had aussies and aussie mixes since I was four! I have only had two that I had trouble with aggression. Most recently I got a puppy who turned out to be an alpha male with quite a streak in him and no matter what I tried, he was unconvinced that I was in charge....and so was I after a few months. I reluctantly let him go to a male owner and they have been a perfect combination. I rescued another, a female who was about four at the time, and she has perfect manners. The strong herding instinct sometimes looks like aggression, but I have a deep loyalty to this breed. I encourage you to get your aussie!

No aggression
by: Danielle

I had an assure growing up and I have one now neither if them had ANY aggression or even nipped I have 4 boys and have never had an issue with my girl Rena around them at all in my opinion Aussies are the best family pet

Fiercely loyal
by: Daphne's mom

I rescued a 5 yo Aussie from a deplorable situation. She had every right to be aggressive, just out of mere survival. But she is the most adoring and gentle creature, will share her toys and and treats, and thinks her only job is to love on her owner. She only gets protective if she feels I'm being threatened and will bark until she decides it's it's safe. She's playful for an adult but can be shy around other dogs and actually prefers people. She is absolutely amazing--a little stubborn--but docile and affectionate to a fault. Congrats on a wise choice of breed.

by: Mich

I bought my Aussie 6 years ago and he has never been aggressive. He does nip the heels of my horses when I am doing something he feels needs assistance but never with people and only when pushed to the limit with other dogs.
All my friends with babies are amazed at his gentleness and I work with people with disabilities and he is a great unofficial therapy dog,

My Aussie Zelda
by: Jackie

My aussie, Zelda (4 years old), has been socialized at the dog park since she was 6 months old. She can be protective when we are walking in the woods, and someone approaches. I reassure her that everything is ok, and she calms down. She reacts to dogs with quick movements such as labs, and growls and barks at them. She also tries to herd, and some dogs have turned on her, and chased her ! She started squealing, like she was afraid. She comes across as wanting other dogs to know that she means business ! She is friendly to the dogs that she really knows ! Zelda has never attacked another dog except for my corgi. There have been a few fights where she has made my corgi bleed. She gets upset when the corgi growls at her, and it starts a fight. This is a rare thing though. Most of the time they get along well with each other. She has never attacked a person.

Aussie Aggression
by: Anonymous

I have an Aussie and he is hands down the best dog I have owned. Because Aussies are a herding breed, some will nip in an attempt to control a situation. For example, when introducing new people or dogs, my Aussie would sometimes nip if he saw them move too close or quickly towards me or someone else in our family. He never injured, he only sent them a warning. He is perfect with our other three dogs, family and friends and new people once trust is established. Smart, loyal and affectionate, in my opinion, you can't go wrong with an Aussie.

Aussie's are awesome.
by: The Boneman

I got my Aussie from rescue a couple of months ago. He is 2 years old and very active. Aggressive, that depends on the owner. My Aussie is trained to behave. There are several books out and treats go along way. When I got him, he ran after runners and anybody walking by with a dog. He now sits and waits for runners and walkers. He is a very loyal, loving companion that I love dearly. I walk him daily and sometimes multiple times. Aussies are herders, therefore comes the aggression, but if you take the time and show the love, they are Aussem companions. Feel free to email me at
I hope this helps.

aggression response
by: Anonymous

Just be sure to socialize your Aussie and have him trained. My Aussie wasn't socialized out in public much because of my health issues. Biggest thing my Aussie did was nip a little boy. Our dog picked him out in a line of kids walking by us and he lunged at the smallest one w a hoodie on and just knocked the boy over. I would leash a dog tighter to you to see how he may react in public. It is their natural instinct to herd the smallest one. The good outways the bad w Aussies. They are so intelligent, living, loyal bread. I have never had a dog look at me w so much love. I love to see him grin at me when I feed him in the morning.

aggression dont be silly
by: Tony

They are not an aggressive breed. They herd sheep ,they don't kill an eat them. I have trained them to herd with ducks. I can't believe what humans get on with. WTF. If you are not going to put the time in to train ur dog, no matter what breed it is, then get a fish tank. A dog is a dog, no matter what the breed. It's a dog first. You should educate yourself first, any person that has trouble with an assuie should take a good look at themself. That's where the problem ls.

NO way
by: Anonymous

i got my Aussie when he was 7 weeks old. He is two now. He's a beast. Very big for the breed. Because of his size he looks somewhat intimidating, a muscular 75 pounds. But is the sweetest dog. I've had children on the street want to pet him, some wanting to hug him. He is so gentle with them He herds our smaller dog. He does bark at strangers who come near the house. But no bite or agrees ion. I socialized him early. I've been around several and they are wonderful. Enjoy. One of the best dogs I've ever had.

Sounds like aggression
by: Anonymous

i find it interesting that most of the comments start out saying my dog is not aggressive! and then continue to say " only to strangers" or "only other dogs". Or he or she is "just being loyal". In my opinion I do not want a dog with ANY aggression. Because strangers do come over ... I don't want to worry if a kid pokes his hands through my fence...I know it's hard to know when choosing a puppy, but Aussies do seem to often have aggression issues...I'm sure training and exercise help, but some will be aggressive. Not for me.

proctive dogs
by: Anonymous

My Aussie is 9 and is a sweetheart but she is just over protective of me. Saying that she has nip at people who have touch me

yes, definitely
by: Angie

I have a male Aussie and his aggression toward my 15 yr old son is very disturbing. I love this dog so much but, if my son comes around me his hair stands on end and he growls. We are fearful he will "snap" one day and bite. I think it's a Alpha Dog behavior, but how do I stop it? He is the most sweetest dog ever until my son enters the room.

Mine can be
by: Anonymous

Our Aussie is two years old, we got him at 8 weeks old and from day one he bonded with us. He does not like anyone outside of the family. We ask people to ignore him and when they do that he goes on his way and ignores them. Once he gets to know someone, he's a big cuddle bug. I did have someone come through my gate (we live in the country) and they did not stop when I asked them to, my dog must have sensed something was wrong because he did bite, the person took off, I called police and the guy was picked up on a warrant. So...good job there. He did his job. My daughter has epilepsy and he is awesome with her, especially when she's having a seizure, bottom line, if you can handle the quirkiness of this breed, they're awesome :)

Only Once....and it was warranted
by: Shaun

I've had Aussies for 20 years, and they are loyal, intelligent energetic companions. In a variety of situations that many dogs would be aggressive, my Aussies never were aggressive except once.

That time, a German Shepherd had gotten out of its fenced yard, and charged my neighbor with her baby carriage. I had my dog in the front yard with me, and he heard and saw what was happening. He intercepted the shepherd just before it hit the carriage. He rammed the shepherd, and then kept it away with nips and growls, but never actually attacked. He herded the aggressive dog away from the baby, and kept on guard until one of the other neighbors got the shepherd's owner. My dog was familiar with the baby and Mom because she always stopped by, and he always sniffed and kissed the baby. Basic loyal protective instinct if you ask me, and he averted a potentially life-threatening situation.

by: jeffg

My Aussie is 2 years old now and ive never heard or seen her growl or get angry in any way.She is my service dog and has a wonderful temperament.
I also live in an apartment which is not ideal if you want an aussie and go to work home 24/7 an my wife and i are able to walk her multiple times a day, if not she would have behavior problems im sure.I fully trust her with all kids. I cant wait to get another Aussie service dog for my wife within a year..great dogs

by: Anonymous

I have a eight year old Aussie. Unfortunately when he was quite young our house was robbed with only the dog there. Our vet believes that the robbers did something to our dog because after that incident no-one can come into our home except for the family members.

Not sure what to do. With the family he is amazing.

My Aussie
by: Anonymous

I have a year old Aussie that has a problem with my boyfriend that shows aggrasive towards him . She love my son but with large dogs and my boyfriend its another dog . How do I stop it before it gets to a point I will have to get ride of her and that my last hope right now ?

by: Anonymous

I have 2 very well socialised neutered males aged 4 & 6 and both seem to follow the traits of the breed to the absolute letter! They are typically wary of strangers unless 'introduced' properly - after which they are very accepting. They will bark to alert me but there has never been any aggression shown - especially towards people. They dont show aggression to other dogs but are reactive IF the other dog starts something - apparently this can be quite common - they wont start anything but they will make sure they finish it! This seems to be somewhat breed specific as well - they detest German Shepherds and I think its because the GSD can be quite unpredictable. If the GSD is calm & quite placid then my Aussies are fine but 1 wrong look or move and things can turn sour pretty quickly. I've also heard that the working line can be more aggressive than the conformation line (which makes sense) so that might be something to consider?

Aussie aggression
by: Richard AZ

For the person with the question about Aussie aggression, I will have to go with the majority, Aussies are NOT aggressive, they are very protective!!
I owe three Aussies, one my larger male(Dingo), 4 1/2 yrs, is about as easy going and loving as any dog can be, but on the other side of the spectrum, my other male (Wilie) the almost miniature is the as aggressive as you can imagine. BUT, he will not open his mouth or bite anyone or anything, Wilie is almost 4 yrs, shows very aggressive behavior, but it is a Protective mode he is in until he knows you, but is very vocal even after he is familiar with a new person. People that know Wilie at first are scared to death of him, but after they areuse to the aggressive barking, which he is only talking to you, they are comfortable. Bella is my third Aussie, whom is voiceterous as Wilie, but is only 8 months and still needs to be socialized. The more people you are around under leash, the better. I hope this helps...

Love My Aussie
by: Anonymous

I got my Aussie from a shelter. She did have some socialization issues and was highly protective of me. Had one incident with her, but I blame myself for not reading her the way I should have. It was a protective action. I believe she had been abused prior to our getting her. She scared herself and ran under my desk. With some work she has been one of the best dogs I have ever owned. She likes to chase things so I have to keep an eye on her, but she is great with my 3 kids ages 6 to 12 and we have had her for 4 years. She likes to greet the kids after school and most kids know her name. Loves to ride in the car. She is so easily trained that my daughter who is 8 has been able to do so on her own. She has her own pillow that she cuddles with at night or when everyone is home. She will not touch other pillows. She is my loyal companion and friend. Would get another one any time.

My biting aussie
by: Anonymous

See the parents .. when we got our the lady said the mother didn't like people around her pups .. her bark was crazy mean .. when we got our dog home many people came to see him he would bark at them like he was very freaked out .. teenage girls would come all the time he would never warm up to them never .. we went through training and even asked the trainer .. he never changed we tried everything . If you come to our house he will bite you .. only people he doesn't is my three kids and wife .. we have talked to other that have the same kind of aussie . Everytime we have people stop we put him in the kennel ..everytime he barks like a rabbit dog I remember the mother dog.. pay attention to the parents and pet both . My advise m. I'm here trying to find what I can do to save this dog .. my two cents we tried everything ever way he won't change .. if we kennel him people come in he calms down he is fine no problems at all ever .

hate them
by: Anonymous

they are so aggressive. I got ATTACKED by one walking in my neighbourhood

Protective disguised as aggressive
by: Kimber Soots

Sounds like many others have already said this same thing, but here goes; My 2 year old Female Blue Merle is a total love-bug with people, but requires supervision around other dogs. We have another dog in the house that she gets along with very well, but they do have a scuffle every now and then if she doesn't like the way the other is behaving.

I genuinely believe she only reacts 'aggressively' when she thinks she's protecting me or my house. And right after the scuffle is over she forgets it even happened and is right back to playing.

Overall, don't let this issue sway you from getting your Aussie. Getting mine was the best decision I ever made; she's an amazing companion and loves me to death. If you're to this point I'm sure you already know Aussies require work. This is just another thing to be aware of is all.

Strong guardian instict
by: Anonymous

Aussies were bred to herd other animals which means that they were bred to control. They are highly intelligent and are always on high alert and assessing their environments for any perceived threat to their territory, and more importantly, their people. Having been bred to keep livestock gathered and safe from predators, they are born with the instinct to round up their 'herd' and to chase off potential threats to their 'herd'. It is unfair to the breed to expect them to do anything less. I grew up with Aussies and currently own them. I have a 2 year old male that is always on high alert. He runs here and there constantly watching and assessing. He is AMAZING with our children and family and will stay with them when our youngest play outside. That said, if one of our adult friends arrives whilst they are playing outside and comes walking up briskly, he is quick to get in between the person and 'his' children and bark. If the person doesn't heed his warning and continues on course, he will growl. He needs time to assess for danger and if it's not given, he will err on the side of protecting his 'herd'. This is what he was bred for. As a responsible owner, I need to be aware of where he is and not give opportunity for him to be put in a situation that will bring out his guardian instinct in a less than ideal situation. When having company, it is best to put my Aussies in their safe area for their and my peace of mind. It is unfair to expect them to be something other than what they are bred to be. You will not find a more loyal or loving dog than an Aussie. That said, this loyalty and love doesn't always transfer to strangers. In fact, it seldom does. Even if they start out friendly and remain so for several years, at some point, the guardian instinct kicks in and they become very protective. They are excellent guard dogs. If this isn't something that you are looking for, this breed will not be a good fit for you. Hope this helps! All that said, I will always own Aussies. :)

Mini Ausie mix
by: Anonymous

We have a miniature mix that is slightly aggressive towards other dogs. It's really hard to tell how dogs will act around each other. Ours does love people though, barks at people/other animals outside, but anyone can come up and pet him without a problem.

They have a lot of energy but that makes them a really fun dog to have.

Aggressive Aussies
by: Anonymous

Please know that some Aussies are aggressive and others aren't. I had an aggressive Aussie for 14 years. I had to be careful with him. After he passed, I got another Aussie. I didn't expect a reincarnation of the former. My Aussie is three now. He is very protective! I cannot let just anyone in the house. Put it this way, large dogs that have aggression issues regardless of what makes them tick, is a serious issue due to the fact they could seriously hurt someone. A small dog might bite, but it is not going to kill a person. (Mind you... always exceptions but I'm speaking in general.) They can be very strong as well. Best to know your breeder. Good breeders breed for temperament. They want to sell well rounded dogs. Getting a dog from the man down the street who knows nothing about the father of the pups is risky. That's happened to me twice now. If you are not certain about getting an Aussie, please wait. Read up on Aussies and believe what you read! Then decide, if in the worst case scenario, would you be capable of handling a dog for years to come with aggression issues? If not, then what? A lot of sacrifice will be made. I know they are cute but you have to remember it is a 10 to 15 year commitment! Think it over more and good luck to you!

Wonderful pets
by: AnonymousDeb

I have my second Aussie. Both have been wonderfully social animals. They have become fast friends with everone in my neighborhood. They love children. They love rinning with my horses. I will always have an Aussie in my family. They are extremely intelligent. They are not apartment dogs. They need exercise.

Sorta agressive
by: Anonymous

I had Minnie sweet boy Aussie and he got attacked by two pit bulls and died we didn't have a fence and he got loose and the putts chased him in our yard and killed him but we got a new female Minnie and put up a fence we thought she would be as sweet as our first but she growls and barks like a crazy dog at other dogs and kids I don't know why she doesn't like strangers either she will be a yr old soon so I did have her in training class when she was younger and she wasn't as bad as she is now she didn't want to play with any of the dogs in her class and was very shy with the trainer so it's very upsetting as we planned to have her and then get another dog but I am afraid she won't get usto the new puppy, so I guess some Aussie is good she is adorable with us I must say and I do love her with all my heart and couldn't get rid of her but it is disappointment

Neighbors Aussie seems way too aggressive.
by: Anonymous

So, I have owned an Aussie, and know several people who have owned them, and until recently, I have never seen one that was truly aggressive.
We have a neighbor on our street who's Aussie is so vicious, that it almost froths at the mouth any time he has it out walking. He appears to have some mental health issues, and I'm wondering if he might be abusing the dog, maybe even to make it vicious on purpose.

Baron, Best Dog Ever!
by: Anonymous

We have a 4 year old tri color aussie 80 lbs. He is the least aggressive dog I have ever owned. So lovable and sweet. He would never think of biting someone. He is just the opposite and walks away from confrontation. So smart and wanting to understand every word you say to him. Has a big tongue but will not lick you. Does love to run and do tricks. His favorite thing is to heard our 3 cats, but would not think of hurting them. Best dog I have ever owned.

My Female Aussie Maggie May
by: Sue

I have a 6 year old female red merle, and a 9 year old male red tri. Maggie May and TBear. Maggie is TBear's daughter. TBear is not aggressive towards other dogs unless like everybody else says, we are being threatened by another dog which is rare. When we have company Bear thinks they come to see him. He's so friendly. However; Maggie May is a different story. She has a fear aggression towards people but what I do is when people visit that she has never seen before I'll sit them down on the couch with one of her toys. Then I let her out. They throw the toy for her and she is their friend for life. Very strange. I am keeping my daughter's 14 year old Pekenese. Her and Maggie May tie up a lot, so I have resorted to keeping the Pekense in a large kennel. I can't let her out when Maggie is around. Last week my husband and I had a lack of communication and Maggie got to the Pekenese. She attacked her and was very very aggressive. She had locked her jaws on her lip and my husband had to pry them loose. She attacked her twice. I really believe she was wanting to kill her. I hate that so much because I love my Maggie so much. Otherewise she is so lovable towards us and members of the family. She's like a different dog when it comes to the Pekense. She'll even circle her cage growling at her. Sometimes she whines like she wants to play with her, but we don't dare let them get together. I may have to adopt out the Pekenese.

For the love of an Aussie
by: Barbara

I have two Aussies and a Shetland sheepdog my two favorite breeds.
My Aussies are very protective of me , my grandson and Home. They are obedient, loyal funny and very clownlike. They talk to me all the time. Seriously very vocal and assertive.
Aside from my Sheltie they’re the best dogs I’ve ever owned .
They are quite intelligent and learn quickly.
They do have a guarding/herding instinct easily managed with consistent training.

Aussies that are "too protective"
by: Anonymous

I've owned Australian Shepherds for about 40 years, way before the AKC recognized them and when most Aussies were descended from working bloodlines, not bred for just for looks or as pets.

Aussies were intended to herd animals and guard their flocks, and this tended to be a dominant, instinctive trait. Almost all of those "old style" Aussies made excellent watchdogs or "guard dogs" with no special training. They were not vicious but were extremely protective of their owners and the owner's property, and usually protective of the other animals that were living in the home. They barked when visitors arrived and were highly suspicious of strangers. Some such Aussies would bite people, if provoked or if the Aussie thought the person posed a threat to its owner.

AKC breeders must surely be trying to breed the natural protectiveness out of these dogs, but any Aussie could still exhibit these traits for which the breed was originally created. If you want a dog that is *guaranteed* to be friendly to strangers and never bark when the doorbell rings, choose a different breed.

I'm serious. Get a Golden Retriever or something. At the least, do not get an Aussie from "working" bloodlines unless you want a great watchdog that is highly protective of your self, your family, and your property. Aussies are great dogs but will vary in levels of friendliness to strangers, sometimes showing friendliness only if their owner is present and seems unworried.

Occasionally an Aussie will act friendly in all situations, but in my experience that is rare. Most are suspicious of strangers to some degree. Almost all will bark when someone comes to the door. It irks me when somebody gets an Aussie and then complains that it's too protective. This breed was created to be protective of its flock and their grazing land. Get a non herding dog and non working breed if you cannot tolerate the Aussie's natural instincts. I get Aussies because they keep me safe.

As puppies, Aussies are very nippy but can be taught not to bite. That's just a puppy phase, anyway. But you should make sure you socialize your puppy really well, if you want it to act more friendly when grown. But don't be surprised if it's aloof or seems unfriendly toward strangers. If the stranger becomes a friend to you, the dog will also befriend them, probably.

Mini australian Shepard
by: Collin

My sisters australian sheperd has bitten me countless times as well as my younger brothers and even my mother in the face i would never get another one of these dogs in my wildest dreams he is a nightmare

Not a good idea
by: CJ

Please do yourself a favor and the dog a favor. Dont bring an Australian shepherd dog into a city home. They do not do well. They are meant for country land with jobs to do. Unless you have to vast amount of time to invest in training and activity daily forget it. You risk having a dog the prevents you from ever having company at your home.

Non aggression
by: Patrick

I got my Darla last year. She is a full grown lady now. My grand niece hangs on her like a cheap necklaces. I have seen no signs of aggression in this breed. I will say she is very protective and can become violent if her pack members are threatened. I was joking about " hitting" one of my nieces and Darla was close to attacking me. I'm her favorite person...she knew I was in the wrong. Good dog...Great dog.

by: Anonymous

We have an awesome that is a little over a year old. He's normally a friendly, loving dog. Occasionally though if he is sitting in the room with me, and my wife, daughter, or granddaughter come in the room and approaches he growls barks and gets aggressive. He doesn't do this with me but he will do this also when he is eating his chew bone or treat and they approach him. Today he was sitting in the living room with my wife, and when my daughter entered the room, he began growling and getting aggressive. I don't understand what is causing this Behavior. Any ideas? It is happening often enough that it is causing problems.

Better Rethink an Aussie
by: Anonymous

I would not get an Australian Shephard if you want a sweet, docile, pet and companion that you never have to worry about with other dogs or with people. Yes,.....Some Aussies are very gentle and sweet,....but, some Aussies are very aggressive and high energy. And I do not believe it is always the owners fault. Many long time dog owners have had aggressive Aussies, .....they have socialized them, taken them to obedience classes, and still, they cannot trust their Aussies with friends coming in to their home, or with other dogs. I would call three or four dog trainers and ask them which dog breeds are known for being sweet, gentle companions

"They can be!"
by: Bill

I have a ten year old Red Merle intact male. They can be aggressive if you allow them to, be firm however, and never use anything but a firm voice to make them mind you! They can be very sneaky. Mine will wait until he thinks that I am not watching him, and he will run to the kitchen to counter surf! He doesn't care if he's made to stay in his kennel as punishment... to him if the crime is worth it... he'll do the time! But most of the time he's a joy to own! Once you have one... you're sold!

Not aggressive
by: Anonymous

Our Aussie turned 14 in February. The only thing I ever saw her have aggression towards was anything that she thought was threatening our chickens. She was the sweetest girl I have ever meet. Sadly we just had to put her to sleep. She had a sweet disposition and like some have said she was very vocal if she didn’t like something. (Sometimes I think she liked to vocalize her opinion because she New we would laugh and argue with her.)

Aggressive Australian Shepard
by: Anonymous

I have a 3-year-old and she is very aggressive toward other dogs and to my 7-year-old daughter. I think she looks at my daughter as a threat. Like another dog she’s very protective any time someone walks in the room where we are. She growls at them and I pop her on the nose every time but she continues to do this. She’s never bitten anybody except another dog. I did not raise her to be aggressive. I don’t trust her at all. If I do take her somewhere she has to wear a muzzle. She’s very smart and needs plenty of exercise. She aims to please.

by: Henrietta

We have two - brothers! When people come in that aren't a familiar guest we tell the guest to just ignore them. Their bark can be scary. Once the person is in they just go lay down. But if they know you and like you they will greet you by jumping over each other. They are super loyal. Recently on a walk a gentleman went to give my husband a handshake and one our boys gave him a herding nip - he must've felt my husband was in danger so he gave a warning. So we need to be careful there!! but it wasn't aggressive. He herd nips when I come home! One them does have leash aggression but we know and respect their limits with other dogs.

Biting dog, question breed?
by: Anonymous

We got our Miniature Aussie two and 1/2 years ago. The one thing I've learned is. If you're near my family, and you're not common to our dog. If he can get to you, your getting bit. If you come in my yard. Your getting bit. It doesn't matter if you're human, another dog, a cat, or whatever you are that posed a threat as far as Outlaw our dog is concerned, you're going to get bit. We used to let him run on our property unchained, but we would forget to secure him when the electric man would come. And he got bit. Our water delivery bringing us water. Got bit. If I try to correct my children without putting the dog in another room. I get bit. And yes. He has bitten me. My son says I look a lot like the man we got him from. It's taken me two years for the dog to let me pet him, as that man was abusive. I'm at my wit's end. I told Outlaw to come outside, and before I could get a leash on him, he spotted a man walking down the road in front of our house. He got bit.

I Wouldn’t say mine is aggressive but
by: Anonymous

I have a 1-year-old Mini Australian Shepard
And we all love him greatly he’s awesome he’s so happy all the time joyful he’s energetic of course but if he needs to relax he can relax very intelligent I would say he’s obedient most of the time... kind of stubborn sometimes

And I would not say mine is aggressive but When we go to dog park there are other dogs that he just simply don’t like e.g. Shibas and one pitbull that plays too rough for him and he starts barking at them with a mild aggression he doesn’t bite them It’s quite stressful for me given the fact that it’s a very strong dog but other than that I don’t see any aggression and I would say more is protection trait than aggression

I’ve had at least 9 breeds because I used to rescue dogs and by far this is my favorite

Aggressive? LOL
by: Anonymous

I have read the comments here and I can't help but think you all are full of doggie doo doo!

I have had Huskies and Labs, and now an Australian Shepherd. Have had the dog since she was about 6 weeks old. Hardest to control out of the 3 and more protective out of all too.

They grow very fast. They are extremely loyal and playful, smart but hard headed, and they get aggressive. I know about the female I have anyway. She is alpha and wants to be the boss. She was herding immediately at 6 weeks old trying to control our older lab and us. In fact it was so much that our older dog didnt want to be in the same room.

She tends to like to get us going but potty trained very quickly. Their dew claws are lethal weapons!!! We all have battle wounds to prove it! They are functional and she grabs with them. Doesn't matter how much you discipline her over it. I have a special coat I let her chew on when she wants to play rough, yes rough, growling and snarling while trying to get it. Its either that or my hand. When I finally correct her she gets a squeak toy and squeak squeak squeak squeak non-stop as a way to deal with being told no. Hates being told no, hates when we point a finger at her and for some weird reason you can't whistle the Marine Hymn. We do let her sleep with us, yes a bad habit but it helped us potty train her very quickly.

She is also very loving, will bring you things to say thank you and is always trying to french kiss us.

Lots of energy but all and all in the 5 months we have had her the worst is the dew claws. She hasn't torn up furniture or tried to harm any of us or kill the cat but there is a wicked side there. She does not like to be controlled.

by: Robert

While working at a customer's house, his mother let the dog, an Australian Shepherd, out of its cage. It bit me in the calf. Five minutes later, while bending down, it attacked my lip very severely.

Going on 2nd (aggressive) Aussie...
by: Anonymous

I have loved both of the Aussies I've owned. One current one passed away. But since you asked, aggression was present in previous and present in current. Both love me and show(ed) aggression to my college daughter and husband. Both have been one-person dogs. EXTREMELY LOYAL TO ME. While I love their loyalty, it is problematic that they are one-person dogs if one lives in a family.

by: Anonymous

I am an Aussie owner. Love the breed, and yes they tend to be aggressive. Again, I love the breed and since I know this is true I practice responsible ownership.

Food aggression & possession aggression
by: Shannon

Aussies, like any breed, need to be properly trained from early puppyhood. I see a lot of comments regarding the breed being dominant and running the home if you don’t show them who is boss. I was severely bitten/attacked by an 8 yo male Aussie who had food aggression and possession aggression. The dog belongs to a friend/neighbor of mine. I’ve watched the Aussie/cared for him while his owner took trips. Fed, played catch with and walked him on daily basis. Honestly, I thought I treated the dog better than the owner did, so I am surprised I was attacked. His owner, a 56 yo male, bought as a pup at 8 wks, told me the dog bit him throughout the years if he didn’t want to listen to a command, like "go lay down" or "stop barking." The owner said "he’s always trying to be dominant and he bites me. I have to show him I’m the boss." So I knew the owner had been bitten often and I also knew no one can hand the dog a treat/food, he will take your fingers off. Treats were thrown to the dog and he’d catch them. Handling food around the dog is a good way to get bit. So, I was always careful not to handle food/treats around the dog. So, one day the Aussie came to my house to play with my dog like usual, but on this day, when I picked my dog’s bone off the floor to place up on a shelf, like I have done many times, the Aussie full-on charged and attacked me, bit my hand, arm and leg, numerous bites. The dog has both food and possession aggression and in a moment that I was in my own house, picking up my own dog’s bone, he charged and bit me viciously. Prior to, I took care of this Aussie as if he were my own dog, but I should have known since he bites his owner, he would bite anyone. Now I will never trust any dog this man owns because he referenced dominance/showing he’s the boss a lot in conversation and I don’t know if he made the dog this way, a battle of wills? Plus now, I’ll never trust an Aussie. My impression of the breed is they need strong leadership and must respect the owner or you will have BIG problems, same as with a lot of breeds. The question may not be is an Aussie right for you, but rather, are you the right owner for an Aussie? They require a LOT of attention and exercise!! I think my neighbor bought him based on looks and didn’t know anything about training a dominant breed. Do your homework... learn the breed, learn (and perform correctly) training techniques so you can be a successful leader of a dominant-minded breed. They are not just a cute ball of fur. I now have permanent damage in my hand.

Exercise & Patience
by: Anonymous

Hope it worked out well for you. We’ve had an Aussiedoodle puppy for a few weeks now and look forward to the constant biting and gnawing that most puppies do.

Um my Aussie is kinda aggressive
by: Kelly b.k

My name is Kelly I am 26, autistic, on oxygen, wheelchair bound, I have neuropathy, congestive heart failure, liver disease, hypertension...,well the list goes on, but my Australian Shepherd is Miniature and he is very aggressive. I can't walk at all and can't really do anything. I'm a sick person, for the past couple months my dog has been being aggressive towards me and this morning when I was asleep I woke up to him barking. I tried to calm him by cuddling but he grabbed my arm lock on at several spots and did the head roll with my arm, he tore me up. I have multiple punctures and slices all over my left arm, I don't know why he's like this. I rescued him at 3 weeks and I've always spoiled him with tons of food, toys, treats, harnesses, leashes, beds, covers, bones, everything pretty much and idk why he hates me so much. I'm an animal lover, I know all my facts. I'm the kind of person whom enjoys researching everything online. I have had all kinds of different animals throughout my entire life but I have loved dogs the most and it's messed up because he's being trained to be my service dog.

Unfortunately mine is
by: Anonymous

Unfortunately, I do have an aggressive Aussie (9months). My husband and I have invested a huge amount of time into training and socialising him. We work from home and have been travelling with him for 3 months in an RV around Europe and so he has received loads of attention and exercise. He's generally very cuddly and fun and very clever—will close doors, play dead, fetch specific toys when asked—but has a big resource guarding issue over any inanimate object. He is also very headstrong and hates being corrected. He feels the need to assert his dominance and can be aggressive towards us and other people. He has recently been castrated so I hope this will solve/help things. It's very strange, we knew the breeder and the bitch was the sweetest dog. He can flip like a switch. My sister-in-law is a vet and sometimes dogs can be 'wired wrong'. We are proceeding with a vet who is also a behaviourist to rule out any mental disorders. 😟 I think he may be an exception.

Aggressive/Psychotic Aussie
by: Bill in Tennessee

We have a neutered male Aussie, 1.5 yrs old, that displays a Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde disposition. Unfortunately, in his Mr. Hyde phase he has bitten both of us, along with many near misses (snarling/teeth baring) as well as severely bitten a relative (requiring stitches).

Before everything, he was supposed to be a Miniature, but he weighs 40+ lbs. He was re-homed; we received him from a family with young children and apparently he was quite aggressive with the children.

It’s quite the paradox; most of the time he’s playful and affectionate. Other than whining and anxiety, a good dog and watchdog. We are not completely sure what triggers the aggression, but it nearly always revolves around food.

Occasionally but frequently he will get in a mode where he’ll eat all his dry dog food then throw it all up. Then, for the next 12-18 hrs he’ll guard any new food but won’t eat it. If you approach the food he’ll snarl and bite. We’ve also observed some apparent constipation during these episodes evidenced by his inability to defecate, despite trying. When he severely bit the relative it was because he was trying to take something he was chewing.

We thought we had found a solution by preparing homemade food consisting of rice, chicken, vegetables, etc., and that definitely helps cut down on the throwing up — also he has lots more energy.

Then, the other evening when he was lying between us on the couch, I reached down to get the remote and he bit me without much warning (snarling, etc.). And then, last night, out of nowhere, he sat up on the couch between us and started baring his teeth and snarling at both of us. This episode was preceded by some low growling while my arm was resting on him.

I think this behavior is genetic and instinctual. Unfortunately, if it continues (and I believe it will) I will have to put him down as a last resort.

by: Kathie

My 4 month old Aussie loves to play, go for walks. He gets a ton of attention. When it's bed time he gets aggressive, snarls and bites when we lead him to his crate. What are we doing wrong?

aggressive aussie
by: Anonymous

I rescued a red and white Australian Shepherd about 18 months ago. I have 4 sons at home ranging in age from 20 to 13. He has decided that he is my protector especially while I am cooking. He appears anxious when my sons are around. Once they walk in the room, Rex starts following them very close like he is herding them. He bars their way and growls and sometimes nips at them when they come towards me. My 13-year-old can call him and tell him to stand up to get pets, but as soon as I come around, he starts to growl. He does not display any of these behaviors when I am at work. My sons love to throw a ball and play with him all of the time as long as I am gone. I have tried keeping treats near me while I am cooking, but they rarely keep his attention long. He stays at my bedroom door all night long and growls at anyone who comes up the stairs. If anyone has any suggestions or training tips, I would love to hear it.

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