All About Appenzeller Dogs

The Appenzeller dog is also known as the Appenzeller Sennenhund or Appenzeller Mountain Dog.

It’s one of the rarest of four Swiss Mountain Dogs.

What You Should Know

The first time this breed was mentioned is in a book from 1853. Then, the Appenzeller Sennenhund was listed as a breed in 1898. Eight dogs were then introduced at the Winterthur first International Dog Show. Dr. Albert Heim created the Appenzeller Sennenhund Club in 1906 because of his great concern of Swiss Cattledogs.

This breed is known for herding, pulling carts and guarding. They are active and need lots of exercise to be happy.

Male Appenzeller dogs stand about 20 inches at the shoulder, while the female is slightly smaller. This dog will weigh anywhere from 48 to 55 pounds. They have a heavy body build plus a tri-color coat. This coat is shiny and thick with either brown or black as the prominent color and some white or tan markings.

The undercoat is typically gray, black or brown. Their small eyes are always brown but range from light to dark. Most have white markings on the feet, the tip of the tail, chin, and face. Finally, the Appenzeller has small, triangular ears that hang down against the cheeks.

What Sound Do They Make?

Appenzeller dogs are known for their vigilance to guarding loved ones. When they perceive a threat or they want to announce a visitor, they let off a deep sound. This alarm works against its owners because the Appenzeller sees anything different as a threat, even the neighbor leaving for work.

Group Characteristics

Though an Appenzeller is polite when guests arrive, it is always alert for danger. It’s important to socialize the dog to provide a stable and confident temperament that understands when there’s a real threat. Otherwise, this breed becomes pushy and dominant.

The Appenzeller will live nine to 12 years, on average. The female will have one litter per year. Typically, each litter produces four to six puppies.

How Many are There?

This breed isn’t recognized by the AKC or other major American kennel clubs, but it is registered with international clubs and smaller groups in America. It is the rarest from the Sennenhund canine breeds.

If you need a little more cuteness in your day, you’ll get a kick out of this adorable eight-week-old Appenzeller puppy.

Pop Culture

The Appenzeller isn’t a popular dog breed and hasn’t made it to mainstream media. You won’t find this breed as a common choice for kids movies or TV shows.

Interesting Facts

Sennenhund means dairy farmer’s dog, which makes sense since they were purposed with protecting the cows. They are also known for sacrificing their lives to protect those they watch over. It’s believed that they could be descendants from the Romans cattle dogs, but there’s no proof to back that up.

Because this breed is active and energetic, it’s required that they receive plenty of exercise. They don’t make good city dogs but prefer wide-open spaces where they can run. If they don’t receive any physical activity, they become restless and destructive. The Appenzeller even excels at competitions and outdoor sports where herding skills are vital. Furthermore, this dog prefers colder climates and isn’t fond of higher temperatures.

Because of very careful breeding practices, the Appenzeller is remarkably healthy. This breed doesn’t suffer from any major diseases or defects.

All About the Australian Cattle Dog

The Australian Cattle Dog is also known as a Queensland Heeler or Blue Heeler.

It’s an alert, pleasant and curious breed related to the Dingo, an Australian wild dog. Many people don’t know the essential facts about one of the oldest dogs in the world.

What You Should Know

The Australian Cattle Dog was first bred in the 19th-century by Australian settlers who needed to herd cattle on the ranch. This hardy dog handles the harsh working conditions and climate of Australia. It was accepted into the American Kennel Club in 1980.

It features a blue color with or without red speckled markings. It has a double coat and muscular statue, built for working hard.

What Sound Do They Make?

The Australian Cattle Dog sounds the alarm quickly. It barks at any unfamiliar sight or sound. That’s why it’s not a good dog to leave in the yard unattended. Some of the species also feature a sharp, high-pitched bark that’s hard to handle.

You can get a small taste of its bark with this homemade YouTube video.

Group Characteristics

The Australian Cattle Dog loves to live with families but works best when the children are raised with the puppy. That’s what allows the dog to become protective and caring toward the children. If not, it can become nippy and start to bite.

On average, the Australian Cattle Dog litter consists of five puppies. This often ranges from one to seven pups at a time.

How Many are There?

The Australian Cattle Dog only became accepted by the AKC in 1980. Since then, it recently hit the 55th spot on the Top Breeds list in 2018. It has remained in or around that spot for the last five years.

Watch a Video

If you want the complete rundown on the Australian Cattle Dog, make sure you check out this documentary from Animal Planet.

You can also learn some of the main differences between two popular herding dogs: the Australian Cattle Dog and Border Collie with this video.

Pop Culture

The Australian Cattle Dog has been in numerous movies. Chico was in The Secret Window as Mort Rainey’s dog. One of these dogs was also featured in Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior as Max’s companion.

You will also see an Australian Cattle Dog in Babe, a family film. It was one of the bad dogs that killed sheep. The award-winning Brokeback Mountain showcased a couple of Australian Cattle Dogs which travel with the cowboys during the beginning of the film. If you look in the extended footage, you will find more content containing them.

In Man of Steel, there is also a cattle dog highlighted, but it’s not a large role. You can see it during the midpoint and later in the film.

Interesting Facts

The Australian Cattle Dog is a true survivor. In 2009, a dog named Sophie was on a boat with her family near Queensland, Australia. The dog was thrown off when a wave hit the ship. This pup swam five miles to shore and found itself on St. Bees Island. This island was inhabited by wild horses. Sophie stayed alive by hunting the feral goats on the island. Over time, a ranger found her and reunited her with the family, proving how tough this breed is.

Because these dogs enjoy chewing, owners must be prepared to offer more than the average dog. They will want tough toys and larger bones to keep themselves entertained and satisfied.

A typical Australian Cattle Dog will weigh up to 45 pounds. The average lifespan is between 12 and 13 years old.

All About the Australian Kelpie Dog

The Australian Kelpie Dog is appropriately named since it originated in Australia.

It’s known as a loyal, intelligent and alert family pet that loves to work.

What You Should Know

When sheep numbers increased in Australia, people sought after a solution for herding. In Victoria and New South Wales, properties quickly became larger than two million acres and often hold a quarter of a million sheep. Herding wasn’t practical in such conditions so wire fences were installed so the sheep could run free. A dog was needed to handle the sheep, but it was challenging to find something that could handle the rough terrain, vast distances, dust storms, and excessive heat.

Initially, this breed was imported from Scotland. It features tan and black colors with long hair. These Collie-type styles were the most popular, but there was also a smooth-hair option available.

What Sound Do They Make?

The Australian Kelpie makes a variety of noises to communicate. It’s known to howl for long-range communication. This is helpful for hunting and outdoor work. It also growls to express aggression. If the growl is for play, its tail wags and it moves around rapidly. Sometimes, the Kelpie barks excessively and crosses the line. This is common when it perceives danger or is nervous.

Listen to this Australian Kelpie dog bark on command.

Group Characteristics

The average Australian Kelpie litter size is five puppies. Once the puppies are born, they require a lot of socialization to ensure they get along well with people and children. They prefer to be loyal to one person but can be trained to be a family dog.

How Many are There?

There are no accurate estimates to the Australian Kelpie population. It’s not even recognized as a breed by the AKC. Still, both the Canadian Kennel Club and United Kennel Club have it registered. As far as the US goes, the North American Australian Kelpie Registry helps to promote the interests of this breed.

Watch a Video

In this first video, you can learn about all the traits and characteristics of an Australian Kelpie dog.

This second video helps to explain the differences between the Australian Kelpie and German Shepherd.

Pop Culture

The Australian Kelpie dog is found in numerous films. One of the most popular was Red Dog from 2011. In this film, the dog reunites people of Dampier, Western Australia. Koko was the dog actor’s real name. He died in 2012 from heart failure in Perth, Western Australia at the age of seven. The prequel, Red Dog: True Blue was subsequently dedicated to his memory.

Another famous movie is The Sundowners from 1960. The Australian Kelpie, Ollie, was Sean’s dog. The movie is about an Australian family.

Interesting Facts

It’s possible that dingoes were once interbred with the Australian Kelpie at some point in their history. If that’s true, it’s now a part of the bloodline.

Australian Kelpies have varying coat colors. Some include red, black, smoky blue, chocolate or fawn. Some varieties feature tan markings.

The dog features a double coat with an outer weather-resistant layer. It doesn’t require much grooming, but it sheds heavily in the spring.

The Kelpie works hard and can travel over 30 miles per day. It will nip the heels of herd animals to make them move. A typical Kelpie weighs between 25 and 45 pounds. They will live to be ten to 14 years old.

Because they contain special oils in their fur, they only need a bath if they get dirty. Otherwise, they should be left alone, so their coat doesn’t dry out.