| Pet Care Advice By Veterinarians |

Can Australian Shepherds Live Outside? (Answered!)



Reviewed By: Dr. Joel Robertson

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Many people are wondering if Australian Shepherds can live outside. This is a valid question, as the weather in many parts of the country can be quite severe.

In this blog post, we will take a look at how weatherproof Australian Shepherds really are and whether or not they can live outside in colder climates.

Key Takeaway

  • Australian Shepherds can spend time outdoors and are naturally suited to outdoor activities, but they should not live outside full-time as they need close interaction with their owners and protection from extreme weather conditions.
  • An Australian Shepherd can be outside for several hours at a time for exercise and play, but the exact duration depends on the weather conditions, their age, and health status. However, they should not be left outside for extended periods without access to shelter, water, and human interaction.

Can Australian Shepherds Live Outside?

Can Australian Shepherds Live Outside

Yes, Australian Shepherds can live outside. The Australian Shepherds are built to spend most of their time outdoors and make good outside dogs. These herding dogs are capable of working in all weather conditions. These dogs have the resources to survive even in the harshest weather. However, whether they will enjoy living is a whole other story.

Australian Shepherds were developed on ranches in America in the 1840s. They would spend most of their days outside, herding and helping the farmers with various tasks. These dogs thrive when given a job to do. So, enjoying the open air is written in their genes. Because of this, Aussies are naturally made to be outdoor dogs.

However, experts still recommend that Australian Shepherds should sleep indoors even if they have the best conditions outdoors.

Whether it’s a barn or your home, your Aussie will appreciate sleeping inside. Besides the apparent physical health, it will also benefit the mental well-being of your pup. Australian Shepherds are clingy dogs. They want to be by their owners at all times, especially during the night. The dog will feel more secure if close to you. Also, they have a protective personality, so they would feel better if they properly guard the owners.

However, many people decide to leave their Aussies outdoors, and that’s perfectly fine. In case you’re one of those owners, here’s a guide on how to make your Aussie comfortable outside.

How Long Can an Australian Shepherd Be Outside?

An Australian Shepherd can be outside for a long time as they are bred to work in the fields. However, they should always have access to water and shade. If it is hot outside, they should be brought inside often to cool down. Too much sun and heat can cause problems for an Australian Shepherd.

If the temperature outside is below 45 degrees Fahrenheit or gets above 75 degrees Fahrenheit, an Australian Shepherd shouldn’t be outside in the open for more than two hours.

Direct exposure to the cold or the heat can cause either frostbite or heatstroke to your Australian Shepherd. Don’t get me wrong, they are built to be outside for the better part of the day. However, they shouldn’t be out in the direct cold or direct sun. In wintertime, they should have a decent place that is insulated and has blankets inside. In summer, their dog house should be moved to a shade to avoid direct exposure to the sun.

Some people believe that an Australian Shepherd cannot be left outside in the cold weather, but this is not true. An Australian Shepherd’s fur coat will keep them warm when it is cold outside.

They just need to make sure they have plenty of food and water, and that they are taken inside if the temperature gets too low or too high. A good rule of thumb is to bring your Australian Shepherd inside if the temperature falls below 45 degrees Fahrenheit or gets above 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

How To Make Your Aussie Comfortable Outside?

To make your Aussie comfortable outside, you need to provide proper shelter, ensure they have access to fresh water and food, spend quality time with them, train them on outdoor etiquette, and keep them mentally and physically stimulated.

Provide Proper Shelter

Aussies need a suitable shelter that protects them from harsh weather conditions. This can be a dog house that is waterproof, insulated, and large enough for them to move around comfortably. The shelter should be placed in a shaded area during summer to prevent overheating.

Ensure Access to Fresh Water and Food

Always ensure your Aussie has access to fresh water to keep them hydrated, especially in hot weather. Their food bowls should also be kept clean and the food should be covered to protect it from pests.

Spend Quality Time With Them

Aussies are social dogs that love companionship. Spend time with them playing games, training, or just petting them. This not only makes them feel loved but also keeps them mentally stimulated.

Train Them on Outdoor Etiquette

Training is essential for Aussies living outside. They need to be trained on boundaries to prevent them from wandering away. They should also be trained on how to interact with other animals and people to ensure they are well-behaved outdoors.

Keep Them Mentally and Physically Stimulated

A bored Aussie can become destructive. Therefore, you need to keep them engaged with toys and regular exercise. You can also set up an obstacle course in your yard to challenge them physically and mentally.

How Cold Is Too Cold For Australian Shepherds?

Can Australian Shepherds Live Outside

In general, Australian Shepherds should not be exposed to temperatures below freezing or above 100 degrees Fahrenheit for an extended period of time. If the temperature falls below 32 degrees Fahrenheit or rises above 95 degrees Fahrenheit, then you should bring your dog inside immediately.

Australian Shepherds are a breed of dog that is known for being very weatherproof. They can live outside in cold climates and they are also able to tolerate high temperatures. However, there is a limit to how cold or hot it can be before an Australian Shepherd starts to experience health problems.

Signs that a dog is cold includes shivering, low energy, reluctance to move, and a tucked-up tail. If you see these signs in your Australian Shepherd, it is time to bring them inside.

Even if an Australian Shepherd looks like they are having a good time playing outside in the snow, that doesn’t mean they aren’t feeling the cold. Dogs can tolerate colder temperatures than humans can, but only to a point. Make sure to keep an eye on your Aussie when it’s cold outside and bring them inside if they start showing signs of being cold.

Additionally, make sure that your Australian Shepherd has plenty of water and shade available when it is outdoors in hot weather. A nice blanket inside the dog house goes a long way. Overall, if you are not able to keep your Aussie indoors, make sure it has a decent place outside.

If you are not sure if it’s too cold or too hot for your Australian Shepherd, I would suggest you consult with a veterinarian. Humans have different toleration to cold or heat, so whatever might be too cold or too hot for you, the Aussie might not feel the same.

By following these guidelines, you can keep your Australian Shepherd healthy and happy no matter what the weather is like says Bubbly Pet.

Does an Australian Shepherd Need a Winter Coat?

If you live in a cold climate, it’s likely that your Australian shepherd will need a winter coat to stay warm. Even if you don’t live in a cold climate, your dog may still need a coat if he or she is going to be spending time outside in the cold weather.

There are a variety of different types of coats available for dogs, so you’ll want to choose one that will work well for your dog’s needs.

Some things to consider when choosing a winter coat for your Australian Shepherd include the type of fabric, the fit, and the style. You’ll also want to make sure that the coat is easy to put on and take off, and that it will stay in place while your dog is wearing it. If you’re not sure which coat is right for your dog, consult with a pet retailer or veterinarian for advice. (Check out some cool dog coats on amazon.com).

If your Australian shepherd doesn’t seem to be very comfortable in cold weather, it’s a good idea to keep him or her inside as much as possible during the winter months. You can also provide some extra insulation for your dog’s house or kennel, and make sure that he has plenty of warm bedding to sleep on.

By taking these steps, you can help ensure that your furry friend stays warm and safe during the winter season.

How Do I Keep My Australian Shepherd Cool in The Summer?

Australian Shepherds are bred and developed in the hot climates of Australia and California. Because of this and their luxurious fur, these dogs have no problems working or playing in the heat. Aussies are highly energetic and have no sense of when to stop.

However, as almost all beings, they too can suffer from heatstroke. If you notice changes in your dog’s behavior, quickly take it to a cooled place. Nevertheless, you can do a couple of things to prevent this from happening.

Most importantly, make sure your dog has a constant drinking water supply. Hydration is your dog’s best friend in summer. Putting some ice cubes in the water is also a good idea. However, if you notice your dog is suffering from the heat, get a wet, cold towel and let the Aussie lay on it. Take the dog indoors or in a shady place. Also, if you happen to be near a river or a lake, let the pup go for a dip. Australian Shepherds enjoy swimming.

You can also change your Aussie’s diet in summer. Avoid fatty nutrients and try to feed your dog with some fresh foods. You will notice your dog eats less in summer than it does in winter. Another bright idea is to set the exercise times to early mornings or late evenings when there’s no sun on the horizon. Remember, if it’s too hot for you, it’s also hot for your Aussie.

Another vital summer activity is regular grooming. Australian Shepherds shed a lot, especially in autumn and spring. However, their hairs stick to their bodies. Regular brushing will help remove this excess hair, thus helping the dog cool off. So, once the sun starts scorching, take your brushes and get to work.

Do Australian Shepherds need a backyard?

No, Australian Shepherds do not need a backyard. Although they may enjoy having a large space to run around in, they can adapt to living in an apartment or small home.

They will need plenty of exercises, however, so be sure to take them for walks or play with them outside often. If you live in a rural area with lots of open space, your Aussie may prefer that over city life. But overall, Australian Shepherds are versatile dogs and can adjust to most environments.

If you’re looking for a breed that is good with kids and loves spending time outdoors, the Australian Shepherd may be the perfect dog for you! These active pups make great companions and love playing fetch or going on hikes.

They need plenty of exercise, so a backyard is ideal, but they can also adapt to living in an apartment if necessary. Australian Shepherds are versatile dogs that make great family pets!

How Do I Keep My Australian Shepherd in My Yard?

There are a few things you can do to keep your Australian Shepherd in your yard. One is to install a fence. Another is to use a dog tie-out or stake. You can also use a kennel or run. If you have a large yard, you may not need to do anything else to keep your dog contained.

However, if your yard is small, you may need to take additional steps. For example, you can put up boundaries such as bushes or trees, or you can train your dog to stay in certain areas of the yard. Whichever method you choose, be sure to always supervise your dog when he is outside and never leave him unsupervised for an extended period of time.

The most important thing is to associate positive thoughts with the yard. Build a nice dog house with proper insulation and a dog bed inside. The more you make the dog house comfortable, the faster Australian Shepherds start to adjust to the yard life and they will love to live outside.

Don’t threaten your Australian Shepherd like ”Be nice or I will let you sleep in the yard!” If they see the yard as a punishment, you will have a hard time keeping your Aussie in the yard. They will try to run away, jump fences, or turn to destructive behavior like digging holes and destroying flowers.

Instead, go out with them in the yard, play fetch, or some other game. Just make sure that they enjoy being in the yard. In no time, your Australian Shepherd will start to love the yard.


Q: Are Australian Shepherds good family pets?

A: Yes, Australian Shepherds can make excellent family pets. They are known for their loyalty, intelligence, and agility. They are great with children and can be a wonderful addition to any family.

Q: Do Australian Shepherds shed a lot?

A: Yes, Australian Shepherds tend to shed moderately throughout the year, with heavier shedding during the change of seasons. Regular grooming and brushing can help manage their shedding and keep their coat healthy.

Q: How much exercise do Australian Shepherds need?

A: Australian Shepherds are high-energy dogs that require a significant amount of exercise to remain happy and healthy. They need at least 1-2 hours of physical activity every day, including walks, runs, and playtime.

Q: Are Australian Shepherds easy to train?

A: Yes, Australian Shepherds are highly intelligent and trainable dogs. They are eager to please and excel in obedience training, agility, and various dog sports. Consistent positive reinforcement methods and early socialization are key to their successful training.

Q: Do Australian Shepherds get along with other pets?

A: Australian Shepherds can get along well with other pets if properly socialized from a young age. Early socialization and positive experiences with other animals can help them develop good relationships and prevent any aggressive tendencies.

Q: Are Australian Shepherds prone to any specific health issues?

A: Australian Shepherds can be prone to certain health issues such as hip dysplasia, epilepsy, eye problems, and certain allergies. Regular veterinary check-ups, a balanced diet, and proper exercise can help maintain their overall health and well-being.

Q: How big do Australian Shepherds get?

A: Australian Shepherds are medium-sized dogs. On average, males can reach a height of 20-23 inches (51-58 cm) and weigh between 50-65 pounds (23-29 kg), while females are slightly smaller, reaching a height of 18-21 inches (46-53 cm) and weighing between 40-55 pounds (18-25 kg).

Q: Do Australian Shepherds need a lot of mental stimulation?

A: Yes, Australian Shepherds are highly intelligent and active dogs that require mental stimulation to prevent boredom and destructive behaviors. Providing them with puzzle toys, obedience training, and engaging activities can help keep their minds sharp and satisfied.

Q: How long do Australian Shepherds live?

A: On average, Australian Shepherds have a lifespan of 12-15 years. However, with proper care, a healthy diet, regular exercise, and routine veterinary check-ups, they can live even longer.

In Conclusion

In conclusion, while Australian Shepherds are hardy dogs that enjoy outdoor activities, they should not be made to live outside full-time.

They thrive on human interaction and can suffer from isolation if left alone for extended periods. Also, they need protection from extreme weather conditions.

Please take the time and leave a comment below if this article helped you, or you have any additional questions.

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