Australian Retriever

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Australian Retriever

Canis lupus

Last updated: February 8, 2022
Verified by: IMP

The Australian Retriever may have two different eye colors.

Australian Retriever Scientific Classification

Scientific Name
Canis lupus

Read our Complete Guide to Classification of Animals.

Australian Retriever Conservation Status

Australian Retriever Locations

Australian Retriever Locations

Australian Retriever Facts

Fun Fact
The Australian Retriever may have two different eye colors.
Active, intelligent, and friendly

Australian Retriever Physical Characteristics

  • Brown
  • Black
  • White
  • Gold
Skin Type
12 to 15 years
60 lbs

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Australian Retriever as a Pet:

General Health
Energy Level
Tendency to Chew
Family and kid friendliness
Yappiness / Barking
Separation Anxiety
Preferred Temperature
Average climate
Exercise Needs
Friendly With Other Dogs
Pure bred cost to own
$200 to $1,000
Dog group
Male weight
30-60 lbs
Female weight
25-52 lbs

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The Australian Retriever may sometimes inherit two different eye colors from its Australian Shepherd parent. The technical term for this is heterochromia iridum.

The Australian Retriever is a cross between two beloved and famous breeds of dogs: the Australian Shepherd and the Golden Retriever. Temperamentally, these breeds are quite similar to each other, even though they were bred for two different purposes. The Australian Shepherd is an athletic ranching and herding dog that (despite the name) was perfected and refined in the United States. The Golden Retriever is a strong worker and hunting/retrieving dog that originated from the Highlands of Scotland.

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As a cross between two different breeds, the Australian Retriever comes in many different colors and appearances, but it is generally characterized by its large size, athletic frame, broad head, and small expressive eyes. The coarse coat of fur comes in various color combinations, including black, brown, brindle, merle, blonde, and gold. It can be either wavy or straight as well.

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3 pros and cons of owning an Australian Retriever

Pros! Cons!
Energetic and High-Intensity

The Australian Retriever should be well-suited for owners who want a very active and engaged dog.

The Australian Retriever seems to have a constant motor and may have trouble settling down.
Friendly and Outgoing

This mix is an excellent companion and friend.

This crossbreed is very protective of even small objects like toys.
Intelligent and Trainable

Many owners believe that the Australian Retriever is a real joy to train. It has the ability to learn lots of commands and tricks.
High Separation Anxiety

This dog should not be left alone for very long without companionship from people or activities to do.

Australian Retriever Size and Weight

The Australian Retriever has a medium to large athletic frame. The male tends to be slightly larger than the female.

Height (Male) 19 to 23 inches
Height (Female) 19 to 23 inches
Weight (Male) 30 to 60 pounds
Weight (Female) 25 to 52 pounds

Australian Retriever Common Health Issues

The Australian Retriever is considered to be a very healthy hybrid dog, but it may inherit several conditions from its two parent breeds, including eye disorders, joint problems, bloating, epilepsy, skin conditions, and hip dysplasia (a developmental condition in which the hip joint can become partially or fully dislocated).

Cancer is also the leading cause of death in this type of dog. To minimize the chances that it develops any problems, you should always attempt to buy your dog from a high-quality breeder who screens for these issues; low-quality breeders or puppy mills may just lead to more health problems later down the line. It’s also a good idea to schedule regular appointments at the vet to catch problems as early as possible.

In summation, these are the most common issues with the Australian Retriever:

Health and Entertainment for your Australian Retriever

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  • Skin Disorders
  • Eye Disorders
  • Joint Problems
  • Cancer

Australian Retriever Temperament

The Australian Retriever has a friendly and upbeat personality; it will be an endless source of energy, fun, and companionship for the entire family. But don’t let its appealing qualities blind you from the challenge that comes with it. Possessive, needy, and high-intensity, this dog is a real handful to care for, which means it is not for everyone. The dog will do best with a highly engaged and creative owner who takes a very active interest in its life. If the Australian Retrieve doesn’t receive enough attention and care, then it may begin to feel stressed out and anxious. This could lead to unnecessary destructive behavior and chewing.

How to Take Care of the Australian Retriever

The Australian Retriever requires plenty of time and attention from its owner. Do not buy this dog unless you have the ability to take care of all its needs. If you have any questions or concerns about your dog’s care, then you should talk with your vet.

The Best Dog Food for Australian Retrievers

The Australian Retriever will need about 3 cups of nutrient-rich dog food per day to support its highly active lifestyle. This should come in the form of dry dog pellets to keep the dog’s teeth clean and healthy. Of course, the exact amount of food will depend on your dog’s age and activity level. Some dogs may need to consume at least 30 calories of food per pound they weigh, more than most dogs. If your pet suffers from bloating (a serious condition that can cause the stomach to expand rapidly), then you might want to divide up the food into multiple meals per day.

The A-Z Animals recommendation for the best dog food for Australian Retrievers is Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin & Stomach, High Protein Dry Dog Food.

A nutritious sensitive skin formula, this salmon kibble has plentiful omegas including DHA, which nourish both eyes and skin. The real fish infuses natural glucosamine into your Australian Retriever’s diet for joint protection, too.

Think about putting Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin and Stomach High Protein dog food in your amazon cart.

Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin and Stomach Dog Food With Probiotics for Dogs, Salmon & Rice Formula – 30 lb. Bag

  • One (1) 30 lb. Bag – Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin and Stomach Dog Food With Probiotics for Dogs, Salmon & Rice Formula
  • Oat meal is easily digestible and gentle on the digestive system. High protein formula, with real salmon as the first ingredient
  • Fortified with guaranteed live probiotics for digestive and immune health. Used to be known as FOCUS Sensitive Skin and Stomach Salmon and Rice Formula
  • Sunflower oil rich in omega-6 fatty acids for healthy skin and coat. Natural prebiotic fiber nourishes specific intestinal bacteria for digestive health
  • Antioxidants for a healthy immune system. Fish oil rich in omega-3 fatty acids for joint health and mobility

Australian Retriever Maintenance and Grooming

The Australian Retriever has long hair that will shed a moderate amount. It should benefit from twice weekly grooming and the occasional trimming to prevent the fur from matting. During these grooming sessions, it’s a good idea to clean out the ears, clip the nails, and brush the teeth with a dog-specific toothpaste. Bathing with a suitable shampoo is only necessary when the dog becomes particularly dirty.


The Australian Retriever descends from two highly intelligent and trainable breeds. It’s capable of learning a huge range of different commands and tasks. These dogs should do best with positive reinforcement methods and rewards-based training combined with a clicker or verbal commands. Since this dog has the tendency to lose focus after long periods of repetitious behavior, it’s a good idea to limit sessions to no more than 20 minutes at a time and try to change things up frequently.

But because of its strong herding and retrieving instinct, the Australian Retriever may have the tendency to run around, explore its surroundings, and attempt to herd people and animals. Training will help to overcome these instincts, but the owner can only do so much.


This high-energy mix will probably need at least an hour of exercise per day. Owners and dogs can bond over long walks/runs, sports, games, fetches, and even swimming sessions. It also does very well with agility and herding competitions.


Australian Retriever puppies will need to begin socialization and training within the first few months of their lives to adequately prepare them for adulthood. Classes and doggie daycare are excellent options for owners who lack the time and ability to take care of the puppies at all times by themselves. These dogs are generally good quite easy to housetrain, but if you’re still struggling to break it of bad habits, then you might want to consider investing in a crate. Dogs seem to have a natural aversion to sullying their living quarters. In fact, a crate is a good option, in general, to give your dog a restful place and soothe its anxiety. But owners should not treat the crate as a punishment or prison.

Australian Retrievers and Children

The Australian Retriever should be an excellent and loyal companion for children of almost all ages. Every member of the family can take part in the dog’s care. But its hyperactive and excitable behavior might not be suitable for the youngest kids, since it may have a tendency to knock them over or crawl over them.

Dogs Similar to the Australian Retriever

The Australian Retriever combines together different elements of herding and retrieving dogs. Besides its two parent breeds, these are the most similar breeds you can find:

  • Labrador Retriever – There’s a reason that the Labrador Retriever consistently ranks as the most popular dog in the United States. Originally bred in Newfoundland as a duck retriever and fisherman’s companion, this dog’s sweet, good-natured, outgoing, and loyal personality infectiously endears it to people of all ages. It’s also an excellent athlete and exercise companion.
  • Flat-Coated Retriever – Sporting a lustrous black or liver coat with featherings around the legs and tail, this self-confident, upbeat, and good-natured gundog is another friendly and loving companion with a high-intensity motor. People of all ages will love this dog.
  • Collie – If a herding dog like the Australian Shepherd seems like your idea of an ideal companion, then the Collie may also appeal to you. This athletic and graceful dog comes in two different varieties: a rough or a smooth coat. They are noted for their loyalty and intelligence.

Famous Australian Retrievers

While this particular hybrid dog isn’t well-known (breeding only became routine in the early 21st century), the Australian Retriever combines two of the most popular breeds in the United States. The Golden Retriever regularly ranks in the top three, while the Australian Shepherd is usually America’s favorite dog breed. They are owned by famous celebrities and appear in TV shows and movies.

If you’re looking for a good Australian Retriever name, then you might want to consider one of the following options:

  • Bella
  • Charlie
  • Luna
  • Cooper
  • Bear
  • Lucy
  • Max
  • Buddy
  • Molly
  • Tucker

Last update on 2022-07-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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AZ Animals is a growing team of animals experts, researchers, farmers, conservationists, writers, editors, and — of course — pet owners who have come together to help you better understand the animal kingdom and how we interact.

Australian Retriever FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What is an Australian Retriever?

The Australian Retriever is a crossbreed between an Australian Shepherd and a Golden Retriever. These charismatic, outgoing, and friendly dogs make excellent companions for those with the time and patience to take care of them. Athletic and intelligent, they are all-around great pets with an even temperament.

Does the Australian Shepherd and Golden Retriever mix shed?

The Australian Retriever sheds about an average amount for a dog. It will need to be groomed at least twice a week to remove some of its loose or dead hair. On account of its shedding, you may need to clean furniture and carpets somewhat regularly as well.

What is the price of an Australian Retriever?

The price of an Australian Retriever will tend to be anywhere between $200 and $1,000. A reputable breeder will probably charge a lot more than the average cost for the quality of their dogs and the guarantee of a good health screening. If the price is a particular issue, then you might want to consider adoption. This is a humane and low-cost alternative to buying a dog from a breeder. The only problem is that this crossbreed is relatively rare and may be difficult to find in any normal adoption agency. It might take a bit of searching or luck to track down one of these dogs. Some Australian Shepherd or Golden Retriever adoption groups may carry them though.

How big does an Australian Retriever get?

The Australian Retriever does not usually grow much larger than 60 pounds.

What is the lifespan of an Australian Retriever?

The Australian Retriever has a lifespan between 12 and 15 years. Some exceptionally healthy dogs may end up living longer, but it’s not possible to predict the lifespan ahead of time.

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