Miniature American Shepherd - Information and NZ Breed Standards

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General Information - Miniature American Shepherd

Group: Working Dog

Size: Dogs 36 to 46cm (14 to 18")
          Bitches 33 to 43cm (13 to 17")
Lifespan: 13 to 15 years

Exercise: High

Grooming: Medium

Trainability: Very HIgh

Watchdog ability: Very High

Protection ability: High

Area of Origin: United States of America

Other Names: MAS


The breed was first registered with the National Stock Dog Registry in 1980 and was originally called the Miniature Australian Shepherd. By the early 1990's, they had attained nationwide popularity. Several clubs promoted these small dogs, as they were registered and shown with various rare-breed organizations. The first parent breed club and registry, MASCUSA, was formed in 1990 and incorporated in 1993. The breed entered the AKC Foundation Stock Service as the Miniature American Shepherd in May 2011 and in 2015 they became fully recognised as an AKC Herding Breed. The first MAS registered in New Zealand was in 2019.

Miniature American Shepherds are active and athletic, and they need a moderate amount of exercise but are also very adaptable to their family's way of life. They do well as city dogs as long as owners provide sufficient exercise. They enjoy outings with their people that will occupy both their mind and body. They enjoy and excel in many canine events, including obedience, agility, and tracking.

The Miniature American Shepherd has a double coat, with a longer outer coat and a woolly undercoat. The breed sheds a fair amount, even more so during shedding season, which can occur once or twice a year. Weekly brushing daily during shedding season will help to remove dirt and loose hairs and keep the dog looking his best. Mats or tangles can be worked out with a slicker brush or metal comb. As with all breeds, the nails should be trimmed regularly, as overly long nails can cause the dog discomfort.

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