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7 Best Companion Dogs For An Australian Shepherd

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Australian Shepherds are a friendly breed and, for the most part, do get along with other dogs, but not always. Commonly known as Aussies, Australian Shepherds are often wary of strangers and strange dogs. And more so if they lack early socialization. Furthermore, most Aussies possess strong herding instincts that make them a bit bossy of other dogs. While some dogs have no issue with being bossed around, others are not as accommodating. Aussies are usually sweet-natured dogs and tend to get along with some dog breeds better than others.

As herding dogs, Aussies can get along with other herding breeds. Breeds that are more laidback than the Aussie can also make great companions for Aussies. However, to avoid any scuffles, it's crucial to introduce them properly and slowly. If you are considering getting a companion dog for your Australian Shepherd, one of the following breeds can be a great choice.

1. Miniature American Shepherd

The Miniature American Shepherd is as intelligent, friendly, energetic, and trainable as the Australian shepherd. It is a small herding dog breed that resembles a small Australian Shepherd. Of course, Mini American Shepherds were created by breeding what was thought to be small Australian Shepherds. As a highly intelligent and biddable dog, the Miniature American Shepherd can make a great companion for the Australian Shepherd. Like the Aussie, the Mini American Shepherd has an expected lifespan of 13 to 15 years.

2. Border Collie

A Border Collie and an Australian Shepherd being best friends
A Border Collie and an Aussie getting along with each other.

Like the Aussie, the Border Collie is a herding dog breed known for its intelligence and high energy. Both the Aussie and the Border Collie are medium-sized herders that can be blue merle and red merle. Like some Aussies, some Border Collies show signs of dominance over other dogs. However, with a proper introduction, your Aussie and Collie can be friends and share a mutual trustworthy bond too. The Aussie and the Border Collie, in most cases, love to play when kept together.

3. Australian Cattle Dog

Australian Cattle Dogs are known for getting along with other working dog breeds, such as the Aussie. Like the Aussie, the Cattle Dog is a medium-sized dog known for being obedient, loyal, and energetic. Because some Aussies don't tolerate full-grown dogs, it is recommended that you introduce the Australian Cattle Dog as a puppy.

4. English Shepherd

The English Shepherd is a herding dog breed from the United States, known for its smarts, kindness, and versatility. Collies of various types were the English Shepherd's progenitors. As such, the English Shepherd shares ancestry with the Australian Shepherd and Border Collie. If introduced as a puppy, the English Shepherd can make a great companion dog for your Aussie.

5. Pyrenean Shepherd

The Pyrenean Sheepdog is a small to medium-sized breed of herding dog believed to be among the Australian Shepherd's ancestors. Like Aussies, Pyrenean Sheepdogs are energetic and make ideal companions for active pet owners. Early socialization and obedience training are a must for the Pyrenean Sheepdog, as its temperament can become bossy when its herding instincts kick in.

6. Labrador Retriever

The Labrador Retriever is a friendly, outgoing, and high-spirited companion, as such it can make a great companion for your Australian Shepherd. Labs are famously friendly and socialize well with neighbor dogs. Like Aussies, Labs are enthusiastic athletes that need lots of exercise to keep physically and mentally fit.

7. Bernese Mountain Dog

The Bernese Mountain Dog is a strikingly beautiful dog known for its sweet, affectionate nature. This breed of dog is likely to get along with Australian Shepherds if it is brought up with them. However, unlike Aussies, Berners have a shorter life expectancy: 6 – 8 years.


With proper training and socialization, your Australian Shepherd can get along well with all the dogs listed above. It's not uncommon for male Aussies to be aggressive toward other male dogs, so they may get along best with female dogs. However, this is less likely to be an issue if they're well-socialized from puppyhood.


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