Introducing the Weird and Wonderful Australian Terrier

Reading Time: 3 minutes

australian terrier sitting down

G’day to you mate! Australia is a country that is home to many wild, wonderful and deadly creatures. Kangaroos and koalas, wallabies and platypus’, and let’s not forget the dingoes (a wild dog that does not bark). All these crazy critters to choose from, yet the Aussies love domestic dogs (like the Australian Terrier) above all else! More homes in the land of Oz have pets than children – the majority of which are the furry canines.

The Australian Terrier breed is one of the smallest working terrier breeds. This tiny Aussie is the life of the party. They’re entertaining and spirited, with a lot more personality than their size suggests.

A Brief History of the Australian Terrier Dog Breed!

During the 19th century, British settlers brought several breeds of working terriers to the Australian Outback. What resulted from the interbreeding of these different terriers was a hardy, hard-working, brave hunter of snakes and small animals. They were perfectly suited to the harsh terrains of the remote Australian regions.

A breed standard for the Aussie Terrier was devised in Australia in 1887 and imports to America and Britain began soon after. The American Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1960. This small Aussie was the first Australian breed to be recognized by the kennel clubs of other countries.

Is the Australian Silky Terrier a Different Breed?

They’re related but the Silky Terrier is a breed of its own. This refined pooch is more popular than its scruffier cousin. They’re part of the Toy group and as flamboyant in temperament as other terrier breeds.

What About an Australian Terrier Mix?

The Aussies have a word for a mixed breed dog – “bitzer”, meaning “bits o’ this, bits o’ that”. Here are some great “bitzers”…

australian terrier dog standing in field

The appearance of the Aussie Terrier

The Aussie Terrier is a small dog with pointed ears and a shaggy outer coat. They have long torsos and their sturdy build is a testament to their confident demeanor.

Their Coats and Colors

The scruffy coat of an Australian Terrier comes in a range of colors: solid sandy, solid red or blue and tan. They have a harsh textured outer coat, a soft undercoat and soft, silky hair around their faces. This breed is blessed with a weatherproof coat that repels mud and most dirt. And good news…they shed very little to no hair. 

Long Haired Terrier Grooming Requirements

This is a low maintenance dog when it comes to grooming. Hooray! Bathing your little Sheila is only necessary when she smells. If you shampoo your Aussie too often then their harsh coat will soften and become more susceptible to dirt. This could also make their skin itchy. You can trim the hair around their eyes and ears to keep it short and hygienic. Visit your local dog groomer for nail clipping and general skin/hair care.

A Large Terrier in a Small Body: Average Size and Weight

Standing small at 10-11 inches and weighing in at 15-20 pounds; your pup will exude spunk!

How Long Do These Terrier Dogs Live?

Your terrier can live for up to 15 years. They’re energetic and need regular exercise to keep them out of mischief. Keeping your puppy fit is one way to ensure health and longevity.

cute australian silky terrier sleeping

Terror Dog? Their Temperament Proves They Belong in the Terrier Group

As with most terrier breeds, the Australian Terrier is a boisterous, spirited and lively companion. If you’re ready to shower your dog in affection and allow them to rule the roost then this is a dog for you. They love to be the center of attention and early socialization is paramount if they are to coexist with other cats or dogs. You can keep bad behavior and hunting tendencies under control with some positive and reward-based training methods.

Like Many Australian Dog Breeds: They Make Great Family Dogs

Puppy training is an ideal start for any dog’s life of domestic bliss. Aussie Terriers are intelligent and easy to train. These are happy-go-lucky dogs with a sense of humor. They make great friends for children or the elderly and have an affinity towards the handicapped. The Aussie Terrier makes a great watchdog and loves to bark when there is something new around, whether its a squirrel or a stranger.

Potential Health Problems these Dogs Might Face

This is a healthy breed if you keep their wellness checks up to date. Exercise them and give them good dog food so that they can live a long and happy life with you. Go easy on the doggie treats as an overweight pet can have a range of health problems. Here are the most common diseases to look out for (and, if possible, get them tested):

Australian Terrier Puppies for Sale!

If you’re on the search for a purebred Australian Terrier puppy then make sure you buy one from a responsible breeder. Expect to pay between $550 and $1200 for your Aussie furbaby. The Australian Terrier Club of America lists breeders by state. To find a breeder that has an American Kennel Club Breeders of Merit, view their Marketplace page.

Adopt, Don’t Shop! Find a Terrier Rescue Group!

Your rescue pup is just a few clicks away…

  • Australian Terrier Rescue serves the USA and Canada and has coordinators in most states that can help you to find a pup to rescue or re-home.
  • Adopt a Pet can help you find specific breeds in your area with their easy-to-use search engine.
  • Pet Finder is a directory of nearly 11,000 animal shelters and adoption organizations across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

aussie terrier lying down

Many other sites specifically serve your area or you can contact your local animal shelters and they can notify you if they have an Australian Terrier in their care. 

An Australian Terrier is a great choice for anyone needing an Emotional Support Animal (ESA). Many researchers have noticed that these small animals empathize with their owners. If you’re happy, they’re chipper and playful. If you’re depressed, they’re quiet and attentive. Their presence is one of a true companion. This Aussie is sure to become your best mate!

Common Questions on the Australian Terrier

Does the Australian Terrier need regular exercise?

Do Aussie Terriers shed hair?

What does an Australian Terrier puppy cost?

Do Australian Terriers make good ESAs?

All product and Company names are Trademarks™ or Registered® trademarks of their respective holders.

Disclosure: Bear in mind that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase may earn a commission. Keep in mind that we link these companies and their products because of their quality and not because of the commission we receive from your purchases. The decision is yours, and whether or not you decide to buy something is completely up to you.