Stumpy Tail Cattle Dogs, also known as Australian Stumpy Tail Cattle Dogs, are usually simply referred to as Stumpies. This Australian breed originated in the 1800s from a cross between dingos and the Smithfield Collie. It is a close relation to the Australian Cattle Dog. For most of this breed’s history, performance, working instinct, and stamina were much more important than appearance.
Most Stumpy Tail Cattle Dogs stand between 17 and 20 inches tall and weigh between 35 and 50 pounds. The ears are erect, the muzzle is tapered, and the tail is naturally bobbed. The body is level, strong, and muscular. The coat is medium to short, dense, and harsh. Colors include red roan and blue roan. Stumpies need twice weekly brushing, although more may be needed when shedding.
The Stumpy Tail Cattle Dog is a very active dog breed who was bred to herd. Their stamina is such that they can follow a horse all day working cattle and you still can’t tire them out. This energy has attracted people who enjoy training their dogs in performance sports, and Stumpies are now competing in flyball, agility, and herding.
The Stumpy Tail Cattle Dog breed is not a couch potato! Stumpies are extremely intelligent, sometimes downright scary in their ability to learn. This means training is very important. Training should begin early, continue into adulthood, and challenge the dog’s abilities. Stumpies can learn tricks and should definitely have a job to do. Socialization should begin in puppyhood, as this breed is watchful and protective. Stumpies need an actively involved owner who enjoys a canine shadow.
This breed has a tendency to bond more closely with one owner than with multiple people. Stumpy Tail Cattle Dogs are good with children when raised with them but, if not raised with them, will usually avoid them. They can be good with other dogs but often wish to be in charge. Health concerns include deafness, cleft palate, and back problems.