Fédération Cynologique Internationale

United Kennel Club

Australian Kelpie

Australian Kelpie


ORIGIN

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FCI
Australia.

PUBLISHED

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FCI
08.10.2012.

UTILISATION

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FCI
Sheepdog.

CLASSIFICATION

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FCI
Group 1Sheepdogs and Cattledogs
Section 1Sheepdogs
With working trial

UKC
Herding Dog

BRIEF HISTORICAL SUMMARY

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FCI
Following the opening of vast areas of land in the Australian States of New South Wales and Victoria, the sheep numbers increased so dramatically that some properties were over two million acres and ran over a quarter of a million sheep. In areas as extensive as these, herding (originally carried out by convicts) was impractical, wire fences were erected and sheep were left to run free. It was then necessary to have dogs to handle sheep in such large areas. A dog had to be developed to work in the conditions present in Australia. These conditions included heat, rough terrain, dust storms and vast distances. The Kelpie being able to perform the work of several men. Tireless workers in the hottest and dustiest of climates.
Like so many breeds, the origin of the Kelpie is disputed. There is no doubt, however, that the origin of the breed came from dogs imported from Scotland. These dogs were black and tan, long-haired with semi- pricked ears, medium sized and of Collie type. Others were smooth haired with erect ears but still of Collie type. Litters from these dogs also produced red (liverbrown) puppies.
UKC
The Australian Kelpie originated around 1870 and played a major role in the development of the sheep and wool industry in Australia. Descended from the British and Scottish "working Collies" (an origin shared with the Border and Scotch Collies and the English Shepherd), the Kelpie was developed to handle the harsh, hot landscape, extensive acreage and unruly Merino sheep on Australian stations. The Kelpie is a gathering style dog, using eye, bark and bite (grip) to move stock, as conditions warrant. In the Australian bush, Kelpies often worked unsupervised, relying on their own wits to find and gather livestock. Kelpies are keen and active dogs, always ready to work. The foundation of the Australian Kelpie breed came from the Scottish Rutherford, or North Country strain, of working collies. This included smooth-haired, prick or semi-prick eared dogs, which were black and tan in color. The foundation female was born from an imported pair owned by a Mr. George Robertson of Victoria, Australia. This female came into the possession of J.D. Gleeson, who named her "Kelpie." Mr. Gleeson's friend, Mark Tully, had an outstanding black dog named "Moss", bred from imported Rutherford stock. Kelpie was mated to Moss and produced an extremely good line of working sheepdogs. Two other imported black and tan dogs named Brutus and Jenny were also mated, and their pup, Caesar, was later mated back to Kelpie. From this litter came a black and tan female, also named Kelpie, who went to Mr. C.W. King and later made the Kelpie name a household word by winning the Forbes Sheepdog Trial. Stockmen everywhere wanted a "Kelpie" pup. By the 1890's the "Kelpie” as a strain was well established. The Australian Kelpie is primarily imported and bred by ranchers and farmers for use as a working stock dog. Australian Kelpies in the United States are used on all types of livestock, on large and small operations. They are also entered in various herding trials, as well as participating in Obedience and Agility.

GENERAL APPEARANCE

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FCI
The general appearance shall be that of a lithe, active dog of great quality, showing hard muscular condition combined with great suppleness of limb and conveying the capability of untiring work.
It must be free from any suggestion of weediness.
UKC
The general appearance shall be that of a lithe, active dog showing hard, muscular condition, and conveying the capability of untiring work. It must give the impression of suppleness, and be free from any suggestion of weediness.

IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS

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FCI
The length of the dog from the forechest, in a straight line to the buttocks, is greater than the height at the withers, as 10 is to 9.

BEHAVIOUR / TEMPERAMENT

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FCI
The Kelpie is extremely alert, eager and highly intelligent, with a mild, tractable disposition and an almost inexhaustible energy, with marked loyalty and devotion to duty. It has a natural instinct and aptitude in working of sheep, both in open country and in the yard. Any defect of structure or temperament foreign to a working dog must be regarded as uncharacteristic.
UKC
The Kelpie is extremely alert, eager and highly intelligent, with a mild, tractable disposition, marked loyalty and devotion to duty. It has a natural instinct and aptitude in the working of livestock, both in a confined area and in open country. An open, friendly, alert but placid disposition is essential, with a good balance between keenness to work and ability to rest.

HEAD

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FCI
The head is in proportion to the size of the dog. The overall shape and contours produce a rather fox like expression, which is softened by the almond-shaped eyes.
UKC
The head is in proportion to the size of the dog.

CRANIAL REGION

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Skull

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FCI
Slightly rounded and broad between the ears. The forehead running in a straight profile towards the stop.
UKC
The skull is slightly rounded and broad between the ears. The forehead remains straight in profile to a pronounced stop. The cheeks are not coarse or prominent, but round to the foreface.

Stop

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FCI
Pronounced.

FACIAL REGION

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Nose

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FCI
The colour conforms to that of the body coat.
UKC
The color of the nose harmonizes with the color of the coat.

Muzzle

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FCI
Cleanly chiselled and defined, preferably slightly shorter in length than the skull.
UKC
The muzzle is cleanly chiseled and defined. It is slightly shorter than the skull, with tight, clean lips.

Lips

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FCI
Tight and clean, free from looseness.

Jaws/Teeth

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FCI
The teeth should be sound, strong and evenly spaced, the lower incisors just behind but touching the upper; that is a scissor bite.
UKC
The teeth should be a full complement of strong, white, evenly spaced teeth meeting in a scissors bite. Dogs displaying broken or extracted teeth due to herding injuries should not be penalized. Undershot or overshot bites are serious faults.

Cheeks

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FCI
Neither coarse nor prominent, but round to the foreface.

Eyes

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FCI
The eyes are almond shaped, of medium size, clearly defined at the corners, and show an intelligent and eager expression. The colour of the eyes to be brown, harmonising with the colour of the coat.
In the case of blue dogs a lighter coloured eye is permissible.
UKC
The eyes should be almond shaped, of medium size and widely spaced; clearly defined at the corners. The color of the eye should be brown, harmonizing with the color of the coat. In the case of blue (gray) dogs, a lighter-colored eye is acceptable. Expression should be intelligent and eager and is somewhat fox-like.

Ears

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FCI
The ears are pricked and running to a fine point at the tips, the leather fine but strong at the base, set wide apart on the skull and inclining outwards, slightly curved on the outer edge and of moderate size. The inside of the ears are well furnished with hair.
UKC
The ears should be widely-spaced, pricked, and running to a fine point at the tip; inclining outward and slightly curved on the outer edge and of moderate size. The ear leather is fine, but strong at the base.

NECK

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FCI
The neck is of moderate length, strong, slightly arched, gradually moulding into the shoulders, free from throatiness and showing a fair amount of ruff.
UKC
The neck should be of moderate length, strong and slightly arched, gradually molding into the shoulders. It is free from throatiness, and has a fair amount of ruff.

BODY

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UKC
The length of the dog from the point of the breastbone, in a straight line to the buttocks, should be greater than the height at the withers, as 10 is to 9. The chest is deep rather than wide and the ribs are well-sprung. The topline is firm and level. The loin is well-muscled, with good depth at the flank.

Topline

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FCI
Firm, level.

Loin

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FCI
Strong and well muscled. Flanks of good depth.

Croup

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FCI
Rather long and sloping.

Chest

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FCI
Deep, muscular and moderately broad. Ribs well sprung and carried well back, not barrel ribbed.

TAIL

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FCI
The tail during rest should hang in a very slight curve.
During movement of excitement it may be raised, but under no circumstances should the tail be carried past a vertical line drawn through the root. It should be furnished with a good brush.
Set on a position to blend with sloping croup, and it should reach approximately to the hock.
UKC
Set on to follow the natural line of the sloping croup, the tail should be long enough to reach nearly to the hock. At rest, it hangs in a very slight curve. During movement or excitement it may be raised, but it should never be carrier higher than horizontally. It should be furnished with a good brush.

LIMBS

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FOREQUARTERS

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FCI
The forelegs should be muscular with strong but refined bone, straight and parallel when viewed from the front.
UKC
The shoulders should be clean, muscular and well sloping, with close-set withers, the upper arm forming a right angle with the shoulder blade. The elbows set parallel to the body.

Shoulder

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FCI
Clean, muscular, well sloping with the shoulder-blades close set at the withers.

Upper Arm

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FCI
Should be at a right angle with the shoulder-blade.

Elbow

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FCI
Neither in nor out.

FORELEGS

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UKC
Straight and parallel when viewed from the front, with strong but refined bone and good musculature. The pasterns should slope slightly for flexibility.

Pastern

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FCI
When viewed from the side, the pasterns should show a slight slope to ensure flexibility of movement and the ability to turn quickly.

FEET

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UKC
Round and strong, with deep pads, and tight, well-arched toes. Nails are strong and short.

Forefeet

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FCI
The feet should be round, strong, deep in pads, with close knit well arched toes and strong, short nails.

Hind feet

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FCI
The feet should be round, strong, deep in pads, with close knit well arched toes and strong short nails.

HINDQUARTERS

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FCI
Should show breadth and strength. When viewed from behind, the hind legs, from the hocks to the feet, are straight and placed parallel, neither close nor too wide apart.
UKC
These should show breadth and strength. The rump should be rather long and sloping, the upper thigh set into the hip socket at the pelvis at a corresponding angle to the shoulder blade. The stifles should be well turned, and the hocks fairly well let down. Viewed from behind, the rear pasterns should be parallel.

Stifle

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FCI
Well turned.

Hock joint

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FCI
Fairly well let down.

GAIT / MOVEMENT

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FCI
To produce the almost limitless stamina demanded of a working sheepdog in wide open spaces, the kelpie must be perfectly sound, both in construction and movement. Movement should be free and tireless and the dog must have the ability to turn suddenly at speed. When trotting the feet tend to come closer together at ground level as speed increases, but when the dog comes to rest it stands four square.
UKC
It is essential that the Kelpie be perfectly sound, both in construction and movement. The gait should be smooth, free and tireless with the tendency to single track becoming more pronounced as speed increases. There must be ability to turn suddenly at speed, and the capability of crouching, stealthy movement demanded by its work. Any tendency to cow hocks, bow hocks, stiltedness, loose shoulders, restricted movement, weaving or plaiting is a serious fault.

COAT

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HAIR

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FCI

The coat is a double coat with a short dense undercoat. The outer coat is close, each hair straight, hard and lying flat, so that it is rain-resisting. Under the body, to behind the legs, the coat is longer and forms near the thigh a mild form of breeching.
On the head (including the inside of the ears), to the front of the legs and feet, the hair is short. Along the neck it is longer and thicker forming a ruff. The tail should be furnished with a good brush. A coat either too long or too short is a fault. As an average, the hairs on the body should be from 2 to 3 cms in length.
UKC
The outer coat should be moderately short, flat, hard, straight and weather resisting, with dense undercoat. On the head, ears, feet and front of the legs, the hair should be short. The coat can be longer at the neck, showing a ruff; and at the rear of the thighs, forming mild breeching; the hair on the tail sufficient to form a brush.

COLOUR

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FCI
Black, black and tan, red, red and tan, fawn, chocolate, and smoke blue.
UKC
Black with or without tan markings; blue (gray) ranging from dark to light, with or without tan markings; red ranging from chocolate to light red, with or without tan markings; tan ranging from dark to cream. Minimal white markings such as a spot, strip, or at most, a blaze on the chest are acceptable. White stockings are a serious fault.

SIZE

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Height at withers

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FCI

Males 46 to 51 cms.
Females 43 to 48 cms.
UKC
Approximately 18-20 inches at the withers for males, approximately 17-19 inches at the withers for females.

FAULTS

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FCI
Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on its ability to perform its traditional work.

SERIOUS FAULTS

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FCI

  • Loose shoulders.
  • Any tendency of cow- or bow hocked.
  • Weaving or plating movement.
  • Movement that is restricted or shows stiltedness.

DISQUALIFYING FAULTS

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FCI

  • Aggressive or overly shy dogs.
  • Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.
UKC
Unilateral or bilateral cryptorchid. Viciousness or extreme shyness. Albinism.


Anatomical Features of the dog

N.B.:

Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.