How to Stop an Australian Shepherd from Herding_ 9 ways 2023

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As an australian shepherd owners, I know firsthand how challenging it can be to deal with a herding dog’s instincts. Even with proper training, these dogs can’t seem to resist their natural urge to herd, which can lead to some frustrating situations.

But don’t worry, there are ways to control your Australian Shepherd’s herding behaviour without suppressing their instincts entirely.

In this article, I’ll share with you some effective tips on how to stop an Australian Shepherd from herding.

How to Stop an Australian Shepherd from Herding

How to Stop an Australian Shepherd from Herding

If you are one of those who are struggling with herding behavior then you can follow these effective step by step Guide.

1. Understanding Australian Shepherds’ Herding Instincts

Before we delve into how to stop Aussie from herding, it’s essential to understand what drives this behaviour. Australian Shepherds were bred for herding livestock, and they have an innate desire to control and move things. This behaviour is hard-wired into their genetics, and it’s not something that can be eliminated entirely. However, with proper training and management, you can control your dog’s herding behavior.

2. Start Training Early

One of the most effective ways to control your Australian Shepherd dog herding behavior is by starting their training early. Begin training your dog as soon as you bring them home, and be consistent with the training sessions. Use positive reinforcement techniques to encourage good behaviour and discourage unwanted behaviour.

3. Teach Basic Obedience Commands

Teaching your Australian Shepherd basic obedience commands is crucial to controlling their herding behavior. Commands like “sit,” “stay,” “come,” and “heel” will help you establish yourself as the leader and make it easier for you to manage your dog’s behaviour. Make sure to reward your dog when they follow your commands, and be patient when they make mistakes.

4. Use Distractions

When you’re working on controlling your Australian Shepherd’s herding behaviour, distractions can be a useful tool. Use toys or treats to distract your dog from herding behavior, or give them a task to focus on. For example, you can teach your dog to fetch a ball or bring you a toy, which can redirect their energy away from herding.

5. Provide Adequate Exercise

Australian Shepherds are energetic dogs that require a lot of exercise to stay healthy and happy. Without enough physical and mental stimulation, they can become bored and restless, which can lead to destructive behaviour. Make sure to provide your dog with adequate exercise, including regular walks, runs, or playtime in the backyard.

6. Keep Them Busy

In addition to providing exercise, it’s essential to keep your Australian Shepherd mentally stimulated. Puzzle toys, interactive games, and training sessions can help keep your dog’s mind active and prevent them from becoming bored. Mental stimulation can also help tire out your dog and reduce their herding behavior.

7. Be Consistent

Consistency is key when it comes to training your Australian Shepherd. Make sure everyone in your household is using the same commands and training techniques, and be patient with your dog’s progress. It may take time to see results, but with consistent training, you can control your dog’s herding behaviour.

8. Avoid Reinforcing Herding Behavior

Reinforcing your Australian Shepherd’s herding behavior can make it more challenging to control. Avoid activities that encourage herding, such as playing fetch with a ball or Frisbee, as these activities can trigger your dog’s herding instincts. Instead, opt for activities that don’t involve herding, such as hiking or swimming.

9. Consider Professional Training

If you’re struggling to control your Australian Shepherd’s herding, consider seeking professional training. A professional trainer can provide you with personalized advice and help you develop a training plan that works for you and your dog.

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In conclusion, Australian Shepherds are highly intelligent and energetic dogs that have a natural instinct to herd. 

While this behaviour can be cute and entertaining, it can also become problematic if left unchecked. As a responsible pet owner, it’s important to understand how to stop your Australian Shepherd from herding.

So, how can you do it? One effective way is to provide your dog with plenty of exercise and mental stimulation to satisfy their natural instincts. Additionally, training and positive reinforcement techniques can be very helpful in redirecting their herding behavior.


How do I stop my Aussie from herding my other dog?

Train your Aussie to respond to commands and redirect their herding behavior. Provide plenty of physical and mental exercise to fulfil their energy needs. Seek professional help if needed.

Why does my Aussie herd me?

Aussies are bred for herding livestock, so they may see humans and other pets as part of their “herd.” Proper training, exercise, and redirection can help manage this behavior.

How do you calm a herding dog?

To calm a herding dog, provide them with regular exercise, mental stimulation, and a consistent routine. Teach them calming commands, such as “settle” or “relax,” and reward calm behavior.

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