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What does Herding Instinct Mean

Temperament: The Miniature American Shepherd is intelligent, primarily a working dog of strong herding and guardian instincts. An exceptional companion, he is versatile and easily trained, performing his assigned tasks with great style and enthusiasm. Although reserved with

strangers, he does not exhibit shyness. He is a resilient and persistent worker, who adjusts his demeanor and arousal appropriately to the task at hand. With his family he is protective, good natured, devoted and loyal.

Living on a farm or ranch and having livestock to herd is a plus for herding breed dogs such as the Aussie and Mini American Shepherd.

They can still exhibit herding instinct however without "livestock"

They will herd your kids, your cats, your cars, or anything else that moves fast or they feel they can make move. 

With that said, it is a must to have a nice fence to keep your pup out of the street chasing cars or passing bicycles.

Teach your cats not to run and they will most likely be ignored.  If a cat runs, its game on !

You don't want squirrels in your backyard, get you a Mini

You have kiddos running around the house, they will be rounded up and put in place in no time.

You have a crawling toddler, they might be pushed along with a nose.

Sometime, continued movement will cause these dogs to nip at the heels of your children or

grab a pant leg of even an adult.  This is how a herding dog is wired.  They nip at livestock to make them move forward,

so now humans are their stock.  Correction is hard but a firm "no" and a redirect to something they can grab when 

used consistently typically works. 

Although the game of chase is fun for pets and children, it is never a good idea to let this happen.

You want the dog to learn to Come to You when called.  You Never want to go towards your dog and them run the other direction.

You also do not want it to be OK, for a dog to chase a person (play could turn serious)


As with all dogs..... Teach your children not to hang, tug, or hit on a puppy.

It is also imperative that they do NOT put their face in the face of a puppy or a mature dog, 

regardless how well they know the dog.

That is groundwork for a disaster to happen and the dog will be blamed for it even when it is NOT it's fault at all

Some signs a dog/puppy is not enjoying the attention and it is a silent warning to STOP what you are doing !

Licking its lips

Showing the whites of its eyes

Panting when not overheated

Turning its head the other direction

Sadly when these signs are ignored and the dog bites, the dog gets blamed when it wasn't his fault at all

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