Country of Origin: Australia
Breed Category: Terrier
Average Size: 24-27 cm
Average Weight: 5.5-7.5 kg
Average Life Span: 10-12 years
Grooming Requirements: Medium
Exercise Requirements: Medium


The Australian Terrier, also referred to as the Aussie, is a small terrier breed developed in the early 19th century by crossbreeding a number of terriers. The dogs that contributed to its development include the Irish Terrier, Cairn Terrier, Yorkshire Terrier and the Skye Terrier.

The purpose in developing this breed, which was initially called the Rough-coated Terrier, was to create a small, skilled dog that would successfully hunt rats and snakes. It also proved to be a useful watchdog, as it would bark to alert farm owners of intruders of the human or animal variety.


The Australian Terrier is one of the smallest known terrier breeds. It has a long, lean body and short legs. The tail of this breed is medium in length and thin, tapering slightly at the end. Its ears are small and triangular in shape, standing erect on top of the head. The round eyes of the Australian Terrier bare a curious and lively expression.

The colouring of this breed is typically red, blue or a combination of these colours. Tan, brown and gray may also be seen. Though its double coat is long throughout its body, it is particularly shaggy around the head and chest. Its coat is weather-resistant and tough, requiring regular brushing to keep tangles at bay. Its fur should also be hand-stripped several times each year. The Australian Terrier’s versatile coat allows it to spend time outdoors in a variety of climates.

The Australian Terrier is an average of 24-27 cm in height and 5.5-7.5 kg in weight.


This breed has a true terrier personality. It can be man’s best friend, but it can also be stubborn, snappy and difficult to manage if it does not receive proper training and discipline from its owner. Though it prefers free reign over a large amount of land, the Australian Terrier will be happy with life in a flat so long as its exercise needs are somehow met.

Like most terriers, the Australian Terrier loves to dig. It has a fine nose and a natural prey drive towards small animals. They can develop a tolerance for cats and small pets with which it shares a household, though this is not necessarily the case when this breed encounters small animals outside. It may display aggressive tendencies towards other dogs, which is a characteristic that is common for terrier breeds. It is naturally suspicious of strangers, though it is generally friendly with people once it gets to know them.


Several potential health conditions may affect this breed. These include diabetes, patella luxation, cataracts and allergies.

The Australian Terrier lives to be approximately 10-12 years of age, which is slightly shorter than average for dogs of this size.


Australian Terrier Organisations in Australia
Australian Terrier Club of Queensland
Kathleen O’Donnell
Crows Nest, QLD, Australia
Email : [email protected]

Australian Terrier Organisations in the UK
The Australian Terrier Club of America

Australian Terrier Organisations in the US
The Australian Terrier Club of America
Australian Terier Club of QLD

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