Australian Shepherd History Revisited

Las Rocosa Scooter of TTT – Copyright © 2010 Hartnagle Archive

One historian’s view that has been published over and over proposes the Basque and Spanish herders and their sheepdogs had very little to do with the breed’s foundation,“It appears that the theory of Basque origin probably came about from the understandable assumption by some breeders who obtained their first dogs from Basque sheepherders, that the dogs themselves must be of Basque background, and it makes a romantic picture to envision the Basque sheepherders being followed around the world by “their little blue dogs,” but this picture, nonetheless, is erroneous.” 

Another author wrote, “However, one fact many [breed] historians either do not realize or have forgotten is that many of the Basque immigrants to both Australia and North America were not shepherds in their homeland.”

Interestingly, Basques that lived along the coast at the western end of the Pyrenees were fisherman and have a long history with the sea. However, those living inland are among the earliest people to domesticate animals. Sheepherding has been a way of life since the beginning of time. 

To learn more about the Basque herders that came to the United States and brought their little blue dogs with them please see Lesson From Louis L’Amour:

To learn more about the Australian Shepherd please refer to, All About Aussies: The Total Australian Shepherd blog:

Copyright © 2009 – 2010 by Jeanne Joy Hartnagle-Taylor and Ernest Hartnagle.

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