Can You Handle a Basset Aussie Mix? This Oddball Dog Needs a Special Home

The Basset Hound Australian Shepherd mix (Basset Aussie Mix) is a fascinating, though unpredictable, combination of two very distinct breeds. This mix is not for novice dog owners. With hound dog stubbornness and the boundless energy of a herding breed, you could end up with a long, low couch potato or a hyperactive escape artist!

Understanding the Parent Breeds

Basset Hound: With their comically long ears and soulful eyes, bassets are the picture of easygoing charm. But beneath that mellow exterior lies a strong-willed hound who follows their nose first and your commands second! Their unique body structure predisposes them to potential back problems, so gentle exercise and a healthy diet are essential.

Australian Shepherd: Aussies are bundles of energy disguised as beautiful dogs. Bred to work long hours herding livestock, they need ample mental and physical outlets to stay happy. If an Aussie gets bored, expect them to find their own entertainment, which might involve rearranging your furniture!

Appearance: A Roll of the Genetic Dice

Since these breeds are so different, Basset/Aussie mixes are wildly unpredictable! You might get:

  • Size: Compact and long-bodied, or taller with surprisingly short legs
  • Ears: Those iconic basset ears, or upright Aussie ones (or one of each!)
  • Coat: Short and dense like a basset, or longer like an Aussie, with a variety of colors and markings.

Temperament: It’s a Mixed Bag

This mix needs an active, experienced, and very patient owner. Be prepared for:

  • Stubbornness: Bassets follow their noses, not always your commands.
  • Energy: Aussies demand mental and physical challenges – a walk around the block won’t cut it.
  • Escape Artist Potential: Bassets are diggers, Aussies are jumpers. Containment is a challenge!
  • Vocalization: Basset howls mixed with Aussie barking tendencies.
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Health Considerations

Responsible owners should be aware of potential health issues from both parent breeds:

  • Back Problems: Especially with long-bodied Basset/Aussie mixes
  • Hip and Elbow Dysplasia: Particularly in larger mixes
  • Eye Issues: Aussies can carry eye disease genes

Is a Basset Hound Australian Shepherd Mix Right for Me?

Basset Hound Australian Shepherd mix (Basset Aussie Mix)
(Basset Aussie Mix)

This is NOT a beginner-friendly dog. Ask yourself honestly:

  • Experience Level: Have you dealt with stubborn or high-energy breeds before?
  • Activity: Do you have time for multiple daily walks and training sessions?
  • Lifestyle: Can you provide secure containment and mental stimulation even with a busy schedule?

Finding Your Aussie Basset Mix

Adoption: Shelters and rescues might occasionally have Basset Aussie mixes in their care. Be honest about your experience with different dog breeds and any potential challenges you anticipate.

Reputable Breeders: If you go the breeder route, prioritize those who conduct thorough health tests on the parent dogs and carefully evaluate puppy temperaments. Expect to be on a waitlist due to the unique nature of this mix.

Training Tips Section

Living successfully with a Basset Aussie mix calls for patience, consistency, and the use of positive reinforcement methods. Here’s what you should know:

Basset Stubbornness: High-value rewards, like small pieces of cooked meat or their favorite treats, can help break through a basset hound’s independent streak. Keep training sessions engaging and upbeat.

Aussie Energy: Find healthy ways to satisfy your dog’s need for mental and physical activity. Consider dog sports (like agility or scent work), puzzle toys to keep their mind busy, and long, enriching walks.

Containment: Secure your yard or outdoor space meticulously. Bassets have a knack for digging, and Aussies are agile jumpers. Crate training can give your dog a supervised and safe haven.

Socialization: Early and frequent exposure to various people, animals, and sights will help your puppy develop confidence and prevent fear-based reactions.

Is This Mix Right for You?” Quiz

Unsure if a Basset Aussie mix is your perfect match? Take this short quiz to find out!

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Instructions: Answer each question honestly by choosing the answer that best reflects your lifestyle and experience.

1. Your typical daily exercise routine includes:

  • (a) Multiple walks or jogs, a trip to the dog park (1 point)
  • (b) A leisurely walk around the block, some playtime in the backyard (2 points)
  • (c) Minimal activity due to busy schedule (3 points)

2. Experience with dog training is:

  • (a) Extensive, with positive reinforcement methods (1 point)
  • (b) Some experience, but willing to learn more (2 points)
  • (c) Limited experience, prefer an easygoing dog (3 points)

3. Your living situation has:

  • (a) A securely fenced yard with plenty of space (1 point)
  • (b) A balcony or small yard with limited space (2 points)
  • (c) An apartment with minimal outdoor access (3 points)

4. You describe your ideal dog as:

  • (a) Energetic, playful, and eager to learn (1 point)
  • (b) Affectionate, easygoing, and low-maintenance (2 points)
  • (c) Independent and doesn’t require constant attention (3 points)

Scoring:

4-6 points: A Basset Aussie mix could be a great fit for your active and experienced lifestyle!

7-9 points: This mix might require more energy and training than you can provide. Consider a breed with lower energy needs.

10-12 points: A Basset Aussie mix is likely not the best choice for your living situation or experience level.

Remember, this is just a quiz! Every dog is an individual, and responsible pet ownership means considering all aspects of your lifestyle before welcoming any dog into your home.

Conclusion

The Basset Hound Australian Shepherd mix is a fascinating blend of opposites, making them both delightful and demanding. If you’re up for a canine challenge and can provide the right environment, they’ll reward you with loyalty, laughs, and plenty of head-scratching moments. Carefully evaluate your lifestyle and experience to determine if you’re truly the right fit for this extraordinary mix.

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Frequently Asked Question

Are Basset Hound Australian Shepherd mixes good family dogs?
Only with older children and a household experienced with dog training. They’re not ideal for first-time owners or families with young kids.

Can Basset Aussie mixes be left alone for long periods?
Not recommended. They need companionship and can become destructive when bored or anxious. Doggy daycare or a pet sitter can help if you have longer workdays.

Do Basset Hound Australian Shepherd mixes shed a lot?
It depends! Prepare for at least moderate shedding, especially if your mix takes after the Aussie side. Regular brushing is essential.

How big do Basset Hound Aussie mixes get?
This is unpredictable. They can range from compact and long to medium-sized with surprisingly short legs.

Are Basset Aussie mixes easy to train?
Not typically. They need patient owners who understand the challenges of basset hound stubbornness and the intelligence (and potential mischief) of an Aussie.

What health problems are common in Basset Hound Australian Shepherd mixes?
Be aware of potential back problems, hip and elbow dysplasia, and eye issues associated with both breeds.

Do Basset Aussie mixes like to cuddle?
This varies! Some will inherit the basset’s love of snuggles, others the Aussie’s more independent streak.

How long do Basset Hound Australian Shepherd mixes live?
With proper care, a lifespan of 10-12 years is typical, though some individuals may live longer.

What is the best breed to mix with an Australian Shepherd?
This depends on your desired traits. Popular choices include Border Collies (for super high-energy workaholics), Labs or Goldens (for a more family-friendly Aussie mix), or Poodles (for a potentially hypoallergenic mix).

What is the best Basset Hound mix?
Again, it depends on your goals! Bassets mixed with Corgis are adorably long and low, while mixing with Beagles creates a less stubborn scent hound.