Rotarian Rebecca Talks Puppies!
Rotarian Rebecca Lindemann presented her own program, talking to the club about her recent experience raising a litter of Miniature Australian Shepherd puppies. She brought in three of her puppies and allowed the club to ask her questions as they pet and snuggled the puppies. Becky told everyone that she bred their dog Nahla via insemination at a clinic in Inver Grove Heights with the help of a stud in California. She explained that this is the breed standard which is similar to the size of a Labrador Retriever. The miniature stands 16-18" high and only gets to about 25-35 lbs. They are great family dogs, but Becky stressed that they are not a lap dog. To be happy, they need an outlet for exercise or play. However, they are also very people oriented dogs and want to sit at your feet come the end of the day. 
The club was very interested in the breed's coloring. Becky explained that the breed most commonly comes in a more a black or red solid coat with white and tan accents, called a TRI, or a blue or red merle, which is a spotted coat variation that is highly sought after. Red is always less common than the black and blue. There are also three eye color variations of the breed: brown, blue and marble (a combination of brown and blue). 
Becky is selling her pups for $1000 per dog. She said most of her puppies will go to the metro area, one to St. Cloud and one to the Duluth area. She said that puppies within the Australian Shepherd breed are often priced based on gender, coat and eye color. Females, merles, and blue eyes are the most sought after among the breed, however, a merle puppy are often valued twice that of a tri. A word of warning on breeding Aussies: You should never breed a merle female with a merle male. It causes a double recessive genetic combination that causes defects like blindness and deafness in dogs. A merle can only be safely bred with more solid tri-coated dog. 
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Rebecca Lindemann