The Kelpie is a medium-sized dog and come in a variety of colors. It’s an Australian sheep dog which is very successful at mustering and droving with little or no command guidance. The breed has been separated into two distinct varieties: the show or bench Kelpie and the working Kelpie. The show Kelpie is seen at conformation dog shows in some countries and are selected for appearance rather than working instinct. Working Kelpies are bred for working ability rather than appearance.
Kelpies are loyal, friendly, intelligent, energetic dogs that require a challenging job to be satisfactory companions. They need to be stimulated as idle and bored dogs become frustrated, noisy, and destructive with personalized love and attention, they can be very placid and faithful, although they do need space to run. For the show or bench Kelpie, walks and socialization may be sufficient to keep them happy.
A working bred Kelpie must have a job to do and plenty of exercise and mental stimulation to remain healthy and companionable.
Kelpies are a hardy breed with few health problems, but they are susceptible to disorders common to all breeds, like cryptorchidism, hip dysplasia, and luxating patella. Current research is underway to find the genetic marker for cerebellar abiotrophy in the breed.