If you own an Australian terrier and are interested in showing him, your dog must meet many personality and show standards. Many reputable breeders and handlers are happy to help you by evaluating your pet to find out if he has the standards necessary for show possibilities. There are also books and information available from dog breeders, the library, on the internet, and from Australian terrier clubs. To show your Australian terrier, he must meet the American Kennel Club breed standard.
It is a fault for your terrier to be aggressive or shy towards people but should be self-confident, spirited, and alert, with an intelligent, keen expression. The general appearance is a medium boned, sturdy, small terrier with a docked, erect tail and v-shaped, erect ears. The Aussie has good drive and reach, and is free moving and sound. The proportion of an Australian terrier is short legged with a level topline, slightly longer in length than height. His balance and symmetry, proper body proportions, medium bone structure, and good working condition determine the proper weight of an Australian terrier. They have a silky, soft topknot either silver or a fainter shade of his head color, a distinctive apron, and ruff, harsh-textured coat in colors of solid red, solid sandy, or blue and tan.
When showing your Australian terrier the judges will penalize your dog for any breed standard deviations. The terrier, at the withers, is ten to eleven inches tall. His skull and muzzle length are equal, head powerful, strong, and long with scissor bite teeth. Your dog's eyes must be small and set well apart, oval in shape, very dark brown to black in color with black rims. His nose is black and lips tight and black or brown rimmed.
Your Australian terrier's loin should have a slight tuck-up, and be fairly short but strong. Both too long in the loin and cobbiness are faults and they will penalize the dog. His ribs are not rounded but are well-sprung forming a chest that reaches just below the dog's elbows, which are close to his chest and have a distinct keel. The forelegs are medium sized, round in bone, parallel, and straight with strong pasterns that slope slightly. Excessive muscularity or poor muscular developments are both considered faults. Your Australian terrier should have catlike, clean, small, nicely padded feet, free of long hair, with compact, arched toes and strong, black, short nails.
The undercoat of your Australian terrier is soft and short while the outer coat is weatherproof, harsh, rough textured, and straight. His body hair should be two and a half inches except on his pasterns, tail, ears, and back legs from the paws down. Your terrier's neck hair is well furnished and soft, blending into his apron forming a protective ruff.