Ever notice your Aussie companion panting like they just ran a marathon… while you were literally just watching TV? Yeah, us too. Those fluffy bundles of energy seem to have a built-in air conditioner permanently set to “high,” leaving us wondering if something’s wrong. So, what’s the deal with all this panting?

Is Excessive Panting in Australian Shepherds Normal?

The short answer: It can be! Australian Shepherds are working dogs bred for herding and intense activity. Panting is their primary way to cool down, so it’s perfectly normal for them to pant after a good playtime session with their favorite Printies bandana (we know they look fetching in those!), during a hot day, or when they’re feeling excited.

However, if the panting seems excessive, especially when your Aussie is relaxed or in a cool environment, it’s worth taking a closer look. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Excessive panting in Australian Shepherds can be normal, especially if it occurs during exercise, hot weather, or when the dog is excited. However, if the panting is accompanied by other symptoms like lethargy, loss of appetite, or difficulty breathing, it could indicate an underlying health issue and should be checked by a veterinarian.

What Causes Excessive Panting in Australian Shepherds?

There are a bunch of reasons why your Aussie might be panting up a storm. Here are some of the most common culprits:

  • Hot weather and humidity: This one’s a no-brainer. Just like us, Aussies struggle to regulate their temperature when it’s hot and muggy.
  • Strenuous exercise or activity: Remember those working dog genes? Running, jumping, and playing all take a lot of energy, and panting helps your Aussie cool down.
  • Anxiety or stress: Just like humans, dogs can pant when they’re feeling anxious or stressed. Maybe it’s a trip to the vet, a noisy storm, or separation anxiety from their favorite human (you!).
  • Obesity: Carrying extra weight makes it harder for your Aussie to cool down, leading to more panting.
  • Respiratory problems: Certain health issues, like allergies or heart disease, can make it difficult to breathe, leading to excessive panting.
  • Pain or discomfort: If your Aussie is in pain, they might pant more than usual.
  • Fever or infection: A fever is a sign your dog’s body is fighting something off, and panting can be a symptom.

How Can I Help My Aussie Cool Down When Panting Excessively?

If your Aussie seems to be panting a bit too much, there are ways to help them cool down:

  • Provide them with access to shade, fans, or air conditioning. Especially during hot weather.
  • Offer plenty of fresh water. Dehydration can worsen panting.
  • Avoid exercising them during the hottest parts of the day. Early mornings or evenings are ideal for playtime.
  • You can also wet their paws or ears with cool (not cold) water to help lower their body temperature.

When Should I Be Concerned About My Aussie’s Panting?

Here are some red flags that your Aussie’s panting might be a sign of something more serious:

  • It occurs at rest or in a cool environment
  • It’s accompanied by other symptoms like lethargy, loss of appetite, or coughing
  • It seems painful or distressed
  • It doesn’t improve with rest and cooling
  • It occurs at night and disrupts sleep

If you notice any of these signs, don’t hesitate to consult with your veterinarian to rule out any underlying health conditions.

Do Some Australian Shepherds Pant More Than Others?

Absolutely! Just like people, some Aussies are naturally more energetic or anxious than others. This can influence how much they pant. Age, weight, and even individual health can also play a role.

Playtime and Cooling Accessories for Your Aussie

Playtime is essential for the health and happiness of your Australian Shepherd, but it’s crucial to keep them cool during and after their energetic activities. At Printies, we offer a fantastic range of dog accessories that can make playtime safe and enjoyable:

  • Pet Bandanas: Stylish and functional, these can be soaked in cool water to help keep your dog cool.
  • Pet Blankets: Perfect for creating a comfy and cool resting spot.
  • Pet Tags: Personalized tags ensure your pet’s safety during outdoor adventures.
  • Dog Collars: Durable and comfortable, our collars are designed with your dog’s activity in mind.
  • Pet Mats: Great for providing a cool surface to rest on after play.
  • Pet Bowls: Ensure your Aussie stays hydrated with our stylish and practical pet bowls.
  • Pet Feeding Mats: Keep your feeding area clean and cool.
  • Pet Beds: Comfortable beds that provide a cool and relaxing spot for your dog to rest.

Explore our personalized options to add a unique touch to your Aussie’s accessories and keep them cool and comfortable.


Panting is a normal behavior for Australian Shepherds, especially given their active nature. However, it’s essential to pay attention to excessive panting and recognize when it might indicate an underlying issue. By providing a cool environment, plenty of water, and appropriate exercise times, you can help keep your Aussie comfortable and healthy. And remember, for all your dog accessory needs, check out our selection at Printies for items that can help make your dog’s life even better.

Sources and References
  • “Australian Shepherd Panting: What You Need to Know | AussieBase.” Www.aussiebase.com, www.aussiebase.com/blog/australian-shepherd-panting-what-you-need-to-know. Accessed 24 June 2024.
  • Hamel, Author Jacqueline. “Why Do Aussies Pant so Much?” Herding Dog Zone, 23 May 2021, herdingdogzone.com/why-do-aussies-pant-so-much/. Accessed 24 June 2024.

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