Cordova, Lasater and the Kennedy’s
together attempted to form the first parent club for the miniatures. Although
the club never quite got off the ground, their stated purpose for developing the
miniatures was to produce an Australian Shepherd under 17" who had the
heart, intelligence and drive to work stock, and yet be small enough to travel
easily to stock shows and be a "house" dog.
Cordova’s dogs were registered
through the National Stock Dog Registry (NSDR) and eventually NSDR came to be
the first registry to recognize and register the mini as a size variety of the
Originally recognized in (1989
- 1990) they were shown with the RBKC of Southern California (Rare
Breed Kennel Club) as Miniature Australian Shepherds. The miniature gained
in popularity and the owners and breeders missed
the cohesive nature of a parent club dedicated to the miniature, so in 1990, the
Miniature Australian Shepherd Club of the USA (MASCUSA) was formed. Kathy
Croswhite (Munson), Jeanine Perron, Florence Toombs, Susan Sinclair and Richard
VanBurkleo served as the first Board of Directors, and one of MASCUSA’s
most notable early achievements during that time, was to gain recognition of the
miniature by the American Rare Breeds Assc. (ARBA) to provide a Nationally
recognized conformation show venue.
Now with the
recognition of the American Rare Breed Association (ARBA) the Miniature
Australian Shepherds showed along side the Australian Shepherd until 1993, when
the AKC officially recognized the Australian Shepherd.
The American Rare Breed Association's policy at that time was not to
allow any breed of dog to show with them (except in exhibition) that had the
same name as an AKC affiliated breed and suggested that we change our name.
Amid mixed reactions MASCUSA opted to change the name of our dogs from
Miniature Australian Shepherd to North American Shepherd, for the sole purpose
of keeping ARBA as one of our main show venues.
At the same time, the club amended its name to North American Miniature
Australian Club, USA, while also retaining the name Miniature Australian Club,
USA as an a.k.a. The breed
flourished over the next five years and grew under this name both in the US and
the beginning of 1998, ARBA changed their breed name policy and through much
consideration and discussion on the part of our club members and the Board of
Directors of NASCUSA, formerly MASCUSA, Miniature Australian Shepherd was
incorporated back into the name of our dogs, thus becoming the North
American "Miniature Australian Shepherd".
Today, breeders of the Miniature
Australian Shepherd continue to strive to produce Aussies of a smaller stature.
Preservation of the herding instinct as well as the intelligence and athleticism
of the mini is a priority in breeding programs, as well as continuing the
reputation for health and easy companionship that the mini enjoys.
Miniatures are quickly gaining in
popularity among Agility, Flyball and Disc competition enthusiasts as their
attributes of small size and amazing athletic ability makes them very
competitive and easy to travel with. In the suburbs and cities, families wanting
a big dog are attracted to the "big dog" qualities of the miniature
Australian Shepherd, in a smaller package.
Vive la miniature!