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Blue Heeler

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Working Dogs: This group  includes more breeds than any other. These dogs were bred to do a variety of work from guarding, herding, pulling sleds and rescue for example. A few in this group include Border Collie, Bernese Mountain Dog and Bullmastiff to mention a few.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Australian Cattle Dog

(Blue Heeler)

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Australian Cattle Dog

 

Description

The origin of the Australian Cattle Dog is still questionable, with stories of its development in both NSW and Queensland Australia. They have also been known as Hall's Heelers, Queensland Blue Heelers and Blueys. Even though no records of the original breeding are left, it is suggested that Blue Merle Collies and perhaps even Bull Terriers were used.  Originally bred for endurance, toughness and herding when Australia’s cattle industry was developing. These dogs were well suited to the wild terrain, however over the years these dogs have been less useful because of their roughness with the cattle.  Nowadays the Australian Cattle Dog rarely finds a place as a working dog but still remains a lasting representation of Australian bush culture. Being instantly recognizable for their legendary toughness and loyalty, they are still one of the most popular dog breeds owned in Australia.  

 

Temperament

You could best describe the Australian Cattle Dog as energetic, intelligent and fiercely loyal. It is known that many Australian Cattle Dogs will bite a stranger or someone that gets between the dog and its owner.  These dogs need to be kept occupied with lots of activity to be kept happy and need to be trained from an early age.

 

Appearance

Height:   43-51cm  (17-20in)

Weight:  14-16kg  (30-35lb)

Group: Working Dog

The Australian Cattle Dog is a compact, strong and solid dog which gives you the impression of a dog that is alert, agile and tough.  With their strong head, broad face and upright ears they have this cautious glint or look in their eye. Coming in the colours of blue or red, with distinctive patterns of mottling these dogs have short powerful legs and a medium length thick tail which assists them with their balance and turn when moving around quickly.

 

Grooming

With this dog’s short and weather-resistant coat, it needs minimal care and is very easy to groom by just combing and brushing with a firm bristle brush and bathing only when necessary.

 

Life Expectancy

10-13 years

 

Health Concerns

The Cattle Dog doesn’t really have any significant health problems, except those associated with the merle gene and deaf puppies may be produced.

 

Suitability

Even though they are a low maintenance dog, the Cattle Dog does require lots of activity, whether in the form of exercise or interaction with people. They do make suitable backyard dogs but should be provided enough space and things to keep them occupied. It is recommended that they receive training from an early age and it is advisable that they are immediately introduced to family members and allowed to mix with other people as soon as possible.  These dogs enjoy being a constant companion and have the capacity to be trained to do almost any kind of task and love being able to please.  The Cattle Dog is very suitable to family life.

 

 

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