The Blue Heeler Australian Shepherd Mix, is a mixed breed dog resulting from breeding the Australian Shepherd and the Blue Heeler. It is sometimes referred to as an Texas Heeler or a Queensland Heeler Australian Shepherd Mix. The Australian Shepherd is one of the sweetest and nicest dogs as well as one of the smartest dogs you will ever find. Both of these parent breeds are extremely intelligent and obviously very good herding dogs. What does this mixed breed look and act like? Is it more like the Australian Shepherd or the Blue Heeler? Those are the questions we will try and answer below. Continue reading below to see pictures, videos, and learn more about the beautiful Australian Shepherd Mix.
While we really recommend that you acquire all animals through a rescue, we understand that some people might go through a breeder to get their Blue Heeler Australian Shepherd Mix puppy. That is, if they have any Blue Heeler Australian Shepherd Mix puppies for sale.
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All hybrid or designer dogs are tough to get a good read on as there isn’t much history to them. Breeding specific dogs like this has become common in the last twenty years or so even though I am sure that this mixed breed found it’s share of dogs to the shelter due to accidental breeding. We will take a closer look at the history of both parent breeds below. If you are looking at breeders for new, designer dogs please beware of Puppy Mills. These are places that mass produce puppies, specifically for profit and don’t care at all about the dogs. Please sign our petition to stop puppy mills.
Australian Shepherd History:
The Australian Shepherd has a rather vague past and lineage. For this reason, it’s name is a bit misleading. The Aussie was actually called the following prior to it’s current name - Spanish Shepherd, Pastor Dog, Bob-Tail, New Mexican Shepherd, California Shepherd, and Australian Shepherd. There are a lot of folks who think that the breed originated from the Basque region in Spain where they were used by shepherds. The thought is that those shepherds emigrated to the West Coast of the United States via Australia and brought their dogs with them. While the origins aren’t totally agreed upon, there is agreement that it developed in western North America in the 19th and early 20th centuries. One theory as to where they got their name is that they were named for the imported sheep that they herded.
The Australian Shepherd isn’t as affected by altitude as much as other herding breeds so it became a well known and loved sheep herder in the Rocky Mountains. The original breeders were Ranchers in Boulder, Colorado, who then began to sell and distribute the dogs all over the West.
Back when dogs such as this were used primarily as working stock, shepherds were much more interested in dogs' working abilities than their appearance. As a result, over time, shepherds interbred dogs that they believed would produce better workers for the given climate and landscape. The landscape played a large role in how the dogs looked, In the eastern U.S., terrain and weather conditions were similar to that of Europe. Europe is where most of those breeds came from, so the existing breeds and their offspring worked well there.
However, different dogs were needed In the American West, as the conditions were much different from the East. Spanish flocks of sheep, known as the Churra were introduced for food. The shepherds brought over Spanish dogs that proved capable for their job in the wild and dangerous territory. These dogs were highly valued for their ability to herd and protect from predators on the open range. Selective breeding for many generations focused on aspects of the dog that enabled it to function as an effective stockdog in the American West. It had to handle severe weather; have plenty of speed, athleticism, energy, and endurance; and be intelligent, flexible, and independent; while remaining obedient.
Blue Heeler History:
Australians owe a great debt to all the persons involved in the development of the Australian Cattle Dog or the Blue Heeler. The beef industry would have really struggled without them. The legend has that in 1840, George Elliott, in Queensland, was experimenting with Dingo-blue merle Collie crosses. These dogs were excellent workers. Cattle men started buying these dogs as they were very impressed with their working ability. Two brothers, Jack and Harry Bagust, got their hands on some of these dogs and started improving them. Their first step was to cross a bitch with a fine imported Dalmatian dog. This cross changed the merle to red or blue speckle.
They are extremely alert, hardworking, and clever. This is an extremely high energy dog and needs lots of exercise. They can be very stubborn and will start herding the kids, the cats, or anything else if there isn’t anything else around to be herded. Like all dogs he also needs to be socialized when he is young or he can become shy and fearful.
Height: 18 - 23 inches at the shoulder
Weight: 35 - 75 lb.
Lifespan: 13-15 years
Height: 17 - 20 inches at the shoulder
Weight: 31 - 35 lb.
Lifespan: 13 - 15 years
The Texas Heeler is going to be a very sweet and good natured dog. They will be a great companion and a great sidekick to have along your side. This is the type of dog that you are going to want to come home to at night as they are very kind, loyal, and gentle. Sometimes they are almost too smart for their own good. No matter what the mix is, they are going to be bouncing with energy and will not be good for apartment dwellers. In fact, they won’t be good for low energy people. They are going to need to go for very long walks and hikes EVERY DAY to wear them out. If you don’t control their energy it will control you. It is also extremely important to socialize your dog. While they naturally have a very nice temperament, socialization is extremely important to help them learn how to interact with other dogs. They also might have a rather high prey drive due to their wanting to chase small, fast things. It will be a good idea to keep an eye on the cat or any other small creatures until you better understand their personality.
All dogs have the potential to develop genetic health problems as all breeds are susceptible to some things more than others. However, the one positive thing about getting a puppy is that you can avoid this as much as possible. A breeder should absolutely offer a health guarantee on puppies. If they won’t do this, then look no more and don’t consider that breeder at all. A reputable breeder will be honest and open about health problems in the breed and the incidence with which they occur. Health clearances prove that a dog has been tested for and cleared of a particular condition.
The mixed with the Australian Shepherd might be prone to Epilepsy, deafness, OCD, eye problems, hypothyroidism, drug sensitivity, cancer, Joint dysplasia, allergies, collie nose
Note that these are just common problems in both breeds.
What are the grooming requirements?
The Australian Shepherd and the Blue Heeler are both pretty moderate shedders. The Blue Heeler should not shed as much as the Aussie, therefore the Texas Heeler. They will need routine grooming and baths as needed, depending on how they feel.
What are the exercise requirements?
This is a high energy dog that will need that from an owner. As I stated previously, they were bred to work and run all day so they will not be content just laying around. Plan on taking them for extremely long walks and hikes to keep their energy level down. Don’t be surprised if it starts to herd you as the Australian Shepherd has a very strong herding instinct. A tired dog is a good dog though. Never tie your dog up outside - that is inhumane and not fair to him.
What are the training requirements?
This is an extremely intelligent dog that will be easy to train, however, it might be extremely stubborn. It will need a strong, firm handler that is consistent and won’t let this dog take advantage of them. All dogs respond best to positive reinforcement. So make sure to praise her when she does well. She is an intelligent dog who loves to please, and loves a physical challenge. The more exercise she gets the easier she will be to train. Proper socialization is imperative to all dogs and puppies. Make sure to take her to the park and doggy day care to get her around as many people and dogs as possible.
A lot of times diet is done on a per-dog basis. Each one is unique and has different dietary requirements. Most dogs in the U.S. are overweight. A mix like this one that is prone to hip and elbow dysplasia should really be on fish oil and glucosamine and chondroitin supplements as soon as possible.
Overfeeding any dog is not a good idea as that can really exacerbate health problems such as elbow and hip dysplasia.
A good diet to look into is Raw Food Diet. A raw food diet will be especially good for the Wolf background.
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