Australian Cattle Dog

The Australian Cattle Dog, also known as the Queensland Heeler or Blue Heeler, is related to Australia’s well-known wild dog, the dingo. These tough herders are cunning enough to frequently outwit their owners.

The Australian Cattle Dog has a white coat at birth that eventually turns blue and gray or red. Both types of coats have distinguishing mottling or specking patterns. Australian Cattle Dogs are exceptionally motivated and skilled in pursuing prey and, naturally, moving livestock. They are terrific jogging partners because of their endless energy and flexible gait. They easily grow bored and mischievous if they aren’t challenged. To keep their dog mentally and physically active, owners are advised to join with their dog in some work, sport, or regular exercise.

Responsible breeders will examine breeding stock will be for diseases like hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy, or PRA, which results in visual loss, and deafness. Their teeth should be brushed frequently, and their ears should be examined frequently to eliminate foreign objects and prevent wax buildup. Average life expectancy for the breed is 12 to 16 years.

Recommended Health Tests:

  • Hip Evaluation
  • Elbow Evaluation
  • Ophthalmologist Evaluation
  • PRA Optigen DNA Test
  • BAER Testing
  • PLL DNA Test

Australian immigrants in the 19th century developed the Australian Cattle Dog specifically to herd cattle on big ranches. This breed helped ranchers develop the Australian beef industry by herding the occasionally out of control cattle. The breed was accepted into the AKC in 1980 and was one of the original members of the group when it was formed in 1983.

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