What Is a Blue Heeler German Shepherd?

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A blue heeler German shepherd mix is a hybrid of two medium- to large-size dog breeds: the German shepherd and the blue heeler Australian cattle dog. The breeds complement each other in physical condition but contrast each other in character a bit because the German shepherd tends to temper the heeler's enthusiasm.

A blue heeler is actually a specific color of the Australian cattle dog.
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However, both are intelligent and loyal dogs, and with the right training and exercise regime, they can make good family pets for those with older children. The same is likely true for a German shepherd cattle dog mix. The crossbred dog might resemble a combination of both breeds or favor one parent strongly over the other.

The blue heeler Australian cattle dog

A blue heeler is not a specific breed of dog; rather, the term refers to a specific color of the Australian cattle dog — a recognized American Kennel Club breed. The color standard for the blue version of the Australian cattle dog is blue, blue mottled, or blue speckled, with or without other markings. If the dog fits this description, he's called a blue heeler.

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Heelers can have tan points on the head and legs, and at maturity, males stand between 18 and 20 inches high at the point of the shoulders, and females are slightly smaller at 17 to 19 inches. Originally called an Australian heeler, blue heelers are sometimes called a Queensland heeler today.

Overall, any color of Australian cattle dog emits the impression of a strong, well-built working dog. They trace their origins to the Dalmatian, collie, and even the dingo, a wild Australian canine. After a few generations, the result is the high-energy Australian cattle dog, arguably the finest of all cattle-herding canines. Like the German shepherd, the blue heeler has pricked ears atop a broad skull.

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The German shepherd

The German shepherd dog is a breed known for loyalty and obedience.
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The German shepherd is a recognizable breed and is popular as both a family pet and a working dog, often portrayed in pop culture as protectors, security dogs, and defenders. This is likely a result of their association with law enforcement and their extremely loyal and obedient nature. A confident dog, they've been called a dog lover's delight, and they are defined by muscles, smooth curves, and grace.

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Mature male German shepherds stand between 24 and 26 inches tall at the shoulder, with females slightly smaller at 22 to 24 inches high. The dog's length should exceed the height. The German shepherd should possess a noble, strong, and well-proportioned head. While the most common coloring is a light shade of brown with a black saddle and mask, any color except white is permissible in the breed standard. That doesn't mean white shepherds don't exist, but they are not permitted to show in AKC conformation classes.

Blue heeler German shepherd mix temperament

The blue heeler Australian cattle dog and the German shepherd are both exceptionally smart and active canines. Both breeds require focused training and activities. Therefore, a blue heeler German shepherd mix is likely to require the same.

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If you're lucky, your crossbred dog will lean more toward the exercise needs of the German shepherd, which are considerable, rather than toward those of the Australian cattle dog, which are enormous. Clearly, a German shepherd cattle dog mix is going to be energetic, only the degree might vary. Since both breeds are good with older children, your cross could make a fine family pet, but she's probably too tough for younger kids.

German shepherd cattle dog mix training

Blue heelers need a lot of exercised and are natural herding dogs.
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Since the German shepherd and blue heeler both soak up directions like canine sponges, your crossbred dog should be relatively easy to train. These dogs need jobs; they are not couch potato canines. If these dogs don't receive good, solid training and the requisite amount of exercise, expect them to find their own outlet for their mind and energy — an outlet that will likely be destructive.

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If you're a novice dog owner, you're probably better off with another type of canine. In the hands of an experienced dog owner who is familiar with strong working breeds, a blue heeler German shepherd mix can shine.

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