The Australian Cattle Dog is also known as the Queensland Heeler or the Australian Heeler. The Cattle Dog is a tough, compact and rugged member of the herding dog breeds. Male Cattle Dogs range from 17 to 20 inches and female dogs from 17 to 19 inches at shoulder height. These Australian dogs can weigh from 35 to 50 pounds. The Cattle Dog’s water resistant outer coat is short and stiff with a short dense undercoat. The Australian’s coat can be red or blue with many white hairs mixed in – speckled. Many dogs have blue, black or tan markings on the head.
Australian Cattle Dogs are members of the American Kennel Club (AKC) Herding Dog Group.
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The Cattle Dog was developed as a rugged Australian cow dog in the 1850’s by crossing Collies, Dingoes, Dalmatians and Bull Terriers. These tireless dogs work extremely hard at rounding up and driving herds of range cattle across their native Australian continent. Since herding cows is their purpose in life, this dog breed has been further developed to become smart, fast and capable of giving stubborn cattle a sharp bite to get them moving the right direction. Cattle Dogs were ranked 74th out of 154 dog breeds in 2004 AKC registrations.
The tireless and hard working Cattle Dog has an inexhaustible supply of energy and seems to be able to ignore any discomfort. This breed is easily trained but needs lots of activity to satisfy its workaholic nature. If this Cattle Dog is left alone in a backyard it will turn destructive. These dogs are only truly happy working at herding cattle. Although the breed is loyal and possessive and makes a good guard dog, it is not a good family pet. The Cattle Dog requires training and firm management from an experienced master. This breed does not do well with a novice or first-time owner.
These dogs require a lot of exercise such as working cattle stock, jogging, biking and chasing balls. They should have a very large backyard as they are definitely a free-range outdoors dog.
This breed requires little or no grooming. The dogs will shed their coats once or twice per year.
The Cattle Dog breed has a life expectancy of about 12 to 15 years and has no common health problems. Information on genetic diseases in dogs can be found in our article Hereditary Diseases in Dogs.
Article type: xdogbreed