Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler – Everything You Need To Know

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Mix is a hybrid dog breed crossed between two purebred dogs, the Australian Shepherd and the Blue Heeler, or the Australian Cattle Dog. They are intelligent, energetic, and hard-working, and inherit their herding trait from parent breeds. They are majorly found in Texas and hence got the name Texas Heeler.  They come with the designer dog tag and are not recognized by the AKC. The Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler mix is believed to have originated in Texas and developed by the breeders. The dog enthusiasts also believe that the first dog of this crossbreed was registered in Texas in 1970. Though this breed existed naturally over the years, breeders started to develop them around the 1970s as the demand soared. 

The parent breed, Australian Shepherd, is believed to have originated from the Pyrenees Mountains between Spain and France. Australian Shepherd dogs initially herd sheep and cattle in rugged terrains. They are loyal and brilliant. So Australian Shepherds are called due to their connection with the shepherds who migrated to the United States. The other parent breeds, Australian Cattle Dogs or the Blue Heelers, are loyal and protective dogs bred to herd cattle. The Australian settlers bred the Australian Cattle Dog in the 19th century to herd cattle on big ranches. These dogs are loyal, hard-working, and intelligent. However, Blue Heeler is naughty and is called a “velcro dog” because they tend to be attached and bond closely with their owners.

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Mix combines all its parent breeds’ attractive traits and makes an excellent family companion. 

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Pros and Cons

Intelligent High herding tendency
ProtectiveHigh energy level
Low grooming needNot suitable for apartments

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Basic Information

  • Name: Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler
  • Origin: Texas, United States of America
  • Group: Mixed breed, herding dog
  • Size: Medium
  • Height: 16-22 inches
  • Weight: 25-50 pounds
  • Coat: Short and less dense
  • Color: Black, blue merle, and blue ticked with white or fawn
  • Energy: High
  • Activities: Walking, tracking, hiking, playing fetch, herding
  • Barking Level: Low
  • Shedding Level: High
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Litter Size: 4-6 puppies
  • Other Names: Texas Heeler, Aussie Shepherd Heeler
  • Original Passtime: Herding
  • Life Span: 12-15 years
  • Breed Recognition: ACHC = American Canine Hybrid Club, ARF = Animal Research Foundation, DRA = Dog Registry of America, Inc.

Australian Shepherd vs. Blue Heeler: A Comparison

FeaturesAustralian ShepherdBlue Heeler

OriginUnited StatesAustralia
Height18-23 inches17-20 inches
Weight40-65 pounds 30-50 pounds
Size Medium Medium
Children CompatibilityHighMedium
Family CompatibilityHighHigh
Pets CompatibilityHighMedium to High
Barking LevelMedium to HighLow
Shedding LevelMedium to HighMedium to high
Grooming NeedsMedium to HighMedium to low
Overall HealthMedium to HighHigh
Exercise NeedsHighHigh
TrainabilityHighMedium to High

Companion, Sports, Obedience, AgilityCanine sports, Agility, Obedience, Rally, Flyball, Flying Disc
Complication in breedingNoNo
Litter Size6-7 Puppies1-7 Puppies
Lifespan12-15 years12-16 years
Other NamesSpanish Shepherd, Pastor dogs, Bob-Tails, New Mexican Shepherds, California ShepherdsQueensland Heelers Queensland Blue Heelers Australian Heeler, Hall’s Heeler, Australian Cattle dog, Red Heeler, Australischer Treibhund

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Personality

Australian Shepherd Blue Heelers are medium-sized, grow up to 16-22 inches and weigh about 45-50 pounds. Male and female Texas Heelers do not differ much in their physical appearance. They are hypoallergenic and shed very low. They are double-coated with soft, short, and dense hair. The coat color includes black, blue merle, and blue ticked with white or fawn. The ears are erect or folded, noses are black, eyes are brown, wide and alert, and the tails are bobbed. They inherit the Australian Sheperd’s happy, smiling face. The puppies commonly have patches on the face that are typically seen from the muzzle to the eyes. 

Texas Heelers have legs that are long and lean, suitable for running. They have a deep chest with both forequarters and hindquarters broad. They are sturdy and well-built dogs that instantly appear hard-working. Their appearance depends on the gene game, yet they go on to add a dose of cuteness to your home.

Friendliness Overview

Affection levelHigh

Adaptability Overview

Good for apartment livingLow
Good for new ownersMedium
Sensitivity levelMedium
Tolerates being aloneMedium
Cold toleranceHigh
Heat toleranceMedium

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Temperament

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler is a smart, energetic, and high-spirited dog. They love to please and to be around their owners. They are typically working dogs and are happiest when they are at work. They also make excellent working dogs. Texas Heelers are protective, active, loyal, affectionate, and love to stay busy. They usually pick their favorite human in the family, stick to that person, and be overprotective. Thus, they make excellent watchdogs. In addition, Texas Heelers make lovely service dogs due to their high interest in working.

Texas Heelers inherit the herding instinct from their parent breeds, so they try to herd and overpower children by nipping and biting. However, they get bored when left alone, leading to barking, howling, and digging. They are kid-friendly and make a good family dog. They do well with other pets in the household with early socialization and training. Their overall temperament includes:

  • Protective
  • Energetic
  • Intelligent
  • Active
  • Loyal
  • Happy

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Training

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler is intelligent and eager to learn new things. They love to please their owners, and this makes training easy. They are highly energetic, and training sessions keep them busy and help with mental stimulation. Training can include multiple sessions a day with fifteen minutes of each session. Positive reinforcement that includes praises and treats helps while teaching commands and other general rules. They enjoy dog puzzles and maze games that keep them occupied. 

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Agility training is a great way to make them listen to commands and get all the energy out. They must be socialized early with people, animals, and the environment. Their training can include the following:

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Exercise Needs

Australian Shepherd Blue Heelers are highly active and need loads of regular exercise. A daily routine of 90 minutes of exercise is ideal for keeping the dog’s mental stimulation intact. Walking 2-3 times a day with lots of space to run and play keeps the dog happy and healthy. However, the best-suited exercise for these heelers is running in a large yard. A proper exercise routine helps the dog with the following benefits:

  • Social interaction
  • Weight Control
  • Stress Relief
  • Behavioral Corrections like excessive chewing, persistent barking
  • Brain stimulation
  • Strengthening Muscles
  • Routine Toileting
  • Mental health and happiness
  • Hiking
  • Swimming

Exercise Needs Overview

Energy levelHigh
Exercise needsHigh
IntensityHigh to medium

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Grooming

Australian Shepherd Blue Heelers have a short coat with low levels of shedding. They are easy to groom, and you can brush the coat 2-3 times per week. Brushing helps remove clump hair and pull out the loose fur during shedding. One of the essential parts of grooming is bathing which keeps the dog clean. However, frequent bathing causes dry skin and itches. Bathe your dog once a week with ph-balanced shampoos for dogs, and pet wipes will keep your dog’s coat fresh, clean, and shiny. However, daily brushing helps to keep the fur from knots and tangles. 

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Australian Shepherd Blue Heelers may also need an extra dog coat in the cold temperatures, and it’s best to apply dog sunscreen during summers on the skin where there is less fur.

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Australian Shepherd Blue Heelers are prone to collect ear wax quickly. Hence, Ears should be cleaned and regularly checked as they are prone to ear problems. Brush their teeth daily to prevent plaque and other dental problems. Never brush the teeth with a stiff brush as it will harm the gums and teeth. Also, make sure to use dog-friendly toothpaste. 

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Also, clean their eyes and trim their nails as a part of everyday grooming needs. Check their nails once a week as longer nails may harm and injure the dog. You can trim the toenails with a commercial dog nail trimmer or with the help of a vet or professional groomer.

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Grooming Overview

Easy to groomHigh
Drooling tendenciesLow 
Amount of sheddingLow

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Health

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler is a healthy and active dog. Yet, it’s always wise to be aware of the health conditions they are prone to.

Health Overview

General healthMedium
Weight gain tendenciesHigh

Collie Eye Anomaly: CEA is an inherited developmental condition usually seen in breeds like Australian shepherds, Border Collies, Shetland sheepdogs, etc. This disorder can lead a dog to blindness.

Distichiasis: Few Australian Shepherds and their mixed breeds may suffer from an eye illness called distichiasis. This refers to an overgrowth of eyelashes that causes bending, irritating the cornea. Dogs with this condition keep pawing their eyes due to the discomfort caused. The good news is you can treat distichiasis. You can trim the lashes, or the long-term procedure would be surgery.

Elbow Dysplasia:  Elbow Dysplasia is a heritable condition commonly seen in large-breed dogs. This disease is caused due to different growth rates of the three bones that form the dog’s elbow, causing joint laxity and painful lameness.


  • Mild to moderate pain  
  • Lameness in the forelimbs

Although the symptoms begin to show as early as four months, some dogs will not show these signs until later in life. Further, this may involve both the elbows, but one of them may be heavily affected.

Hip Dysplasia: Hip dysplasia is outwardly a painful disease that occurs when the bones of the back legs do not fit properly in the joints. While some dogs will exhibit symptoms, the majority of canines will not. Hip dysplasia is primarily genetic, although other causes such as accidents, excessive weight gain, and inappropriate training can also cause it. Even though this disease is fatal, therapies range from medicine to hip replacement surgery. This condition causes defects or damage to the hip bones and joints and worsens without treatment. To avoid this problem, avoid breeding dogs with hip dysplasia parentage and get annual examinations.

Other Causes of Hip Dysplasia: 

  • Injuries 
  • Excessive weight gain 
  • Wrong exercises 

Symptoms of hip dysplasia in dogs include:

  • Reduced activity and movements
  • Reluctance to rise, jump, run or climb
  • Lameness in the hind limbs
  • Reducing thigh muscle mass
  • Swaying, “bunny hopping” gait
  • Grating in the joint during movement
  • Enlarging shoulders
  • Pain
  • Stiffness

Progressive Retinal Atrophy: A degenerative eye disorder that causes blindness from the loss of photoreceptors at the back of the eyes. It can be detected earlier. A very later stage is blindness. Dogs with this condition can survive for several years since they have other senses to compensate.

Deafness: While some dogs are born deaf, others may acquire it with age. While hereditary deafness is due to genetic defects, acquired deafness results from decreased blood supply to the cochlea of the inner ear, which results in the loss of hair cells necessary for sound transmission. Deafness may present unilaterally (deafness in one ear) or bilaterally (deafness in both the ears). Bilaterally deaf dogs require some special considerations. To get to know your pet better, you can adopt a reliable scientific test called the BAER (Brainstem Auditory Evoked Response), which helps you detect deafness in dogs.

Skin Problems: The continual scratching or licking of your Texas Heeler can be as annoying as nails on a chalkboard. Still, don’t blame your dog for his bad behavior; a skin issue is most likely to be blamed. Parasites, allergies, and underlying sickness are all possible reasons. The following are the symptoms of skin problems in dogs:

  • Skin sores
  • Dry skin
  • Rashes
  • Lumps
  • Redness
  • Dandruff
  • Bumps
  • Hair Loss

Allergies are immune system’s misdirected reaction to external chemicals, which can affect people and dogs. In dogs, there are many distinct types of allergies. Skin allergies, food allergies, and environmental allergens pose problems for dogs and their owners, and to make matters worse, the symptoms of all of these allergies often overlap. The following are the symptoms of allergies in dogs: 

  • Itchiness
  • Hives
  • Swelling of the face, ears, lips, eyelids, or earflaps
  • Red, inflamed skin
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Sneezing
  • Itchy ears
  • Chronic ear infections
  • Itchy, runny eyes
  • Constant licking

Ear Infections: Ear infections are common and are easily diagnosable and treatable. The initial signs are itchiness, ear discharge, head shaking, and redness and swelling of the ear canal. Excess wax and dirt can lead to severe infection.

Spay or Neuter: In spay, the ovaries or uterus in females is removed, and in the neuter, the testicles of the male dogs are removed. It eliminates the possibility of pregnancy or fathering unwanted puppies and decreases the likelihood of certain types of cancer.

Recommended Tests

  • Physical Examination 
  • X-ray imaging 
  • Eye Examinations 
  • Brain Auditory Evoked 
  • Response (BAER)
  • Hearing Tests
  • Blood Analysis

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Diet and Nutrition

Australian Shepherd Blue Heelers are medium-sized hybrid dogs. They need a large quantity of high-quality food. They should eat 3-4 cups of food every day. Each puppy is distinctive, and the correct amount and quality of food depend on age, weight, activity level, health, and more. You can also split the meals into two 2 cups daily. They are prone to obesity, and hence overfeeding must be avoided. 

  • Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler pups can be given dry food, wet food, or both. 
  • Ensure their diet contains omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, chondroitin, and glucosamine. 
  • You can also feed them with fruits and vegetables that give carbohydrate energy. 
  • Never hesitate to consult a vet to meet your pup’s dietary requirements to keep them happy and healthy.

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Living Condition

Australian Shepherd Blue Heelers love being around humans. They do not suit small spaces and apartments and need homes with bigger yards. They love outdoor activities like walking, running, playing, and hunting. They fit in homes with bigger yards where there is space to run. However, they have a high prey drive and may wander off due to their hunting instincts. It is best to keep them leashed or within fenced yards for safety. They love the attention of their owners and suffer from separation anxiety when left alone. Boredom and anxiety lead to destructive behaviors like chewing and barking. 

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Texas Heelers do well with children, elders, and other smaller pets in the family. They are double-coated and can tolerate cold temperatures. They can also moderately accept hot climate conditions. 

Adding Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler to Your Family

Things to remember before adding an Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler to your family

Getting an Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler puppy from a reputable breeder is best to prevent unavoidable circumstances like health disorders and provide you with vaccination certificates. It is best to check with the puppy’s parents to ensure his health and happiness. Always remember the following red flags to avoid backyard breeders and puppy mills.

  • Puppies are available around the year.
  • You can choose from a variety of litter that is always available.
  • We recommend you visit the puppy and his parents and get health clearance and vaccination certificates, to avoid purchasing a weaker puppy.

Rescue Groups

Cost of an Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler

The cost of an Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler ranges from $150 to $850.

Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Puppy
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Other Australian Shepherd Mixes

  • Australian Shepherd German Shepherd Mix
  • Australian Shepherd Husky Mix
  • Aussiedoodle
  • Australian Shepherd Lab Mix
  • Australian Shepherd Blue Heeler Mix
  • Border Collie Australian Shepherd Mix
  • Aussiepoo
  • Bull-Aussie
  • Aussie Akita
  • Berner Aussie
  • Aussie Pug
  • French Bull-Aussie (Aussie-Frenchie)
  • Australian Retriever
  • Aussie Beagle (Sheagle)
  • Sheepnees (Aussie Pyrenees)
  • Australian Shepherd Rottweiler
  • Aussie-Chi
  • Border-Aussie (Aussie Collie)
  • Aussiedoodle
  • German Australian Shepherd
  • Ausky
  • Aussiedor (Shepradors)
  • Auggie
  • Bossie (Baussie)
  • Auberman
  • Chow Australian Shepherd
  • Dachshund Aussie Shepherd
  • Dalshep
  • Aussiel (Cotralian)
  • Australian Eskimo
  • Auss-Tzu
  • Aussie Tare
  • Cairn Australian Shepterrier
  • Aussalier English Cotralian
  • Confetti Australian Shepherd
  • Aussie Newfie
  • Austi-Pap
  • Aussie Pom
  • Shel-Aussies
  • Aussie Shiba
  • Aussie-Flat
  • Aussie Wheaten
  • Yorkie Aussie
  • Border Aussie

Other Blue Heeler Mixes

  • Blue Tzu Heeler
  • Box Heeler
  • Border Heeler
  • Dalmatian Heeler
  • Heeler Pei
  • Pit Heeler
  • Aussimo
  • Texas Heeler
  • Cattle Collie
  • Labraheeler
  • Boston Cattle Dog
  • Corgi Cattle Dog
  • Basset Heeler
  • Bernese Cattle Dog
  • Blue Spaniel
  • Beagle Heeler
  • Blue Cadoodle
  • Ausky
  • Golden Cattle Dog
  • Blueweiler

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