Blue Red Joe's Australian Cattle Dogs

Quality Queensland Heeler Breeder

Located In Newman CA.

Updated December 8, 2022

About the Australian Cattle Dog


The breed originated in Australia and goes back to the mid 1800's. The Australian Cattle Dog (ACD, Cattle Dog or Queensland Heeler), was bred to herd cattle in Australia's outback. Everything about the breed today - temperament, coat, physical structure, etc - reflects this original purpose.   In 1840, a man named Thomas Hall crossed some blue merle Smooth Highland Collies with dingoes to create a breed known as the ‘Hall’s Heelers.’ These were crossed with the Bull Terrier in the 1870’s, making the breed more aggressive, and later with the Dalmatian for increased ‘carriage’ capability—the ability to run alongside horses. The Australian Cattle Dog’s or Queensland Heeler distinct appearance and highly capable herding skills gained it notoriety across Australia. It was later imported to America and recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1980.   We can definitely thank Hall for the Australian Cattle dog puppies that we know and love today. And the Australian Cattle dog puppies born today still have all the attributes of the dogs from years gone by.              


The ACD or Queensland Heeler is a sturdy, compact working dog. It is well muscled and very powerful, but agile. Its body is a bit longer than it is high and has a slightly curved tail that reaches just about to the hock. It has a broad skull that flattens to a definite stop between the eyes, with muscular cheeks and a medium-length, deep, powerful muzzle. The ears are pricked, small to medium in size and set wide apart, with a covering of hair on the inside. The eyes are oval and dark brown, with an alert, keen expression. The neck and shoulders are strong and muscular; the forelegs are straight and parallel; and the feet round and arched, with small, sturdy toes and nails. The top line of this dog is level, with a strong back and well-sprung ribs. Its chest is deep and moderately broad, with broad and muscular loins and deep flanks.  


The Australian Cattle Dog’s outer coat is weather resistant, short, and somewhat rough. The inner layer is short and thick. There are a variety of coat colors: red speckled (with possible dark markings on the head), or blue/blue mottled with possible markings of any color but black. Australian Cattle Dogs are born with a white coat which darkens increasingly over time. They shed once or twice a year. The mask is one of the most distinctive features of this breed. They have a mask covering one or both eyes of either red or black, depending on whether it is a red or blue speckled dog. However not all the dogs have a mask. Many of these dogs have a blaze of white fur on their foreheads.  


Height: Males 17-20 inches Females 17-19 inches Weight: Males 32-35 pounds Females 30-35 pounds


Smart, hardy, independent, stubborn, tenacious, energetic and untiring, these are all traits essential to a driver of headstrong cattle, and all traits of the Australian Cattle Dog. This dog makes an ideal companion for children and other dogs if adequately socialized when young (though it may nip at running children due to its herding instinct). Australian Cattle Dogs or Queensland Heelers are wary of strangers. They are fairly easy to train to do various work tasks, as long as you keep things interesting so that they don’t get bored. However, the dog’s first and foremost instinct is for herding, so you will want to keep this in mind when designing tasks for the dog to accomplish.    

Living Area

Australian Cattle Dogs or Queensland Heelers are not recommended for apartments or homes with small yards.  They do best with at least a large yard. They thrive if they have a job to do.  

Life Span

Australian Cattle Dogs typical life span is 12 - 15 years, but may live much longer. The record books show one ACD that lived to be 29 years old.  


The Australian Cattle Dog requires only occasional grooming with a brush or comb to remove dead hairs and bathe only when necessary. This breed tends to shed their coats once or twice per year (depending on sex status and region).            

Health Problems

Musculoskeletal and reproductive ailments are common areas of concern.

Information Links

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