Have you come across pictures of adorable Blue Heeler German Shepherd puppies and wondered about this mix? You certainly aren’t the only one. While the Blue Heeler German Shepherd mix is still a rather new and unknown breed, there is more interest in them now.
Of course, as with all hybrid breeds, it is important to know what you’re getting into. Since it can be a little trickier to know what the pups might turn out to be like, you should be well-informed about Blue Heeler German Shepherds. Fortunately, you can find all the information that you need right here:
Basic Characteristics Of The Blue Heeler German Shepherd Mix
Here are some of the fundamental traits that you can expect to see with this hybrid breed:
- Weight: 35 – 90lbs
- Height: 17 – 26 inches
- Coat: Thick double coat, short to long length
- Kid-Friendly: Yes, if trained and socialized at an early age
Blue Heeler German Shepherd Parents
With Blue Heeler German Shepherd dogs, there can be quite a bit of variation in looks, temperament, and capabilities. This is because the puppies can take after either parent. As a result, some dogs may have an even mix of their two parent breeds. Or, they may take after one parent over the other.
Due to this, it is important to have background information on both parents. This makes it easier to get a more complete picture of what a Blue Heeler German Shepherd pup may be like.
Blue Heelers are more commonly referred to as Australian Cattle Dogs (ACD). This is because they were bred by Australian settlers to herd cattle on large and expansive ranches. As such, this breed belongs to the herding group.
Many of these traits have remained with the Blue Heeler. Despite being family dogs, they are constantly on the lookout for tasks to accomplish. They are happiest when they have a job to complete. These dogs excel at virtually all physical activities and are fast and agile.
At the same time, they thrive among humans. They love being around their human family members and exhibit strong loyalty. Blue Heelers can be rather protective of their people as well. They also do well around other dogs.
The most important thing to remember about Blue Heelers is that they haven’t lost their working dog traits. As such, they are high-energy dogs that need a great deal of attention and exercise. If this isn’t something that you can provide, then you should look at another breed.
In many ways, German Shepherds and Blue Heelers share many common points in their origins. GSDs were also bred to herd livestock and thus have been classified as a part of the herding group. However, as their name suggests, this breed got its start in Germany.
German Shepherds are rather fine-tuned dogs. This is all thanks to the work of Captain Max von Stephanitz. He crossed different strains of German Shepherds to produce dogs that were known for their speed, agility, strength, and intelligence.
At the same time, German Shepherds are great around people as well. Once they have bonded to their family, they exhibit loyalty, courage, and gentleness. Not to mention, they want to be included in everything that their family does.
However, at the end of the day, GSDs retain many of their working dog traits. As such, they need to be stimulated mentally and physically. Thus, you need to ensure that you are capable of meeting these needs so that your GSD can be healthy and happy.
What Does A Blue Heeler German Shepherd Mix Look Like?
What many people are interested in, naturally, is what your Blue Heeler German Shepherd pooch can look like. Here are some of the possibilities:
Blue Heeler German Shepherd Size
As you can see from the basic characteristics of this mix, there can be quite a bit of variation in size. This is because Blue Heelers are known to be more compact, while German Shepherds are on the larger side. As such, your Blue Heeler German Shepherd could fall somewhere in the middle or take after the smaller or bigger parent.
Blue Heeler German Shepherd Physical Appearance
In terms of facial appearance, there is a good chance that the mixed pooch will have a lean face with a medium to long muzzle. They may also have erect, pricked ears. As for the body, you can expect a muscular physique as both parents tend to have strong muscles. It is also quite possible that a Blue Heeler German Shepherd will have a long body with broad shoulders.
Blue Heeler German Shepherd Coat Color and Pattern
It’s difficult to know what kind of coat color or markings you are going to get with this mix. It can be an interesting mix of the two or the dog may have a dominant coat type. Either way, here are the possibilities for what the coat may look like.
Blue Heelers have an incredibly interesting coat color and design. The base color in a Blue Heeler’s coat is black. This color is interspersed with white hair. It is this combination that causes the coat to have a bluish hue.
Now, these dogs do have two kinds of coat patterns – speckled or mottled. With the speckled coat, the white hairs stick out random. With the mottled kind, there are patches of fingertip-sized white spots throughout the coat.
Blue Heelers can also have patches of tan throughout their body. This tends to appear on their legs, chest, throat, and their face. On their face, you may notice a black patch over one or both eyes.
- Black and tan
- Red and black
- Black and silver
Blue Heeler German Shepherd Coat Thickness and Length
Like Blue Heelers, German Shepherds have a double coat. As such, it is a certainty that a mixed puppy will have one too. GSDs tend to have thicker and denser fur than Blue Heelers. This means that a mixed puppy could have either a thinner or thicker coat.
The coat length can also be up for debate. Blue Heelers have short coats, while GSDs can have short, medium length, or long coats. As such, a hybrid dog could inherit any length.
Blue Heeler German Shepherd Temperament
What’s more important than appearance is their temperament. After all, you need to ensure that your dog’s temperament is suitable for your own or that of your family. The good news is that German Shepherds tend to have some similarities with Blue Heelers. This makes it a little easier to deduce the temperament of a mixed pup.
Both breeds do incredibly well with people. Once they have bonded with your family, they will be loyal and loving. There is a good chance that you will be followed wherever you go. These dogs don’t do well by themselves and tend to need a great deal of companionship.
A dog with Blue Heeler tendencies may not be great for children. In addition to their herding instincts, these dogs tend to nip. However, if you train and socialize these dogs at a young age, you should be able to do away with these negative habits.
When it comes to strangers, both breeds can be rather wary. A dog with GSD tendencies will be downright aloof. To overcome this, the puppy will need to be socialized at a very young age.
Who Are They Best Suited To?
Both dogs are great for families, particularly where there are older children. And, since they need to be around people, they will not do well in empty households. Get this hybrid breed if you can be certain that someone will be with them for most of the day.
It is unlikely that Blue Heeler German Shepherds will be a good fit for a novice owner. This is a dog that needs a great deal of mental and physical stimulation. If you aren’t up for it, you shouldn’t get this breed. If they are not given enough exercise, these dogs can get rather destructive.
Health, Lifespan, and Genetic Concerns of Blue Heeler German Shepherd Mix Breed
Blue Heelers tend to have a longer lifespan than German Shepherds and may live between 12 to 16 years. GSDs, on the other hand, may live around 7 to 10 years. Thus, a Blue Heeler German Shepherd may have a life span between 7 and 16 years.
What’s great about hybrid dogs is that they tend to be healthier than purebred dogs. This has to do with the fact that there is a lower chance of genetic issues making an appearance. However, this doesn’t completely reduce the risk of certain health conditions. As such, you need to be aware of the medical issues that plague Blue Heelers and GSDs.
Some of the more common concerns with GSDs are:
- Perianal fistula
- Hip dysplasia
- Degenerative myelopathy
Some of the issues to know about with Blue Heelers are:
- Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)
- Canine hip dysplasia (CHD)
- Elbow dysplasia
- Osteochondrosis Dissecans (OCD)
Nutrition Requirements For Blue Heeler German Shepherd
This hybrid breed doesn’t have any specific nutritive needs. As such, it is enough to feed them high-quality dog food. If you are planning on making them homemade food, check with your vet to ensure that you are giving your dog all the nutrients they require.
As long as your dog is getting the exercise he or she needs, it is unlikely that they will gain an excessive amount of weight. Nevertheless, it is important to follow the serving guidelines for the dog food you are using.
How Much Exercise Does A Blue Heeler German Shepherd Need
As mentioned, this hybrid mix needs an incredible amount of exercise. As such, it is unlikely that a walk a day will be enough for them. Rather, you need to ensure that they get enough physical activity.
In addition to a long walk, make sure to play fetch or some other activity with your pooch. Taking them to the dog park can also help to burn off some of their energy. This needs to be done every day.
Now, this mixed breed also enjoys tasks. Due to this, keeping them mentally active can help them stave off boredom and negative behaviors. If your dog has more GSD tendencies, then enrolling them in agility courses can help. If they take after their Blue Heeler parent, then engaging them in dog sports is a great idea.
What Are The Best Living Environments For Blue Heeler German Shepherd
These dogs will not do well in apartments. They are far too active to enjoy being in such a closed space. As such, you should have a home – preferably with a backyard – if you want to have a Blue Heeler German Shepherd as a pet.
At the same time, you can’t just leave them outdoors either. These dogs enjoy being around their humans. You should also be aware that if your pup has a strong Blue Heeler streak that he or she may have wanderlust tendencies. As such, they may wander off if you don’t keep an eye on them.
How To Groom A Blue Heeler German Shepherd
If your hybrid breed has a coat that resembles a Blue Heeler, this is good news. These coats are designed to be low maintenance. A quick brushing once a week, followed by an occasional bath is enough to keep your dog clean.
Blue Heelers shed their coat twice a year, though. During this period, you will need to brush them several times a week. As long as you do this, you should be able to keep the shedding to a minimum.
Now, if your dog takes after their German Shepherd parent, you may have to do a little more grooming. Try to brush them every few days. This way, you will not have to deal with stray hairs around your home.
German Shepherds have one or two shedding seasons a year. This means that you need to increase the frequency with which you brush your dog. As with Blue Heelers, though, they only need occasional baths.
How To Train A Blue Heeler German Shepherd
Fortunately, both Blue Heelers and German Shepherds are intelligent and responsive to training. This means that they can learn to perform several tasks. What’s more, they are happiest when they have a job to do.
That being said, begin socialization and training at a very earlier age. This will help to weed out negative behaviors while cementing positive ones. The key to caring for these dogs is continuous training backed by positive reinforcement. This ensures that your dog doesn’t get bored.
If your dog has strong Blue Heeler tendencies, you need to invest even more in their training. Sign up for various courses and programs. This will keep them occupied and happy and also allow you to bond with your dog better.
Finding a Blue Heeler German Shepherd Puppy
This is still a rather rare hybrid breed. As such, you may not be able to find a breeder right away. Even then, you shouldn’t settle for the first breeder you find. It is important to find the best possible breeder.
Keep in mind, a good breeder will trace the parentage of the Blue Heeler and German Shepherd parents thoroughly. This will help them weed out any genetic issues that may go several generations back. In doing so, your breeder will be able to reduce the risk of your dog being born with one of these illnesses.
Breeders can also play a significant role in early socialization. Thus, selecting the best breeder will result in a healthier, better-behaved dog.
Adopting a Blue Heeler German Shepherd
Adopting a Blue Heeler German Shepherd is one of the best things you can do. Not only is this is the more humane option, but adopted dogs tend to be older. As a result, you will have a better idea of the traits this dog has inherited from its parents.
Of course, it may be difficult to find this breed in a shelter. Due to this, you may need to widen your search quite a bit. Using online resources may make it easier to locate a Blue Heeler German Shepherd that needs a family.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the more commonly asked questions regarding this hybrid breed:
How Big Will a Blue Heeler German Shepherd Get?
Well, there can be quite a bit of size variation here. A dog that takes after the Blue Heeler parent will be smaller, while someone who takes after the GSD one will be larger. Or, they may fall somewhere in the middle.
Is a Blue Heeler German Shepherd a Good Family Dog?
Yes, this hybrid breed can be an excellent family dog. They are loving, loyal, and protective of family members. They do better around older children than younger ones, though.
Are Blue Heeler German Shepherds Aggressive?
A Blue Heeler German Shepherd can have aggressive tendencies. As long as you train and socialize them at a young age, you should be able to curb these behaviors.
What Does a Blue Heeler German Shepherd Look Like?
Blue Heeler German Shepherds can take after either one of their parents. This means they can have coat colors and patterns of either a Blue Heeler or German Shepherd. Or, the dog may be an equal mix between the two.
This is what you need to know about the Blue Heeler German Shepherd mix. Now that you are fully aware of what these pups bring to the table, you can make a more informed decision about whether they are the right breed for you.