Anyone have a blue heeler?

Anyone have a blue heeler?

This is a discussion on Anyone have a blue heeler? within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; I'm not much for internet chat, really, but I figured I'd throw it out there. I have been wanting a dog, and grew up with ...

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Thread: Anyone have a blue heeler?

  1. #1
    Member Array Ford's Avatar
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    Anyone have a blue heeler?

    I'm not much for internet chat, really, but I figured I'd throw it out there. I have been wanting a dog, and grew up with two great hound mutts. I've spent some time on ranches in Colorado and grown to love the complete obedience and intelligence of the herding dogs out there. I've seen 6 week old pups staying, coming, and doing a half decent job at herding cattle.

    So I've been looking into a blue heeler. I would really rather rescue one. I've been reading on them and most pages stress the need to be involved in training the dog, get it lots of physical and mental exercise, and make sure that you are the leader and not it. They tend to be one person or certainly one family dogs. I want a dog that is smart enough to get me a beer out of the fridge, walk by my side without a leash, let me know if someone is trying to break in, but also not bite some little kid just because it wants to pet it.

    Most of what I can find is written about people who love blue heelers, not people who have had bad experiences with them. So have you had or known one? Love it? Did it not work out?

    Another consideration is my wife wants a brittany spaniel. The heelers, from what I have read, can be domineering and aggressive toward other dogs. That would not be ok. We are thinking of getting the spaniel first and the heeler later, so it is more likely to accept the other dog since its the new guy.

    If I determine the breed isn't right for me, I may travel to a certain ranch in Nebraska where they raise some dogs that are a cross of 5 kinds of heeler and a border collie, and get one of those. I've known several and they are a smart, obedient dog with the laid back, sweet demeanor of a mutt. I'd really rather get a dog that needs a home, and will be destroyed otherwise. There's a lot of good dogs out there, I know a lot just need an owner willing to put in the time and effort.


  2. #2
    Member Array Cattus Vir's Avatar
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    My dad's blue heelers were smart and loyal but could be head strong. I guess that came from "their job" of helping him with the cattle. I was to young at the time to be out helping work the cattle. His never won any of the local contest but they were well trained and listened to him well. I think they tolerated the rest of of us but were never aggresive towards people. There were a few quick fights between the heelers and our pointers but nothing that ever lasted more than a few seconds are required intervention from us. That is what I remember from more than forty years ago anyway so my memories may be cloudy.

  3. #3
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    No, but I have been known to keep a Blue Meanie or two around...

    A man fires a rifle for many years, and he goes to war. And afterward he turns the rifle in at the armory, and he believes he's finished with the rifle. But no matter what else he might do with his hands - love a woman, build a house, change his son's diaper - his hands remember the rifle.

  4. #4
    Member Array nick060200's Avatar
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    i had a red healer and had to get rid of her. she needed a lot of supervision and our house was too small for her. she was constantly biting my wife and my heels. chewed on everything and was very head strong. just not my kind of dog. i have a German shepherd now for the past 4 years and i can only complain about his shedding.
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  5. #5
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    I don't know anything about heelers, but a Britt is a great dog. (FYI, they are not considered spaniels anymore.)
    "Just blame Sixto"

  6. #6
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    I've known of some Blue Heelers down here in FL...for cattle ranches. Reading more about them makes them sound like a great family/alert protection dog.
    Sounds like a great choice to me.OMO
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  7. #7
    VIP Member Array NC Bullseye's Avatar
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    I had a blue heeler / chow mix and that was the best dog hands down. Obedient, smart and VERY good with kids and protective of them. A blue heeler will most defiantly be our next dog too.

    Just watch for deafness, it seems to run in the heelers. They are still great but you need to be aware of the different needs for a deaf dog.

  8. #8
    Member Array mlkx4's Avatar
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    We had a blue heeler that we rescued from the pound when he was still a pup. Hard to know what his past life was like, so I dont fault the dog, but he hated kids and we had a park across the street. Tried like hell to retrain but snapped at one to many kids so we sent him to a farm. Beutiful dog and he is still missed but just couldnt take the chance. Maybe if we had more land it would have been different.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Array bbqgrill's Avatar
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    Mine is almost 12 years old, he still has the curiosity, energy and playfulness of a puppy. Everything said is accurate, the protectiveness is probably understated, mine will not allow non-family members into my home, I have to put him out when people visit. He does need daily challenging play time and he is obedient without professional training.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Array CowboyColby's Avatar
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    I have a blue heeler and he is an amazing and loyal dog. I have him primarily for herding cattle but he does very well with little kids, other dogs, and people. He has also earned the role as my security alarm. He sleeps everynight right by my bed and when he hears something he perks up then growls. I can send him to every room in the house from my bed and if something is wrong he will bark or increase his growl one time it was a friend standing at my porch another time a stray dog came up onto my porch.

    I've also had border collies but in my experience they are more hyper, require more exercise, and don't have the attitude that a blue heeler does to keep on a bull after the bull chases them off, my heeler won't back down until I tell him to or he gets the job done. Heelers are also a little harder headed so you have keep that in consideration while training them and you may have to be a little harsher and sterner with your punishments. I had a problem when my heeler was younger of him not releasing after I'd set him on a cow he would chase that thing through the entire heard I finally broke down and bought a shock collar and one time of a him getting shocked when I asked him to release and he didn't was all it took and he doesn't have to wear it when we work now. I will only from now on only use heelers and kelpies for work. Get one you will be pleased and have a life long loyal friend.

  11. #11
    New Member Array karry's Avatar
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    great dogs

    I have always had a blue heeler. Living out in the country in Oklahoma they are grate watch dogs. they bark every time someone in diff car drives up they will be at the car door barking. None of mine have every bitten anyone. They are bred for working cattle and aggressive nature. I have 2 grandkids and and mini Aussie. The heeler lets them know she is boss. Great alert dog. The size is not intimidating,

  12. #12
    Member Array Ford's Avatar
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    Thanks for the good advice. Good to hear they're at least not too prone to biting people (aside from herding instinct). I would plan to socialize him/her with plenty of people early on, but never discourage being protective of me/wife/home. I'll keep thinking on it, I'm thinking they might just be the kind for me. I saw one at the park today, I think everyone at the park thought I was a creepo, I was gawking and looking over my shoulder for a while as I drove by, but I was looking at the dog, not the woman.

  13. #13
    New Member Array Kmlvscl's Avatar
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    Red face R U interested in a Blue Heeler? Trying to find a good home for my baby girl Bella.

    Good morning,
    Recently decided to go back to school and be a full time student, my husband is in the military. We have a wonderful girl heeler that needs more exercise and excitement than we can provide. She is smart, but needs some good training. We would love to find her a home that would provide her with love and hours of entertainement. Please let me know if you are still interested.



    Quote Originally Posted by Ford View Post
    I'm not much for internet chat, really, but I figured I'd throw it out there. I have been wanting a dog, and grew up with two great hound mutts. I've spent some time on ranches in Colorado and grown to love the complete obedience and intelligence of the herding dogs out there. I've seen 6 week old pups staying, coming, and doing a half decent job at herding cattle.

    So I've been looking into a blue heeler. I would really rather rescue one. I've been reading on them and most pages stress the need to be involved in training the dog, get it lots of physical and mental exercise, and make sure that you are the leader and not it. They tend to be one person or certainly one family dogs. I want a dog that is smart enough to get me a beer out of the fridge, walk by my side without a leash, let me know if someone is trying to break in, but also not bite some little kid just because it wants to pet it.

    Most of what I can find is written about people who love blue heelers, not people who have had bad experiences with them. So have you had or known one? Love it? Did it not work out?

    Another consideration is my wife wants a brittany spaniel. The heelers, from what I have read, can be domineering and aggressive toward other dogs. That would not be ok. We are thinking of getting the spaniel first and the heeler later, so it is more likely to accept the other dog since its the new guy.

    If I determine the breed isn't right for me, I may travel to a certain ranch in Nebraska where they raise some dogs that are a cross of 5 kinds of heeler and a border collie, and get one of those. I've known several and they are a smart, obedient dog with the laid back, sweet demeanor of a mutt. I'd really rather get a dog that needs a home, and will be destroyed otherwise. There's a lot of good dogs out there, I know a lot just need an owner willing to put in the time and effort.

  14. #14
    New Member Array Kmlvscl's Avatar
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    100_0313.jpgLooking for a home for my baby Bella. She is a 1 yr old Blue heeler. We have done some training, gets along with other dogs, but needs a life outside having fun. My email is kristen.dickerson@yahoo.com. Missouri.
    Last edited by Kmlvscl; December 4th, 2011 at 12:45 PM. Reason: Added Photo

  15. #15
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    A past neighbor had two that were entirely too obnoxious. They barked constantly, and were super high energy dogs that were total PITA's. I wouldn't have one to kick. And yes, I have had a large variety of dogs and am fairly certain I know many breeds well.

    They are working dogs that need to work. I would not have one unless I had at least 20 acres and some animals to herd.

    Brittany's can be very high energy dogs too. Crack heads.

    Good luck to ya'll.


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