The Border Heeler: A Complete Guide

The Border Heeler is a hybrid which is the result of breeding a Border Collie with an Australian Cattle Dog, also known as Blue Heeler.

This is a dog that has high energy levels, thanks to his equally energetic parent breeds.

He is a very intelligent, alert, loyal, and protective dog.  Since he has so much energy to expend, it is not a good idea to submit him to apartment life.

The only problem with the Border Heeler is when he does not get enough exercise.

Boredom, anxiety, and other destructive behaviors can result. Unacceptable behaviors like barking, digging, and even chasing cars can also develop.

The parent breeds were developed for herding and working. As a result of the attributes contributed by the parent breeds, Border Heelers are perfect for these tasks.

They produce an incredibly smart canine who can pick up new tricks and learn new things at an astonishing rate.

If you’re considering getting this dog, be prepared to keep him challenged, both physically and mentally.

Both parent breeds require some grooming maintenance, though the Blue Heeler parent contributes less need than the Border Collie breed parent.

Border Heeler Puppies – Before You Buy…

The Border Heeler is the perfect companion.

What Price are Border Heeler Puppies?

The price of Border Heeler puppies is approximately $500 to $800.

How to Find Reputable Border Heeler Breeders?

Breeders that can be defined as reputable or responsible have the betterment of the breed in mind. They are interested and devoted to their pups throughout their entire lives.

They plan each breeding carefully, taking into consideration the conformation, health, and temperament, hoping to improve the quality of their dogs in all these areas.

Reputable breeders usually have a waiting list of potential puppy buyers.

Most responsible breeders place their puppies with a health guarantee. If a dog does not work out, they will either take the dog back or help the owners find a new home for them.

They perform health checks on their dogs before a breeding takes place. Their puppies have a health check-up and at least one set of shots before leaving their home.

Look for breeders who are members of national breed clubs. National organizations are formed to protect the breed.

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Many have a code of ethics to which members must subscribe. You can also try regional breed clubs. Many of these organizations have breeder lists.

If you are attending a local show, check the catalog to see if there are good breeders listed. Most exhibitors will be happy to tell you about their dogs and may also be aware of other breeders who are planning litters.

3 Little-Known Facts About Border Heeler Puppies

  1. The Border Heeler comes from a rich history of herding and working dog ancestry.
  2. The Border Collie parent breed’s origins go back to first century England when it was invaded by the Romans.
  3. The Australian Cattle Dog parent breed can be traced back to the early 1800’s in Australia when the ranchers and farmers were using a variety of Collie-type breeds to manage their herds.

Physical Traits of the Border Heeler

The Border Heeler is a hunter by nature.

The appearance of the Border Heeler depends on the traits inherited from either or both parent breeds.

Most seem to have the mottling or speckling in red or blue from the Australian Cattle Dog parent and the combination type of coat from the Border Collie parent.

Both the Australian Cattle Dog and Border Collie have strong, solid, and compact bodies which are slightly longer than tall.

Both are also approximately the same height and weight. The Border Heeler’s skull is strong and in proportion to the rest of the body.

His eyes are oval and moderate-sized. The ears can be broad at the base, pricked, and pointed, or medium-sized and held erect or semi-erect.

The snout and muzzle are strong and medium in length. He has tight lips and a scissors bite with powerful, well-developed jaws.

He can have a double coat with a short dense undercoat. The outer coat is short or medium length, with straight or slightly wavy hair that is weather-resistant.

The Border Heeler will need grooming maintenance, and this can vary from low to moderate, depending on which parent breed has the bigger contribution in the gene pool.

He will need regular brushing, preferably at least twice a week to reduce the natural shedding.

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But he will need bathing and shampooing only when necessary. Frequent bathing will reduce the oil in the coat, which contributes to its weather resistance.

As with most canine breeds, you need to properly examine and clean the ears to prevent ear infections.

Regular eye examinations are also needed to monitor the variety of eye problems which can afflict your Border Heeler.

He will also need regular dental checkups and teeth cleaning to prevent tooth loss and other types of periodontal disease.

How Big is a Full-Grown Border Heeler?

The Border Heeler stands approximately 18 to 23 inches in height and weighs30 to 45 lbs.

What is the Life Expectancy of the Border Heeler?

The life expectancy of the Border Heeler is approximately 13 to 17 years.

Intelligence, Temperament and Personality Traits of the Border Heeler

The Border Heeler requires a lot of room for exercise.

The Border Heeler is a hybrid created from the breeding of the Border Collie and the Australian Cattle Dog.

As such, he can take on the temperament of either or both the parent breeds. Your Border Heeler can be aggressive, alert, energetic, intelligent, loyal, protective, and responsive.

He will also be sensitive, and his barking tendencies could range from occasional to frequent.

He could be a moderate to a really loud barker, with a bit of a hunting drive and a tendency to roam and explore.

Your Border Heeler will be good with kids and relatively good with strangers and other animals. His intelligence is nothing short of amazing.

It’s important to note that he will need to be kept mentally and physically challenged to prevent boredom and the unacceptable behaviors which can accompany that condition.

He is a high-energy canine bred to work hard and help his masters.

It would be a good idea to allow him to help you in your daily activities. Don’t be surprised if he ‘herds’ the kids and other pets in your household.

Border Heeler owners have described the ease of training this breed to be similar to that of giving directions to a child.

The Border Heeler’s Diet

Feeding Border Heelers to fuel their endless energy requires a high-caliber nutrient-packed dog food.

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About 1 ½ to 2 cups of quality kibble twice a day is a great starting point. Amount fed may go up or down based on your dog’s size, weight, age, and overall daily activity.

Kibble formulas with multiple meat protein sources are good. They ensure that protein is being delivered optimally to be metabolized by your Border Heeler.

To maintain joint health, his dog food should also contain chondroitin and glucosamine. For a beautiful and glossy coat and healthy skin, choose a formula packed with Omega-6 fatty acids.

How Much Exercise Does a Border Heeler Need?

Both the parent breeds of the Border Heeler are high energy canine breeds which were bred for herding and hard work.

They will need to be kept active and physically and mentally challenged. This will prevent boredom and unacceptable destructive behaviors that accompany boredom.

This is not a dog who will be happy with apartment living. He will do much better in a family home with a fenced yard and plenty of opportunity for exercise.

Daily walks of 1 to 2-hour duration, games of fetch, frisbee, or football will help keep him occupied. Cooler climates suit him better since he’s equipped with a coat that is dense and weather-resistant.

Border Heeler Health and Conditions

Major health concerns for this breed include Collie Eye Anomaly, hip dysplasia, and deafness. Minor concerns include cerebellar abiotrophy, cataracts, and progressive retinal atrophy.

Occasional tests include physical examinations, x-rays, hip and eye tests, and hearing tests.

Special Treats

The Border Heeler is bred as a working dog and therefore is more prone to weight gain, especially if it is not made to exercise enough.

Therefore, if you plan on rewarding it with treats throughout the day in addition to its usual meals, make sure that these treats are low in fat and carbohydrate content.

This is a dog that loves its treats, so you can use delicious snacks to make sure it cooperates during obedience and agility training.

The Border Heeler will love to flaunt any new tricks that you teach it but make sure to be consistent in rewarding it with a tasty treat because it will carry out these antiques in hopes for a reward.

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These treats should ideally be unique and different from what the dog usually eats.

So if your Border Heeler is on a dry dog food diet, you can treat it with wet food or home-cooked meat that has been sitting in gravy.

Whatever food you give your pet dog, make sure it is hygienic and healthy. If you give it home-based food, you can ensure its cleanliness and nutrition level for your dog.

However, if you purchase commercial dog food for your pet, make sure you only spend your money on good, reliable brands that are known to provide nutritious and high-quality food.

It is good to spoil your pet with its favorite food every once in a while, especially in return for good behaviour, but make sure you do so with food that only adds to its health instead of harming it.

Since this is a relatively active dog, you should feed it snacks that boost its internal strength so that it can cope up with its high energy levels that it will expel throughout the day.

Supplements and Vitamins

With 18 to 23 inches of height and weight between 30 to 45 pounds, the Border Heeler is a medium-sized dog requiring a very healthy diet.

If you are providing it a well-balanced diet and keep giving it special treats often, you probably have nothing to worry about.

However, there is still a minor chance that your dog’s diet is not complete in terms of nutrients and is causing health issues to your dog.

In this case, you need to immediately supplement its diet with high-quality supplements and vitamins.

One great option is the Alaskan Salmon Oil which is rich in Omega-3, necessary to maintain the good health of your dog’s skin and coat.

This oil also comes without any toxins and almost negligible mercury levels.

For efficient liver function and to enhance the health of your dog’s kidney, administer quality probiotics to it.

These will also ensure that your Border Heeler does not suffer from bloating or bad breath.

In addition to this, the VertriScience Verti Disk will help enhance the health condition of the cartilage and the spinal cord.

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Moreover, consider supplementing your dog’s regular food with apple cider vinegar which is excellent in helping with gas and constipation, and even assists with digestion.

Furthermore, for building muscle and keeping your Border Heeler very healthy, you can provide it the Gorilla Max Muscle Building Powder Supplement.

Dog owners are also very fond of the Healthy Breeds Multivitamin which contains many essential vitamins your Border Heeler requires.

You should further make sure that your dog does not lack Vitamin A by giving it carrots which will help with its immune system and growth.

Also, make sure your Border Heeler does not suffer from any allergies which might be triggered by these supplements or vitamins.

If it is allergic, find out the most appropriate hypoallergenic supplement for it.

My Final Thoughts on the Border Heeler

If you’re looking for the perfect companion, the Border Heeler might just be the one you need.

Whether you live alone, looking for a hunting companion, or searching for the most compatible family pet, this dog has all the potential to make the perfect fit.

Full of energy and love to give, the Border Heeler is a hunter by nature.

He loves to please his humans. Even though he’s not much of a couch potato, he will occasionally try your lap on for size.

He requires a lot of room for exercise. He will not be comfortable living in an apartment. But give him a whole house with a fenced in yard and he will be in his perfect happy place.

Since he’s high in energy, he will need to stay busy to avoid boredom. A simple task or heavy-duty chew toy will do the trick.

Image Sources: 1, 2, 3

OVERALL SUMMARY

7
Cost to Buy
9
Cuteness Level
7.5
Family Safety
7.5
Friendliness
6.5
Health Concerns
8.5
Life Span
3.5
Exercise Required
7
Food Required
OVERALL RATING 7.1 / 10

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