Whatever the case may be, Blue Heelers owners like you may be worried about how well their dogs will socialize with others. Will it be a good experiment or a total trainwreck?
Officially, the Australian cattle dog and also referred to as the ‘blue heeler’, is originally a herding breed.
Blue Heelers are not naturally good with other dogs because they are territorial and aggressive. However, they are also highly trainable, which means you can train them to be good with dogs that they have been raised with.
Do Blue Heelers Get Along With Other Dogs? It Totally Depends
Heelers are tolerant of many breeds and it depends a lot on how and when you expose them to other pets in the house.
Here are some characteristics of a Heeler that will help you know its tendency to a group living.
Aside from Blue Heelers, there are some breeds that get along well with other dogs. They include Australian Shepherds, Beagle, Bull Terriers, Bloodhounds, Boston Terriers, Barbet, French Bulldogs, Bichon Frise, Dutch shepherds, Poodles, Staffies, Pointer, Pug, Rottweiler, Collies, Great Danes, Great Pyrenees, English Setters, Newfoundland, that are good with other dogs.
On the other hand, the list of dog breeds that are not compatible with other dogs includes:
Akita, American Bulldog, Border Terrier, Bulldog, Chihuahua, Chow Chow, Doberman Pinscher, German Shepherd, Mastiff, Pomeranian, etc.
1. Dog Friendly – Australian Cattle Dog With Other Dogs
Used as sheepherders for their toughness and aggression one might suspect them to be arrogant and hostile towards other dogs but that is not the case.
Blue Heelers are great comrades when it turns to their relationship with other dogs. They neither try to dominate others nor they shy away and lose their confidence, they tend to be playful with other dogs.
Seeing them as playmates, they would rather enjoy company by playing tag or fetching twigs. They can also socialize with other dogs to complete the tasks assigned to them like herding sheep or finding lost objects.
Overall they have an accommodating and friendly nature and are great collaborators.
2. Very Sensitive
Heelers tend to take things to heart and lose confidence easily, this can happen when they think their share of love and attention is being shared with somebody else.
You must be very careful about their sensitivity and make sure they don’t get neglected.
Have a proper schedule for their food, grooming needs, and playtime.
Don’t pet too many that you cannot give love and care to each dog in the manner it deserves.
3. Easily Trained
A good side to this high intelligence is their trainability. Heelers grasp new behaviors quite well.
Consequently, when they are trained to live with other dogs, it doesn’t take much time for them to adopt.
For better results you can train them as pups, dogs are more likely to be friendly to their littermates than adults.
Playing together also makes this connection even stronger. The more you engage them in group activities like fetching, hunting, and herding the more they will bond together and think of other dogs as their fellows.
ACDs have a consistent need to go out and use their energy. Whether it is utilized in sports or chores it doesn’t matter.
They would want playmates who can replicate this behavior and have similar energy levels to keep up with them.
Otherwise, It can result in negative behaviors and detachment from the group.
Dogs like the Great Pyr, Collier, and Shepherds are great companions for Heelers because of their outgoing nature and energy.
5. Nips and Bites
ACDs have a natural predisposition to nipping and biting. They will try to bite almost anything, be it a sheep, or another dog. This can be perceived as negative behavior by other dogs and lead to conflicts.
It can be avoided by training them from the start via positive reinforcement where they get rewarded when they remain peaceful and do not nibble on other animals.
Loyalty runs in their blood, quite literally. Heelers are not fond of sharing their masters with other dogs.
You will have to show your love consistently to them through your actions, or else they might get offended.
Although, this behavior is common in adult Heelers and relatively uncommon in youngs raised together with other dogs.
Here’s a video that shows how to train Blue Heeler’s dog aggression:
Frequently Asked Questions
Following are some of the questions I have received in live training sessions.
Which dogs have better compatibility with Blue Heelers?
Blue Heelers tend to like dogs similar to them in traits. This means dogs that are playful, intelligent, and extroverted.
Some of their best companions are German Shepherds, Great Pyrs, Pitbull, and Colliers.
With that said, Heelers can be trained to live happily with most dog species if they are trained right especially as a pup.
Why do Heelers bite a lot?
They are a breed designed for cattle herding and protection, which naturally makes them aggressive.
Australian cattle dogs derive their name ‘Heelers’ from their act of nibbling the heels of the sheep they would herd.
Still, with positive reinforcement, they can be encouraged to adopt a more calm and less aggressive behavior.
Blue Heelers are a compassionate species that loves mingling with humans and dogs alike.
Where they have a fun-loving nature and enjoy having playmates, they also are possessive of their owners and can be contentious.
A lot depends on how you bring them up with other dogs and whether you can manage to have multiple dogs as pets or not.
Every dog deserves the right amount of attention, care, and love, and once provided, they can be trained to live with others quite easily.