Australian Cattle Dog

Updated: Jul 3, 2018

Other Names : Blue Heeler, Hall's Heeler, AuCaDo

Country of Origin : Australia

Dog Group : Working Dog


The Australian Cattle Dog is the outcome of a deliberate breeding programme. Various dogs with specific abilities were crossbred over a period of 60 years. During the 1830's a collie type dog was crossed with the native wild Dingo. The result was a dog, called Timmon's Biters, that barked less and was better at driving the herds. In the 1840's 2 blue-merle smooth coated collies were crossed with the Dingo, the best of the resulting litter were kept. These dogs were known as Hall's Heelers. Timmon's Biters, Hall's Heelers and Dingos were used in further breeding experiments. One experiment involved a male Dingo being bred with a blue merle collie. A Dalmatian was then introduced which made the breed good with horses but not as good at herding. The Bull Terrier was then added but made the dogs too rough so they were bred out. They can still be seen, ever so slightly, in the AuCaDo of today, in their head shape and temperament. Later on the black and tan was added, this reintroduced the original herding capabilities. This was the final dog to be used in the breeding programme and the AuCaDo has been bred true since 1893.


Dogs of great stamina and endurance, Australian Cattle Dogs are a picture of strength and agility, with intense watchful eyes. They are compact and symmetrical and should look well-muscled, with a double coat. The undercoat is smooth, short and dense; the outer coat is hard, straight and weather-resistant. They move freely and tirelessly with powerful drive from the hindquarters and are capable of quick and sudden actions.

Feeding & Ownership

This dog is relatively easy to feed, only really requiring greater nutrition during working periods.


AuCaDo's are extremely courageous and hard-working, always being alert to the job on hand. They will behave in an exemplary manner towards children and other household pets if adequately socialised when young. They are a quiet breed, barking very little and are very loyal to their handlers. They are versatile dogs, giving lots of satisfaction to their families and enjoying being involved in all family matters, They generally prefer to be the only dog in the household.


AuCaDo's require very little grooming; an occasional brush or comb is all that is required.


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