Blue Heeler Lifespan: How Long Do These Pups Live?

Written by Alyssa Shea
Updated: August 16, 2023
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Australian cattle dogs, also known as blue heelers, are a popular dog breed for good reason! They’re incredibly intelligent herding dogs that tend to outwit their owners! Are you ready to learn more about these pups and their lifespan?

Average Life Expectancy

The blue heeler is a hardy breed. This means most live a long, healthy life. However, some common health conditions to keep an eye out for are:

  • Canine Hip Dysplasia
  • Deafness
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy
  • Urolithiasis

All things considered, the average life expectancy for a Blue Heeler is between 12 to 16 years, though one famous blue heeler named Bluey lived for 29 years and five months!

Blue Heeler lifespan
Blue heeler dogs originate in Australia.

The History Behind the Breed

Did you know that Blue Heelers were bred by Australian settlers by cross-breeding common dogs with the Australian dingo? You can expect these dogs to weigh between 35 to 50 pounds and stand at around 17 to 20 inches. As puppies, their fur is white but will turn a deep blue or silver-blue hue and can also have other markings. As the first known successful Australian dog breed, this cattle-herding pup was first bred in the 1800s!

food for blue heelers

Blue heelers’ fur is white when they’re puppies, but as they age, it shifts to a deep blue or silver-blue hue.

©WOLF AVNI/Shutterstock.com

Will a Blue Heeler Fit in With Your Family?

Blue heelers are known for their intelligence and fierce loyalty. They have high energy levels, so they can definitely keep up with your active children. However, you might want to wait until your children are older to add one to your family. Their high prey drive and natural herding tendencies mean they might nip at your toddlers in order to corral them.

How to Feed Your Blue Heeler

Your heeler will require three to four meals per day as a puppy. Equally dividing the meals will ensure your puppy develops appropriately. As your dog gets older, you can plan to provide meals twice daily. The amount will depend on the type of kibble you choose to feed them. You can include wet food in their diet to create a healthy, shiny coat!

Exercise and Training Tips

Your blue heeler will require a lot more exercise than you might think! Most owners give their heelers at least two hours of exercise per day. Sending them to a daycare facility while you’re at work can help to tire them out. Taking them on daily walks of 45 to 60 minutes is also crucial. When it comes to training, you should plan on only introducing one behavior or skill at a time. Utilizing short training sessions and being consistent will lead you and your pup to success!

Blue heeler looking up

Blue heelers are intelligent dogs and loving companions.

©iStock.com/Tatyana Consaul

Grooming Needs

Blue heelers have a double coat of fur. This coat protects their skin and helps to keep it clean. As such, this means you can expect a lot of shedding! Avoid shaving your heeler, as this can damage its coats of fur. Heelers have periods of high, seasonal shedding, which is also known as “blowing their coat.” Due to this, they can be a difficult breed to own if you have allergies. Plan on bathing them every 8 to 10 weeks and daily combing.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © iStock.com/Carmelka

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About the Author

I'm a 36-year-old mother of 2 and military wife. I have 2 dogs and a cat that I'm thoroughly obsessed with. When I'm not writing for work, I'm writing as a hobby. You can find me knee deep in a pile of books or way too invested in a video game.

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