Blue Heelers, otherwise known as Australian Cattle dogs, are an obedient and energetic working dog breed with a unique, blue or red color speckling. With such liveliness, it’s essential to find out how big they get – and what age they typically reach their final size. Here is what you need to know.
So, how big do Blue Heelers get? The average Blue Heeler will reach between 17-20 inches in height, and between 30-50 pounds in weight when fully grown. They typically take between 18-24 months to reach their final size. Males are generally slightly larger than females, although either way they are classified as medium-sized dogs.
Blue Heelers are loyal, intelligent, and hardworking. They are in many ways still happiest when they have a purposeful job to do, or when kept busy.
Their best-known trait may just be their fierce loyalty, both when working and when around their owners.
They adore figuring out puzzles, are devoted beyond question, love to be active, and have an intense dislike of being forced away from the humans they idolize.
If you are considering getting a Blue Heeler, you may be wondering just how big this intriguing breed will get. If so, read on for all the info you need to know!
What Is The Average Size Of A Blue Heeler?
The average height of a Blue Heeler is between 17-20 inches (43 and 51 cm) and the average weight is between 30 to 50 pounds.
That’s the general measurements for the breed.
But there is a difference between males and females, with males being slightly bigger:
- The average female Blue Heeler has a height of between 17-18″ (45-48 cm) at the shoulder, and a weight of between 30-35 lbs. (14-16 kg)
- The average male Blue Heeler stands at 18-20″ (46-51 cm) at the shoulder, and a weight of between 35-50 lbs. (14-22 kg)
As you can see, there is little difference – particularly in height, between the two.
These average sizes follow the guidelines set out by the American Kennel Club (AKC), which granted membership to the Blue Heeler in 1980.
At What Age Is A Blue Heeler Full Grown?
Blue Heelers are considered to be a medium dog breed, fully grown by around 18 to 24 months of age.
Although their growth plates have finished healing between 11 and 12 months of age, their final height tends to be reached between 9 and 11 months.
They often do not reach their full weight, however, until they are between 18 and 24 months of age.
The additional time it takes for them to put on their weight is why they are only considered grown after they have reached their target height.
Below we will take a look at the respective growth rates of both male and female Blue Heelers:
Growth Of A Male Blue Heeler
- The weight of a male Blue Heeler at 3 months should be between 13 and 15 lbs (pounds).
- At 6 months, they will likely weigh between 24 and 26 lbs (pounds).
- At 1 year, a male Blue Heeler should weigh between 31 and 35 lbs (pounds).
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Growth of a Female Blue Heeler
- The weight of a female Blue Heeler at 3 months should be between 12 and 14 lbs (pounds).
- At 6 months, they will likely weigh between 23 and 26 lbs (pounds).
- At 1 year, a female Blue Heeler should weigh between 30 and 34 lbs (pounds).
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As you will see, the weight of a greyhound of the same age can vary by quite a bit but can still fall within the breed standards healthy range.
It is also usual for Blue Heeler litters to have one or two runts born in their litters.
Although born far smaller than their littermates, most of the time these little ones completely bridge the gap, or even get larger than their brothers and sisters!
When choosing puppies, some people prefer to choose the runt in the mistaken belief that they will end up with a smaller dog once fully grown. This is generally not the case.
What Do Blue Heelers Look Like Once Fully Grown?
This medium-sized breed has several interesting characteristics once they are fully grown.
Derived from Dingos in Australia, and bred with collies that have smooth coats, the Blue Heeler is fascinating to look at.
Interestingly enough, all Blue Heeler puppies are born white. The white is apparently an inherited genetic trait from Dalmatians somewhere down through their lineage.
As they grow, their white puppy coat is replaced by the colors they will have as adults. There are several possible colors that a pup may turn into.
The only exception to this is Blue Heeler pups that are born with colored markings on their face. These will always remain the same.
The actual coloring is either red-speckled (Red Heeler), or blue-speckled (Blue Heeler). The Blue Heeler has striking marks, unlike any other dog.
A Blue Heeler’s body is a striking dark blue, and the lighter blue speckles are evenly distributed. Around the head, chest, and legs are marked with tan.
Their eye color is predominantly brown, and more often than not, around those beautiful eyes and ears will be black patches made even more noticeable by a white fur patch smack in the middle of their foreheads.
Marking colors on the heads of the blue-speckled are tan, blue, and black. No two look exactly the same, so you can guarantee that you will be getting a very unique adult dog.
Blue Heelers shed plenty, due to their short, thick double coats. This makes them a poor choice for those who suffer from allergies to dogs.
Bred to help with herding cattle on large ranges and wide, open ranches, there is no denying the power, leanness, and muscularity of a Blue Heeler, even with only a quick glance.
Their small ears sit tall and erect on the head, and they are set quite wide apart.
Their feet have short toes pointing out from feet that are small and round. The tail is long, and it is usually held down, although it still manages to curve upward.
What Are The Factors That Influence A Blue Heelers Size?
The size of a Blue Heeler is influenced most by what they are bred for.
Breed standards apply to litters of Blue Heelers that are bred for show, and because of this, there is hardly any deviation from the standard size.
Dogs that are not bred for show, but instead bred from working lines, are more likely to vary from the breed standard.
As discussed before, there is not much change from a male to female Blue Heeler, but it is still a contributing factor to their final size.
There are also miniature Blue Heelers. These smaller versions come from the very careful breeding of males and females that are far smaller than normal for the breed standard.
It takes generations of breeding to get the line down to miniature size, so it is far more common to see average size dogs.
The other factor that influences their size is the actual build and body size type. As with any breed, this can vary from one dog to the next, sometimes significantly.
Their body overall is usually quite compact. While this may sound strange, the tail also influences the size of a Blue Heeler.
The body should be slightly longer than the tail, so dogs with shorter tails will be smaller than others.
Does Blue Heeler Size Change Over Time?
The typical Blue Heeler size does not change much over adulthood, although this breed does have a propensity to gain weight relatively easily.
They obviously grow from puppies into adults, which does change their size, as do all dogs.
The confusion over whether or not their size changes over time may come from the fact that they continue to fill out past their first year.
So, they do not really get bigger, but rather fill in until at least 18 months of age. The only thing actually changing is their weight.
How Can I Keep My Blue Heeler At A Healthy Weight?
Although they are extremely active dogs, Blue Heelers should never be overfed.
With a propensity for bone and joint problems, such as elbow dysplasia, hip dysplasia, and osteochondritis dissecans, an overweight Blue Heeler could face serious health issues down the road.
The best way to avoid this starts with the puppy stage of feeding to keep your pet slim and trim.
Choose a good quality food that is appropriate for the age and weight of your puppy.
Be certain it contains all the protein, vitamins, and minerals they need, and that it is not filled with processed ingredients and fillers.
With their high energy needs, Heelers require huge amounts of protein, and it should be the first ingredient found on the dog food label.
Unless otherwise directed by a vet, follow the feeding guidelines that are printed on the bag.
Your particular Blue Heeler may need more or less than the suggested serving size, so keep an eye on how long it takes them to finish their meal.
Divide their daily amount of food into at least two meals. And three or four is even better).
This way they are never going too long without some food in their tummies. Weigh your pup often so that you can increase their portion size as needed.
Even if they are not overweight, Blue Heelers have high daily exercise requirements.
Since they were bred to herd, they have tons of energy because they are used to hard work.
Where some dogs need exercise to get rid of pent-up energy, Blue Heelers need a job to do and mental stimulation.
Able to reach top speeds of 30 mph, taking your dog for a daily run may be just the thing.
If you are not into running, long walks are still a must to keep your dog happy and healthy.
Each day they require a minimum of 1 to 2 hours of hard exercise. They love to chase, so throwing balls or sticks will take care of their need to do a job, and it gives them mental stimulation at the same time.
Blue Heelers that are well exercised are unlikely to become overweight unless they are grossly overfed.
Additionally, when they do not receive enough exercise, they become bored and their intelligence can quickly lead to destructive behavior as “payback”.
Another breed that shares this is Jack Russell Terriers.
They are so smart that their minds need to be kept constantly engaged to keep them from getting into mischief.
Overall, Blue Heelers are the perfect size of dog for most people.
The only question left to ask yourself before getting one is whether or not you will be able to keep up with them!
This medium-sized dog breed is very energetic and does need to be kept busy.
Many owners often report that their dogs are just not content sitting around the house and even encourage their owners to take them outside for exercise, play or even work.
Raising a Blue Heeler from a puppy will take work, and it helps to have previous experience.
With this breed, you need to be careful, especially if you have young children that you do not want to be herded!
Blue Heelers are not aggressive per se but have been known to nip in this kind of context.
Blue Heelers do not take many months to reach their expected height and weight, and they are not massive dogs once fully mature.
The importance of dog training for this breed is important. Thankfully, this breed is very intelligent and keen to please its owners; they are therefore considered easy to train.
By doing so, you should have a loyal and obedient dog that thrives off the companionship and enriching activities that you can provide.
Just consider the costs involved; like any dog, they do not typically come cheap!
Blue Heelers are not considered large dogs. Instead, they are classified as medium-sized dogs.
Blue hellers are considered to be medium-sized.
Blue heelers are considered and classified as medium-sized.
Other Blue Heeler guides you may want to read:
- Are Blue Heelers Aggressive?
- How To Train A Blue Heeler Puppy Not To Bite
- When Do Blue Heelers Calm Down?
- Do Blue Heelers Like To Cuddle?
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.