Do Blue Heelers (Australian Cattle Dogs) Like To Cuddle?

The Blue Heeler, also known as the Australian Cattle Dog, is a tough and energetic working dog.

His hardy nature made him perfect for the role of driving cattle in the rugged terrains of Australia.

As well as that, his alertness and cautiousness makes him a great guard dog. The Blue Heeler is an incredible herding dog who excels at his job.

But what about wanting to keep a Blue Heeler as a family dog?

How does the Blue Heeler do as a pet?

This article discusses the aspects of a Blue Heeler’s personality when he is together with his family. It will mainly focus on the question ‘do Blue Heelers like to cuddle?’.

Also, it will give advice on how to get your Blue Heeler to cuddle, and how to bond with your dog.


Do Blue Heelers Like To Cuddle?

Whether Blue Heelers like to cuddle depends more on the individual itself than on anything else. Many Blue Heelers, however, are not mad about cuddling.

It is true that this breed is extremely affectionate and loyal to his family.

Like most herding dogs, he loves human interaction and working along with his human partner.

However, the Blue Heeler does not always need as much cuddling as other breeds. He is an energetic dog that can become restless if he feels confined in any way.

Nonetheless, the approach toward cuddling with owners or family varies from dog to dog.

3 Reasons Why Your Blue Heeler Might Not Like To Cuddle

Some Blue Heeler owners may find that their dog is exceptionally cuddly and loves to snuggle up.

Others find that their Blue Heeler cannot settle down to even cuddle for a short while.

What are some reasons why a Blue Heeler may not like to cuddle?

Due To Their Nature

Blue Heelers are very hardy, sturdy, and independent working dogs. They were bred to do tough jobs in rough terrain and in an extremely hot climate.

Due to their nature, a Blue Heeler may not require or enjoy cuddling or physical touch like other breeds.

Instead, this dog may much rather prefer playing or exercising with his owner.

This is especially true if you have got your Blue Heeler from a working dog line. It may not be in his genes to be particularly fond of petting and cuddles.

On the other hand, this would be different for a Blue Heeler bred as a show dog or family pet.

In this instance, your Blue Heeler may enjoy physical affection just as much as other breeds.


Blue Heelers have exceptionally high energy levels, making them active and athletic dogs.

This energy comes from the fact that their original purposes was to drive cattle for long distances.

They have great stamina and can work on for many hours without tiring out. For this reason, many Cattle Dogs can act very restless a lot of the time.

They may not like to lay about not doing anything which they see as productive for long whiles.

They may also not like to feel constrained, as this will make them grow restless.

Restlessness is also caused by not giving your Blue Heeler enough physical activity on a daily basis.

If your Blue Heeler is not exercised properly, he will most likely not want to settle down for cuddles.

Not Enough Socialization Or Poor Upbringing

A dog not socialized enough or at all during its puppyhood can result in a number of negative outcomes.

First of all, they may grow to be rather shy toward humans. They may prefer their own company to that of their family, and could even act withdrawn toward others.

Poor socialization can even lead to fear or, on the other hand, aggression.

If you have got your Blue Heeler from a shelter or rescue center, there could be an even bigger likelihood of behavioral problems.

There is a chance that a Blue Heeler may have been abandoned or neglected as a puppy.

He may have also been treated poorly, or even abused. Socialization may have been completely absent from his upbringing.

As a result, your Blue Heeler may have grown up to completely avoid cuddling and human affection.

How Do I Get My Blue Heeler To Cuddle?

Whatever the reason may be for your Blue Heeler not liking to cuddle, what can be done about it?

How do I get my Blue Heeler to cuddle?

Fortunately, there are many ways to get your Blue Heeler to be more open to cuddling with you.

Below are some I have included:

Get Him Used To Receiving Affection From An Early Age

When getting a puppy, it is important to show him plenty of affection and love on a daily basis.

This will make him more likely to like cuddling even as an adult, and see human touch as normal.

A Blue Heeler puppy raised without much physical touch may become rather distant from humans.

He may not be used to receiving cuddles, and will grow up not to be fond of them.

Positive Reinforcement

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What if your Blue Heeler has been cuddled from early on in his life and still doesn’t enjoy it?

Cuddling in your dog can be encouraged through positive reinforcement.

Whenever your Blue Heeler comes over for affection, or allows you to cuddle him, reward the behaviors you want to see.

Rewarding a Blue Heeler simply for tolerance when cuddling can encourage him to repeat this behavior more often. He may even come to enjoy it.

He may link cuddling with something positive, like receiving [amazon link=”B076M77QHC” title=”a treat” link_icon=”amazon” /]. As well as that, a Blue Heeler is eager to please his owner.

Resultingly, seeing you happy and praising him for cuddling and showing affection can move him to do it more often.

Give Him Enough Physical Activity

When your Blue Heeler receives enough exercise on a daily basis, he will be happy and satisfied.

For that reason, he may be more open to cuddling. In addition, he won’t be restless and have excess energy, so he will be more relaxed.

He will also not try to escape or become uneasy when being cuddled.

How Do You Bond With A Blue Heeler?

Exercise Together

One of the things that a Blue Heeler is most fond of is exercise.

These highly energetic, active dogs need 1 to 2 hours of physical activity each day.

Exercising together is not only a great way to keep fit, but also a way to spend time with your Blue Heeler.

Going for walks, jogs, runs, swimming, or playing fun games builds a close bond and friendship with your dog.

In addition, it will help your Blue Heeler associate your presence with positive things.

Playing Games Together

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Playing together can not only be a form of physical activity, but also mental stimulation for a Blue Heeler.

Lack of regular mental stimulation can leave them extremely bored and prone to destructive behavior.

This breed needs to be doing something entertaining, and enjoys a challenge.

You can mentally stimulate your Blue Heeler in a number of ways. This includes through interactive toys, chewing, digging, or allowing your Cattle Dog to explore and find new scents.

However, there are also plenty of [amazon link=”B0719Q89XH” title=”mentally stimulating games” link_icon=”amazon” /] you can take part in as well with your dog.

Some of these include games like fetch, tug of war, hide and seek, and treasure hunts.

Not only will these provide entertainment, but also help you bond with your dog during the time spent together.

Sleep Or Rest In The Same Room

Dogs are social animals, and because of this enjoy sleeping or resting close to other pets and people.

This behavior is inherited from wolves, which usually rest and sleep close together in their packs.

Sleeping or resting in the same room with your Blue Heeler may promote a sense of comfort, reassurance, and security for him.

As a result, it will also likely strengthen the bond between you and your dog.

Obedience Practice And Teaching Him New Tricks

Even if you dog knows everything revolved around obedience, it can still be a great way to bond with him.

You can also teach him new skills, tricks or commands, which your Blue Heeler will be quick to learn.

How does obedience help you bond with your Blue Heeler?

First of all, it is due to the fact that a Blue Heeler will feel like it’s completing a purpose or a job.

Blue Heelers are very eager to please their owner and are happy when they can do something for them.

Also, being praised and rewarded with a treat will make it even better for them. In turn, this will make the friendship between both of you stronger.

Are Cattle Dogs Good Pets?

Australian Cattle Dogs and Hound Mix by Andrea Arden (CC BY 2.0)

Cattle Dogs are good pets for a number of reasons. They are extremely loyal and affectionate with their families, forming a strong bond with them.

They are intelligent, fast-learning and obedient dogs that enjoy working with their owners.

As well as that, the Blue Heeler is a brave and courageous dog who is very protective of his family. They are alert, watchful, cautious, and wary of strangers.

Therefore, due to possessing such attributes, Blue Heelers can make great guard dogs.

They will alert their owner at any sign of danger, and may even save their life from a real intruder.

What can make the Cattle Dog such a good protector?

It is true that some guard dog breeds may simply bark to scare away someone who has broken into your home.

While this is a good thing, a Blue Heeler may offer extra protection. These dogs instinctively nip and bite at the heel when perceiving a threat in someone.

This behavior is a natural maneuver they would have used in driving herds of cattle through the terrains of Australia.

This is a great defense and an action which will definitely scare someone away.

In addition, Cattle Dogs can be a playful and lively family companion, both to their owners and to children.

They are gentle and very affectionate with children as long as they are socialized properly from an early age.

They will also protect your children, which is a bonus.

Importance Of Physical Activity

However, Blue Heelers are best suited dogs to families which regularly take part in physical activity.

Exercise is an extremely important aspect of owning one of these hardworking dogs.

Their level of energy cannot be underestimated or ignored. It can not only result in hyperactivity and restlessness, but also in destructive behaviors.

For this reason, a very busy family who is always away from the house will not be ideal for a Blue Heeler.

A family which prefers to stay inside and relax all day is also not greatly suited to keeping a Blue Heeler as a pet.

It takes time and dedication to look after this dog who not only needs plenty of exercise, but also mental stimulation.

This is crucial in keeping your Blue Heeler busy, happy, and satisfied.

Nonetheless, if you are sure you can look after all of a Blue Heeler’s needs, this dog will be right for you.


Do Blue Heelers like to cuddle?

A lot of Blue Heelers are not extremely fond of cuddling, and may prefer to show their affection in other ways.

This is mostly due to their nature, their energy and restlessness, or other facts which can affect all dogs.

However, this also depends on the individual. There are many Blue Heelers which love to cuddle and enjoy physical touch from their owner.

But what if your Blue Heeler does not like to cuddle and you would like him to?

If that’s the case, there are plenty of ways you can encourage your dog to cuddle. This includes a good upbringing, positive reinforcement, and lots of physical activity.

Exercising, obedience, games, and fun together can also strengthen the bond with your Blue Heeler.

The stronger that your bond is with your dog, the better the chance that he will enjoy cuddling with you.

Authored By

Madeline Wright

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