How Fast Can A Blue Heeler (Australian Cattle Dog) Run?

The main factor when deciding which dog is right for you is that it should match your personality and lifestyle.

So, if you’re someone who likes running, you should find a dog that can keep up with you and your tempo.

You’ve probably run across many online articles listing the dogs that make the best running companions.

One name is a staple on all these lists – Australian Cattle Dog.

Also known as Blue or Red Heeler, this dog is agile and bursting with energy. They like nothing more than having the freedom to run as much as possible.

Besides, they have the speed and stamina to back it up.

In this article, I’ll go into details of how fast can Australian Cattle Dogs run, how durable are they, and why you should choose them as your running mate.


How Fast Can A Blue Heeler/Australian Cattle Dog Run?

Blue Heeler Australian Cattle Dog by Pleple2000 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

When running or riding a bike, you want a dog that can keep up with your pace. Athletic, long, and weighing at around 35 pounds, the Heelers are built for running.

Just how fast can Blue Heelers run often depends on the individual dog and its genetics and training.

However, on average, Blue Heelers can run around 25 miles per hour. In full sprint, they can easily reach 30 mph.

This doesn’t put them at the very top of the list of the fastest dogs, but it’s still more than respectable speed.

It’ more than enough for them to keep up with whatever athletic task you put in front of them. With them able to run at that speed, you better make sure to train them right.

Otherwise, you may find yourself not being able to catch up when they go on one of their trademark sprints.

Heelers, as a breed, have an independent streak, so this may be a problem if they’re not properly trained.

Alternatively, you may use the collar or harness with a leash around 3-5 feet long.

How Long Can A Blue Heeler/Australian Cattle Dog Run?

Australian Cattle Dog “Silverbarn’s Naava” by Eva Holderegger Walser (CC BY-SA 2.5)

When it comes to endurance, Australian Cattle Dog hardly has a match among other breeds.

They’re among the toughest dogs, both mentally and physically. Historically, ACDs were bred in Australia for cattle herding.

This often required driving the livestock for miles across the roughest terrains of the Australian outback.

So, it’s no wonder that today they have exceptional endurance and stamina. They can easily be active from sunup to sundown.

A fully healthy adult Australian Cattle dog can easily run upwards of 5 miles and can safely join you for more than 50 miles of running per week.

If you’re more of a hiking person, your Heeler will enjoy accompanying you on half-day or full-day hikes.

Plus, thanks to their thick double coat, they can easily withstand running distances no matter the weather.

Some specimens can even run half-marathon or marathon distances. The key is in conditioning. Just like humans,

Blue Heelers need to build up their fitness.

You can’t just start with 30-minute runs from day one. Also, be careful not to overexercise your dog. Forcing it to run excessively can lead to serious health problems.

Overworked ACDs can experience overheating or collapse and suffer joint, tendon, and muscle injuries. Of course, always remember to bring water for your pooch.

Heelers are so eager to run and work that they can drive themselves to exhaustion.

Are Blue Heelers/Australian Cattle Dogs Good Running Partners?

Australian Cattle Dogs are fantastic running companions. Thanks to their herding mentality, they’re always eager to work, be active, and excel at everything they do.

They see running as another task they need to perform, which makes them more than willing partners whenever you go for a run.

Furthermore, their work ethic is so strong that they will often be the ones motivating you to go running.

If you get ACDs used to the daily running routine and decide to skip a day, they will basically try to push you out for a jog.

Plus, thanks to their thick double coat, they can easily withstand running no matter the weather and be your partner in all seasons.

When Can You Start Running With Your Blue Heeler/Australian Cattle Dog?

Most dog owners believe that you shouldn’t start running with your pup until it’s one year old. However, that’s a common misconception.

Dogs younger than that age already play fetch or run around chasing frisbee which is much more intense physical activity than plain running.

Plus, it carries more potential risk for joint or hip injuries.

You should be able to start running with your Australian Cattle Dog as soon as is three or four months old.

Nevertheless, it’s important to remember that you should never force your pup to run.

It’s vital that you learn to listen to your dog. If it slows down, you should slow down too. If it stops, you should stop and give it time to rest.

Starting running with your ACD at a young age will help you create a connection and build running habits.

The Benefits of Running with Blue Heelers/Australian Cattle Dogs

If I were to list all benefits of having your dog as a running partner, I would need way more space.

But, here are a couple of the most obvious ones.

It’s Fun

If we’re being honest, running can often be monotonous and boring.

Bringing your dog with you will make running more fun and add an element of play into your daily routine


A dog will motivate you to push harder and test your limits. It won’t complain about tiredness or bad weather.

Even on a day you don’t feel like running, your pooch will likely be dragging you out the door.


A daily run with your dog will help you build a strong relationship.

It will also increase its obedience and make it follow your commands better.

Physical and Mental Benefits

If you own a naturally active breed, such as Australian Cattle Dog, daily exercise is essential in keeping your pet healthy and happy.

It will not only build up its fitness but reduce depression and anxiety. Of course, this goes both ways.

Partnering with your dog while running will have the same effect on you.


If you’re looking for a four-legged running buddy, Australian Cattle Dog should be at the top of your list.

These athletic, tireless, and highly trainable dogs are always eager to go for a run. In fact, it’s one of their main traits and is necessary to keep them healthy.

Due to their genetics, you certainly won’t have to worry if they can follow your tempo.

It’s not by accident that they’re one of the favorite breeds that professional runners use to keep them company while training.

Knowing how fast can Australian Cattle Dogs run and for how long, the main question probably is if you’ll be able to keep up with them.

Authored By

Madeline Wright

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