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Australian Cattle Dog / Pitbull Mix

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Is the Australian Cattle Dog / Pitbull Mix right for you?

Species group:

The basics:
RightPet does not advocate the intentional cross-breeding of purebred dogs. But the reality is that most dogs available for adoption at shelters and rescues are mixed breeds. We think it might be helpful to hear from owners of these mixes to see what traits can be found in these dogs who are desperately needing homes.

What are you getting with the so-called Australian Cattle Dog / Pitbull Mix? In some cases, you're getting the Pit Heeler-- the cross between a pure American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT) and a pure Australian Cattle Dog (also called a Heeler). In other cases, you may be getting some other cross of the Heeler with an APBT mix, an AmStaff or AmStaff mix, or another mix that a casual dog owner might refer to as a pit bull mix. Whatever you're getting, you will need to check to be sure you are allowed to own so-called pit bull mixes in your area.

Appearance / health:
It's impossible to predict the exact traits inherited by a mixed-breed dog, and the appearance of your pet could be different depending on whether the Australian Cattle Dog or the so-called pit bull traits dominate.

Behavior / temperament:
While it's impossible to predict the exact personality of a mixed-breed, it's always important to be a responsible, experienced owner when you're working with any bully breed mix, because of the controversies surrounding them. Owners often report that these dogs are among the sweetest and most loyal to their families, but you must also socialize those protective instincts so they don't represent a threat to your neighbors.

An added complication is that the herding dog genes may encourage some individuals to nip-- and a biting dog with the muscles of a pit bull could be a dangerous one.

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