Bluey is a super sweet, even tempered, very loving, friendly Australian cattle dog, with possibly a bit of border collie. He weighs 45 lbs. and we estimate that he is 15-18 months old. Bluey is also essentially deaf. In new situations, or when first meeting people or other dogs, he is unsure of himself and tends to be shy. Once he feels comfortable and knows things are okay, he becomes very loving and playful. Since he cannot hear, Bluey is very observant, and big on checking in often and making eye contact with with people. He also tries very hard to understand what you want, and to do it.
He is a great dog, who very attentive and responsive to people, and he very is eager to please. His only issues are easily addressed and are not his fault. People in his past never worked to teach him anything. Bluey is just beginning to learn basic manners, boundaries, and obedience commands with hand signals. These can easily be learned with consistent guidance and training practice. We asked a wonderful, very experienced dog trainer to evaluate Bluey, and he described Bluey as a “treasure,” which we had never heard him say about any dog before. He later told us that if he had the ability to add another dog to his household, he would take Bluey.
Our boy very social with people (including children) and other dogs. When petting him, he’ll roll over for you to pet his belly. Bluey is just a silly guy who has the best intentions. He exhibits excellent body language with other dogs. Bluey would do well with another dog to learn from. Because he lacks experience in many situations, he closely watches and copies what other dogs do. When having a play date, he saw a dog use a doggie door and was at first puzzled by it. A few minutes later he copied her and was suddenly inside the house. There is not a mean bone in his body. His fosters have cats, and Bluey is curious, but calm and respectful around the cats.
While Bluey is his full size, mentally he is just a big puppy. He loves dog toys, shaking and tossing the soft plush toys, and he is very keen on chew toys. He enjoys chew treats, such as bully sticks. He has not shown any guarding behavior at all
Bluey is very much like a human toddler. He treats everyone like a littermate. When the puppy in him wants attention, or to play with either a human or another dog, he can be pushy about it, often using his paws to get a response from humans or other dogs. Bluey doesn’t realize how big he is, or the using his paw to pat a small dog or a child could scratch or injure them. We are working on having him keep his paws to himself. When he is trying to get someone to play with him, he can become a little mouthy and nibbling. His instinct is to use his mouth to show you what he wants and to communicate. He will try to take your hand or pull at your pant leg to get your attention and tell you it’s time to play. Like a small child who wants to hog the attention, if you are petting another dog, he will run over and try to squeeze himself in and edge the other dog out. He takes corrections from other dogs very well. He remains good natured a will back off when other dogs growl or nip at him.
Bluey rarely ever truly barks. He is most vocal when actively playing with another dog, and he begins his ultra-high pitched, excited cattle dog bark. Still a baby, he will also cry if he’s afraid or worried.
Here are YouTube links to videos of Bluey playing with other dogs: https://youtu.be/0a3ZyGeDGRk
He has the velcro nature of a cattle dog, who wants to belong to a family/pack, and to have a human to bond and hang out with. Bluey’s fosters have an 8 year old daughter. When she had a sleep-over, Bluey and the girls played every waking minute. He has the energy to run and play in spurts during the day, but he is also often content to be inside, relaxing near his person.
Bluey seems to be a medium energy dog, which is unusual for a young herding dog. He seems to be content with a 10-15 minute session of highly active play, punctuated by a rest/nap time period. Having several blood pumping exercise each day, makes him much calmer and less fidgety inside the house. Sometimes after playing or running around, he becomes energized and overly stimulated, and needs an adult to stop the action for a few minutes to settle him down.
With normal body language used to train any dog, we are working to teach him manners and appropriate vs inappropriate behaviors, and we have also begun teaching him hand signal commands.
Bluey is learning to sleep in a large crate at night, but he is afraid of being alone in the dark. He sometimes wakes up while it is still dark and if he believes that he is alone, he will begin to cry. If there is a night light on and he can see someone, he will be okay. Bluey also loves to be outside and play, but he is very afraid of being left outside alone, especially when it is dark outside. Bluey tends to be afraid of getting into a car and during the ride. He will climb in if another dog he knows is in the car, and if he is consistently taken to a fun place by the same person and car, he becomes happy to get in and ride to his play date.
Our boy walks fairly well on leash. He does not pull, but he does zig-zag. He seems to be housebroken. However, his movements must be watched and managed during the first day or two in a new home, in case he tries to mark, especially if he detects the smell of another male dog. He was neutered on Nov. 23, 2022, and it may take a few months for his marking behavior to diminish.
Bluey is an all around great dog, who possesses a wonderful nature and excellent personality traits that cannot be taught. However, he is not a turn-key dog. Mentally he is still a baby. He needs people who understand the work and time involved to manage his energy and excitement, and teach him manners, boundaries, and basic obedience commands. We are seeking adopters for Bluey who are willing to work with him, and enable him reach his full potential.
Potential adopters must be willing to have an adoption transition process to allow him to make the mental transition to new people and a new situation. We prefer that potential adopters live within a 1-2 hour drive of the Santa Rosa, CA, area.