We all love Bluey and Bingo—the stars of mega-hit Bluey—but is an Australian cattle dog right for you?
australian cattle dog puppy lays in green grass
Credit: Kieran McMichael / Getty Images

Bluey, the anthropomorphic titular character of (alleged) children's show Bluey, is an Australian cattle dog. She's part of an entire family of cattle dogs—hence the last name of Heeler—and the hit Australian show portrays the breed accurately: energetic, curious, and quite intelligent. 

If you need any confirmation, ask one of the millions of children or parents across the globe who've watched Bluey since its 2018 release. Bluey and her sister Bingo play almost nonstop; can be a little stubborn; and are plenty tough (and a little stubby). It's no accident they represent the breed's real-life temperament. 

"They're sort of the dog of Australia," executive producer Daley Pearson said last year. "They're inexhaustible. They're very smart, loyal, loving."

(Bluey is also the name of a real-life heeler who previously held the world record for the oldest living dog at 29 years, 5 months.) 

In fact, I'm guessing there are a few heeler owners out there who relate most to Bandit and Chilli, Bluey's parents who deeply love their daughters while often struggling to match their energy levels. (Especially when they're, perhaps, hungover.)

Lean More About the Australian Cattle Dog

To be clear, there's no Australian cattle dog vs. blue heeler comparison because they're the same breed. Bright-blue Bluey and Bandit are blue heelers while Chilli and Bingo are red heelers. 

Heelers' fur colors include different shades of blue, red, black, and gray—the color of Muffin, Bluey's extremely loud and opinionated cousin

australian cattle dog puppy sits on dirt road
Credit: Zack Gowing

Generally, Heelers are medium-sized dogs with oversized amounts of energy and stamina. They were bred to herd cattle over vast swaths of Australian land, so they needed it. You probably don't have that much land at your disposal, so prospective heeler owners need to plan for a lifestyle of dog-friendly games, exercise, and training. Classes are a good idea, and maybe you can try dock diving or flyball, too.   

Live in an apartment? I'm not saying it's impossible, but you're probably better off with a different breed.

Real-life Blueys and Bingos are loyal and love their owners like many dogs do, but you have to make sure they have enough tasks to occupy their bodies and minds. Otherwise, a bored heeler can turn into a destructive heeler. They may not be for you, and that's OK. 

Other Bluey Character Breeds (We Think)  

The Heelers' adventures and silliness are hardly contained within the family. Bluey's games and capers often include her friends, classmates, and neighbors. Thanks to the show, the Bluey wiki, and their on-screen appearance, we have a decent idea of which breeds they are. Let's meet them. 

Calypso: This Australian shepherd is Bluey's teacher. 

Chloe: Bluey's best friend is a Dalmatian

Chucky: Bluey and Bingo's younger neighbor, a Labrador retriever.

Coco: Another of Bluey's friends, Coco is a poodle

Fido: Winnie's dad is a Labrador retriever and, finally, Bandit's friend.

Honey: Yet another of Bluey's friends. She's a beagle

Indy: Boy, Bluey has a lot of friends. Indy is an Afghan hound

Jack: One of Bluey's classmates, this youngster is an energetic Jack Russell terrier

Janelle: Chucky and Luck's mom and Pat's better half is a Lab.  

Judo: Bluey's chow chow neighbor who doesn't always play nicely. 

Lila: Bingo's best friend is a Maltese

Lucky: Chucky's Lab brother, neighbor to Bluey and Bingo.

Mackenzie: Another of Bluey's friends, Mackenzie is a border collie from New Zealand.

Pat: Also known as Lucky's Dad, the Heelers' neighbor is a Lab.

Pom Pom: A "small and hearty" Pomeranian

Rusty: Another friend of Bluey's, an adventurous Australian kelpie

Snickers: Bluey's dachshund friend who is very smart. 

Unicorse: The worst unicorn in the world. 

Wendy: Judo's mom, also a chow chow who often witnesses Heeler tomfoolery. 

Winnie: Bluey's Lab friend she met at the park.