Australian Shepherd x Australian Cattle Dog
(also referred to as Texas Heelers)
DoB: May 2010 (litter mates)
HERDING INSTINCT: Unknown
ISSUES: pull on leash a little; jump up for attention; not trustworthy around cats or rodents.
This group of seniors were surrendered by the owner's surviving children. The owner, who recently died after a long battle with bone cancer, had intended to re-home the dogs but did not get the chance & the adult children did not have the heart to re-home them while she was battling the disease.
These guys are big, fluffy, lovable sweethearts! They love people of all sizes and ages. They are all generally good around other dogs of any size. They do not love every dog they meet but they are polite when they meet them.
They are all very food/treat motivated and they all like to chase &/or carryballs, squeaky toys, stuffy toys or shredding paper. They took to crate training no problem but BJ & Festus seem to be the escape artists, whether out of a crate or pulling up wire fencing or paneling & squishing underneath (especially if the feral cats are tempting them on the other side of the fence).
For their bulky size, they are pretty active dogs and if they lost any more weight, they would look funny. The 4 that resemble the Australian Shepherds have huge coats that will require regular grooming. Cowboy & Sally are wash 'n' go.
This crew is pretty happy go lucky and would be happy to be the center of your attention!
Cowboy is the patriarch of the group. He basically leads everyone else around & they take their cues from him. He is polite meeting any new dog but if another male thinks he's going to be boss, Cowboy will enlighten him.
Cowboy will dance in place for his food or treats. He gets so excited about eating. He LOVES his squeaky toys & will carry one around with him all the time. However, he will gut the squeaky if he takes it to his kennel with him so it is best to give him a chew toy or cow hoof to keep him occupied. He also likes to play with laundry, paper, things that can be shredded (bags of shavings)...
FYI...Runs much faster, & jumps higher, than you think he can, especially if he sees a cat or skunk.
BJ is a sweetheart. He does not jump up for attention but soaks up every bit of love you give him. BJ is the most worried about being wrong & will curl his butt right to his shoulder when he is happy you are talking to him.
He is a very gentle soul but is still somewhat sneaky. He has been the one to pull apart wire kennels or fencing to get out. He's not as good about getting out of the plastic hard sided crates. He was at his most destructive when he first arrived & was not used to being separated from Festus. They are much more independent of each other now & although they are still kenneled near each other, we don't think they need to be.
Festus, like BJ, is a gentle soul & somewhat worried about being wrong. However, he does have more confidence than BJ but not as demanding for attention as Roper. Festus also laps up all the attention he can get & will somehow end up in your lap without you knowing it.
Festus is a pretty easy keeper & likes his treats. They all do like their treats but Festus (& Roper) seem to pack them on easily & keeping a bit of a defined waistline is challenging. Fortunately, he also likes to play fetch & enjoys the squeaky toys so it helps in keeping him fit.