Heeler Pei

45-50 lbs
United States
Australian Cattle Dog
Chinese Shar-Pei
The Heeler Pei dog is a cross between the Australian Cattle Dog and the Chinese Shar-Pei. This blending of the breeds has produced a dog that is medium in size, with moderate activity requirements and a dog that often bonds more with one person but who will extend his protection and some affection to other family members. With a strong muscular build, the Heeler Pei is an attractive dog that requires a strong pack leader as an owner. They are devoted dogs, although if you want a cuddly dog you may be disappointed by their independent and slightly stand offish nature. They are good with children as long as they don't pull the tail, ears, or interfere with the dog at feeding time. The Heeler Pei can bond with other pets as long as they have grown up with them, but they do have a strong prey drive (especially from the Australian Cattle Dog parent) so anything else but the family pets is considered fair game. Both parent dogs are distrustful of strangers, and so it is with the Heeler Pei,  and they can be highly territorial. Training and socialising when young will help overcome some of this tendency. Intelligent, stubborn, willing to please, and a real character, this dog is not for inexperienced owners but will shine under strong leadership.
Working dog, herding dog, companion, agility and obedience
Date of Origin
Australian Cattle dog, Shar-Pei

Heeler Pei Health

Average Size
Male Heeler Pei size stats
Height: 19-20 inches Weight: 50-55 lbs
Female Heeler Pei size stats
Height: 18-19 inches Weight: 45-50 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Entropion
  • Hip And Elbow Dysplasia
  • Hypothyroidism
Minor Concerns
  • Glaucoma
  • Allergies
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Deafness
  • Skin Fold Dermatitis
Occasional Tests
  • Skin Scraping
  • X-ray imaging
  • Serum Biochemistry
  • Complete Blood Work
  • Regular Full Physical Examination By Veterinarian
  • Blood Work and Urine Tests
  • Ocular Tests for Eye Problems

Heeler Pei Breed History

The Heeler Pei is a hybrid dog and while it doesn't have an extensive history of its own , we can look to the parent dogs for the most likely characteristics. The Australian Cattle dog originated in the 19th Century from a need for a sturdy, independent dog that could handle the extreme conditions and vast distances of the Australian outback. They were (and still are) valuable to the cattle ranches and helped by quietly but firmly herding the wild cattle with nips and bites especially to the leg area - which is where the 'heeler' label originated. The original settler dogs that arrived in Australia could not cope with this new land so they were bred with the native Dingo to breed a tougher more aggressive dog. While there were many variations on the breed, it evolved into the Cattle dog we know today. The blue coloured dogs of the breed became very popular with ranch owners and drovers, and gained the name of Blue Heelers. The American Kennel Club accepted the Australian Cattle Dog in 1980. The Shar-Pei comes from southern China and is an ancient breed dating back as far as the Han Dynasty 200 B.C. The early Shar-Pei was a working dog, helping out on the farm, guarding livestock, hunting game and herding flocks. Held in high esteem, they were thought to protect against evil spirits with their wrinkly skin and unique purplish tongue. These dogs were also used in dog fights where their loose skin made it difficult for other dogs to latch onto them. A turn in fortune in the early 20th Century after the Communist takeover saw many eliminated, due to the fact that they represented the decadent past. By the 1950s they were all but extinct, but in 1973 a Hong Kong breeder appealed to Western dog enthusiasts to save the breed and Americans fully embrace the wrinkled dog and it was fully recognised in 1992 by the American Kennel Club.

Heeler Pei Breed Appearance

This unique and rather rare breed can vary in its appearance, due to the genes from two very strong and dominant dogs. A medium dog of muscular and sturdy build, it has a well proportioned body which supports strong legs with rounded paws and solid pads. The chest is deep, the neck thick and the head is rounded at the top. The ears can vary between small, triangular shaped, and folded  like the Shar-Pie to pointed and erect like the Cattle Dog. Blessed with a long fine muzzle with teeth that end in a scissor bite, and a nose that can vary from black to a pinky beige, this hybrid has deep set round eyes. They may have some facial wrinkling from the Shar-Pei influence, or the unique speckled coat color of the Cattle Dog. The tail can be straight and held low or it can curl up over its back. The Heeler Pei is undoubtedly a dog that has presence; it is confident, active, loving and protective.
Eye Color Possibilities
brown Heeler Pei eyes
amber Heeler Pei eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Heeler Pei nose
brown Heeler Pei nose
isabella Heeler Pei nose
Coat Color Possibilities
brindle Heeler Pei coat
gray Heeler Pei coat
brown Heeler Pei coat
blue Heeler Pei coat
pied Heeler Pei coat
red Heeler Pei coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
Heeler Pei wiry coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Heeler Pei Breed Maintenance

The Heeler Pei has a short coat that is resistant to the weather, and tends to shed its coat all at once at least twice per year. A firm brushing every couple of days will keep the coat in good condition, but when it sheds it will need daily brushing. If your Heeler Pei has inherited some of the wrinkles of the Shar-Pei, care must be taken to keep the wrinkles clean and dry to prevent infection. These dogs only need bathing when necessary, making use of a mild dog shampoo to maintain the natural protective oils in the skin. Other basic care involves trimming of the nails, and wiping out the ears gently with a damp cloth and special solution to free the ear from dirt and debris. Dry the ears gently afterwards. Then comes the fun part, brushing of the Heeler Pei's teeth. If you have trained him since puppyhood it should not be a problem, but may take some patient training if you have left it till now.
Brushes for Heeler Pei
Pin Brush
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
Heeler Pei requires weekly brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Heeler Pei Temperament

The Heeler Pei is a confident, quiet dog who doesn't need to prove himself, you can tell by looking at him that this dog is not to be messed with. They make ideal family pets, and tend to bond closely with one person while remaining friendly and protective of others. The person they bond with will find they have a dog that is almost like velcro - it will stick at their side and want to be part of their life. Socialising when young is important for these dogs, as they can be aggressive if untrained. They need to learn at an early age what is appropriate behavior. These dogs are aloof to strangers, taking time to warm to them, but when they do they will accept them as part of an extended family. While the Cattle Dog influence can produce a dog that will herd anything from your children, to your pets, and yourself if not restrained from doing so. Any nipping should be discouraged immediately before it takes hold. The Heeler Pei has strong hunting instincts, so you will need a fenced yard to prevent him from bounding over the fence and chasing other dogs or cats down the street. Unique, loveable and handsome dogs, the Heeler Pei is a rare breed that is proving to be a quality dog. They do need a strong pack leader as an owner to bring out their best qualities.

Heeler Pei Activity Requirements

The cross between the hyperactive Cattle Dog and the quieter Shar-Pei produces a dog that requires only moderate exercise. The Heeler Pei is a dog that is quiet in the house, but will enjoy a walk or two per day. While they can adapt to apartment living, the ideal situation is a well fenced yard so that they can follow you around, dig here and there, and growl at all the dogs passing by. These dogs are adaptable to weather extremes, although severe cold may test their limits. The Heeler Pei is not a good mixer among other dogs, and while it will not attack or threaten, it will certainly not back down from a scrap. Puppy training and socialising is a must for these dogs before their habits become solidified as adults. This will teach them social skills that are appropriate.
Activity Level
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
9 miles
Minutes of Activity Per Day
90 minutes

Heeler Pei Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
3 cups
Daily Cost
$1.00 - $2.00
Monthly Cost
$34.00 - $45.00

Heeler Pei Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Heeler Pei size stats at six months
Height: 9 inches Weight: 25 lbs
Female Heeler Pei size stats at six months
Height: 8 inches Weight: 23 lbs
12 Months
Male Heeler Pei size stats at 12 months
Height: 15 inches Weight: 35 lbs
Female Heeler Pei size stats at 12 months
Height: 14 inches Weight: 33 lbs
18 Months
Male Heeler Pei size stats at 18 months
Height: 19 inches Weight: 52 lbs
Female Heeler Pei size stats at 18 months
Height: 18 inches Weight: 47 lbs

Heeler Pei Owner Experiences

5 Months
4 People
House & Yard
Learn a new trick
Boomer is still very young <6mo but has been a great addition to the family. He has been friendly with every human and dog he has met and is patient with my two toddlers. He loves to learn commands and is building an impressive catalog. He can be shy when first approaching strangers but warms up quickly. Hes very excited to meet new dogs and plays confidently with our 80lb boxer. Hes a bit stubborn with being housebroken but is getting better. His toughest trait is that he is mouthy when excited and will chew anything in sight so having plenty of toys and a watchful eye is a must. Also teaching my toddlers to have "calm bodies" when they get him riled up. We couldn't be happier to have him in the family!
4 months, 4 weeks ago
Milo Otis
16 Months
4 People
Tug of war
Milo is a very intelligent dog, we have had only mild difficulty training him. He can be very sweet and cuddly depending on his mood. Somewhat distrustful to strangers, but eventually warms up to them. Has strong bonds with his family. Overall a very healthy and happy dog that while may require some effort training, is well worth it!
5 months ago
12 Months
2 People
She is extremely loyal. She will protect you without hesitation. She is affectionate and loves hugs. Shes a handful as shes still young
6 months, 3 weeks ago
6 Months
5 People
Maggie is a sweet girl. She likes to herd our 2 cats and trap them in. She hardly ever barks. She would lay in your lap and let you snuggle her all day.
1 year, 6 months ago
7 Months
3 People
House & Yard
Explore the woods
He's a shy pottier, loves to chase his tail and sorta play fetch. He learns commands pretty well, but has trouble with boundaries. He whines alot, especially if say the cat won't play, or he's kenneled during odd times. He likes to cuddle a few times a day and prefers to be around people over other animals, but he does get along with other dogs fine.
1 year, 6 months ago
3 Years
1 People
House & Yard
Great dog but definitely different from any other dog I have had in the past. She is independent and friendly with other dogs but selective. Incredibly noisy when she plays and wrestles which scares some dogs.
2 years ago
22 Months
3 People
House & Yard
Molly is a great dog. Loves cuddles and is very protective. Can show a little aggression in dog park, but is generally happy to socialise.
2 years, 3 months ago
Book me a walkiee?
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd