Last Updated on July 4, 2023
Have you heard of blue merle Shepherds? These brilliant dogs have a unique coat colouring that makes them extraordinarily desirable and gaining popularity!
But what should you know before you purchase a blue Merle Shepherd? And what are the key things you need to keep in mind?
What Is a Blue Merle Shepherd?
“Blue merle” means the specific colour of the dog’s coat. Just as you see tri-coloured Shepherds, blue merles are another unique colour for an Aussie. Blue merle is typically a white, blue-grey, or blue-ish colouring that speckles the coat. They also may have brown or tan limbs and cheeks. They are technically also “tri-coloured”, but the merle colouring is focused along the body, where no other colours are present beyond white and blue-grey.
How Rare Is It?
Red Australian Shepherds are one of the rarest colours you can get; the blue Merle Shepherd isn’t typical either. This colour has to be selectively bred, which makes breeders charge a premium for these puppies. Some will even tell you that a tri-coloured Shepherd a blue merle, so watch out! You may find it hard to find a blue merle.
Check this article to learn the types of Australian Shepherd colours.
How Much Does a Blue Merle Shepherd Cost?
Because of their colouring, this particular colour can cost more than regular Shepherd puppies, selling high at about AUD 1200. Breeders used to not charge so much for blue merle Shepherds, but prices have rapidly increased with the current demand for these gorgeous dogs.
Where To Get Blue Merle Shepherds?
Some reputable breeders may choose to breed blue merle Shepherds specifically for that colour. Of course, breeding is a process, and some litters may not produce blue merle Shepherds. In this case, you should ask around various breeding programs to ensure they have puppies with blue merle Shepherds. They may be harder to find, especially in areas of Australia with fewer breeders available, but keep trying!
Blue Merle Shepherd Adoption and Rescue
Due to their unique colourings, Blue Merle Shepherds are found in a few centres that may or may not be appropriate. Pet mills based on a farming basis are one of the worst places an Australian shepherd should be. The dogs in these places are bred for the sole purpose of being sold at the highest rate possible and therefore are given little to no care.
Rescuing and adopting a blue merle shepherd from an abusive environment can be slightly complicated due to the registration of documents such as health certificates verified by an animal vet.
Pros and Cons of Owning a Blue Merle Shepherd
Owning a blue merle shepherd can be an exciting experience; Australian shepherds are generally high-energy dog breeds and, therefore, can make the owner work as hard as the dog.
These dogs are fun-loving and are always looking to play with their owner; if you are unable to focus on your Aussie, or are just busy with another work, then the Australian shepherd will undoubtedly tug on you either with jaws or on your heartstrings by pulling their well renowned “puppy eyes”.
The cons at most may generally come out if you happen to be someone on the financially low side and cannot give complete focus to your Aussie or feed them a proper nutritional diet.
Aussies also are not fond of living in small apartment spaces and, therefore, may turn destructive if left to their own devices for a long time in a small apartment.
In terms of activities, you will also have to give a focus of around 60-90 minutes if you want to tire your Australian shepherd out completely; that is granted if you are not tired first.
Health Conditions of the Blue Merle Shepherd
Coloboma is common among blue merles, but all Australian Shepherds have this trait. Coloboma is where the iris does not dilate correctly, resulting in vision impairment for the Aussie. Not all blue merles will have this trait, and some non-merle Aussies carry it. Please take the time to research the dog’s pedigree and ask questions.
Aussies do not change temperament based on coat colour. This is a myth, as temperament can be affected by environment and training. If your Aussie is acting up, it may be they are under-stimulated.
Aussies are working dogs! A task, a job, and a routine go a long way to keep an Australian Shepherd happy and healthy! Daily walks are a must, and regular playtimes help. Even training and learning tricks and commands will help your Aussie thrive.
Training and Socialization for Blue Merle Shepherds
Dogs not adequately socialised tend to be slightly violent or even outright dangerous to strangers or animals. They may even attack them in extreme cases. As with all dog breeds, blue merle shepherds need proper training to follow commands obediently and socialisation to interact appropriately with others, such as different dog breeds or different people.
Therefore, training and socialising your blue merle Shepherds can be the key to making them obedient and well-behaved. First, you may start by giving them small commands to follow, such as “sit”, “down”, and potty training them. Later, once your dog starts reacting to the commands positively, reinforce the behaviour by giving them treats to eat.
Later, you may make your dog interact with other animals on a leash, bring them out on play dates in the park, make them walk in dog parks and slowly but surely, make them interact as closely as possible with other dogs of either their kind or of a different breed,
If your dog misbehaves, do not be harsh; instead, focus on instilling proper social values in your dog by patiently rewarding them for successful interactions.
Your dog may eventually start to behave better. Remember to keep your blue merle shepherds on a leash while socialising with them in parks.
Blue merle Aussies are a highly sought-after colour for Australian Shepherds and are well worth the cost if you want a unique colour. However, finding and purchasing one might be a bit tricky!