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Kerry Blue Terrier

Known for its impressive blue coat, the Kerry Blue Terrier is an ideal working dog that originated in the Irish County Kerry. Intelligent and brave, this versatile farm dog was once used for hunting rodents, birds, small game, and herding cattle and sheep. Over time, it has now become a valued family companion and adaptable watchdog.

It is among the largest of all terriers, with a uniquely soft, dense coat covering its muscular body. You can easily recognize a Kerry Blue by its V-shaped ears, sporty beard, and mop of hairs that fall over its dark, keen eyes.

If you want to have a loving and devoted pet with excellent working abilities, then this is the breed for you. It does not, however, get along well with other dogs and can be kept as the solo pet in your household.

Breed Characteristics

  • Other Names:Kerry, Irish Blue Terrier
  • Colors:Blue, gray, black, silver, slate blue, blue, and black
  • Life Expectancy:12-15 years
  • Height:Male: 18-19 inches; 
    Female: 17-18 inches
  • Weight:Male: 26-33 pounds; 
    Female: 22-29 pounds
  • Temperament:People-oriented, alert, strong-willed, spirited
  • Good with Kids:Yes
  • Exercise requirements:High
  • Hypoallergenic:Yes
  • Litter Size:3-8 puppies
  • Barking Capacity:High
  • Health Problems:Hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, dry eye, cataracts, hypothyroidism, entropion, skin cysts, cancer
  • Trainability:Moderately difficult
  • Origin:Ireland
Blue Terrier Kerry
Kerry Blue Terrier Picture

Kerry Blue Terrier’s History: A Timeline


    First literary reference to a dog with an appearance similar to the Kerry Blue was found

    Late 1800s to early 1900s

    The breed was refined and standardized for participating in dog shows


    Five Kerry Blues were imported to North America


    The AKC recognized it


    Formation of the Kerry Blue Terrier Club of America

Kerry Blue Terrier Dog
Kerry Blue Terrier Puppies


Your Kerry is an active breed, and it needs a lot of exercises regularly. A daily walk will help keep it fit and trim. If you live in a condo or apartment, you may need to walk your dog twice or thrice every day to provide both physical and mental stimulation.

It enjoys participating in outdoor play, jogging, or playing interactive games like fetch with its human companion. Also, you may engage your Kerry Blue in canine sports like dock diving, barn hunt, herding, and obedience to help burn off its energy.

Its coat, being dense, wavy, and non-shedding, requires high maintenance. You need to thoroughly brush its fur once a week in order to avoid matting. Apart from brushing its coat, you can trim the hair on its head, neck, and abdomen with clippers, while those on the rest of the body can be trimmed using scissors.

For trimming its coat, you may choose to hire a certified professional groomer. In case you opt to trim your Kerry’s hair on your own, you can follow the charts and guidelines available on the Kerry Blue Terrier Club’s website.

Make sure to brush your dog’s teeth two to three times per week to prevent bacterial buildup. Also, trim its nails once a month whenever you hear them clicking on the floor.

If you want to give your pup homemade food, you may choose cooked eggs, meats, fruits, vegetables, and cottage cheese. However, if you prefer commercial dry dog food, then ACANA Regionals and CANIDAE All Life Stages are amongst the best foods available in the market. Check with your vet whether these foods are appropriate to your dog’s age and weight.

You will need to be patient and firm when training your Kerry. Since it can be aggressive to other dogs, you need to get your canine friend well trained and socialized. Incorporate socialization early in your Kerry Blue’s life by taking it to different places, where it can see and meet a lot of people and their pets. You may enroll your pup in dog obedience classes so that it learns to follow your commands when told to do so.

Kerry Blue Terrier Size
Kerry Blue Terrier Images

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