Kerry Blue Terrier

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Irish Blue Terrier
  • Silver-haired Irish Terrier
Country/Date of origin:
  • Ireland
  • 19th century
  • Females:  17-1/2 to 19 inches
  • Males:  18 to 19-1/2 inches
  • 33 to 40 pounds
  • Very outgoing and friendly with people.
  • An excellent guard dog, the Kerry will bark an alarm and will defend his property.
  • Convinced he is in the right, a Kerry will not back down from a fight.
  • Not recommended for home with other dogs or cats.
  • Assertive in personality, the Kerry is often difficult to train.

In the southern mountains of Ireland, farmers kept an all-around working and utility terrier.  This blue-coated worker came to be known as the Kerry Blue Terrier, for the county where it came to prominence.  It was used for hunting small game and birds (retrieving on land and water), eliminating vermin, and herding cattle and sheep.  As a watchdog for the farm, the Kerry is second-to-none.  Although the Kerry Blue is hundreds of years old as a purebred, it did not come to the attention of international fanciers until the 1920′s.  After acceptance by the kennel clubs of Ireland and England, it gained recognition by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1924.

Body Type:
  • A long-legged terrier with a stocky, solid build.
  • V-shaped ears hang forward on the head and are not altered.
  • Erect tail is docked.
  • Unusual, single coat of silky softness is unusually dense and wavy.
  • Blue, described as silver and steel ranges from light, silver gray to slate, and is the only color permissible.
  • Requires professional grooming.
Health and Wellness:
  • Entropion (turned in eyelids).
  • Skin tumors.
  • Eye problems especially tear deficiencies.
What you should know:
  • The non-shedding coat makes the Kerry an excellent choice for those with allergies.
  • Also free from doggy odors.
  • Puppies are born black and gradually fade to blue over a period of 18 months.
  • A extremely active dog that needs daily exercise.
  • Long-lived and retains vigor throughout its life.
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