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Kerry Blue Terrier Breed Summary

Confident, Out-Going, Stubborn, Affectionate and Gentle

These dogs have a very unique and distinctive appearance, mainly due to their Astrakhan-type coats and heavily coated muzzles. They are a very lively breed and possess a lot of Terrier traits. For this reason, you will need to have a very secure garden where your dogs can happily run around with no risk of escape.

Unfortunately, Kerry Blue Terriers have been declining in popularly over the years and have even been placed on the Kennel Clubs Vulnerable Breed List. Therefore, anyone wanting one of these guys would need to be put on a waiting list.

Fun Fact: Puppies are born with black coats, but as they grow it changes to a blue colour!

Kennel Club Group Terrier
Lifespan 12 - 15 Years
Height (at the withers) Males 46cm - 48cm, Females 44cm - 46cm
Weight Males 12kg - 15kg, Females 10kg - 13kg
Coat Coats are Soft, Silky, Dense and Wavy
Colour Black, Black & Blue, Black Turning Blue, Blue
Eye colour Dark
Common health issues Hip dysplasia, Elbow dysplasia, Cataracts, Entropion, Dry eye, Skin problems, Cysts
Other Names Kerry, Kerries, Irish Blue Terrier

The Kerry Blue Terriers are known for their confident and outgoing personalities. However, they are very stubborn, which makes them fairly difficult to train and probably not the best breed for first-time owners. They need to be in a family who have experience dealing with similar breeds and need to know their place in the pack in order to stop them from becoming the alpha male. They also need lots of socialisation and training from a very young age, in order to make sure they become well-rounded and happy dogs. But for the right family, they make lovely pets!

It's thought that the Kerry Blue Terrier first appeared in the late 1800s as fighting dogs but their origin is essentially unknown. Some people believe that Bedlington Terriers and the Irish Wolfhound may have been involved in their creation, and maybe even Irish and Soft Wheaten Terriers too. There is also a theory that these dogs were taken over to Ireland during the Spanish Armada when their ships, which were badly damaged, washed up on Irish coasts. The legend says that these dogs were the only on-board survivors and killed all other native dogs that came across their path. However, it is more likely that they are a descendant of the Gadher, used for sheep herding in ancient times. By the 1900's they had become very popular, participating at prestigious dog shows, including Crufts!