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Kerry Blue Terrier… Everything You Need to Know at a Glance!

If you’re looking for one really tough dog, wrapped up in a medium package, then you may have just found the dog your looking for because the Kerry Blue Terrier is all that and more!

But be warned…

While these guys are certainly loyal to a fault, they are also very much a “Terrier” at heart which means that these dogs may not be “right” for everyone.

This is why…

In this article, we wanted to take a moment and discuss what it might be like to own one of these awesome animals as well as discuss some of the pros and cons of this breed.  This way if you are on the “fence” as to whether or not you want to adopt a Kelly Blue Terrier puppy or rescue dog, you’ll hopefully have a better idea if one will be right for you!

So, without further ado, let’s dive right in.

Kerry Blue Terrier Fast Facts

Country of Origin: Ireland

Breed Group: Terrier

Height: 17.5 to 19.5 inches at the shoulder

Weight: 33 to 40 pounds

Life Span: 12 to 15 years

Origin of the Kerry Blue Terry

The Kerry Blue Terry or Irish Blue Terrier is from the Kerry County of Ireland, hence the name.  There in Ireland, the Kerry Blue earned a reputation for being a “do everything” kind of dog.  Whether that be, helping out on the farm with the livestock or hunting vermin a small game or even working as a land and water retriever for hunters, this dog can basically do anything!

That said however…

It wasn’t until after World War I that this breed became really famous across Ireland and England which was largely because that was when they made their first real appearance in the Westminster Kennel Club show, where they stole the spotlight!

So much so…

That their new-found fame could not be contained one just one continent which is why they were soon afterwards “officially” recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1924, which was followed by the formation of the first Kerry Blue Terrier club in New York City.

Oddly though…

While the Kerry Blue Terrier is a loyal family dog and is certainly well known, his popularity has never quite taken off in the U.S. However, the dog owners who have adopted him, know about him and are more than happy with this breed.

 Physical Characteristics of the Kerry Blue Terrier

Kerry Blue Terrier is a mid-sized dog. Males of the breed stand at 18 to 19.5 inches in shoulder height while females are between 17.5 to 19 inches tall. They don’t weigh much, only 30 to 40 pounds, but you can bet that all 30 to 40 pounds of him is going to be muscle!

Which bears repeating…

The Kerry Blue is a very muscular and strong dog – he is, after all, a working dog. He has a thick and wavy coat which covers most of his body a coat which you guessed it is usually of the color blue-gray.

These guys also have…

A long head and sports big whiskers and a thick beard. His eyebrows are thick too which looks all the more powerful when matched with his V-shaped ears and a large black nose.

And while the…

The Kerry Blue does not shed much, you should be aware that it is important to brush his coat every week to prevent any sort of tangling or matting of the hair and to remove the dirt or the grime.  You’re also going to need to trim or sheer his coat once a month as well if you want to keep him looking his best!

Kerry Blue Terrier Personality

The Kerry Blue Terrier is one of the smartest dog breeds out there. He is full of life, energetic and playful. These are the “kinds” of dogs that are going to want to follow you everywhere and wants to be involved in everything you do.

Which as we all know…

Can be a good thing and a bad thing. It’s good that your pet loves you so much and is eager to please. However, the dog can start sulking and whining whenever he starts feeling ignored in any way.


When the Kerry Blue gets bored, he resorts to mindless mischief. He can be destructive sometimes, jumping at people, barking unnecessarily or tearing up the sofa cushion.


This is not a dog that likes being teased or treated roughly. He reacts to that, he can snap. That’s why you should not trust a small child or a toddler with him. You know how badly kids treat dogs at times!


You should establish yourself as the Kerry Blue’s leader sternly and early in the relationship. This is a dog that respects authority and wants to be led. He is a clever dog and if you’re too soft, he is going to take advantage of that.

That’s why this…

Dog may not be ideal for an inexperienced or first-time dog owner. He is also not suitable for a multi-pet household as he has a very strong prey drive. He is more likely to hunt cats, small animals and birds rather than make friends with them.

That said however…

Once trained, your Kerry Blue Terrier will become a loyal dog, one that is highly protective of his human family and who will protect your household like no other.

Kerry Blue Terrier Health Concerns

Like all purebreds, one always needs to be concerned about the potential health risks a certain breed may have.  And while all in all, the Kerry Blue Terrier is a reasonably health breed, it is susceptible to certain health conditions, such as…

  • Entropion
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Degenerative Myelopathy
  • Dry eye or Keratoconjunctivitis sicca
  • Patent Ductus Arteriosus

And while this…

May see like a really long list, the truth is, this is somewhat typically when purchasing a purebred dog in general.

This is why…

We here at IndulgeYourPet also recommend that any new pet owner take a moment and see what it might cost for you to purchase a pet insurance policy for your new animal.

Now will a pet insurance policy be right for everyone?

No, probably not.  But until you fully understand what these policies “will” and “won’t” cover and how much these pet insurance policies cost, how will you know if one might be right for you?

For more information on who we feel currently offers the “best” pet insurance policies out there, we would encourage you to check out our Best Pet Insurance

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