Weather Updates
Monday, June 5, 2023

Kerry Blue Terrier

Group: Terriers (Group 2)
Club: Sporting Terrier Club of Victoria Inc (Group 2)
Contact: Ms Margaret Gray
Phone: 0418 410 017

Brief History
Place of origin and colour of coat give the breed its name, a blue dog from Kerry County, Ireland. Like the other Irish Terrier breeds. it is assumed that the Kerry Blue has been in the country for centuries. It has humble origins as a rat catcher and all-round farm dog. There are few if any references to the breed before the 20th century, but by around 1928 this impressive, balanced terrier, with its beautiful soft blue coat, became popular worldwide.

Average Life Span
When considering a dog, please realise that you are taking it on for its lifetime. The average life span is 12 to 16 years.

Fearless, dominant, determined

The Kerry Blue Terrier has a feisty spirit, is keen and alert and fears nothing. The Kerry will not back off in a confrontation, be it man or beast. He will find other small family pets irresistible, so they would need to be carefully separated. Kerries require firm, positive training to know their place. They will enthusiastically supervise whatever is going on in the household and guard that household with their life.

General Breed Description
The most striking feature of the Kerry is its amazing blue coat, which will not shed. It is soft, plentiful, wavy and silky in texture. Interestingly, the puppies are born black, changing to shades of blue by around 18 months of age. A medium sized, muscular, square dog, the Kerry Blue Terrier has a long head dressed with a beard. His tail is carried up. Trimmed Kerries are stylish, untrimmed they are shaggy. His build and athletic ability enable him to herd, trail, run, retrieve, swim, and dispatch vermin.

Coat and Care Requirements
The Kerry Blue Terriers coat must be brushed and combed daily to remove any tangles.  The coat is both profuse and non-shedding, so much care must be given and given often.  Kerries need clipping at least four times a year. Due to their intelligence and strong will, they must be socialized and disciplined from an early age. They are not a dog to be ignored. Kerries need company. They are athletic and require daily walking.

Height: Males 46 to 48cms (18 to 19ins), Females slightly less.
Weight: Males 15 to 17kgs, Females proportionately less.

All breeds have individual health issues. When speaking to breeders it is recommended you enquire about breed health and what health testing the breeder does.

Kerry Blues are fine in a suburban household with a responsible owner who is prepared to give them the love, exercise on lead and the training they need. They are not a dog to be lazily let off lead at the dog park and are not the dog for a first time dog owner. A well trained Kerry will make a great family pet, but should always be supervised when with children.

In Conclusion
Now you know a little more about this breed. If you have decided this is the dog for you and wish to investigate further, please contact the Breed Club or Dogs Victoria. They will be able to give you information about available puppies and also suggest dog events where you can see the breed and speak to breeders. In this way you will gain a better perspective of the breed and its needs. With any breed of dog, it is important to research and determine suitability for your lifestyle before committing to a puppy which will be a part of your family for many years to come.

Whilst many breeds are recommended for families, it is imperative that when children are with dogs they are supervised at all times. Basic obedience training is a vital part of dog ownership.

Dogs Victoria is about the responsible ownership of all dogs and in particular the preservation of pure breeds.

Link to Dogs Australia Breed Standard:

Registered Breeders