The Kerry Blue Terrier!

The Kerry Blue Terrier is a medium-sized terrier that undergoes an amazing coat color transformation with time. This canine is born with black coat that turns to very dark blue, hence the name, then usually to light gray. Sometimes the change is towards shades of brown then later to blue gray. Such coat is soft, wavy, and non-shedding. This dog has a long head with small but prominent dark eyes, as well as plenty of whiskers, beard and eyebrows. It has muscular limbs, covered in dense coat, that support its confident and smart gait. It has an upright tail that is docked.

Some Quick Facts:

Life Expectancy:
12 to 15 years

Energy Level:

Living Conditions:
Indoor; easily house trained.


Exercise Needs:
Regular long walk.

Breed Group:


18 to 20 inches

33 to 40 pounds

Standard Hair Colors:
Varies throughout lifetime. Born black. Can transform to dark blue, grey or brown.

National breed club:
US Kerry Blue Terrier Club

Kerry Blue Terrier Skills

The Kerry Blue Terrier is Ireland’s national terrier. Originating in the 1700s in the County Kerry, it performed several utilitarian functions in the house and in the farm such as to herd sheep and cattle. In Ireland and England, It was used to retrieve items from land or water. Some Kerries participated in game hunts, performed tricks and even undertook police work.

Kerry Blue Terrier Personality

This unusual looking dog is a family favorite. It is affectionate, loyal, and intelligent. Its out-going, high-spirited and people-friendly attitude makes it a dear companion. It loves children and is a safe playmate for older kids. It loves to dog its master to know what he is doing and to get his attention. It can be housetrained easily. Like with any other dog breeds, the Kerry Blue Terries must be treated with respect and loving gentleness. It may also turn scrappy with other dogs.

Exercise Needs

This dog will be happy with a long walk once a day but will not be disappointed by a few skips of this outdoor routine.

Living Conditions

The Kerry Blue Terrier is excellent for indoor living for it does not have doggy odor and is easily housetrained. A small yard will help exercise its muscles.

Grooming Requirements

Despite its heavy coat, this breed has no doggy odor. But it does require weekly brushing and bathing, as well as professional trimming every few months at least. Its beard must be washed often to remove any accumulated food and dirt. Hair must also be pulled out from near its ear canal or else, infection may occur. Furthermore, it is compatible even with a family member suffering from allergy since it hardly sheds.

Health Issues

The Kerry Blue Terrier is considered a hardy breed. It has few known genetic problems. However there have the cases of various tumor types suffered by some dogs of this breed. It can also be prone to hip dysplasia, cataracts, and spiculosis.

If you liked this dog…

...because it is so wooly and for its terrier characteristics, you may choose a Sealyham Terrier instead. This is much smaller than the Kerry Blue Terrier and is whitish in color but is also lovable, energetic, and useful. Another option is the Soft-coated Wheaten, which looks like the trimmed version of the Kerry Blue Terrier and is as big.


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