History and Origin: originated in Ireland, in County Kerry. Also called the Irish Blue Terrier. First noted in the rural mountains and appeared in writings in the 1800’s. Suggested crossings with Wheaten and Bedlington terriers as well as Portuguese Water Dogs, Irish wolfhounds and Irish terriers may have produced the Kerry and certainly there are similarities to these breeds. Bred to control vermin of all sorts, including badgers, foxes, otters and even wolves. Used in Ireland as a general purpose farm dog, ratter, herding dog and guard dog.
General Appearance: one of the largest terriers, sturdy, powerful athletic and muscular. Long head, small dark eyes with keen expression, ears small, v-shaped, and carried forward, strong jaws with teeth meeting in level or scissors bite, big black open nostrils, strong straight legs, short level back, tail straight and carried gaily and erect. Size: 33-40 pounds males 18-19 ½ inches females 17 ½ -19 inches
Coat and Colour: puppies are born black but the colour gradually changes to a grey blue or slate colour in the mature dog. Black may remain on legs, beard and eyebrows. Unlike most terriers that have a harsh wiry coat, the Kerry coat is short soft dense and wavy and can be scissored to shape. Regular brushing is required. Coat is non shedding.
Feeding: Feed twice daily with a good quality kibble for optimal health.
Training and Obedience: Intelligent. Excels in many performance sports such as barn hunt, agility, obedience, herding trials, rally etc
Activity: daily exercise in a fenced yard or walks on leash. Active breed for jogger or cyclist. High prey drive. Not always fond of other dogs.
Temperament : devoted, playful, and loyal to his family including children. Equally loves playtime and quiet time in the home.