Do Kerry Blue Terriers Shed? (Shedding & Grooming Guide)

The Kerry Blue Terrier or Irish Blue Terrier is a mid-sized dog from Ireland bred to hunt creatures like hares and foxes. Between its unique breed standards, appealing blue coat, and untiring loyalty, there is much to love about this Terrier breed.

Exactly how much does the Kerry Blue Terrier shed?

The Kerry Blue Terrier is a very low-shedding breed that loses little hair, even seasonally. Grooming is a big part of why this Terrier doesn’t shed, so you’ll have to commit to brushing your dog daily to weekly and bathing him about monthly.

If you want to learn even more about caring for the Kerry Blue Terrier, then make sure you keep reading. In today’s post, I’ll discuss how often this breed sheds and what grooming the Kerry Blue is really like.

Kerry Blue Terrier Shedding

The Kerry Blue Terrier is known to barely shed.

Part of that has to do with this dog being a Terrier. If you’ve read my other posts on the Glen of Imaal Terrier or the American Staffordshire Terrier, you’ll recall how Terriers are usually low-shedding breeds.

Yet looking at those dogs and then the Kerry Blue Terrier reveals some key differences in the latter breed’s coat.

No, it’s not just that the Irish Blue Terrier has blue fur. Rather, it’s the texture of that fur that’s important. The Kerry Blue features a coat that’s wavy and dense yet soft.

The dog has longer fur around its muzzle, making the Kerry Blue look like it has a fancy beard. It’s front and hindquarters also feature thicker fur.

Yet, since that fur is wavy and otherwise close-cropped, the Kerry Blue Terrier loses very little of its blue hair.

This breed is also single-coated, which reduces its risk of seasonal shedding. So when wintertime and summertime come around, your Kerry Blue Terrier won’t begin blowing fur around the house, coating it in blue hair.

That said, all dogs shed at least a little, and the Kerry Blue is no exception. Throughout the year, as the dog’s hair cycle repeats, some hair will come out. It’s just not a noticeable amount.

Grooming Your Kerry Blue Terrier

To maintain the Kerry Blue Terrier’s low rate of shedding, regular grooming is a must. Just be prepared to put some time into this part of the dog’s care.

How often you brush your Kerry Blue will vary. If your dog isn’t leaving a lot of fur around the house, then weekly brushing should suffice. However, some dog owners take it a step further and brush their Irish Blue Terrier daily or every other day.

This will keep the Kerry Blue’s fur in the best condition, so I recommend it.

I’d advise you to use a pin brush for combing through the Kerry Blue Terrier’s fur. When brushing, do so in the same direction the dog’s fur grows. If you go against it, you could create mats and tangles, which are fur issues the Kerry Blue Terrier is predisposed to have anyway.

If you notice any mats, you can try brushing them out. The most stubborn tangles, though, might require you to trim that area.

What about the dog’s facial furnishings and the longer leg fur? You can still use a pin brush or a rake comb on these areas. Brush through them softly, looking for knots and mats as you go.

Neatly groomed Kerry Blue Terrier standing on footpath next to green lawn.
Kerry Blue Terrier

When you’re done brushing your Kerry Blue Terrier, it’s probably time to trim him. Although this breed’s coat isn’t known to grow ridiculously long, the coat can get unruly unless you tend to it through grooming.

The longer the Kerry Blue’s coat, the greater the likelihood of its coat matting, which is problematic.

Trim around your Kerry Blue’s cheeks, face, and ears using your favorite dog hair clippers. This will allow its facial furnishings to look more distinct.

Since these are sensitive areas, cut with precision and firmness.

If your dog tends to turn its head, stick its tongue out, or otherwise try to distract you from trimming him, I’d suggest letting a groomer take care of this job instead.

Then you need to trim the rest of this dog’s body, so its front and hindquarters look wide and fluffy. After that, you can again use clippers for its abdomen and neck, then dog-grooming scissors for other areas of the coat.

Once you get your Kerry Blue Terrier trimmed according to breed standards, you’ll have to repeat this once every month to maintain its unique shape.

Bathing your Kerry Blue will have to occur about every six weeks due to its coat. If your Terrier hasn’t gone outside much recently, such as during the winter, you can wait to bathe him until the eight-week mark.

When bathing the Kerry Blue Terrier, please brush the dog’s fur beforehand to remove mats and tangles. Keep the water temperature lukewarm, and always stick a mat under your dog to prevent slipping.

The Kerry Blue Terrier’s nails can grow quickly, so unless you walk your dog often, trim their nails weekly. Of course, you can always let your groomer do this.

Here’s a YouTube video that will show you how to groom the Kerry Blue Terrier from head to toe!

Are Kerry Blue Terriers Hypoallergenic?

You’re looking to adopt a dog, but you have an allergy sufferer in the house. Whatever pet you bring home can’t exacerbate those allergy symptoms.

Is the Kerry Blue Terrier a good choice?

Before I get into that, I want to remind you that no dog is truly hypoallergenic. Since pet allergies are symptomatic due to pet dander or dead skin, every dog can aggravate allergy symptoms since every dog has skin.

Some breeds are less likely to trigger allergies, and the Kerry Blue Terrier is indeed one of them.

This is due to its low-shedding wiry coat. The less a dog sheds, the harder it is for pet dander to travel.

Although bigger dogs are usually less hypoallergenic since they have more surface area and thus more skin, the Kerry Blue’s low shedding rate makes up for its size.

Is a Kerry Blue Terrier Right for You?

You’re in love with the silhouette of the Kerry Blue Terrier, and you quite adore its blue fur as well. You think you’d like to adopt this dog, but you still have a few reservations.

Here’s some handy information to help you decide whether the Irish Blue Terrier should be your next four-legged friend.

The Kerry Blue Terrier is a mid-sized dog from Ireland’s mountains that likely first existed in 1847.

Its background story may or may not be a myth. The story goes as follows: upon finding a Kerry Blue Terrier swimming after a ship went under, sailors loved its coat so that the dog was bred with Wheaten Terriers.

What we do know about the Kerry Blue Terrier is that the breed originally hunted all nature of creatures, from hares to otters, foxes, badgers, rabbits, and rats. Kerry Blues were also popular guard dogs and herding dogs.

The American Kennel Club describes the Kerry Blue Terrier as companionable, adaptable, and alert. They’re also very loyal and can keep watch over you and the rest of your family. That makes the Kerry Blue a dependable dog!

In adulthood, the average size of these canines is 19 inches with a standard weight of 40 pounds, so they’re not exactly small dogs. In an apartment, the Kerry Blue might feel a little claustrophobic.

Kerry Blue Terriers like to exercise, but more so than that, they prefer to do whatever you–their owner–are doing. They can be lazy and chill or upbeat and rambunctious, depending on your lifestyle. If you have a large yard for them to play in when the urge strikes, that’s all the better.

What about your other pets? The Kerry Blue Terrier will show surprising aggression around dogs and will even fight with them. Their prey drive can cause them to chase smaller creatures such as cats or hamsters as well.

The way around these issues is to socialize your Kerry Blue from a young age to live with other animals.

Fortunately, Kerry Blue Terriers are a lot nicer to people, including children. Since they can read the room and be more energetic (or less so), your Irish Blue should have no issue keeping up with the kids.

Kerry Blue Terriers aren’t known to bark to excess, but they can chew and otherwise cause trouble if they’re not getting enough exercise.  

Bottom Line

The Kerry Blue Terrier is a mid-sized dog from Ireland’s Kerry Mountains that used to hunt vermin, corral animals, and do other work-related tasks. Its glorious blue fur does not shed much.

By brushing your dog daily, bathing them about monthly, and trimming them just as often, your Kerry Blue Terrier will look and feel great and lose less hair.

Its unwavering loyalty, guard dog skills, and friendliness towards people make the Irish Blue Terrier just the dog you’ve been looking for!

Do Kerry Blue Terriers Shed? (Shedding & Grooming Guide)

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