endangered that this requirement was dropped. The characteristic fall and beard is still retained as a relic that once protected the eyes and nose of the Kerry from the claws and teeth of the badger and the thorns of the brambles. Above ground, the open gait and strong musculature of its rear also makes the Kerry a formidable herder of cattle and sheep. The soft, nonshedding coat of the Kerry makes it an ideal house dog, and its size, combined with its love of family and home makes it a good dog for warning off potential intruders. In temperament, the Kerry will romp with the children, chase thrown balls for hours and then curl up beside you as you read the paper, ready for pets and scratches behind the ear. The ideal height for the Kerry is between 17 and 20 inches. While born black, the coat color matures into a blue- gray that allows for a wide spectrum of shade. A young Kerry needs some level of training and socialization, which its
intelligence readily accepts. However, left untrained and unsocialized that intelligence may result in unruliness. Kerrys, like most dogs of their size, require some level of exercise. While the Kerry is adaptable to apartment living as well as to a ranch, Kerrys need to have some room and time to exercise. Free access to a small yard may be enough, but where living space is restricted, owners must be willing to take their Ker- rys out for walks, runs or to parks where they can be free to romp. Kerrys also require grooming. The beautiful, soft lush coat required brush- ing at least weekly, but preferably more frequently. The nonshedding aspect of the coat requires that it be trimmed at least every month to six weeks. Kerrys are eligible to participate in numerous AKC events and receive titles for their efforts. Confirmation showing is popular, but growing in popularity are performance events, such as Obedi- ence, Agility, Rally and Herding, where
Kerrys are enthusiastic and successful in their participation. Kerrys are found in the ranks of Therapy dogs where their soft coat and love of people make them very suitable to that task. Kerrys also have retained their retrieving instincts and are frequently seen in Dock Dog Events where their enthusiasm, love of water and impish sense of humor often provide the watching crowd with great amusement. In general, the Kerry loves to please its owner, but does so on its own terms, as witnessed by Kerry that loved Obedience, but hated frosty grass. She would finish each routine by squat- ting beside her handler, her bottom a few inches above the wet, cold grass. With proper treatment, training, food and exercise, the Kerry Blue Ter- rier is very long-lived and healthy and will retain his activeness until the end. In fact, a Kerry Blue Terrier of six and eight years of age may well be taken for a young dog.
“THE CHARACTERISTIC FALL AND BEARD IS STILL RETAINED AS A RELIC THAT ONCE PROTECTED THE EYES AND NOSE OF THE KERRY FROM THE CLAWS AND TEETH OF THE BADGER AND THE THORNS OF THE BRAMBLES.”
S how S ight M agazine , J anuary 2019 • 341
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