Parson Russell Terrier
The Jack Russell Terrier is a small, miniature-sized version of a working Fox Terrier, and is often confused for this breed. However, it has distinct qualities and fun-loving, merry personality. The dog is usually white with reddish black and brown markings, and can often have many large tan patches. The skull is flat between the ears, and these usually flow to a tapering point. The stop is well-defined, and the dog has almond shaped eyes with a black nose. Eyes are usually dark brown or near-black, and the dog has one of the most "pitiful puppy" dog looks!
The Jack Russell Terrier has a very flexible body and is incredibly agile. It has a medium to small chest and this helps them run and chase after prey that are close to the ground. Highly active and usually always on the run, these dogs are athletic with plenty of energy. The docked tail is carried high and they carry themselves with a lot of energy and a strong attitude. The dogs come in smooth and wire-haired versions, although the broken coat can also be quite rough. The slightly fuzzy face and smooth head are natural qualities of this dog and the Irish types often have shorter legs than English types.
The dog is usually more white than other colors, and has its origins in fox hunting. The Jack Russell Terrier is often simply called the "Jack Russell" and has been used to describe many different types of small terriers of similar stature. These dogs tend to get very excited, and are wonderful with children. These dogs have been raised to be working terriers, and have a strong expression and distinct appearance. The red fox is the most common prey for these dogs, and they are commonly found hunting down red foxes and old badgers in dens and quarries. The Jack Russell Terrier is small enough to burrow into quarries and dens, and will gladly pursue a variety of small animals. These dogs jump at the chance to explore new territory, and it is not uncommon to find them "stuck" in a den or hole after a relentless search for their next find!
The Jack Russell Terrier has a white coat with black, tan, and brown markings and often has reddish tones. The coat is moderately long and not dense, but medium textured and soft.
Parson Russell Terrier Temperment
The Jack Russell Terrier is happy, devoted, loving, and very perky. It will rise up early in the morning and play about at its leisure, but most enjoys its time with a job to do. These dogs are amusing and entertaining, and will be eager to play with new toys, games, and people. They are friendly and kind towards children and strangers and will happily introduce themselves to new people. These dogs are very determined and independent as well; it is important to remember this when they are during their training stages as they can be difficult to manage at times. Still, diligence and perseverance with these dogs will pay off.
The Jack Russell Terrier may be aggressive with other dogs, especially during its early years of socialization. This is why it is especially important for these dogs to learn from early socialization and they must be introduced to different dogs and animals whenever possible. These dogs do have natural hunting abilities and a strong instinctive quality. They are stronger than the average terrier and should generally not be trusted with smaller animals. They are driven to hunt, so it is important to keep them on a tight leash in new territory. Unless they are very well-trained, these dogs can be difficult to manage off the leash and may run off far from home.
These dogs can become destructive if they are restless or bored, and it is important that they have plenty of activities to enjoy when they do not have access to formal exercise. Regular activity will keep them from becoming occupied in harmful actions and activities overall. The Jack Russell Terrier is a natural climber and can jump and climb over fences relatively easily. These dogs do get excited very easily and are strong-willed; they will do their best to achieve a goal and will run after new things easily. Making sure they are well-trained well before they have a chance to do so is in the owner's best interest.
These dogs are very loving and affectionate, and will need constant attention. They will turn to excessive barking and other unmanageable behavior if they are not getting the attention they need, and may even resort to digging and destroying objects in the home. It is important to vary their activities and make sure they are actively engaged with the family on a regular basis. These dogs do have a tendency to be "cat-aggressive" and will not get along well with other small animals in the home. They often get involved in fights with rabbits and other small fur-bearing animals so it is important that they are kept far from the cages of any household pets as often as possible.
These dogs are inquisitive and curious, and due to their small sizes, can find themselves in a lot of trouble very easily! It is important to remember that these dogs do not enjoy being "lap dogs" and would rather play about freely. They are not comfortable sitting in one place for extended periods of time, and will need to be taken to new environments and settings on a regular basis.
The Jack Russell Terrier is very easy to groom, and will need to be combed or brushed about once per week. A firm bristle brush is all that is necessary to maintain their clean and healthy coat. For owners who use the Jack Russell Terrier as a showdog, professional services and grooming will b necessary.
The Jack Russell Terrier's coat does not tangle easily, and has a soft and natural feel to it. The coat will need to be brushed out on a regular basis, and it is important to use a softer brush on the undercoat. In much the same way as rougher coats, the dog may need to be stripped completely during various seasons.
Bathing and shampooing is only necessary when the dog has become extremely dirty. These dogs do spend a lot of time outdoors so taking them to the vet during tick season is recommended. The toes may need to be clipped on a regular basis, and these dogs are comfortable with grooming at the dog parlor or other professional services.
The first appearance of the Jack Russell Terrier seems to have been in the Oxford area of England, a place where small white fox-working terriers were first bred by Reverend John Russell. The line of terriers bred by John Russell were especially strong and attractive; these dogs were raised to be aggressive and to hunt foxes. However, it is unlikely that the Jack Russell Terriers existing today are direct descendents of this dog. These feisty terriers were used to hunt small game and were trained very well in digging quarries out of dens. These dogs have a superb working ability and their standard is broad in range.
The typical accepted body type is muscular and well-proportioned. The dogs were supposedly long-legged at some point, and had an innate ability to keep with hounds and hunting in packs. These dogs are naturally energetic, playful, and have strong stamina. They make excellent family companions and can pick up skills and tricks with ease. These dogs can be easily trained to hunt, track, and perform a variety of tricks. They are also very agile and can expertly dig into burrows and dens.
The Jack Russell Terrier is a smart and intelligent breed of dog, and can learn new tricks and skills very quickly. They respond well to basic training but they may be difficult for the average person to train. These dogs require patience and consistent training; they are sensitive to tone and command and they are especially receptive to affection and attention.
When training the Jack Russell Terrier, it is important to remember that they have a tendency to be hyperactive to the point of becoming unmanageable. These dogs require consistency throughout their formative years, and they do not perform well with harsh correction or criticism. In fact, these dogs will simply freeze or become upset. It is important to keep training to 2-3 sessions per day, and keep them brief and short. These dogs are sensitive to sound and movement, and will not respond well when they are overly anxious.
The Jack Russell Terrier loves to learn new things, and will adapt well to a variety of settings and environments. It is important to combine training with play for these dogs as they will respond well when they are interacting positively with a variety of activities.
The Jack Russell Terrier is a hardy breed and is quite healthy overall. However, there are some special medical conditions to pay attention to:
Hip Dysplasia: Canine hip dysplasia (CHD) can cause mild to severe lameness.
Collie Eye Anomaly: can cause blindness, but is not a progressive disease.
Legg Perthes disease: a disease of the hip joints of small breeds of dogs.
Deafness: Congenital Deafness can be a problem.