The Jack Russell Terrier is a small, principally white-bodied, smooth- or rough-coated terrier that has its origins in fox hunting.
The working Jack Russell Terrier is a unique terrier which has been preserved in working ability as well as appearance much as it existed over 200 years ago.
Jack Russells are sturdy and tough, measuring between 10″ and 15″ at the shoulder. Predominantly white in coloration (more than 51%) with black and/or tan markings, they exhibit a smooth, broken or rough coat.
The skin can sometimes show a pattern of small black or brown spots — referred to as “ticking” — that do not carry through to the outer coat. Jack Russells are first and foremost a working terrier. Originally bred to bolt fox from their dens during hunts, they are used on numerous ground-dwelling quarry such as groundhog, badger, and red and grey fox.
The working JRT is required to locate quarry in the earth, and then either bolt it or hold it in place until they are dug to. Jack Russells tend to be extremely intelligent, athletic, fearless, and vocal dogs. Their high energy and drive make these dogs ideally suited to a number of different dog sports.
Jack Russell Terrier History
The small white-fox working terriers we know today were first bred by the Reverend John Russell, a parson and hunting enthusiast born in 1795.The basis for a breeding program to develop a terrier with high stamina for the hunt as well as the courage and formation to chase out foxes that had gone to ground.
An important attribute in this dog was a tempered aggressiveness that would provide the necessary drive to pursue and bolt the fox without resulting in physical harm to the quarry, effectively ending the chase, which was considered unsporting.
While Trump’s appearance is without detail, and her size is a complete mystery, the fox dens of Devon, England, where John Russell once hunted, are well known. Terrierman Eddie Chapman, who has hunted those same Devon earths for more than 30 years, notes that “I can state categorically that if given the choice, ninety-nine percent of hunt terrier men would buy an under 12″ worker, if it was available, over a 14″ one.”
Jack Russell Terrier Temperament
It is not uncommon for these dogs to become moody or destructive if not properly stimulated and exercised, as they have a tendency to bore easily and will often create their own fun when left alone to entertain themselves.
Is a Jack Russell Terrier Right For You?
The Jack Russell is generally not good with other pets, so those pet owners who’s family members already include those of the canine, feline or rodent persuasion may want to consider a more placid dog breed.
Due to it’s high prey drive, Jack Russell has a tendency to be aggressive with other dogs and can be particularly unfriendly towards cats. If you have other dogs in your household, you may want to reconsider adopting a Jack Russell.
The Jack Russell Terrier is not a good apartment dog since the breed thrives on activity. This breed is better suited to dog owners that have plenty of space for their JRT to make use of; a large, well-secured yard is preferable. Country living is ideal for this dynamic dog breed.
A Jack Russell Terrier can be an excellent choice in dog breed if you are looking for a loving family pet and have the time, energy and space to devote to exercise and training. Caution is in order if you have other pets in your household.
For additional information, please visit the website of the Jack Russell Terrier Club of America.