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Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell Terrier dog breed is predominantly characterized by boldness and high level of energy. Therefore, though small in size, these dogs are not suitable for first time dog owners, especially the ones with a sedentary lifestyle. On the upside, these delightful dogs make for extremely devoted and affectionate pets in the hands dedicated owners.

These courageous and vigorous working terrier dogs were originally used for fox hunting. Nonetheless, they are now utilizing their hunting talent in hunting rodents in their houses and yards. The unique name of this unique breed has been derived from its developer, Reverend John Russell who was a hunting enthusiast.

Physical Appearance

The Jack Russell Terrier breed of dogs is known for his athletic, sturdy and robust body that is compact and balanced. These short legged dogs are small in size and are therefore convenient to handle. The length of the body proportionate to the height.

Their thick ears are moderate in size and usually folded forward. The wide nose resembles the shape of a diamond. They have almond shaped, expressive eyes that seem to bear an alert and inquisitive expression, always ready to explore the world around them.

Color: Jack Russell Terrier dogs are white in color with random brown, black, tan or tri colored markings especially around the head and tail.
Height: Both male as well as female Jack Russell Terriers grow to about 10 to 15 inches in height.
Weight: The ideal Jack Russell Terrier weight should range between 14 to 18 pounds.

Health Problems

Jack Russell Terrier dogs are prone to develop health problems like Progressive Neuronal Abiotrophy, Legg-Perthes disease, epilepsy, skin problems and allergies. Eye problems such as lens luxation, glaucoma, etc are commonly associated with dogs of this breed. They are also prone to genetic deafness. These greedy dogs are voracious eaters. Thus, it is essential not to feed them copiously to avoid obesity.

Life Expectancy: The average lifespan for these dogs is 13 to 15 years.
Litter Size: 4 to 8 puppies, on an average.

Grooming Requirements

The dense and weatherproof double coat of a Jack Russell Terrier can be of three types, that is, smooth, broken or rough. The smooth coat is characterized by short and stiff hair. On the other had, rough coat is marked by a longer and coarser outer coat. The broken variety is a mix of the former two varieties. Out of the three coat types, the smooth coat tends to shed the most.

These dogs shed all the year round. All the three types of hair coats can be maintained easily with just minimal effort. The rough and broken coats need to be stripped completely to remove loose hair, especially in case of show dogs. They are relatively clean dogs that should be bathed only when necessary. Trim your dog’s nails on a monthly basis to avoid injuries.


Jack Russell Terrier breed dogs are lively, joyful, alert, playful, fearless, confident, intelligent, assertive, loyal, obedient and loving in temperament. These dogs are highly trainable and intelligent. But, they can not be trusted around small pets on account of their hunting instincts.

Likewise, they are not recommended for children under the age of six. Though, they do fairly well around older children. These intense dogs make for excellent watchdogs. Generally, Jack Russell Terrier dogs are cheerful and pleasant but they can exhibit destructive behavior in the absence of inadequate physical activity and mental stimulation.

They can act in an amusing way just to earn their much deserved human attention. These dogs can be aggressive or strong willed at times, due to their inherent hunting instincts that can only be controlled but not completely done away with.

Key Points

Favorite pastimes of Jack Russell Terrier dogs are barking, digging, exploring, jumping off the fence, chasing smaller animals and engaging in dog fights. So, in order to utilize your Jack Russell Terrier’s energy in a constructive manner, make sure to provide him with plenty of opportunities for physical activity.

In apartment situation, an average to large sized and securely fenced guard should be sufficient to fulfill their exercise needs. Long brisk walks on a daily basis are also necessary in keeping them healthy. It is often recommended not to keep more than two Jack Russell Terriers together, especially unsupervised because they tend to become aggressive and attack each other.