Jack Russell Terrier: dog breed appearance, character, training, care, health


Among the characteristics of the Jack Russell terrier dog breed, it stands out that it is strong, agile and hard-working. It has an energetic, intelligent and intrepid character. An excellent pet, very affectionate with its family. At Petlifey, we explain everything about the Jack Russell terrier.


Character of the Jack Russell Terrier

The Jack Russell terrier, both short-haired and long-haired, is a dog with an intrepid, curious and courageous character.

It has the personality of a very active working dog, always alert and resistant . Its expression is a reflection of its demeanor , which is sharp and lively .It is a pet that shows a lot of self-confidence. It is very affectionate with its family and in its treatment it is kind .

  • Temperament: rustic, stubborn, bold, fearless and courageous, it is always alert and with a very sharp and intelligent expression. Learn very easily. It is very affectionate and friendly.
  • Adaptability: It does not live well in the city or in a small apartment, since it needs to do a lot of exercise and run in open places.
  • Sociability: Coexists without problems with all members of the family and with other dogs, but other animals may want to hunt them.
  • Energy: high level. It needs to exercise every day and to be always busy with something, as its hunter and explorer instinct is very high.
  • Health: very good. As a working dog, it is in very good health.
  • Longevity: Very high. Live more than 15 years.
  • Utility: company. Originally a hunting dog, it is currently used more as a companion dog.
  • Use: hunting and company.

Cheerful, with a great attachment to their owners, brave and very active, like a good terrier that it is, the Jack Russell is characterized by being balanced at all times and with all kinds of people.

It stands out above all for its good connection with the smallest of the house.

It is always important to control the games between a Jack Russell terrier and children. Especially to avoid that the latter can harm the dog unintentionally and thus cause an unpleasant reaction from the animal.

In general, it is an obedient dog that can be trained to carry out any type of activity. It loves games and should always have something to entertain themselves with.

You must have at your disposal something that you can chew on, throw away, and carry without fear of being lost or broken. If you don’t have it and are bored, you may find “fun” on your own.

In addition, as it is a very intelligent dog, it often tries to impose its own criteria with the members of its family, so it is essential to teach it the rules of behaviour from the beginning.

And if you fall in error, another common hand, too condescending treat more as a person than as a dog may suffer significant changes in behavior  or conduct .

This breed adapts and blends well with all members of the family but needs to have a single reference person, someone who in their eyes becomes the leader of the pack to admire and obey.

The relationship with other dogs is usually good, or at least acceptable, if it is used from a puppy, but, if not, it can show a dominant and somewhat aggressive tendency towards its congeners.


Characteristics of the Jack Russell Terrier

The general appearance or appearance of the Jack Russel terrier is that of a strong and active working dog, with a medium length body and very flexible. It is agile and resistant.

Its small size , intelligent eyes, funny features and its sometimes somewhat disheveled appearance have made this furry friend arouse the tenderness and sympathy of many dog ​​lovers.

Speaking exclusively of its body, it is an animal with a rather rectangular body structure , since the length of its body is greater than its height at the withers. Very muscular and flexible , it is an agile and elastic animal , with quick and skilful movements.Its head is in harmony with the rest of the body, it is balanced and its image is generally sweet and kind, quite tender. The stop is well defined, the muzzle is wide, and the nose is black.

Its eyes are small and dark, not very prominent. Almond shaped and with the edge of the eyelids edged in black, they have a very sharp and alert expression .

The ears are quite thick and the dog wears them semi-drooping, with the upper third thrown forward. They are well covered with dense short hair .

Under some straight and strong legs, we find robust and firm feet, rounded and not too large. The toes are moderately arched and straight.

Regarding its tail, when moving it is usually raised and in some countries whose legislation allows it, it is usually cut off, so that when it is raised it is at the level of the ears.

This animal has a short and hard coat , or it is rough and brittle , and it is very waterproof. The white color predominates in the coat of hair , but black or tan markings also appear.

Once this is explained, let’s now see in more detail what the Jack Russell terrier is like and what is the breed standard :

Jack Russell Terrier breed standard

  • General appearance: it is an active, strong, very flexible and skillful dog. Its body is elastic and of medium length.
  • Size: small.
  • Height at the withers: between 25 and 30 cm for males and between 24 and 29 cm for females.
  • Weight: between 5 and 6 kg for males and between 4 and 6 kg for females.
  • Origin: United Kingdom.
  • Body: it has a rather rectangular structure, with a short, strong and very muscular rump.
  • Head: It is wider between the ears and gradually narrows as it gets closer to the eyes.
  • Skull: it is flat and of moderate width.
  • Muzzle: wide and shorter than the skull, it has well developed cheek muscles.
  • Nose: it is black.
  • Eyes: almond shaped and small, not too prominent. The eyelids are well attached to the eyeball and have a black pigmented edge. The iris is dark in color and the gaze is sharp.
  • Ears: they have good thickness, a lot of mobility and are semi-drooping or drooping forward. If they fall completely, they cover the external auditory canal
  • Nose-frontal depression (stop): it is well defined but it is not pronounced.
  • Jaws: they are very strong, deep, wide and powerful, with strong teeth and a scissor bite.
  • Neck: strong and clear, allows the dog to carry its head with balance.
  • Chest: deeper than wide, it has very arched ribs that flatten slightly at the sides.
  • Back: the upper line of the dog is horizontal and the tip of the sternum is clearly in front of the end of the shoulder.
  • Forelimbs: they are strong and straight. The shoulders and shoulder blades are well sloped and not overly muscled. The arms are long and well angulated, and the forearms are straight. Your elbows are well placed under the body.
  • Hind limbs: strong and muscular, they keep a good balance with the shoulder blades. The knees form good angles and the metatarsals seen from behind are parallel. Their hocks are close to the ground.
  • Feet: they are rounded, strong, not too large and have moderately arched toes, which do not deviate inwards or outwards. They are well padded.
  • Tail: at rest the porta fallen, but in movement it carries it raised. Some specimens are cut a piece, so that, raised, the tip is at the same height as the ears, but this amputation is only carried out in countries that allow this practice.
  • Feet: they are rounded, strong, not too large and have moderately arched toes, which do not deviate inwards or outwards. They are well padded.
  • Tail: at rest the porta fallen, but in movement it carries it raised. Some specimens are cut a piece, so that, raised, the tip is at the same height as the ears, but this amputation is only carried out in countries that allow this practice.

Fearless, curious and adventurous, it loves exploring new places and running around controlling and guarding every corner of its territory. Therefore, when they are puppies, they must be constantly monitored.

It is very important to start the process of socializing the puppy as soon as possible . Always with the permission of the veterinarian, you must meet other people, other places and other dogs. Live situations and noises in real life so that it is not a fearful or nervous dog in the future.

The coat of the Jack Russell terrier is dense and tight, but in some specimens its texture is rough while in others it is short and smooth. Most of the time you can not see the difference when they are puppies, but with the passage of time.

In the same way, and in general, the coat of hair of this breed is basically white. But tan or black spots can also appear, both from birth and after a few months of life.


Education and training Jack Russell Terrier

One of the most important jobs in the education of the Jack Russell terrier is its socialization.

Their primary instincts, their desire to hunt or chase other animals, are much stronger in this dog than in other terriers, so it is not easy to get them to establish a cordial relationship with pets of other species .

Nor is it easy to prevent you from repressing your desire to explore unfamiliar places. You have to be very careful when letting it run free, something totally discouraged unless you are in confined and safe areas or in the case of individuals with a high degree of obedience.

The best way to keep a calm and balanced Jack Russell terrier is, therefore, to provide them with all the activity and exercise he needs, which makes them not the best companion for a sedentary family or for living in an apartment in the city. town.

When it comes to your training and education, it is very important to use positive reinforcement . That is, rewarding the animal when it does something well or obeys an order, instead of yelling at it, being rude with it, or punishing it when it does something wrong.


Jack Russell Terrier breed diet

Apart from exercise, the owners of this breed must administer a series of very basic care to their dog to ensure that it lives healthy and happy. One of them is to watch your diet.

The diet of a Jack Russell terrier must be rich in proteins, basically of animal origin, to satisfy its energy demands and provide adequate nutrition to its muscles and its flexible skeletal system.

But at the same time, your food must also have a rich and balanced composition of quality fats (omega 3 and omega 6) to ensure the health of your eyes, skin and hair.

In recent years, the largest manufacturers of dog food have developed feed or kibbles specially designed for this type of dog. You can find it in specialized pet stores or conveniently on the Internet.


Jack Russell Terrier health and diseases

The Jack Russell terrier is a working dog and so far it has not suffered the consequences of fashion, it remains a strong, healthy breed and little exposed to serious diseases.

There are a few isolated cases of knee dislocation and the occasional skin and eye problem, but other than that, nothing of particular importance.

Regarding how long a Jack Russell lives, you should know that in this dog the longevity or hope is between 13 and 16 years with the correct health care and attention.

Thus, it is enough to periodically go to the veterinarian to complete the rigorous vaccinations, the internal and external deworming programs, and the control of the eyes, mouth and ears .

The veterinarian must also be in charge of monitoring its growth and weight, to keep this fantastic dog in optimal health .

In general, working breeds, those that have been selected for generations only on functional criteria, are usually healthy and robust .

The reason is clear: those who are looking for an active, courageous, determined and resistant dog with which to hunt use to breed only breeding pairs that perfectly meet these requirements, and only select from the litters the puppies closest to the dog. ideal they are looking for.

By tradition, puppies that are not chosen by the breeder themselves or destined for someone looking for a dog of these characteristics are eliminated, so the weakest and least prepared dogs are left out of the reproductive chain.

However, this only occurs with working breeds. With the evolution of cinofilia towards sentimental criteria in which other factors prevail, especially aesthetic ones, functionality and temperament are beginning to be left in the background and, almost without knowing it, diseases are introduced into the blood lines that weaken the capabilities of a race.


Specific care of the Jack Russell Terrier breed

The Jack Russell terrier dog breed requires little cosmetic maintenance , a routine brushing once or twice a week with a card or a terrier mitten is enough to remove dead hair.

As for how often you should bathe the Jack Russell , it will only be necessary when the dog is really dirty, since with regular brushing, the bath can be done every 4 or 6 months.

With this minimum care, it is possible to have a healthy, balanced and happy animal that makes the life of the whole family much more fun, since it does not stop encouraging them to play with it and to take it out for a walk or run outdoors.


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