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Jack Russells? Nuthin' but Nuts!
Jack Russells certainly are clever dogs. However, their considerable brain power is focused almost entirely on How; they have exactly one and only one brain cell dedicated to Why, and it always tell them, “Because you can.” Apparently they can not comprehend the basic animal concept of self-preservation in the face of overwhelming odds. I have two quick stories to illustrate this.
Small dog climbs big fence, and does it more easily than most people you know.
Some friends of mine have a small farm in Virginia, big enough for just a couple of horses, a varying number of barn cats, and two dogs, one of which is sane and one of which is a Jack Russell. That little fireball liked to slip under the pasture’s rail fence and chase the horses. You know how a horse’s height is measured in “hands?” Well, short dogs are measured in “ankles.” So, imagine a 2- or 3-ankle high dog nipping at the heels of a horse just to get it to run, for something to do. Think of the relative size: it would be like you or me harassing a creature as big as a 7-story building and half a block long, like a dinosaur. Brains, Jack Russells don’t have; testosterone, too damn much. Anyways, one time, chasing the horses, one of the horses connected with a backwards kick and sent the dog flying, spiraling like a football. But that’s not the story. The dog was in a body cast for weeks and then confined to the house for a few weeks after that. Then, the day my friends opened the screen door so the dog could go outside, run around and do dog stuff, that foolish dog immediately launched himself off the porch and high-tailed it under the pasture’s rail fence, straight for the horse that kicked him airborne!
Rather impressive, doing this without opposable thumbs!
Another time, my friends were sitting on the front porch, dogs at their feet. On the gravel road from over the hill came two big dogs, a German Shepherd and a Rottweiler. Luckily, they were gentle dogs just out for the dog version of an early evening stroll. But not my friends’ Jack, nuh-uh. As soon as he noticed the visitors, he bolted off the porch, barking his outrage. My friend grabbed the porch broom and gave chase. The two big dogs at the end of the yard just stood there and watched the Jack approach, cocking their heads a little as if thinking, “Is that a dog coming at us, or just a really loud and really big insect?” The Jack beelined for the Rottweiler and with no hesitation lunged up at his throat. The Rottweiler CAUGHT the Jack BY HIS HEAD, but luckily did not clamp his jaws; he just held him off the ground, the Jack’s little legs kicking and clawing the air, muffled snarls coming from the dog INSIDE the Rott’s mouth. My friend says the Rott had an embarrassed look on his face, like, “Uh, sorry; whaddya want me to do with this thing in my mouth?” A light smack on the shoulder with the porch broom’s brush was all it took to get the Rott to drop his attacker. Now, here’s the thing: the Jack dropped to the ground, but his legs were like springs. He sort of BOUNCED himself right back up at the Rottweiler, who by this time had lost his tolerance and good temper. Now think about it: is there ANY other animal IN THE WORLD that would not be humbled just a little by having its ENTIRE HEAD held INSIDE the SHARP-TOOTHED MOUTH of its opponent?
Jack owners love their dogs and consider them admirable creatures and fine pets; they say that Jack Russells are very brave and courageous and full of heart. All I know is that if we humans had the heart of Jack Russells, we’d live in a different world, for sure.