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Puppy Training for Jack Russell Puppies

Updated on September 26, 2012
Jasper - Our Jack Russell Puppy with His Chew Toy
Jasper - Our Jack Russell Puppy with His Chew Toy | Source

Puppy Training - Begin Immediately!

My husband and I just recently added a new member to our family - a Jack Russell puppy we called Jasper.

We have previously trained a Schnauzer puppy named Lily from 12 weeks to 9 months, and prior to that my husband had an Australian Kelpie cross from the time he was about nine months old. He lived for 19 years before he died of a stroke.

One thing we've found is that the moment you get your puppy is when you begin training your new puppy.

A puppy is an addition to your family and when you get one you are adopting him or her for life (usually). They become part of your family and as such they respond to you and develop their personality as a result of this.

To have a well trained dog, begin training immediately and maintain your training program consistently.

So how do you train your new Jack Russell puppy?

Follow along with me as we teach our little 'furboy' how to be a well-behaved and socialised little dog...

Training Jack Russell puppies

Training Jack Russell puppies requires an understanding of their nature, so let's take a quick look at what characteristics a Jack Russell has generally.

A Jack Russell has a feisty nature being a big dog in a little dog's body. They come across as being fearless and assertive, with a very strong hunting instinct.

They are intelligent and very energetic. They can jump up to five times their own height and are very quick. They can dig to get at their 'prey' and when they go to 'ground' they stay on task till they get their quarry. In the wild they would hunt rats, and rabbits and any other small animal within their reach. Domesticated, they are still ruled by this hunting instinct and can harass and even kill cats, rabbits, rats, gerbils and birds.

Our little dog seems to be quite calm and loves affection. They respond well to love and attention and clear boundaries. Because they are intelligent, and have energy to burn, they love to have tasks to do.

This makes training important and also can make it quite easy to do. The Jack Russell puppy will need continual training as he/she will need constant challenges, so consistency and continuous training will ensure you have a well trained little dog.

Puppy Training Tips for Your Jack Russell Puppy

Puppy training for your Jack Russell puppy is very hands-on. The whole time you are working with him, you are building a positive relationship with him. He responds well to caring, companionship and clear commands.

Tips to get started training your puppy:

Toilet training - A Jack Russell puppy will need to relieve himself about two hourly. He also will want to go shortly after a drink of water and something to eat. So begin by taking him outside at those times and placing him where you want him to go. If he has an accident inside, show it to him and then place him outside at the spot where he should have gone. One trick is to collect some of his droppings and put it where you want him to go so that he associates the place by scent.

Getting your dog to come to you on demand - Never chase after your dog. Call them to you, and when they come to you, praise them in a warm friendly voice and give them a pat or two. If they do not respond, call again, and if that does not work, turn away from them and walk away. Try again in a few minutes. Generally the dog will begin to follow you when you move away.

Walking - When talking him for a walk, always have him in a body harness and on a lead till he is able to be controlled effectively by voice command. A Jack Russell is exceptionally fast and can be a hazard to himself and motorists, if he suddenly takes off across the road, or after a small animal like a cat or another dog. He will seem to naturally heel on a lead and getting him to walk beside you is a matter of praising him when he does, and repositioning him when he pulls ahead.

Puppy Products for Training - Step by Step Guides and Understanding Your Jack Russell Terrier

'Bad' behaviors - eg biting, chewing Distraction is the key here. If your Jack Russell does what ours does, for example - attempt to bite a cord, growl like his mother or lead dog would do to warn him, and if he doesn't stop straight away then distract him, by making a noise in a different part of the room.

If you want him to stop jumping up on people, gently growl and push him away. Don't give him any attention for a few seconds, then pick him up or pat him when you choose to. Don't respond to him when he wants you to, you are the lead 'dog' and he should be looking to you for direction, not the other way around.

To break a bad barking habit, again, distraction is the key. Usually the dog will bark at something, and the trick is to distract the dog from what he is barking at and give him something else to do.

These are just a few tips and they should help get you started. A Jack Russell puppy is a bit like a baby and needs a lot of love, and to learn what is expected of him. You also need to learn how he behaves naturally in a pack environment, so you can teach him in a way he understands.

A well trained puppy growing into a faithful and obedient companion, is a joy to be with and well worth the time and effort. Training is simple; it requires only knowledge,persistence and perseverance, and a willingness to apply it.

Do it well - your puppy will love you for it!

Jasper Sleeping After a Busy Morning
Jasper Sleeping After a Busy Morning | Source

Training Our Jack Russell - Jasper

As we make progress with our little dog, I will add tips and suggestions.

After tearing around 'mauling his mouse,' fronting up to our cat, and long walks with 'Dad,' our little boy is all tuckered out and sleeps solidly for a good hour or two.

Sleep is as important as food and water while a puppy is growing, so, when he is asleep, keep family and visitors from picking him up, because - gosh, darn it! - he looks sooo cute!

Our Tips for Puppy Training Jack Russell Puppies

As I mentioned earlier I will add updates on things that we try that work for our Jack Russell puppy, Jasper.

As the Jack Russell breed is primarily a hunting dog, one thing I do to keep our wee 'furbaby' busy is to throw a handful of cat or dog 'pellets' or bites, onto our back lawn and he has to go hunt them by smell. This keeps him busy and involves him using his instincts in a positive and fun way!

What Worked Well with Your Puppy Training...?

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    • profile image


      21 months ago

      Thanks for the tips on training a jack Russell, mine is 15 wks old now, and he's great, he does keep trying to bite my hand and fingers when I stroke him, I'm hoping this will stop!

      Every time he gos to chew my hand and fingers, I say bad chew, and give him a chew stick, then say good chew, hoping this will work, other than that, he's great, listens will, training is starting to go well.

      He loves walks and is great round other dogs.

      I shall also take tips on this post too about training, very helpful.

      All the best to all with training there jrt.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      My bitch is 10weeks old im starting her training today thanks for the great advice.

    • Rosemay50 profile image

      Rosemary Sadler 

      5 years ago from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand

      Interesting hub with some very useful advice

    • Chris Achilleos profile image

      Chris Achilleos 

      5 years ago

      This is a very interesting hub, with some excellent tips. I love Jack Russell dogs, their adorable. And your Jasper sure is cute :)

      Voted up!

      Thanks for sharing,


    • Barbsbitsnpieces profile image

      Barbara Anne Helberg 

      6 years ago from Napoleon, Henry County, Ohio, USA

      @Johanna Baker...This is a very worthy Hub on puppy training with gentle hands and generous praise.

      Dogs are all about being loved and loving their people. Teaching them good behavior from the get-go works every time to get them acclimated to the household.

      Jasper is the cutest J.R.

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 

      6 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Jasper is adorable and I envy you having a new baby in the house. My Bella is a one year old ball of energy. She was very easy to potty train. You are correct - it takes patience and diligence but if you stay with it, success is sure to follow.

      I have yet to stop her from jumping and chewing on me. I will attempt to incorporate some of your advice.

    • rjsadowski profile image


      6 years ago

      A lot of good advice about puppy training.


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