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Jack Russell Terrier Dogs

Updated on July 3, 2009

Jack Russell Terrier Dogs

The dogs known as Jack Russell's or Jack Russell Terriers are a breed of dogs that have become known for the small frame and distinct appearance.

There are three types of coats which are common in Jack Russell terriers; smooth, broken or rough.

Video Information on Jack Russell Terriers

The History of the Breed

With the beginning of the breed starting with a breeding by the Reverend Jack Russell of his terrier, Trump and can be dated back to the seventeenth century. The dog was bred with the feisty nature that can assist during hunting trips to assist with retrieving foxes. The aggressive nature of the dog came in handy while trying to retrieve the feisty foxes.

There has been a large gene pool that has developed with the breed and therefore the longevity of the breed has been increased drastically since the seventeenth century through the introduction of the breed.

The Appearance of the Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell Terriers are considered to fall under the category of small breed and are characteristically between ten to fifteen inches in height.

Although there are variations in coloring within the breed, more than fifty percent of the breed is predominantly white and have markings which vary in size, shape and colors of black and tan throughout the body and the head.

There are many characteristics that can help to identify the breed, such as the almond shaped eyes. The head is proportionate to the body and includes a narrow nose with a small black nose which seems to compliment the almond shaped eyes that are characteristic of the Jack Russell Terrier.

A short overbite is present in most Jack Russell Terriers which means that the top of the jaw and teeth protrude over the bottom part of the jaw and this is sometimes referred to as a scissor jaw. There are also bites in which there is no presence of an overbite, referred to as a level bite. Interestingly enough, the scissor bite is preferred within most breeding circles for the Jack Russell Terrier.

What are the characteristics unique to a Jack Russell Terrier?

Jack Russell Terriers are very high energy breeds which can be troublesome for some owners. The high energy contributes to the dogs' susceptibility to excessively bark when the dog is surprised or challenged.

The majority of Jack Russell Terriers have a bark which is larger than their bite as they are said to suffer from a napoleon complex, in which the dog feels as if it is superior or equal to a larger dog. This can lead to the dog getting itself into situations in which is requires help, as the other animal that the dog is coming into contact with is often larger and stronger than the Jack Russell Terrier.

A large amount of exercise in order to keep up with the energy levels that are found within the breed therefore daily walks of at least thirty minutes are recommended to avoid the dog becoming obese, or becoming restless within the home that can lead to a bored Jack Russell Terrier. A bored Jack Russell Terrier is susceptible to wreak havoc in the home and develop bad habits like chewing and other anxious behavior that comes with dogs that lack stimulation and discipline.

Although the dog is adaptable to city and country conditions, the dog should have plenty of room to exercise. A Jack Russell Terrier that does not receive enough exercise and stimulation can easily become bored and begin to wreak havoc on the home in which it lives. It is important to ensure that the dog living in the city has enough room, or enough exercise through the day to keep the dog entertained and active, as a sedentary lifestyle is not one that is going to be tolerated by members of this breed.

As an intelligent breed of dog, it is important to provide adequate stimulation for the breed. The majority of dogs within the breed require constant stimulation through aspects like exercise, toys and of course attention from the owner. This attention can help to increase the intelligence, as can training and obedience classes. The information learned through these classes is a great way to enforce limitations within the household and the rules which the dog must follow.

Rules are very important for the Jack Russell Terrier and boundaries should be set within the home from the moment that the Jack Russell Terrier is brought into the home. This will decrease the amount of aggression and restlessness that can come from the breed not receiving enough attention and training.

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Are there any health conditions which are associated with the Jack Russell Terrier?

Jack Russell Terriers are a popular breed of pet for a reason! They have one of the best records for longevity and health of many of the breeds. The average life span of a Jack Russell Terrier can be between twelve and fifteen years, with a small percentage of the dogs living between fifteen and nineteen years.

Although they have become known for longevity, there are certain health conditions that the pet owner should take into consideration when choosing a Jack Russell Terrier, these include: joint disorders, deafness and cataracts. There have been a high percentage of Jack Russell Terriers that have been known to suffer from a dislocated kneecap, therefore it is important to ensure the safety of the dog at all times, to reduce this risk.

Behavioral Characteristics of a Jack Russell Terrier

The behavior of a Jack Russell Terrier is distinctive of a small dog that has a large bark but no bite. The breed is known for their agility and high energy, as well as their kind nature. These characteristics make the breed popular because of the sense of loyalty that comes in the relationship between the dog and the owner.

Other behaviors which are commonly seen in Jack Russell Terriers include the dog being susceptible to aggression to other small animals including other small dogs, puppies or other small animals which are kept in the home. It is important to properly socialize the pet with these small animals and children while the dog is very young to ensure that the dog will develop good relationships with other small pets and children that are located in the home and that the dog is exposed to in public and other situations.

The Jack Russell is one of the most alert and adaptable breeds, which makes them on guard for the household in which they live. This can cause the dog to become very territorial, when other small animals or even large animals or children enter the home. To avoid this simply teach the Jack Russell the proper way to welcome visitors and ensure that the puppy is enrolled in obedience classes to keep these habits at bay.

How to Choose a Jack Russell Terrier Breeder

There are many aspects of choosing a Jack Russell Terrier breeder.

Learning to identify a reputable breeder is an essential part of ensuring that you are supporting a breeder with the health and well-being of the dogs in mind, rather than the paycheck that is being earned with each litter of puppies that is born. The following aspects can often help to identify a reputable breeder –

· A reputable Jack Russell Terrier breeder will ensure that the parents are on site and can be met with by the prospective parents of the new puppy.

· A reputable breeder will offer advice, information and follow up support with the new puppy to ensure that the transition is easy as possible for the puppy, as well as for the family that is choosing the puppy.

· A reputable breeder will be associated with organizations that contribute to healthy breeding practices, while adhering to the local standards that are set by these organizations.

The benefits of choosing a reputable breeder include the fact that the dogs often come with health guarantees and the parents are of outstanding pedigree, which can contribute to the health, agility and personality of the dog.

A reputable breeder will ensure that the parents that are being used to breed Jack Russell terriers have a low risk of producing puppies that are prone to hereditary disease. In the case that one of the potential parents does have an increased risk the breeder will often cease the breeding processes with this dog and offer the dog for adoption to a loving home, or simply keep the dog. At this time the dog will be neutered or spayed to ensure that the potential risk of passed to the next generation.

Comment on the Jack Russell Terrier

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    • paperfacets profile image

      Sherry Venegas 

      8 years ago from La Verne, CA

      We love our active Jack Russell. He has found lots to amuse him in the backyard but in the evening with us in the house he comes alive, again. Endless energy these dogs have.

    • momto4 lm profile image

      momto4 lm 

      9 years ago

      Great lens! We have a Jack Russell Terrier named JR. He's a great dog and he's really good with our kids. He's a little bundle of energy.

    • italianheart92 lm profile image

      italianheart92 lm 

      9 years ago

      Awesome lens I love this kind of dog they're so cute! Great job :)


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