Russell Terrier

The Russell terrier was named after John Russell, the Oxford reverend and hunting enthusiast who was commonly known as the sporting parson. He developed the breed in southern England from the now extinct English white terrier in his quest to create the ultimate hunting dog during the 1800s. The result was an agile little dog that could pursue red fox over land and into subterranean burrows. In America, the Jack Russell Terrier Club of America was formed in 1976, adhering to strict standards for the hunting dog. In their determination to maintain these standards, members were adamantly opposed when the American Kennel Club considered recognition of the Jack Russell terrier. One group was not adverse to the notion of such recognition, however, and the Parson Russell Terrier Association of the United States was formed. The American Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1997 as a member of the terrier group, but because the Jack Russell Terrier Club of America trademarked the name of Jack Russell terrier, the name used for American Kennel Club registration is the Parson Russell terrier. The standards for the Parson Russell terrier call for a slightly longer body and longer legs, but these are the only differences between the Jack Russell and the Parson Russell terriers.

The Russell Terrier is a small dog, standing 13 to 14 inches tall at the shoulder and weighing 13 to 17 pounds. His sturdy legs and compact frame are built for strength, endurance and agility. His double coat protects him against the elements and the underbrush during hunting expeditions. The coat, which may be smooth or wiry, is predominantly white, and it may display a few tan, brown or black markings. Although Russell Terriers are small, they are feisty and sturdy. It's predominantly white with some black or tan spots. Its coat can either be smooth and glossy or rough and coarse. The coat requires minimal grooming, occasional brushing will suffice. Personality: Russell terriers are insatiable diggers, which stems from their hunting instincts of digging and burrowing to find their quarry. They will hunt moles, chipmunks other small mammals in their yards. They generally do not get along with cats or other smaller pets because they perceive these creatures as potential prey. They were bred to hunt with other dogs, so most will interact well with other canine housemates. The breed is not an ideal choice for families with young children. Their limited amount of patience and tolerance can result in growling or nipping.

Jack Russell terriers are tenacious and stubborn, but they are highly intelligent and easily trained to perform tricks and carry out small tasks. Their intelligence and high energy level requires them to be kept occupied and provided with tasks, toys and dog puzzle games to focus on, or they become destructive in their own search of something gratifying to do. They must also be exercised daily to expend some of their energy. They make ideal candidates for activities that provide mental and physical stimulation, such as agility coursing.

Jack Russell terriers are outgoing, playful, friendly and affectionate, making them fun companions. They are also alert, they bark considerably and they have a territorial nature, making them excellent watchdogs. This dog breed will not tolerate teasing, which is why they're not necessarily the best companions for young children. They can be aggressive towards other dogs and strangers.

Russell Terrier image
Breed Type
Pure
Origin
Europe
Family
Function
Life Span
12-14 Years
Hypoallergenic
No
Other Names
Parson Russell, Russell Terrier

Russell Terrier Build Information

Size
Small
Length (Male)
13-20 in.
Length (Female)
14-16 in.
Weight
15 - 25 lbs
Litter Size
5 - 10 Puppies
Tail Dock or Crop
Docked
Preferred Climate
Any Climate

The Russell Terrier is a small dog, standing 13 to 14 inches tall at the shoulder and weighing 13 to 17 pounds. His sturdy legs and compact frame are built for strength, endurance and agility. His double coat protects him against the elements and the underbrush during hunting expeditions. The coat, which may be smooth or wiry, is predominantly white, and it may display a few tan, brown or black markings.

Although Russell Terriers are small, they are feisty and sturdy.

It's predominantly white with some black or tan spots. Its coat can either be smooth and glossy or rough and coarse. The coat requires minimal grooming, occasional brushing will suffice.

Behaviour and Personality

Kid Friendliness
Affection Level
Activity Level
Energy Level
Independant
Good to Other Pets
Dominating or Submissive?
Guardian Skills
Barking
Aggressiveness Level

Russell terriers are insatiable diggers, which stems from their hunting instincts of digging and burrowing to find their quarry. They will hunt moles, chipmunks other small mammals in their yards. They generally do not get along with cats or other smaller pets because they perceive these creatures as potential prey. They were bred to hunt with other dogs, so most will interact well with other canine housemates. The breed is not an ideal choice for families with young children. Their limited amount of patience and tolerance can result in growling or nipping.

Jack Russell terriers are tenacious and stubborn, but they are highly intelligent and easily trained to perform tricks and carry out small tasks.

Their intelligence and high energy level requires them to be kept occupied and provided with tasks, toys and dog puzzle games to focus on, or they become destructive in their own search of something gratifying to do.

They must also be exercised daily to expend some of their energy. They make ideal candidates for activities that provide mental and physical stimulation, such as agility coursing.

Jack Russell terriers are outgoing, playful, friendly and affectionate, making them fun companions. They are also alert, they bark considerably and they have a territorial nature, making them excellent watchdogs. This dog breed will not tolerate teasing, which is why they're not necessarily the best companions for young children. They can be aggressive towards other dogs and strangers.

Appearance

Colors
Black Light Brown Red-Black Brindle Tan Tan Brindle White
Shedding
Moderate
Grooming
Low Maintenance
Coat Type
Rough

Jack Russell terriers are moderate shedders. While their coats require minimal grooming, weekly brushing will remove the dead hairs and keep his skin and coat healthy. Their ears should be inspected and kept clean during these brushing sessions. Brushing their teeth several times each week will maintain oral and overall health.

Breed's Talents and Facts

Training
Easy
Hunting Companion
Yes
Jolly for Jogging
Yes
Sighting Capabilities
No
Ideal for Tracking
Yes
Retrieving Skills
No
Pointing Breed
No
Herding Skills
No
Dutiful Watchdog
Yes
Security Guard Capable
No
Police Performer
No
Wet Water rescues
No
Assist Disable Owners
No
Dog Sledding
No
Able to Perform Dog Carting
No
Agile/Zippy
Yes
Fun with Lure Coursing
No
Obedient
No
Possible Schutzhund Work
No
Trainable for Tricks
Yes
  • The Russell terrier originated in England
  • The Jack Russell terrier is also called a Parson Russell terrier
  • Jack Russell terriers are intelligent, outgoing, alert and tenacious
  • They love to dig and bark, and they possess strong hunting instincts
  • Jack Russell terriers stand 13 to 14 inches tall and weigh 13 to 17 pounds
  • Jack Russell terriers have a very high energy level
  • Jack Russell terriers require minimal grooming
  • The average lifespan for a Jack Russell terrier is 12 to 14 years
  • Jack Russell Terriers are loving and affectionate but they are also strong-willed, independent and stubborn
  • They have high energy and need daily exercise in the form of walks or vigorous play to be happy

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Common Health Conditions in Russell Terriers

The Russell Terrier is a tough and hardy dog. Some genetic health conditions to be aware of in the breed include patellar luxation, congenital deafness and eye problems that include glaucoma, cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy. The average lifespan of the Jack Russell is 12 to 14 years.

Russell Terrier Pet Insurance

When adding a dog or cat to your family you want to make sure your pet is happy, healthy and protected. During its lifetime your pet is exposed to many illnesses and diseases and some breeds are affected by a congenital disease which is a condition existing at birth. At these moments when your pet is ill or maybe needs surgery, you want to be protected for the unexpected and high veterinarian costs.

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