Breed Spotlight: Jack Russell Terrier

 Tuesday Nov 01,2022
By  Lancaster Puppies

The Russell Terrier, more commonly known as the Jack Russell Terrier, is a spunky, loving, and energetic family dog beloved by families across the world. Let’s take a look at some of the traits that make the Jack Russell Terrier one of the most popular breeds in the United States. 

History of the Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell Terrier characteristics: Intelligent, Lively & Athletic, Friendly & Spunky, Outgoing, High EnergyThe Jack Russell Terrier breed was developed in England in the 19th century primarily by one man, Parson John Russell. Parson was an avid hunter and sought to create a breed that would excel at chasing foxes from their dens. They served as working dogs until the 1900s when they made their way to the United States. Here they gained popularity as family dogs, and the AKC renamed the breed to the Parson Russell Terrier to differentiate the working breed from the family breed. Most other organizations and avid breed enthusiasts still refer to them as Jack Russell Terriers. 

Jack Russell Terrier Characteristics 

Appearance & Coat

Jack Russell Terriers are compact and athletic, built to chase foxes out of their holes. They have a soft and dense undercoat with a harsh, weatherproof top coat. They should be primarily white with black or tan markings. 


Jack Russells are very outgoing, friendly, and playful. They make great family companions and love nothing more than playing games with their family. While they love making friends with people, they sometimes see cats and other small animals as prey, so supervision is recommended in these situations. 


They are known to live long and healthy lives, and responsible breeders will screen them for common health issues. They can be susceptible to some eye conditions, deafness, and Legg Perthes, a disorder in the hip joints common with small breeds. 

Caring for a Jack Russell Terrier

A Jack Russell’s Ideal Home

Did you know, in 2003 the AKC changed the name of the Jack Russell Terrier to "Parson Russell Terrier." Breed enthusiasts weren't happy, and the name never stuck with the general public.Jack Russell’s fit in with families of all shapes and sizes, as long as they are included in the fun. They don’t do well being left alone in the yard and require interactive playtime to stay mentally stimulated. They get along well with children but should be socialized with small kids early in their lives. 

Training Best Practices

They are very intelligent and typically take quickly to training if it is started early in their life. If training isn’t begun early stubborn behavior can appear, which will make training more difficult. Positive reinforcement is a common method in training Jack Russells, and we recommend including fun games in the training process. 

Exercise Needs

Jack Russell Terriers are high energy and do best in an active family. They love going on adventures with their owners and playing games that stimulate them mentally and physically. Exercise that incorporates quality time with their family is always the best option for a Jack Russell. 

Grooming and Hygiene

Their coat can come in three varieties, rough, smooth, and broken. All three coat varieties require minimal maintenance and should be brushed a few times per week to keep shedding under control and to remove dirt and debris from their hair. As with all breeds, their nails should be kept trim and their ears should be cleaned regularly. 

Browse Jack Russell Terrier Puppies Today

If you’ve decided that the Jack Russell Terrier is the breed for your family, browse Jack Russell Terrier Puppies on Lancaster Puppies today!