Jack Russell Terrier breed: the adorable bouncing doodle

László Enikő

2023. May 23 - Photos: Getty Images Hungary; Jacks and Bears

The Jack Russell Terrier is undeniably a terrier of the blood, an adorable energy bomb with just the right amount of stubbornness. Not to be underestimated, he is a very hardy, very intelligent and cunning puppy.


The film The Mask, in which Jim Carrey’s brave and loyal companion was played by a lovable Jack Russell Terrier, made him really popular. All the spectators fell in love with the cheerful, cute and clownish character. It’s not for nothing that many TV dog shows choose this breed. This bouncing self-awareness has real terrier blood running through its veins, with all the benefits and sometimes the drawbacks. He’s impossible to be bored around. Extremely intelligent, always thinking of something to entertain himself and his family. It’s important to remember that this chatty puppy is always one step ahead of his owner.

Jack Russell Terriers are also popular in the film world.


His name was given in the 19th century in England The Reverend John Russell who was a passionate fox hunter and fox terrier breeder. He wanted a dog that could effortlessly keep up with the horses when they went hunting, and was incredibly brave and confident. (Some sources say, however, that they were only carried in a small bag on horseback, not run alongside them.) In addition, one of his main tasks was to chase away rats scavenging for food, for which a terrier is always an excellent choice. The ancestors are thought to be the now extinct white terrier and the modern fox terrier.

At the beginning, the breed was not characterised by a well-defined standard, with countless different Jack Russell Terriers helping the hunt. Although the Reverend was a founding member and respected judge of the Kennel Club, he never registered his own pets. He said:

Comparing my dogs to the others would be like comparing wildflowers to the ones in my garden. Both are perfect in their own way.

John eventually sold his breeding dogs due to financial problems and died shortly afterwards, aged 87.

After that, only two people were left to save the breed, breeding a new generation from the reverend’s terriers. The breed was not officially registered until the 20th century. Around the turn of the 20th century, it began to be associated with a special dog, smaller than the fox terrier and with a different hunting habitus. A separate standard already existed – developed by enthusiastic members of the Jack Russell Club of Great Britain – but it has still not been registered. Until 1990, when the FCI officially recognised it as the Parson Jack Russell Terrier.

Photo by Jacks and Bears.

The breed covered three different sizes of dog, the Jack Russell, the longer-legged Parson Russell and the smaller Russell Terrier. As the official FCI standard does not allow a difference in size of up to 10 cm, the types were separated in 2000 and given their aforementioned names. Today, only the Jack Russell and Parson Russell Terriers are officially recognised. The bloodlines of today’s Jack Russell terriers can be traced back to Australia and Parson Russells to England. They are more of a working dog, while the former are more of a pet type.

Princess Camilla with her Jack Russell terrier.

Breed standard

He is undoubtedly in the category of terriers. Its colour can be completely white, but in most cases it has black, tan or brown markings. The striped design is considered a mistake. The fringe can be plain, half-length or wire, all waterproof. The ideal height of the marble is 25-30 cm. The average weight is 5-6 kg, but there may be variations. His eyes are small and dark, sparkling with intelligence and curiosity. Its feet hang down in a V shape. The nose is elongated, the jaw is deep. Her walk is pecky, energetic, proud. Its tail is sometimes docked. It has a lifespan of up to 16 years.

Photo by Jacks and Bears.


The character of the Jack Russell Terrier is captivating. He’s got plenty of tricks up his sleeve to sweep anyone off their feet. Sometimes their excessive stubbornness requires an experienced owner, but if they have this, they can live together in complete harmony. It is recommended to start training from puppyhood, because it can easily grow on you. Contrary to misconceptions, if it is in good hands, it does not destroy. To stay balanced, you should spend at least an hour a day on mental and physical exhaustion. She forms a close bond with her owner, to whom she will remain loyal for the rest of her life. A real little bomb of fun, great fun for the family.

Ideal environment

It can be kept both in the garden and in the home. In the latter case, however, great care should be taken to ensure that they are thoroughly rested and that they play and walk several times a day. Recommended for children over 6 years old, with whom he can run and play all day. It’s extremely hardy, so it makes a great hiking companion. Proper fencing is highly recommended, as this little terrier can jump up to five times its own height.


The coat does not require any special care, but it sheds a relatively large amount and regular combing is recommended. A few times a year for individuals with coarser hair types trimming is necessary which should be done by a professional.
Eyes and ears should always be kept clean.

Common health problems

The Jack Russell Terrier is a very healthy breed, but the patellar sprain typical of small dogs is not uncommon.

breed dog breeds breed description dredge hunting dogs jack russell terrier small dog

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