Parson & Jack Russell Terriers...

... are hunting dogs. The traits and skills that make of them excellent hunting dogs, i.e. digging or following scent aren't sometimes very welcome in a family. Quarry – cats, rabbits, rats, mice or birds – naturally awakens the hunting instinct of a terrier. It is important that you are attentive in such situations and call back or distract the dog. Undesired attributes can be held within limits with consistent training, patience and foresight.

 Christina Wespi... get along well with other pets. It is an advantage if they have been used to them at the puppy age. They should never been left alone with smaller pets such as rats, guinea pigs or mice.

... require a consistent discipline.
They ar
e very intelligent and will always test their limits. Very often, they train their owners before the owner knows what has happened. To live comfortably in a household, they should at least have basic obedience training: walking on a lead, come, sit, down and stay. This is to your advantage as well; an obedient dog is welcome nearly everywhere.

... need sufficient activities. If left unattended or unemployed they will invent new and fun jobs for themselves (which you will usually find destructive). An active, tenacious dog such as a Jack Russell terrier is a great companion on all kinds of walks, tours, runs, bike rides, outings and horseback rides, whether hunting or not. They also love agility and other dog sports. A fully occupied Jack Russell terrier is quiet and peaceful in his home.

... are big dogs in little bodies. They have the same need (or even more!) for exercise as much larger dogs, and they think they are large dogs! That's why they often challenge other dogs three times their size.

... are fond of children and good family dogs. They love the activity in a lively family and are always ready to play. But it is important that children know how to play with dogs. The dog has to be protected from rough treatment or constant teasing. The dog must also not been disturbed while eating or sleeping. Just as with any dog, Jack Russell terriers should never be left with a baby or infant unattended. Small children often try to carry small dogs like a Jack Russell terrier. This should not be permitted.

... need a secure fenced yard. They can dig under, climb over, and jump fences. If they are to be left unattended in your yard, it should be surrounded by a sufficiently high close-meshed fence. If they are bored, they will soon be looking for a greener playground on the other side of the fence.

... have a coat which needs only some care. Brushing once a week will do. However, all dogs shed, and rough coats have to be plucked a few times a year.

... are great friends! They are lively cheerful companions for various activities. Knowing the specific attributes of a Jack Russell terrier is very important. Owners should love these attributes or at least be able to tolerate them. If so, you will never be disappointed of this dog, but be as enthusiastic about a Jack Russell terrier as we are.

Text/Foto: Astrid Zwahlen, Brightbud