The Jack Russell Terrier is a small terrier which origins with fox hunting. It is a small but explosive dog, more compact than tall, agile, and despite its small size it has a great strength and resistance. It is a working terrier, watchful, tough and independent. It is an excellent companion dog for active people.
This breed is divided in two varieties: the smooth haired Jack Russell and the rough haired Jack Russell Terrier. Their main difference is their coat.
Jack Russell Terrier’s origin dates back to the XIX century in England. All breeds from the Terrier’s group had origin in the British islands, except for the Miniature Schnauzer. Lots of them come from a similar ancestor, and during the course of the XIX century, the Terriers were classified in two basic categories: the ones with thick coat and short paws, which tend to come from Scotland; and the ones with longer paws and smooth coat, bred in England.
The Jack Russell Terrier was bred thanks to the reverend John Russell. He developed a style of Fox Terriers which suited his needs; a dog who could run with his Fox Hounds and did a big effort to trap the foxes and other preys. These dogs were divided in two varieties with similar standards, except for some differences such as the height and proportions. The tallest one, with a more defined squared shape, was known as the Parson Russell Terrier, and the shortest one, a little larger, is known as the Jack Russell Terrier.
It is worthy to stress that Australia was a country which collaborated a lot with its development, and later, with its international recognition. In 1972, el Jack Russell Terrier Club of Australia was officially set up. This specialized club introduced an extensive register system and also a formal breed standard, and so they got the recognized by the FCI in 2000, by the United Kennel Club in 2009 and by the American Kennel Club in June of 2012, with the name of «Russell terrier».
Height bitch: 25~35 cm / Height male: 30~35 cm
Weight bitch: 5~6 kg / Weight male: 5~7 kg
Jack Russells are strong and active working dogs, with a lot of attitude, and a flexible body with a medium large. Its skillful movement suits with its clever expression. It has short, strong and muscular limbs. The jaw must be powerful and with a good skeleton; with a scissors bite and straight teeth. Small V-shaped ears of moderate thickness are carried forward on the head. The tail is strong and straight. Its coat may be smooth or rough, and white with red, yellow or black markings in their head or in the point of rump.
They are sturdy, tough, and tenacious, measuring between 10–15 inches (25–38 cm) at the withers, and weigh 14–18 pounds (6.4–8.2 kg). The body length must be in proportion to the height, and the dog should present a compact, balanced image. Predominantly white in coloration (more than 51%) with black and/or brown and/or tan markings, they exhibit either a smooth, rough or a combination of both which is known as a broken coat. A broken-coated dog may have longer hair on the tail or face than that which is seen on a smooth-coated dog. The skin can sometimes show a pattern of small black or brown spots, referred to as “ticking” that do not carry through to the outer coat. All coat types should be dense double coats that are neither silky (in the case of smooth coats) nor woolly (in the case of rough coats).
Their high energy and drive make these dogs ideally suited to a number of different dog sports such as flyball or agility. Obedience classes are also recommended to potential owners, as Jack Russells can be stubborn at times and aggressive towards other animals and humans if not properly socialized. Despite their small size, these dogs are not recommended for the condominium or apartment dweller unless the owner is ready to take on the daunting task of providing the dog with the necessary amount of exercise and stimulation. They have a tremendous amount of energy for their size, a fact which can sometimes lead to trouble involving larger animals. They may seem never to tire and will still be energetic after their owner has called it a day. While socialized members of the breed are friendly towards children, they will not tolerate abuse even if it is unintentional.
Jack Russell Terrier dogs are so lively that they need to do a lot of exercise to be happy and healthy, preferably in open spaces. It would be ideal for them to run in a spacious garden and so get him exhausted.
The owners who live in the city with Jack Rusell Terriers must be careful. If the dog detects a trail, it may disappear quickly without paying attention to the traffic or to the owner’s orders.
The breed has a reputation for being healthy with a long lifespan. Breeders have protected the gene pool, and direct in-line breeding has been prevented. Jack Russells can live from 13 to 16 years given proper care. However, certain lines have been noted for having specific health concerns and, therefore, could occur in any line or generation because of recessive genes. These issues can include hereditary cataracts, ectopia lentis, congenital deafness, patellar luxation, ataxia, myasthenia gravis, Legg–Calvé–Perthes syndrome, and von Willebrand disease.
You can download the FCI (International Cinological Federation) standard at the following link: http://www.fci.be/Nomenclature/Standards/345g03-en.pdf