Jack Russell Terriers are white fox hunting terriers bred by Reverend John Russell, a well known hunter in the 18th century.
He bred the dogs using a white and tan English White terrier named Trump. The dog was his ideal fox terrier in terms of color, characteristics and temperament. By 1850, Trump’s lineage was recognized as Jack Russell Terriers, characterized by high stamina, courage and great ability to burrow and hunt. Today, Jack Russell and similar fox terrier dogs can trace their origin from that breed with some variation. Jack Russell Terriers nowadays are mostly raised as pets or show dogs, they are at heart fox-hunting dogs.
Jack Russells are extremely loyal, fearless, energetic, cheerful, bold and intelligent dogs. They are excellent companions with the propensity to work hard and innate hunting instincts. Because they are small and intelligent dogs, they have a tendency to assert themselves as leader of the pack. This attribute can sometimes be a problem especially if they are not properly socialized. Lack of socialization skills can make them aggressive with other animals or even small children. Since they are highly energetic Jack Russell Terriers need plenty of exercise and exposure to people and the outside world.
They are able to adapt to different environment, although because they are very active dogs, apartment living can pose as quite a challenge. Although they are small, they need a considerable amount of outdoor activities, attention and training from their owners. These little hunters, as adorable as they are, may not be a dog for everyone. For those who are willing to train Jack Russells, they can become quite a joy, because they are intelligent, they are highly trainable with a good amount of obedience making them excellent show dogs.
When it comes to dealing with other animals, properly socialized Jack Russells can do well. However, their hunting instincts can sometimes take over and they can become very aggressive towards smaller animals and especially with other Jack Russells. Experts advise not keeping more than two at a time, never leaving them unattended, especially in a closed space. They have been known to attack other dogs and even fatally injure opponents if they get into fights. Courage is a trait that is never lacking in this dog breed, despite their small size. They require constant training, discipline and socialization. Owners should always remind them who the true leader of the pack is; once this is established Jack Russells can be extremely loyal and loving to their owners.
Raising and keeping Jack Russell Terriers will require a bit of special handling, they are well suited for homes with adequate running space as well as patient and active owners. They love to burrow, do earthwork and hunt small animals, thus, they need to be properly socialized and trained in homes with other pets. Despite their innate characteristics, Jack Russells can become excellent family pets. If raised properly, they can be surprisingly gentle towards other animals and well behaved children. They can be friendly to children, even guard and protect them, provided that the children do not handle them too roughly. They are suitable for school aged children who can already be taught not to tease or man-handle these dogs.
Jack Russell Terriers are a special breed with strong hunting instincts that can be exceptionally happy, intelligent, loyal and loving pets. These innate characteristics have not changed much since the time they were first bred and that is what makes them a unique breed.
Camille Goldin, a dog lover, shares information on how Jack Russell Terriers were used for hunting. Visit TrainPetDog.com to learn more about Dogs.