We're all about Jack Russell Terriers

Molly sitting on seat looking alert

Jack Russell Terriers are a lot of dog, in quite a small package! Their plucky, energetic nature regularly makes us laugh, and their inquisitive little faces are outrageously cute. We love them so much that HiLife’s resident mascot is gorgeous Jack Russell Molly!

Although popular as family pets, Jack Russells have no desire to be lap dogs, and can be hard to keep in check if they don’t receive enough exercise or the right training.

We’ve gathered some facts about these adorable, bouncy, much-loved pets:

New guy on the block

Although the Jack Russell Terrier is a common, household name, they have only been classified as a pedigree breed by the Kennel Club since January 2016. Before this they were categorised as a ‘type’ of dog rather than a ‘breed’ due to the diverse range of terriers that were given this name. This reclassification helps to protect the heritage of the breed and encourage responsible breeding. 

What’s in a name?

The name Jack Russell Terrier originates from the Devonshire man who is credited with developing this type of fox terrier, Parson John Russell. Both the Jack Russell Terrier and the Parson Russell Terrier, originate from the first terrier he owned in the early 1800’s. Although they are still very similar breeds, the Jack Russell is smaller at under twelve inches, and the Parson Russell stands at around 13 to 14 inches.

Escape artists

Owners of these peppy little guys can sometimes have a hard time containing them in their gardens. Not only have they been known to climb chain link fences, they can jump up to five feet in the air. They are also natural born diggers from their hunting days, so will happily go under fences too.

Off like a shot

They may be small, but their relatively long legs mean these spirited little guys can reach impressive speeds of up to 25 miles an hour. This makes them considerably faster than most other breeds, with the average top speed for dogs only stretching to 19 miles an hour.

Definitely not foxes
The predominately white colouring of the breed was purposely created when they were used to hunt foxes. The terriers around at the time were mainly tan coloured, so to avoid mistaking the dog for a fox at a crucial moment, it was decided to change the colour of their fur. By careful breeding with the Old English White Terrier, the distinctive coat of the Jack Russell as we know it, appeared.

Stubborn beyond belief

In their original role as hunting dogs, Jack Russell’s would chase their quarry underground into their dens, and it is something some domesticated dogs have continued to do. Once underground, they have been known to wait for their target for hours, or even days, without food or water.

There is lots of fascinating information about Jack Russells and other dogs online, here are just a few great websites that we like - www.jrtcgb.co.uk, thekennelclub.org.uk, dogtime.com, howfastcan.com, iheartdogs.com.

Do you have a Jack Russell Terrier? We’d love to see some pics, or hear what you love about them. Share them on facebook or Twitter

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