What is the Jack Russel terrier's personality? These small dogs are adorable, but what about their temperament? Do they make good family pets? Are they good with other animals? There is much to appreciate about the personality of the Jack Russel terrier and much to by wary of.
Breed History To understand a dog's personality, take a look at the reason the dog was bred and what the first Jack Russels were trained to do. These terriers were bred in England a little over 150 years ago as hunting dogs specifically trained to go after the red fox. These small, athletic canines would make it easier for the fox hunter by flushing the fox out whenever the animal would try and hide underground. The original Jack Russels were actually known as Parson Russel terriers, but these dogs were crossed with other terriers, tainting the bloodline. Today this breed is called the Jack Russel terrier.
Energy Level These terriers are high energy dogs. They are small, but unlike some toy dogs who are happy being playful and cute in the home, the Jack Russell needs plenty of exercise. Bred to hunt, these dogs love to run and chase. Try not to allow them to roam free or they can disappear on their own, becoming too caught up in the "hunt."
Family Pet A Jack Russell does have a good personality as a family pet. They are affectionate with their family, intelligent and fun to play with. While this breed can work with children, it is important to be careful with small children as they will not tolerate a playful toddler.
Aggression The Jack Russell terrier is courageous, strong and bold. On the other hand, the Jack Russell can be a very aggressive breed with other breeds and with dogs of the same sex. Don't underestimate the dog's small size. These terriers will go after other breeds, other terriers and are easily sparked by other small animals. If you own two Jack Russells, you have to be very careful not to leave the pets alone.
Ownership To deal with the strong-willed Jack Russell, it is important to discipline this breed and to understand its temperament as a hunting dog. These terriers also require a lot of physical activity as an energy outlet. If you are interested in this breed, be sure to learn about the specific needs of the animal and make sure you are capable of making the commitment they require.