Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell

Close-up of a Jack Russell.

Jack Russell Terriers are a small breed with lots of energy and a tough nature. Originally they were bred for fox hunting which began in the early 19th century by Reverend John Russell, who trained them to make the foxes leave their dens during hunts. JRT's have a general good health and come in a combination of colours including white & black, tan, lemon or solid white.

JRT'S are a very energetic breed, which require a high level of exercise and stimulation to keep them amused. They’re good at activities such as flyball or agility where they can run around and burn lots of energy. They are seen as very intelligent, fearless and vocal dogs. Training classes are recommended with JRT's as they can be stubborn and aggressive towards other humans and animals if they do not get socialised correctly as puppies. JRT's are also good with children when they are well trained.

Furry Facts

Breed Name:
Jack Russell Terrier
Coat type:
Smooth or rough
6–8 kg for both Males & Females
Average Lifespan:
13–15 years
Playful, Very Active, Outgoing, Intelligent
Favourite Pastimes:
Long Walks, Playing, Mischief Making, Socializing
Easy to train?
Moose who played Eddie in Frasier.

Moose the Jack Russell who played Eddie in Frasier.

Walkies of Fame

Walkies of Fame star

One of the most well-known JRT's was Moose, a famous canine actor. His most recognised performances were in the TV show Frasier, where he played Eddie. As Moose got older throughout the seasons of the show his son Enzo was used as a stunt double to perform the more challenging tricks on set.


The Jackabee is a Jack Russell Terrier crossed with a Beagle; they tend to look more like Beagles than the terrier. These dogs are generally very affectionate and have lots of energy.

The Jackapoo is a Jack Russell crossed poodle, they are very friendly and playful by nature. They are also known to be well behaved and intelligent.

Jack Chis are JRT's crossed with the Chihuahua and they make a good family dog. They get on well with other family pets and want to play most of the time.

Common Conditions

Jack Russell’s have a good reputation for being healthy and having a long lifespan. They have been bred well and so their gene pool has been more protected than others. They still have a few recessive conditions that do occur.

  • Cerebellar Ataxia
    This occurs in JRT's when the cerebellum part of the brain starts to deteriorate and affects the dog neurologically. The dog may stagger or appear wobbly on its feet; if this happens it is best to see a vet to check if this is the cause. It can progress steadily with no other symptoms.
  • Ectopia Lentis
    This is the most common condition known in the JRT and is hereditary. It normally occurs in dogs ages 3-8 years and occurs when the lens moves in the eye. It can slip to the back of the eye or forward known as luxation. If it slips forward it can possibly damage the cornea if it rubs against it and can cause glaucoma. In both cases treatment is available as medication or surgery depending on the individual. Even though this is the most common condition in JRT's it is still relatively rare. Cataracts are also common as with most breeds. These occur later in life and can cause blindness if left untreated.