So you think you want a Jack Russell Terrier?

No one can fault you for being attracted to these smart and active dogs.  They make wonderful companions, and are extremely loyal, and infinitely entertaining.  However, like most dogs,  without some training, they  can become high strung and sometimes destructive dictators in your home. 

They are hunting dogs, and may obsess over your canary, goldfish, or any rodents you may keep as pets.  They will kill and sometimes eat anything they find in your yard (lizards, snakes, rabbits, mice, birds, chickens, ducks, etc.) Although some can be raised successfully with other animals (cats), it is not a given that the prey drive can be trained out of them.

Although they are a small dog, and technically can fit in any lap, they are not a lap dog. They require a lot of exercise, access to a large secure yard, spaces where they can dig and hunt.  They do not adapt well to apartment living.  They also require a lot of attention from their owners,  and do better in homes where someone is home at all times so they are not left to entertain themselves, as they may either find ways to escape, or might chew holes in doors or furniture.

They don't have any idea that they are a small dog.  They will fearlessly challenge much bigger dogs, and although this furious bravado frequently works to intimidate some, it puts them at risk for dog fights.  Our smallest female Fiona frequently breaks out of our fenced barnyard to chase the neighbor's pit bull and border collie through their own pasture and into their house.

Jack Russells can be obsessive - either in chasing balls, attacking vacuum cleaners, barking at guests.  Without firm training these traits can