Jack Russell Terrier Dog Breed Information

The Jack Russell Terrier (and Parson Russell Terrier) dog can trace its roots rather precisely back to a dog named Trump, who lived during the early 19th century and was owned by Reverend John Jack Russell of Devonshire, England. Trump, in turn, was likely descended from an Old English White Terrier (now extinct) and a Black and Tan Terrier or Manchester, though this is debatable.

Reverend Russell was a parson and an avid hunter, and it was his desire to create a line of terriers capable of keeping up with horses and bolting fox without doing them harm; for this, he needed a terrier of exceptional agility and speed, but without the aggressive tendencies that might lead other terriers to dispatch the fox before the hunters arrived. Trumps descendants proved very capable of this task, and the Jack Russell Terriers popularity took off immediately.

The recognition of the Jack Russell Terrier as a breed has been marked by intense debate and controversy, in which owners of working Jacks have been vehemently against AKC recognition. The American Kennel Club nevertheless recognized the Jack Russell Terrier in 1997, and changed the name to Parson Russell Terrier in 2003.

Today, Jack Russell Terriers used in the field are rarely registered with the AKC or similar foreign organizations; rather, they are registered with Jack Russell Terrier clubs or not registered at all.

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