April 14, 2020

Jack Russell – Energy, fun & affection

We’ve all seen the Jack, running through our parks, walking down our streets, on TV and in movies.  The Jack may well be one of the most well-known dog breeds; at least in western society.  English to a fault and bred by a man of the cloth; the Jack was a hunting dog used primarily in the dark art of English fox hunting in the early 19th Century.

When you’re a new dog owner the Jack may not be the best fit.  They’re a very intelligent dog with a high prey drive bred into them.  They bore easily, can be aggressive to other dogs when not trained well from an early age, and require a high level of exercise. They love to dig, run, fetch and do all the things that high energy dogs love to do.  You will be on your feet with this little guy, and their nature can be a tad overwhelming for those new to dog ownership.

Don’t be fooled by his small statue; the Jack thinks he’s a big dog and will take on all sorts if a scruff is called on.  Don’t underestimate his need for activity either.  Although he does need to be inside with the family, not outside in a kennel and is a wonderful inside pooch, he needs loads of daily stimulation. Two to three good walks and runs a day, a bit of time off the leash fetching a ball and plenty of playtime will keep your Jack happy.  Not enough playtime will see him make up his own; which can be destructive; but you can’t blame your pet.

They love being with the family and are a family orientated canine.  It is highly recommended to have your Jack, trained and socialised from a very young age.  They can be stubborn and need consistent routine and steady stewardship.  Positive reinforcement when training is needed; harsh training methods will create a very naughty and shy Jack. They tend to be very good with strangers, less so with strange or new dogs; they’ll chase cats and anything that moves when given the chance so you must keep your eyes open. When going out ensure he has a safe and guarded place to protect himself and other creatures.

As a general rule of thumb the Jack Russell is a robust and healthy breed. Like many smaller dogs they have a long-life span; 13 – 16 years so you’ll have a companion that is around for a long time bringing plenty of cheekiness, fun and genuine love and affection.  Not all Jacks will suffer the following however you should be aware that the breed is susceptible to:
Sometimes seen in the Jack Russel breed.
An eye disease that is very uncomfortable.  It can be hereditary or be the result of an injury or tumour. Glaucoma can result in vision loss and even blindness.
Patellar Luxation
This is a common problem in smaller dog breeds with symptoms ranging from mild discomfort to lameness where surgery maybe required.

In the bowl
They must have a high quality food.
BALANCED LIFE ENHANCED; a dry food with air dried raw meat protein inclusions is an excellent long term feeding option. 1 – 2 cups per day spread over 2 meals will be sufficient.  Including a few meals of BALANCED LIFE REHYDRATE throughout the week adds variety, texture and added water intake.  75grams per day of Rehydrate over 2 meals is similar volume.
It is recommended to monitor your feeding with the Jack Russell and have set meals at set times rather than having food available all day.  The activity level will inform how much food your Jack should be receiving.  Don’t let this breed become overweight.  Too many Australian dogs are currently in the too heavy category leading to disease including diabetes and reduced life spans.  This is totally avoidable with responsible feeding, treating and ample exercise. 
Always consult your vet for guidance on what is best for your Jack Russell.

The Jack Russell is a small dog with a huge personality.  They’re the great lovers of life, wanting to be in everything with a bad case of the FOMO’s when not included.  A willful canine that is a once in a lifetime companion.  Many Jack Russell owners would never not have one in their lives.  As discussed, they’re best suited to experienced dog owners, they have strong wills and a suborn streak, however their affectionate natures, boundless energy and quirky fun-loving personality make them one of the worlds great dogs.

Other Breeds


  • Rehydrate
Jack Russell - Energy, fun & affection - Balanced Life