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The Jack Russell Terrier Was Bred to Run and Hunt

Kellie Rainwater

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It's important to note that above all, the Jack Russell Terrier is a working Terrier, a breed of dog specifically bred to perform specific tasks. The entire reason for the Jack Russell's existence is to run, hunt, chase and flush out fox and other animals. They were specifically breed to perform this task aggressively throughout England. It's the excitement and rush of the hunt that can be credited for the infamous personality and temperament of the Jack Russell.

Part of this breeding has ingrained a very vocal personality and penchant for barking in the breed. This is not a “nuisance" but a desirable trait that is supposed to be represented in the breed in order to do the job it was designed for. The reason that a vocal nature is necessary in the Jack Russell is so that hunters could find the dog during the excitement of the hunt. The Jack Russell quite routinely was placed at the front of the pack and was meant to run far ahead of the other hounds and hunters.

While in pursuit of its prey the Jack Russell is rarely concerned about the location of its owner and can often find himself well beyond viewing range of the hunt party. If a Jack Russell were to chase the game away and not communicate with a series of loud barks, not only would the hunting party not know where the dog is, but they wouldn't know where the dog had located its prey at; they would have no idea in which way to go or where to find their game.

Kellie Rainwater is the proud owner of her Jack Russell, Trixie. This dog has inspired her to coauthor the book, “The Jack Russell Terrier: Canine Companion or Demon Dog. " You can purchase this book along with other Jack Russell items at


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