Parson Russell Terrier (Terrier Group)
The Parson Russell Terrier is a scrappy member of the Terrier Group, always looking for excitement and adventure. These active little dogs love to hunt, chase anything that moves, and will explore any given space with vigor end intent. Parson Russell Terriers are equally as playful as they are energetic, making these dogs excellent to have around children.
The temperament of the Parson Russell Terrier can turn from fun-loving to reserved and aggressive when it comes to other pets or strange dogs. However, they are less weary around strange people, but make an excellent watchdog when the family sleeps at night. This is truly one breed that fits a family that loves a spunky, on-the-move kind of dog.
A Brief History Of The Parson Russell Terrier
The Parson Russell Terrier has its roots in England, dating back to the 1800s. The breed descended from one specific male terrier named Trump. Trump was owned by a man named John Russell, hence the breed’s name, who was an avid enthusiast of fox hunting.
John Russell’s personal mission was to develop a line of terrier dogs that could not only keep up with traveling horses on the go, but could also maintain its ability to quickly dispatch fox. This line of dogs became so popular and successful that they were coined the name “Parson Russell Terriers”.
Parson Russell Terrier dogs remained more useful in the field as opposed to the show ring. A long-standing tradition, proud owners of the breed kept them from competing at dog shows and instead continued to prove their reputation as hunters in the field. The breed received AKC recognition and in 1998 was admitted into the Terrier Group as the “Jack Russell Terrier”, which was later changed to the “Parson Russell Terrier” in 2003.
Upkeep Requirements For The Parson Russell Terrier
This is one dog breed that is best suited for people that enjoy an active lifestyle. Parson Russell terriers thrive off adventure and their energy levels are literally “through-the-roof”. Therefore, they must have daily exercise and fun games to take care of its needs. Parson Russel Terriers must have at least two to three brisk walks during the day in addition to the freedom to run around outside.
The ideal living arrangement for this dog is to allow the Parson Russell to have access to a fenced-in yard during the day, but to sleep indoors at night. They have moderate tolerance to hot and cold temperatures, but should never be forced to sleep outside. This is also not the type of dog to have couped up in a small apartment. Grooming requirements are minimal, calling for a light brushing once per week to remove dead hairs.
The average lifespan of the Parson Russell Terrier is between thirteen and fifteen years. There are no major Health Concerns in the breed and the only minor issues are patellar luxation and lens luxation. Veterinarians suggest that these dogs get specifically tested for knee and eye problems.