Jack Russel

Jack Russell Terrier Appearance

Jack Russell Terrier appearance in terms of what is acceptable varies based on the standards set by various Jack Russell Terrier Clubs, the American Kennel Club (AKC), not to mention the English Jack Russell Terrier Coub of America.  That said, there is a range of accepted characteristics which is a broader definition of most other breeds.

Accepted Jack Russell Terrrier Appearance

Each of these pictures depicts a Jack Russell which falls within the accepted defintion of the breed as defined by the Jack Russell Terrier Club of America:

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All of these Jack Russell Terriers fit within the accepted definition of hte breed
Source: Jack Russell Terrier Club of America

 If you have ever watched "Frasier" or "The Mask", you may have thought those dogs were so cute. These precocious canines are Jack Russell Terriers.

Jack Russell Terrier Appearance Described

The Jack Russell Terrier appearance starts with a predominately white coat with a few tan, brown, or black markings. Their coat can be smooth, broken, or rough.

  • A smooth coat refers to fur that lays flat and close to the JRT's body.
  • A broken coat is very similar to a smooth coat; however there can be sparse tufts on the face, neck, body, and legs that will be longer.
  • A rough coat has more tufts typically all over the body that gives the impression of a dog that has a bit longer coat.

Keep in mind that for the proper Jack Russell Terrier appearance the coat should never be soft as, genetically, a coarse coat is desirable for protection against the weather. The general appearance of a JRT is of a muscular and sturdy dog that measures about ten to fifteen inches high at the highest part of its back. The length of the body has to be in proportion to its height presenting a solid, balanced appearance.

It is also important to the Jack Russell Terrier apperance that the head of the JRT should also be in proportion to its body. The cranium ought to be flat with moderate spacing at the ears and narrows to the eyes. At the eyes, there should be a distinct stop. The length from the nose to the stop should be a bit shorter than the length from the stop to the back of the head. The JRT's nose is supposed to be black. The eyes of a JRT should be dark and almond shaped. They should be filled with vitality and be intellectual.

A JRT's ears are small and triangular. They should drop forward and be close to the head.

The JRT's jaw needs to be strong with muscular cheeks. Their teeth should also be strong and the top teeth should somewhat overlap the lower teeth.

The neck of a JRT should be muscular as well as in good proportion the rest of the body. The neck should widen slightly as it meets the shoulders.

The front shoulders of the JRT should slope and be defined at the highest point of the back. The front legs should be muscular and straight boned with the joints correctly aligned. The elbows should be at a 90 degree angle to the rest of the body and work freely from the sides.

The back hips and legs should also be full of strength and muscle. The angles should be well defined so as to be able to propel the JRT forward quickly and powerfully. If you look at the JRT from the back, the lower leg joint must be straight. The feet also should be straight, not pigeon-toed. Their pads should be hard, not soft. This enables their ability to dig out their find.

The JRT chest should be thin and tapered with the front legs set not too apart. The appearance should be athletic. Their back should appear to be physically powerful and straight. The back should match the overall size of the JRT without being too long or short. The stomach area should be arched somewhat.

The tail of the JRT is usually about four inches in length, but should be in the same proportion as the rest of the body. In fox hunting, the tail is often grabbed to pull the JRT out of the fox’s den. A healthy and happy JRT will carry its tail high, almost proudly. In short, the overall Jack Russell Terrier appearance  is of an athletic, happy, and active dog.

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