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Parson Russell Terrier – the Cheerful Character with a Personality

07.10.2022 - Reading time: 3 minutes

Eine Nahaufnahme eines Parson Russell Terrier

Are you looking for a sporty and happy dog, are you an active person, perhaps with a family and children? If you also have some dog experience, then the Parson Russell Terrier is your ideal candidate. This funny little whirlwind will delight you with its personality as well as its versatility.


Newsletter Parson Russell Terrier

Parson Russell Terrier
Great Britain
long legged terriers
Males 34 to 38 cm at shoulder height – females 31 to 35 cm at shoulder height
6 to 10 kilograms
strong and agile; chest not lower than elbow level; tail carried erect when moving
dark, almond-shaped, intelligent expression
V-shaped bent ears
Coat and colour
Structure rough-haired or smooth, close to the body, dense and harsh, also the belly and underside are hairy; colours pure white or with tan, yellow or black markings.
Special features
Tendency to destructiveness and aggression when underchallenged
stubborn, eager to work, courageous, funny, loves exercise and fond of children
trim two to three times a year, comb and brush regularly
Predisposition to eye diseases and patellar luxation (displacement of the kneecap)

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The pastor's dog breeding

John Jack Russell was not only a parson, but also an enthusiastic hunter and very keen to have ideal hunting dogs around him. He bred Fox Terriers for fox hunting, whereby the appearance of the dogs was secondary to their abilities as intrepid burrowers. Reverend Russel’s work gave rise to the long-legged Parson Russell Terrier, which has been officially recognised as a breed in its own right since 2001. Prior to that, the terrier was listed as a long-legged British variant of the well-known Jack Russell Terrier. Parson Russell Terriers are thus one of the youngest “official” dog breeds.

Characteristics of the Parson Russell Terrier

The Parson Russell Terrier is extremely intelligent, not only when it comes to tracking or other “doggy things”. It also has a well-developed social sense, notices human weaknesses very quickly and knows how to exploit them to its advantage. At the same time, the character of the Parson Russell Terrier is friendly and cheerful – the dog spreads good humour everywhere with his witty and charming nature. Not to be underestimated is his pronounced hunting instinct. Parson Russell Terriers are usually not aggressive towards people, but males are often not averse to scuffles with other dogs. They are very fond of children and, thanks to their self-confidence, are also adept companions in confusing situations such as pedestrian zones.

Training and husbandry of the Parson Russell Terrier

The Parson Russell Terrier is a very self-confident dog with a mind of its own. When it sees an opportunity, it tries to take over the reigns in the household. Parson Russell Terriers are not beginners’ dogs. As an owner, a certain consistency in training is indicated, which is certainly a challenge given the dog’s mischievous charm. Obedience is the primary goal in raising a Parson Russell Terrier. Once the roles are clarified, nothing stands in the way of a harmonious relationship.

Keeping a Parson Russell Terrier as a pure lapdog or house dog is absolutely not appropriate for the species. It wants and needs to be challenged. If it cannot give expression to its agility and intelligence, it will become bad-tempered and take it out on the furniture or its owners. So make sure your dog always has something meaningful to do. A well-balanced Parson Russell Terrier is an agile fellow who is excellent for dog sports such as agility or obedience and especially sleuthing work. The Parson Russell Terrier is also a tireless companion for cycling and horse riding as well as an enthusiastic swimmer.

Ein Parson Russell Terrier.

Care of the Parson Russell Terrier

The somewhat shaggy coat of the Parson Russell Terrier should be groomed daily with a brush and comb. Two to three times a year, the coat needs a professional cut by a groomer or trained owner. Specialist shops offer special trimmers for this purpose. Like most small dogs, the Parson Russell Terrier has a predisposition to problems with the kneecap.

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