Brown and white Jack Russell

The Jack Russell cross is a very high energy dog

© Sundays Photography - Shutterstock

The Jack Russell cross: Everything you need to know

By Ashley Murphy Content Writer

Updated on the

From Jack-a-Doodles to Jack-a-Bees, and Border Jacks, Jack Russell crossbreeds are becoming increasingly popular.

To understand the Jack Russell cross a little better, you must take an interest in the parent breeds. In this case, the Jack Russell!

Jack Russell personality and training

The Jack Russell ©Sundays Photography  - Shutterstock

Generally speaking, Jack Russells are full of energy, playful, and have a tendency to be a little bit stubborn! They’re also one of the more vocal breeds, so socialisation and training are really important when it comes to Jack Russell puppies. You don't want a naughty Jack Russell on your hands - these small dogs can turn into big problems! But with the right care and attention, most develop into loyal and happy companions. They are also very brave and protective, making them excellent guard dogs.

Exercise requirements of the Jack Russell

Despite their tiny stature, they're not really suited to apartments or smaller houses. Jack Russells were originally bred to hunt foxes, and so they need plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. Without it, they can get restless and even destructive.

Grooming a Jack Russell

These dogs are fairly low maintenance - a weekly rub down with a cloth or soft brush should suffice to keep their coat clean. Both coat varieties shed heavily, though the wire-haired Jack Russell typically sheds less than the smooth-coated Jack.

Jack Russell health

Jack Russells are prone to certain health issues which may affect any crossbreeds. Take extra care of their eyes, as Jack Russells are susceptible to inherited eye disease. They also have a tendency to go deaf as they enter old age. Legg Perthes is another common issue. The exact cause is still unknown, but over time the hip joint begins to deteriorate, leading to pain and eventually arthritis. It's especially prevalent in smaller breeds, so cross breeds like the Jack Chi and Jack-a-Rat are most at risk. There's also the possibility of dislocated kneecaps.

A Jack Russell mix is generally a good choice for people who enjoy long walks and vigorous exercise - these are energetic dogs! Now remember - you can never know exactly what type of dog you're going to end up with when you get a mixed breed dog. But researching the parent dog breeds is the best place to start. So without further ado, here's what you need to know about the most popular JRT crossbreeds and their parent breeds!

The Jack-Rat Terrier: Jack Russell Terrier x Rat Terrier

A Jack Russell crossed with a Rat Terrier means double the terrier, so you are going to have a real bundle of energy on your hands. They'll need plenty of exercise and will do best in a suburban or countryside environment. These dogs also have a strong prey drive; they'll run off in all different directions during walkie time, so keep a close eye on them! If not, they're bound to get into some kind of mischief. However, despite their hyperactive natures, Jack Rat Terriers are moderately easy to train, and sociable. They can be a good choice for first time owners, as long as they are prepared to handle their fire-cracker personalities!

The Jackshund: Jack Russell x Dachshund

A Jack Russell and Dachshund mix, the Jackshund is a low maintenance dog perfect for older couples. They require less exercise than their Jack Russell parent (30-45 minutes a day should suffice). Their laid-back natures means they are good with children too. Due to their loving and affectionate personalities, Jackshunds can be prone to separation anxiety. You must habituate them to alone time from a very young age, if possible. Don't let these guys get too comfortable, Jackshunds are also prone to obesity. You'll need to watch their diet and take them for regular walks.

Find out more about the Dachshund

The Jack-a-Ranian: Jack Russell x Pomeranian

The Jack-a-Ranian is a product of the union between a Jack and a Pomeranian. This is a high energy dog! Though they don't require as much exercise as a Jack Russell, Jack-a-Ranians should get at least an hour of activity a day, lest you have a destructive pooch on your hands. Their high levels of energy and stubborness mean they can be difficult to train if you don't find the right motivators. Patience is key! They shed a lot of hair - so be prepared for regular grooming and regular vacuuming sessions. This mix has a very loving and affectionate personality, so it'll want to be around you as much as possible!

Find out more about the Pomeranian

The Jack Chi: Jack Russell x Chihuahua

Also known as the Jackhuahua, this is a cross between a Jack Russell and a Chihuahua. Unsurprisingly, these little things are bursting with energy. The Jackhuahua loves to play, is sociable, and likely to keep any owner on their toes. They can make decent family pets if they are properly socialised from a young age. Training can be difficult, due to their head strong characters, but it is primordial! Without it, you may have an uncontrollable pooch on your hands! Unfortunately, Jack Chis are prone to certain health issues, especially allergies.

Find out more about the Chihuahua

The Jack-a-Bee: Jack Russell x Beagle

Mix a Jack Russell with a Beagle and you'll end up with a Jack-a-Bee. This is a tough, sturdy little dog that is great around kids. Although they can make a good family dog, Jack-a-Bees can be a bit stubborn and headstrong - meaning they can be difficult to train for the novice owner. They need plenty of exercise, but care must be taken when out and about. These dogs have both a strong prey drive and a great nose, perfect to follow a scent for miles and matter how much you try to call them back to you! If you have a garden, don't expect to keep it neat and tidy with this digger around!

Find out more about the Beagle

The Jack-a-Poo: Jack Russell x Poodle

You’ve probably already guessed this one, but just in case, the Jack-a-Poo is a Jack Russell/Poodle mix. Also referred to as the Jackadoodle, the Jack-a-Poo is known for its energetic and loyal character. They can be a bit noisy, and due to their independent natures, they can struggle to adapt to new environments as they get older. They can also be quite aloof with strangers, so it's a good idea to start socialising them at a young age. They’re one of the healthiest Jack Russell cross breeds; they have an average life expectancy of 12-15 years.

Find out more about the Poodle

The Border Jack: Jack Russell x Border Collie

Put two of the most energetic breeds together and what do you get? A very hyper dog! You'd better have time on your time on your hands before you adopt a Border Jack. These dogs need at least 2 hours of vigorous exercise every day, as well as plenty of mental stimulation. Much like their parent breeds, Border Jacks are courageous, loyal, and playful. Due to their drive and intelligence, they could actually make wonderful working dogs. However, they could also be suited to family life if properly trained and cared for.

Learn more about the Border Collie

The Jack Tzu: Jack Russell x Shih Tzu

The Jack Tzu can be a good choice for owners who want a dog more relaxed than the Jack Russell but more active and healthier than the Shih Tzu. Like their parent breeds, Jack Tzus tend to be very loyal to one person in the family in particular, but they are generally friendly and sociable with everyone.

Learn more about the Shih Tzu

Although the Kennel Club classes the Jack Russell as an official breed, Jack Russell terrier mixes and/or cross breeds still remain unrecognised. However, that doesn't stop these versatile dogs from being excellent, life-long companions. All they need is the right training, plenty of exercise, and lots of love and affection.

Check out these other mixed breeds:

More advice on...

What did you think of this advice article?

Thanks for your feedback !

Thanks for your feedback !

Leave a comment
Connect to comment
Want to share this article?