Parson Russell Terrier
BISS BPISS Am Ch. Bowery Cirque du Soleil "Ale"
Photo courtesy of Dobaella Perm.Reg.

Breed Registries:

Note: Effective 1 April 2003, the American Kennel Club (AKC) changed the name of the Jack Russell Terrier to the Parson Russell Terrier. This name change was based on a request by the Jack Russell Terrier Association of America which is now known as the Parson Russell Terrier Association of America.

In Canada, the Canadian Kennel Club (CKC) has the Parson Russell Terrier as a "Listed Breed" in the Terrier Group.

In England, Ireland, and Australia, the longer-legged square dog is known as the Parson Russell Terrier while the lower, longer dog is called the Jack Russell Terrier.

The United Kennel Club recognized the short-legged dogs as Russell Terriers on January 1, 2001; and, effective on January 1, 2009, the breed name was revised to Jack Russell Terrier.

The breed registries indicated above are the most recognized all-breed registries. The breed may be recognized by other registries not indicated here. For further details about dog registries, please see the document: Dog Breed Registries in North America.

** — The Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) is the World Canine Organisation, which includes members (one member per country) that each issue their own pedigrees and train their own judges. The FCI recognizes 339 breeds, with each being the "property" of a specific country. The FCI is not a breed registry nor does it issue pedigrees.


Great Britain


12 to 15 inches
The ideal height of a mature dog is 14 inches at the highest point of the shoulder blade, and females are ideally 13 inches.


About 14 lbs.

Breed Profile:

The Parson Russell Terrier was developed in the early 1800's in England by Reverand John Russell who's goal was to breed the ideal foxing terrier. One who could track the fox, follow it underground, and bolt it from its den.

He is a unique, versatile working Terrier — Intelligent, loyal, affectionate, keen, alert and always ready to go. He is also a match for any cat in his ability to catch mice.

The Parson Russell is adaptable, however, he was bred to be a hunting dog and, as such, does require plenty of outdoor activity and exercise. His unique personality makes him desirable to many, but city or apartment living or a sedate lifestyle does not meet the dog's needs. It should also be noted that Parson Russells can be aggressive toward other dogs and small animals including cats, gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs, etc. The breed is fearless and known to take on an adversary twice or more his size.

His coat may be smooth or rough, white, white with black or tan markings, or white with a combination of these colours.

The Parson Russell is a happy, bold, energetic dog with a suprisingly gentle and kind nature.

Health Issues

If you are considering the adoption of a Parson Russell Terrier, or any breed, it is very important to be selective in choosing a responsible and reputable breeder. Ensure that the prospective puppy's parents have all health clearances. Breeding of any dog should not be done until after they have been proven to be free of evidence of significant hereditary diseases. (For more information on selecting a breeder, see the articles on the main Breed Listing and Breeders page.)

Additional Health Resources:

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Breed Standards

Grooming Information

  • Grooming — This section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website includes tips, articles and information covering all aspects of dog grooming along with a listing of Groomers from across Canada.

Training Resources

  • Training — For training information, see this growing section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website for tips, articles, as well as listings of training centres across Canada.

Training Tools & Equipment
Choose from a wide variety of items from

Additional Information

  • Clubs, Sports & Activities — For information on the many sports and activities you can get involved in with your dog.
  • Working Dogs — The Working Dogs section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website provides information and listings of organizations that are involved in various dog jobs, such as Guide Dogs, Therapy Dogs, Police Dogs, Protection Dogs, and much more.

Select from the following links to view Breeder listings; Breed Clubs; Rescue Organizations; as well as Books and other Merchandise specific to the breed:

Breeders  /  Breed Clubs  /  Rescues  /  Books & More