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 Flushing Pheasant Russells
Located on the Colorado/Kansas border
Jordie Mann (720-345-9500)

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Parson Russell Terrier

(Recognized by the AKC and the parent club, JRTCA)

12-15 inches tall,
Square body,
Bred for hunting & usually has the higher energy levels to accommodate those tasks. Commonly known as “hyper” because of their higher energy levels. This breed requires exercise!

Russell Terrier*
(Recognized by the AKC, UKC and the parent club, ARTC)

10-12 inches tall,
Rectangular body,
Bred for companionship & temperament

(*Often the Parson Russell will be lumped into this category which is sometimes called “Jack Russell Terrier” as well making things much more confusing.)

Text Box: Parson Russell Terrier vs. Jack Russell Terrier
What’s the difference?

    The American Kennel Club recognizes the Parson Russell Terrier and it is shown in a multitude of classes in their shows, including the conformation ring in the Terrier division. The Jack Russell Terrier is currently recognized by the United Kennel Club and other clubs as well. The Jack Russell Terrier or simply, the Russell Terrier is now recognized by the American Kennel Club and are currently listed in the Terrier Group.


    The Russell Terrier and the Parson Russell Terrier had similar beginnings but through the years have separated into two distinct bloodlines with different breeding histories and typically, very different personalities. To make matters more confusing, the Parson Russell is often called a Jack Russell Terrier as well. The Russell’s nicknames are shorty jack, puddin or just Russell Terrier. Please know that this breed is not made up of a mutant gene that makes them short and that they are a very viable breed that can do anything and everything… the sky is truly the limit with the Russell Terrier.


    As far as personality is concerned, the Parson Russell Terrier and the Jack Russell Terrier are similar and vastly different all at the same time! They both were bred to be working terriers. They are both built with a body that can adapt to the earth if the dog should go down a hole after prey. But that’s where the similarities stop. The Parson Russell Terrier was bred to be a hunting dog and like most hunting dogs (i.e. Brittany Spaniels, German Shorthairs and other breeds of common bird dogs) they are typically super high energy. They were bred to be able to keep up with the foxhounds on the ground and are white so the Huntsman (responsible for the hounds in a fox hunt) could spot the smaller Parson Russell from atop his horse. The Russell Terrier, however, is bred for companionship and while they share the same prey drive as their cousin the Parson Russell, they also seem to know when to turn it off. They have the ability to mellow out and when they are inside with the family are able to calm down and cuddle. There are exceptions to every rule and I’m sure there are Parson Russells that have this ability as well but for the most part, the Parson is higher energy than the Russell Terrier.


    The difference between the Parson Russell and Russell can also be measured in height. The standard for the Parson starts at 12 1/2 inches tall at the shoulder and goes to 15 inches tall. The standard for the Russell Terrier starts at 10 inches and goes up to 12 inches tall at the shoulders (wither). The Parson is also known as the square dog in that he is as long in his back as he is tall in his leg. The Russell is known as slightly longer than tall. He is typically between 1/2 inch to 1 inch longer in his back than he is tall. And not to confuse matters, but the EJRTCA or English Jack Russell Terrier Club Alliance, Inc. recognizes the old style or traditional Jack Russell Terriers that range in height from 8 inches to 12 inches at the shoulder.


     And then to throw a wrench in the middle of all of this, there is the breed that is currently being developed and not yet recognized by the AKC called the American Hunt Terrier! Opposite of the Parson and Russell Terriers, this breed can not be more than 51% white! It MUST be a solid color and a little white on the chest and feet is allowed! Quite the opposite from the Russell and Parson Russell Terrier! The solid colors on the Hunt Terrier that are acceptable are Black, Red, Tan, and Black & Tan. Click on the picture of Milo (Hunt Terrier) and Oz (Rottweiler) to be taken over to the American Hunt Terrier page on this site. It goes in to even more detail about the other breeds that surround both the Russells and the Hunts. I promise, it will make much more sense after you visit that page. Enjoy!

Russell Terrier
As recognized by the EJRTCA.

Photo used with permission from Walnut Creek Farms in Northern Georgia.

8-12 inches tall, Rectangular body, Bred for companionship and temperament primarily. Also bred to improve on the breed and be a true working breed through lure coursing and go-to-ground competitions, etc.

Our beloved breeds, in a nutshell

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Pam’s Great Pyrenees Guard Dog and one of her shorty JRT puppies meet nose to nose.


Picture of Murphy Jayne BrownKingdom Come Ranch Bella, a Hunt Terrier female.

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Oz and Milo!