Are Jack Russell Terriers Hyper?

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If planning to own a Jack Russell Terrier for the first time, knowing whether it is an active dog or not can help you know the exercise requirements to expect and whether its activity level can match your exercise routines. So, are Jack Russell Terriers hyper?

Are Jack Russell Terriers Hyper?

Jack Russell Terriers are naturally hyper due to their high energy levels which can make them excited suddenly, especially when not engaging in rigorous exercises. However, considering that Jack Russell Terriers strive to please their owners, it’s easier to engage them in exercises that can help use the excess energy. 

Since Jack Russell Terriers were initially bred to help flush out foxes and vermin from their hiding places, they have a strong prey drive, contributing to their excitement and hyperactivity. 

A Jack Russell dog in the grass field

Considering Jack Russell Terriers are now companion dogs and no longer hunt, the high energy and hunting instinct is mostly channeled towards undesirable and destructive behaviors when idle and bored.

Can a Jack Russell Terrier Calm Down?

Although most Jack Russells are more hyper during puppyhood, it is not uncommon for your dog to continue crashing things and jumping around even during adulthood. In most cases, the high energy levels will remain at the peak from one year up to about 8 to 9 years. 

It will be a senior dog from the age of 10 years, and the energy levels will significantly reduce and make it less hyper. At this age, your dog might also be prone to a wide range of health conditions, which would make it less excited.

How Can I Calm Down My Hyper Jack Russell Terrier?

Considering that the energy levels of your Jack Russell Terrier will be at their peak for the larger part of its life, you might want to calm it down to fit into your lifestyle requirements. Fortunately, you can use the following tips to try and control its high energy levels.

Engage the Dog in Rigorous Physical Exercises

Since most Jack Russell Terriers become excited when full of energy yet idle and bored, you can help them use the excessive energy by engaging them in intense exercises. Usually, physical activities will also help keep them physically fit and improve their overall health.

Consider taking your dog for 30 to 45 minutes of intense hiking or jogging, or at least 1 hour of walking. However, you need to be careful not to over-exercise your dog as it can lead to exhaustion and excessive weight loss.

Girl kissing her dog

Use the Calm Hold Method

If your Jack Russell Terrier is excited, jumping around, and crushing things, you can use the calm hold technique to calm it down. This method involves putting your hand and maintaining it in one position on one side of your dog’s shoulder. 

For the best results when using this technique, avoid eye contact and don’t say anything. If the dog is still not settling, you can use your other hand to hold it from the collar. Depending on how you have trained your dog, you can calmly command it to settle and relax.

Give Your Dog Some Chew Toys

Chew toys for dogs are specifically designed to provide relief from boredom. Some of the stimulation and health benefits of giving your Jack Russell Terrier some chew toys include:

  • The chew toys help stimulate the dog’s brain, making it feel happy, calm, and less stressed. Typically, this is due to the release of endorphins into the brain as the dog chews. 
  • Chew toys can help improve the overall dental health of your dog
  • Interactive chew toys can help improve the intelligence levels of the dog.
  • Since chew toys are made of chewable materials, they are more pleasing to chew than other objects such as wood. Usually, they occupy the dog and help it stop some destructive behaviors such as eating furniture.
  • Since the chew toys are specifically designed for dogs, they pose no health risks. 

Read up about the best dog food for Jack Russells.

Separate the Jack Russell Terrier From Active Kids or Pets 

Some home pets, such as rabbits and cats, are playful and can make unexpected moves that trigger the hunting instincts and excitement in Jack Russell Terriers. Also, kids under six years are playful and can easily excite the dog.

Close-up picture of a Jack Russel dog

Related Questions

What Makes Jack Russell Terriers Shake?

In most cases, Jack Russell Terriers shake as they try to expend excessive energy levels when not engaging in intense exercises. However, they can also shake due to an underlying health issue or if they are experiencing extreme emotion. 

Can I Keep a Jack Russell Terrier Indoors?

Yes, it’s possible to keep a Jack Russell Terrier indoors. However, its high exercise requirement will need you to take it for walks, jogging, or hiking several times a day. It’s therefore advisable to allow it to stay outdoors where it can play and expend excessive energy by itself. 

Final Thoughts

Jack Russell Terriers are hyper due to their high energy levels, and they can develop destructive behavior if they don’t expend this energy. The best way to calm them down is to engage them in intense physical exercises or provide them with interactive chew toys.