Why Does My Jack Russell Terrier Constantly Whine?

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When it comes to dogs, Jack Russells can sometimes bark, whine, and complain excessively. If you are curious about this subject, you might wonder, “why does my Jack Russell Terrier constantly whine?” and what are the best solutions.

Why Does My Jack Russell Terrier Constantly Whine?

Jack Russells can excessively whine when they are bored and want attention. This breed is very active and loves spending time with its owners. Therefore, they could constantly ask for attention if they have nothing to do. They may also whine if they are hungry.

Graphic image of a white and brown Jack Russell Terrier stating that Jack Russells constantly whine because they want attention

However, those are not the only reasons why Jack Russells whine. They could have also learned that when they whine, they can get rewards. This can happen when you give them food or treats after they cried for a moment. If this is the case, you need to train your dog.

On top of that, Jack Russells can whine when there are other unknown dogs or people near your house. Since they can’t identify them, they can get anxious and even scared. Lastly, your dog can simply whine because he is hungry and it is past its mealtime.

Other Reasons Why Jack Russells Whine

If you exercise your dog daily and provide him with enough food and water, there can be other causes for their whining. One of the most common is when their whine has been reinforced by your actions.

For example, if you stop their whining by giving them a treat, they will constantly learn that whining equals treats. It’s the same principle as when you train them: if they do something good, you reward them with food. In this scenario, though, you are encouraging something negative.

If you want to stop this, you should do the exact opposite. Assign mealtimes and only give them treats when they do something positive, not when they are whining. This way, you will be teaching them to stop crying for treats or attention.

A close-up image of a Jack Russell terrier staring

Too Much Energy

As I mentioned before, Jack Russell Terriers are a very active breed that requires a lot of attention and time. This means that you need to play with them, take them out for a jog, and give them a lot of love. If you don’t do this, your dog might feel bored and start whining for attention.

On top of that, they can start causing havoc in your house for the same reason. If they have too much energy, they will begin to run, dig, and jump everywhere. Therefore, you need to take care of them every day.

Alerted by Something

Dogs can be very protective of their territory, therefore, if they encounter something unusual, they will begin barking or whining. This can be triggered by unknown people, dogs, or other kinds of animals such as rats. 

However, in the case of rats and other small animals, Jack Russells might not start whining because of fear. Instead, since they have a strong predatory instinct, they can start whining because they want to go hunt it. After all, this breed was originally created to be rat and rabbit hunters.

Hyperactivity in Dogs

If you exercise your Jack Russell and he still seems to have lots of energy, take him to the vet; he might have hyperactivity. This causes the dog’s energy level to be twice that of an ordinary dog, therefore, you must know how to treat and train it.

Stressing Situation

Here you can see the common circumstances where your dog can get stressed.

An image of a Jack Russell Terrier that constantly whine
  • If there are a lot of fireworks, he might get scared and start whining.
  • If there are known people in your house and he is locked in its crate, he might begin to whine.
  • If they smell a familiar scent (another dog or a person) and they can’t go meet it, they can get stressed and start to whine.

Related Questions

Here are some related questions about Jack Russell Terriers whining.

Do Jack Russell Terriers Tend to Be Anxious?

No, this breed is often very tenacious and confident. However, they can suffer from separation anxiety and get sad. This is due to their sociable nature; they love being around their owners and getting lots of attention.

Are Jack Russell Terriers Easy to Train?

Yes, since this breed is very intelligent, they can quickly learn tricks and commands. It is very easy to teach them how to behave outside, how to behave around other dogs, and even how to stop constantly whining.

To do this, you only need to use positive reinforcement training, and your dog will learn very fast.


When dogs whine, there might be a lot of causes that must be addressed. However, if your dog simply has to quit asking for treats, the answer is simple; you should train them. In any other scenario, you should consult a vet to rule out hyperactivity.