The Dutch translation of the name "Parson Russell Terrier" means "Pastor Russell Terrier". This is not surprising, since this breed is named after Reverend John ("Jack") Russell. John Russell was born in 1795 in Dartmouth, County Devon, the son of a pastor. John Russell's father was a fanatic hunter and owner of a pack of Foxhounds. The passion for hunting was also stimulated in John. From an early age he was interested in hunting and everything related to it. Nevertheless, he became a good and beloved pastor.
While studying theology in Oxford in 1819, he met a milkman with his terrier bitch on a walk. He fell in love with her and continued to negotiate with the milkman until he sold him "Trump," as she was called. With that she became the foundation mother of a line of Terriers that from then and until now, bear the name "Jack Russell Terrier". Trump was white with markings on the head, over the eyes and ears, and a penny-large spot at the tail. A & nbsp; oil painting of this bitch is owned by Queen Elizabeth II and hangs in Sandringham Castle. This painting clearly shows that this dog was docked at the ears and tail.
This was the reason John Russell commented that he had never, and never after, had a dog so badly abused. John Russell never compartmentalized his dogs, and later the reason was that his dogs could never be found at exhibitions.
After his theology studies, he first took over the parish from South Molton, then that of Iddesleigh and finally Swymbridge. All these municipalities were located in rural areas in the Devon area, where it was customary for the pastor and the nobility to hunt together. John Russell had a pack of Foxhounds in his kennel and also devoted sixty years of his life to breeding excellent Foxterriers.
For him, the working characteristics and use during hunting were the most important goal. The typical appearance of this breed only came second to him. John Russell wanted a dog that takes the fox out of its construction, chases it, that is not tired after 20-30 kilometers and is not impressed by the weather.
In England many terriers were bred for the fox hunt; but no one did so consistently and over such a long period (more than fifty years!) as John Russell. In 1873, John Russell helped found the Kennel Club. This was the start of modern purebred dog breeding; breed standards were established for all breeds. It was written what the ideal appearance, appearance, size, character, coat color, etc. of the dog should be. The dogs also had to be shown and registered at exhibitions of the Kennel Club. Fox terriers, as John Russell bred them, were then commonly called "fox terrier." His dogs were registered as a Fox Terrier at the Kennel Club.
During his life John Russell was a well-respected man as a breeder, judge of this breed - and also as a pastor. Nevertheless, he has never made an effort to obtain recognition of his breeding products as an independent breed. The two most important males in the breeding of the Parson Russell Terrier, "Tartar" and "Old Jock", are also the basis of the smooth-haired Fox Terrier. A breed that increasingly distanced itself from John Russell's type.
April 28, 1883 John Russell died at the age of 88 years. He was buried in Swymbridge.
In the countryside they continued to breed Pastor Russell's "working terriers". In the 1930s, the type of dog John Russell preferred to call "Jack Russell Terrier." "The Jack Russell Terrier Club of Great Britain" was established in 1975 and January 22, 1990 this terrier was recognized as an independent breed under the name "Parson Jack Russell Terrier" by the English Kennel Club. The FCI (Fédération Cynologique Internationale) followed with a provisional recognition of this breed and adopted the breed standard from the English.
Eleven years later, July 2001, this breed was recognized by the FCI and given a new name.
The FCI has accepted the request from the country of origin to call this breed "Parson Russell Terrier". With this name change it must be indicated that the "Parson Russell Terrier" clearly disregards the & "Jack Russell Terrier" distinguishes.