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Black Jack Russell Terrier: Facts, Genetics, Pictures & More

Black Jack Russell Terrier playing with ball in mouth

The black Jack Russell Terrier is a small dog with heightened energies. Mostly, it is the typical Jack Russell Terrier that many pet enthusiasts. The only difference is that this dog comes in a black coat!

Jack Russell Terriers have different coat colors, and they are bred to have certain marks on their bodies for a purpose. With this, black Jack Russell Terriers have a lot of controversy on being purebred or not.

If you’re curious about this type of Jack Russell Terriers, this article is perfect for you. We will go through everything you need to know about them, including color genetics, history, and essential facts.

What Is a Black Jack Russell Terrier? Can Jack Russells Be Black?

Cute black Jack Russell Terrier running outdoors

A black Jack Russell Terrier is a Jack Russell Terrier that has a black coat. While they may resemble most of the traits of the Jack Russell, black Jack Russells are actually not purebreds. Usually, purebred Jack Russells only come with black markings on a white base coat and are not entirely black. 

Looking back at history, there isn’t much about black Jack Russells. There are also no details about the first-ever black Jack Russell.

It was only documented that this breed was produced as white hunting dogs with black or tan markings. The white color is essential to distinguish them apart from the prey.

The pure black variant cannot be achieved by purebreds, so other breeds with black coats, like Dachshunds, are bred with them to have that overall black appearance.

Are Black Jack Russell Terriers Rare?

An all-black Jack Russell is rare. However, the reason may not be what you think. The color black isn’t hard to breed since it is a dominant color. In fact, black puppies are pretty common. So why is the black Jack Russell rare?

For most reasons, Jack Russells are known for their agility and intelligence. Their small size also adds to their quickness. That’s why they are popular show dogs and are bred to compete, on top of being companions. 

However, despite retaining these characteristics, full black Jack Russells are not recognized in these dog shows. Thus, they are not often seen or recognized.

Moreover, these all-black Jack Russell Terriers are not considered purebred, and they are usually acquired through crossbreeding. Hence, no breeder specializes in producing them. As a result, black Jack Russells are scarce.

Black Jack Russell Terrier Appearance

Little black Jack Russell Terrier stands on an open grass field

A black Jack Russell Terrier is a small dog with a long body. They are basically longer compared to being tall. They stand at about 10 to 15 inches and weigh between 14 and 18 pounds.

They have a semi-athletic and muscular build, with their bodies proportional and balanced all throughout. Black Jack Russell Terriers have wedge-shaped heads with medium-sized dark eyes and blunt skulls.

Moreover, their ears could be floppy or raised, and they have a medium-length and slightly broad muzzle. Their tails could be extended or docked, and their lips and nose are black.

A black Jack Russell Terrier’s coat can be long and rough, short and smooth, or rigid depending on parent genes. Many of them are all black, while some retain a small white portion on their chest.

Overall, they are elegant-looking black dogs that stand confident and have an alert expression most of the time.

Check out this cute video of a black Jack Russell Terrier roaming around and exploring their yard:

Black 11weeks jack Russell terrier puppy.

READ NEXT: Long-Haired Jack Russell Terrier: A Complete Guide to the Rough Coat Jack Russell

Black Jack Russell Terrier Color Genetics

There aren’t many specific details regarding the color genetics of a black Jack Russell Terrier. However, what was noted was black is a dominant color. 

Therefore, the dominant black gene known as K locus must be present for it to be exhibited by a Jack Russell Terrier. This is the same gene that gives them black noses.

Specifically, dogs that exhibit the K/K allele pairing will result in the solid pigmentation of their coat. Therefore, the black color variant will be transferred to their offspring. 

Standard Jack Russells are usually white, bi-colored, or tri-colored, with black being one of its markings. Moreover, one Jack Russell Terrier can be bred with an all-black Terrier or other dogs to have an overall black appearance.

Although accepted by many pet lovers as black Jack Russells, the black offspring will be considered a mixed breed standard-wise. They will not exist as purebreds unless there is a sporadic gene mutation within the breed.

Do Black Jack Russell Terrier Puppies Change Color as They Grow?

Newborn black Jack Russell Terrier puppy in the grass

Generally, it is normal for a puppy to lighten their fur color as they grow. However, in the case of black Jack Russell Terriers, they do not change shade or lighten as they mature.

In fact, they may even develop a darker appearance as they grow since it is a dominant color gene. 

This contrasts with standard Jack Russells, as their black and tan markings will tend to be lighter in shade growing up.

Do Kennel Clubs Recognize Black Jack Russell Terriers?

Unfortunately, the American Kennel Club and other major kennel clubs do not recognize black Jack Russell Terriers as a breed standard. It is said that they are considered a mixed breed and therefore disqualified in shows.

They only accept Jack Russells that are predominantly white with black and tan markings or tri-colored variations. So if you want to compete in shows, a black Jack Russell may not be the one for you.

Moreover, they are also not recognized in any designer dog breed and hybrid clubs worldwide.

Black Jack Russell Terrier Temperament and Personality

A little white and black Jack Russell Terrier plays outside

Black Jack Russell Terriers are affectionate and friendly dogs, making them excellent family pets. They may be small dogs, but you may need an ample-sized yard for them to run around since they are highly energetic.

They are protective and loyal pooches that love bonding moments and playtime with their owners. They are great athletes and cheerful. Although sometimes they may be a little reckless, so expect a lot of zoomies.

Once socialized early, they will be great around other pets and children. However, as owners, you must really take socializing them as puppies seriously. 

Remember, these are hunting dogs who have high prey drives. Without proper socialization, they will chase down anything, and they are pretty quick in doing so.

Moreover, they are naturally born brilliant, and they have showcased being fast learners in training over the years, so you won’t have a challenging time making them obey commands.

Overall, they love doing things, so keeping them busy is necessary to avoid destructive behaviors. Black Jack Russels are daring and tireless canines. So they are well suited for active owners and adventure goers.

Black Jack Russell Terrier Lifespan and Health Issues

Generally, black Jack Russels have a long lifespan, averaging between 13 and 16 years, making them excellent companion dogs. However, different factors may affect this, such as diet, exercise, and bloodline.

These dogs are known for their athleticism and sound body, but despite them being generally healthy, there are still some health issues they might be prone to having.

Below are some health conditions that your black Jack Russell Terrier can have:

  • Glaucoma: Glaucoma occurs when there is an increase in intraocular pressure in the eyes that later causes damage to the retina and optic nerve. In severe cases, this causes blindness in your black Jack Russell Terrier dog.
  • Patellar Luxation: Dogs with a luxating patella mean that their patella is out of place or dislocated. This could lead to bone injury, pain, decreased mobility, and arthritis in affected black Jack Russell Terriers. It can be managed through corrective surgery and pain medication.
  • Deafness: Hearing loss or deafness can be acquired genetically through trauma, other diseases, or aging. Black Jack Russel Terriers that have this condition do not exhibit pain or discomfort. However, you must know how to guide them through this health issue as owners.
  • Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease: Legg-Calve-Perthes disease is also known as avascular or aseptic necrosis of the femoral head. This is a condition in which the head of the femur degenerates and causes the collapse of the hip. Surgery for your black Jack Russell Terrier is usually recommended in these cases.

Getting them from reputable breeders also plays a vital role in how healthy your black Jack Russel Terrier can be. Regular vet visits are also necessary to keep them in tip-top shape.

We also recommend checking out our article about the Jack Russell’s lifespan for more detailed information about everything surrounding their health.

RELATED: Jack Russell Terrier Lifespan: How Long Do They Live?

How Much Does a Black Jack Russell Terrier Cost? Puppy Prices & Expenses

The usual price of a black Jack Russell Terrier is around $800 to $1,500. However, depending on different factors such as lineage and breeder, it can be priced as high as $1,500.

If you’re keen on saving money, adoption is always a great choice. Although the process may not be as quick as purchasing one, you get to save a life in return. 

Adopting a black Jack Russell from rescue shelters and organizations usually costs between $300 and $600. Opting to adopt is a pretty noble choice, and it’s practical, so it’s a win-win situation.

Another thing you must consider is the expenses of owning a puppy. Before arriving at your home, you have to make sure that the transition for your puppy is as smooth as it can be.

To give you an overview, this table summarizes the initial expenses of owning a black Jack Russell Terrier:

Type of ExpenseCost
Food and Treats$50 – $80
Food and Water Bowls$10 – $25
Bed$30 – $150
Crate$30 – $200
Leashes and Collars$15 – $50
Toys$20 – $30
Grooming Essentials$30 – $150
Deworming, Flea, and Tick Medications$50 – $200
Initial Vet Visits$100 – $300
Initial Vaccine Shots$75 – $200
Neutering or Spaying$50 – $500
Dog License$10 – $20
Microchip$40 – $60
Miscellaneous Supplies$15 – $30
Total Initial Cost$525 – $1,995

This information is vital to know as an aspiring pet owner, so you can assess your financial capabilities and plan your budget before you open your house to a pet.

Being a fur parent is a lifetime commitment, so it’s best to be prepared so you can avoid cases of abandonment and neglect in the future and give them the best possible life they deserve.

Places to Find Black Jack Russell Terrier Puppies for Sale and Adoption

Black Jack Russell Terrier puppies for sale and adoption

Since black Jack Russell Terriers are not a standard color, they can be pretty rare to find. But with a bit of patience and a lot of research, you might snag one from reputable breeders and rescue shelters.

To get you started on your search, here is a list of reputable places you might find a black Jack Russell Terrier for sale:

  • Black Jack Farm – This family-owned farm has been breeding Jack Russell Terriers over the years. They develop black and tan, red, and solid-colored Jack Terriers. They take pride in establishing intelligent, good-mannered, and loyal dogs, matching every litter in fur parents that fits them.
  • Greenfield Puppies – This site was established in 2000 and has advocated against puppy mills and backyard breeders ever since. They intend to connect loving families to responsible breeders, and they inspect these breeders first-hand to ensure quality puppies. They list Jack Terrier and Jack Terrier mixes, including the black-colored variant.
  • Lancaster Puppies – This website has listed dogs of all breeds and mixes, including black Jack Russell Terriers. However, you may need to check their site from time to time as these puppies are rare and may get sold out fast.

You may also want to view our guide on how to buy a puppy online for more in-depth tips and to ensure the safety and quality of the puppies for sale.

If you’re more interested in adopting, here is a list of places to find a black Jack Russel for adoption:

  • Russell Rescue Inc. – This rescue is full of volunteers dedicated to rehoming neglected and unwanted Jack Russell Terriers. You may want to check in on them from time to time since a black variant can be unique in most shelters. However, they may help since they have rehomed many Jack Russells ever since.
  • Jack Russell Rescue – This organization has saved all kinds of Jack Russell Terriers since 1993. Aside from different colors and types, they also open both puppies and senior dogs to loving and caring homes.
  • Pet Finder – This site is a platform and online database of many animals that need a home. They have connected loving families to over 11,000 rescue organizations to find their preferred breed or mixed breed for adoption, including black Jack Russells.

Aside from the places mentioned above, another piece of advice we can share with you is to ask for recommendations from your local vet. They usually have information about breeders, and they might be able to connect you with them.

Our ultimate dog adoption guide will give you a more detailed overview of how to adopt a dog.

Moreover, you might want to check out our article on how to find free puppies in your area for adoption for more practical tips.

READ NEXT: 13 Ways to Find Free Puppies in Your Area for Adoption (2022)

Frequently Asked Questions

Black Jack Russell Terrier looking at the camera

What Is the Rarest Jack Russell Terrier Color?

Despite black Jack Russels being rare, the rarest color that this breed may have is the lilac and tan combination coat. They usually come from parents with recessive lilac genes.

In addition, dogs with this fur may have much more complicated color genetics than black ones, and they are pretty hard to find and breed.

Do Black Jack Russell Terriers Shed?

Whether your black Jack Russell Terrier is short or long-haired, these dogs are moderate to high shedders. They will shed all year long, so regular brushing is a must if you want to minimize fur all over your house.

Do Black Jack Russell Terriers Bark a Lot?

Black Jack Russell Terriers have the tendency to bark a lot. They are bred as hunting dogs, and they have natural protective instincts. They are also territorial and tend to be vocal, especially when it comes to intruders.

READ NEXT: Retro Pug (Pug & Jack Russell Terrier Mix) Info, Pictures, Facts, FAQs & More

Final Thoughts: Is a Black Jack Russell Terrier the Right Dog for You?

Black Jack Russell Terriers are small but highly energetic dogs. Generally, they exhibit an overall appearance of the typical Jack Russell Terrier with black-colored coats.

They are affectionate and loyal canines that would do anything to protect their families. In addition, they are intelligent and highly trainable pups that are always excited to do exercise and have playtime with their owners.

They are suitable in homes or apartments with an ample-sized yard or place where they could release their energies. Moreover, they are best paired with active owners that can keep up with their activeness.

Are you interested in getting a black Jack Russell Terrier? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.