Looking after a Jack Russell can be hard work. All of that dog hair, mess in the garden and destroyed toys laying about. If you want to know how to look after a Jack Russell without the stress these top 10 Jack Russell essentials are for you. Make both of your lives easier with the help of these simple and affordable ideas to keep your house tidy and your JR happy.
Essentials – Looking after a Jack Russell
Pet vacuum cleaner
One of the best things to invest in for your furry little friend is a powerful pet hair hoover. Shark lift away and Dyson Animal vacuum are two of the best pet vacuum cleaners. Jack Russell’s are known to shed hair especially those with a longer coat. If you want to know how to stop a Jack Russell from shedding so much, there are some easy things to try that might help. You could try swapping to higher quality dog food with more protein and carbohydrates. Many cheaper dog foods contain high levels of cereal which can be low in vitamins and cause dietary and skin problems including moulting in Jack Russell’s. Bathing too much can also cause excessive moulting in Jack Russell’s as it can damage the oils in the skin. Regular grooming is the easiest way to keep on top of all that wayward hair!
Training your Jack Russell on a lead is essential, but can sometimes be a hard task especially in situations where the dog is very excited. Collars can also lead to damage to the neck and shoulders if pulled too tightly, harnesses can help this but can also be problematic if left on when the dog is off the lead. A Halti is a training tool that alleviates the stress of a JR pulling on a lead. The design means you have control over the dogs head, it can’t pull as this will pull it’s head downwards. Make sure to get a comfy Halti that fits your JR and be careful to never use it with a long (extendable) lead as it can cause damage if pulled sharply. Your JR can still pant, drink and bark but it will also stop the ability to bite and can have the effect of putting people off of touching your dog without asking.
Eco dog poo bags
No-one likes to talk about it, but every responsible dog owner has to pick up poo at some point. The normal ones are dreadful for the environment even if disposed of in the proper way, essentially wrapping up organic waste in a material that will never decompose. Eco dog poo bags are here to save the day. They biodegrade just like food waste bags. With over 9 million dogs in the UK it’s important that our furry friends do their bit to reduce their carbon paw print!
Fox poo shampoo
While we’re on the subject… If you have experience looking after a Jack Russell it will come as no surprise that dogs love to roll in poop. Research suggests the reason why dogs roll in poo is a hang up from early evolution. The stench would mask their scent from both predator and prey making them invisible. A dogs sense of smell is said to be at least a thousand times more sensitive than our own according to canine experts, so it would make sense that this would be such an important part of their behavioural evolution. Some shampoo, like Fox Poo Shampoo by Animology, is better than others at getting rid of the results of this unsavoury hobby.
All of those cute, cuddly dog toys look so tempting. “Maybe Jack the Russell would love a little soft toy otter to play with!” you think to yourself in the pet shop. But within 5 minutes of getting home all that remains of Ollie the otter is a paw or two and a lot of white filling spread across the living room. We soon learn Jack Russell’s are hunters. To them cute and cuddly are just different words for lunch. But this isn’t just limited to sweet looking otter toys, anything that squeaks, rattles or bounces soon ends up in shreds in the garden. So what are the best toys for Jack Russell’s? Indestructible toys like Kong, Beco and anything rubber are long lasting. JR’s love to bite things so a tug toy made of rope is perfect, it’s washable, durable and not terrible for the environment.
Possibly the coolest invention for dogs the Tractive pet tracking collar comes with activity monitoring for your dog’s fitness and activity levels. You can compare with similar dogs and set four-legged activity goals. You can also set a virtual fence and be alerted anytime your pooch leaves your back garden. But the real reason this is a must have Jack Russell accessory is that you can track your dog from your phone. JR’s have a tendency to get “distracted” on walks, the Tractive collar means you will always know exactly where your dog is.
Calming herbal tablets
It’s quite common for pets like Jack Russell’s to be scared of fireworks or storms and something that can get worse with age. It can be tricky to know how to calm an anxious dog during fireworks or storms. Dorwest Herbs Scullcap and Valerian tablets are a licensed herbal medicine for the symptomatic relief of anxiety, nervousness, excitability and travel sickness. Make sure to always check with your vet before using new treatments.
When looking after a Jack Russell it’s important to keep your dogs coat in tip-top condition (and to get all of the “aww’s” at the park!). A good brush is a great way to look after your dog’s hair but sometimes it doesn’t quite do the job. A coat stripper or “slicker” works by removing all of the shed hairs from the undercoat while leaving the top layer intact. It’s especially useful during spring or summer when a Jack Russell moults, getting rid of all of the dead hair in one go rather than in small piles all over the house. If you need a break find a dog groomer near you on Bark.
It’s reported that only 1% of owners brush their dog’s teeth. Brushing a Jack Russell’s teeth is really important especially in later life when there can be big vet bills and stinky breath when teeth aren’t properly cared for (check out the ultimate dog toothbrush here). Although not a substitute for brushing, chewing treats designed to keep teeth healthy can help reduce plaque and keep your pooches breath smelling fresh (particularly when they eat something utterly disgusting!). Sodium Tripolyphosphate is the active ingredient in a chew that helps keep your dog’s teeth clean. Clinical studies show that it can prevent tartar build-up by up to 80%.
It’s useful to know human toothpaste contains Xylitol, a sweetener that can be quite harmful to a dog and is known to lead to liver damage. But luckily for us there are lots of Jack Russell friendly toothpastes available. Even better they are often flavoured, making it an enjoyable experience your JR might even end up looking forward to. Start brushing your JR’s teeth from a young age, like with nail clipping it gets easier the more you do it and the earlier you start. It should be as much a part of a routine with your dog as going for a walk or having a cuddle on the sofa.
Looking after a Jack Russell can be one of the most rewarding things on the planet. Although they might not always behave quite as you’d like, they are always entertaining and provide laughter, plenty of character and unconditional love! With these must have Jack Russell essentials life with your JR can be just that little bit easier.
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