Does Your Jack Need a Job?

The Jack Russell Terrier is a working dog. Traditionally, they were bred for chasing down prey that has gone to ground. But today, to be honest, most Jacks serve humanity as faithful companions.

Still, those working dog instincts are still there.

If your Jack seems restless, bored, destructive, or just plain antsy, maybe he or she needs a job. What kind of job?

Well, let's have a look.

Jack Russell…Police Dogs?

When many of us think of police dogs, we think about the noble German Shepherd, the fierce Belgian Malinois, or the intimidating-looking Doberman. It's hard to imagine an adorable JRT bringing down the bad guys.

But many a Jack Russell has become a successful detection dog, sniffing out bombs or drugs. Their intelligence and eagerness to learn makes them easy to teach. Their high play and prey drives makes them a great choice for detection work. And their size and deceptive cuteness is unlikely to put criminals on their guard.

Check out these JRT detection dogs in action.

Here's a JRT that has been trained as a drug sniffer.

And check out Diablo, who sniffs out explosives.

Detection dogs are trained to sniff out one thing and one thing only. This is so that when they “alert,” their handler will know what they've found, since the dog can't tell the handler themselves!

Jack Russells as Service Dogs

If you look at lists of the most popular types of service dogs, you won't find the JRT — and that's a definite oversight!

Anyone who owns a Jack Russell Terrier knows that they're both clever and sociable. They may not be able to provide physical support to their owners, but the quick, energetic, eager JRT can learn to do a lot of useful things. And they're a natural as a learning support or emotional support dog.

Check out Buddy, the certified learning support dog. Buddy helps reluctant readers to gain confidence reading out loud.

And then there's 10-year-old Sancho, whose antics brings joy and smiles to people in the hospital.

But you haven't seen anything yet. Check out how Jesse makes himself useful. He makes breakfast, finds lost keys, takes socks off, and even does the dusting!

Does Your Dog Have What It Takes?

There have been a lot of stories lately about fly-by-night companies that “certify” support animals for a few dollars, and the people who use these fake certifications to take advantage.

But a service dog is highly trained to do important, and often life-saving tasks. And their certification means something. And a therapy dog provides a number of different kinds of emotional and learning assistive services.

Do you think your pup is cut out for this kind of work?

If you think your Jack has what it takes to become a therapy dog, check out Therapy Dogs International . You'll learn all about the organization's standards, different kinds of therapy dogs, and what it takes to become a real therapy dog.

Service dog training is extensive and difficult. But if you think your JRT has a calling, you should check out a Service Dog Training Guide. It could open up a whole new career for you and your dog.

Featured Image: CC0 by Bequest, via Pixabay