Five Photos Five Stories – day three A Breed Apart

Featured imageSpud

Meet Spud our dog. He is small and black and white, as he is constantly moulting any dark flooring is covered in white hairs and light coloured floor in white hairs, and the vacuum cleaner is full of grey fluff.

He can wrap us round his little paw, ever since my wife saw him at the Rescue Centre, where he put his head on her lap and looked up at her with big brown eyes. He is clever and loves bread. This has caused us to alter our behaviour in the kitchen, always push the chairs under the table. If not he will be on it, he is too small to jump on the table but can use a chair as a step to get on the table. And if there is bread or toast on the table, its gone. He also likes tea and patches of sun in which he will lie, careful rolling across the floor as the sun moves.

In other words he is a character, and therefore a classic example of a Jack Russell Terrier.

Featured image

Spud in a Spud sized sun patch

But, how can a rescue dog, of no clearly identified parentage, be a classic example of one of the best known breeds of small dogs. Simple, there is no such breed as the Jack Russell Terrier!

About 150 years ago a group of Victorian gentlemen, formed an organisation called the Kennel Club and began to classify the known breeds of dogs. Before that time dogs were known for the jobs they did, a foxhound chased foxes, a bull dog baited bulls etc. But now they were to be defined as breeds, size, shape and colour was to be listed so a dog could be judged on how closely it matched the ideal. But not the Jack Russell Terrier, and this was very strange as a founder of the Kennel Club was a Devonshire clergyman called John (or Jack) Russell, he helped write the description of many breeds. However he refused to describe the breed he had created and since then the Kennel Club has respected his wishes and never created a breed description for the Jack Russell Terrier.

Why, simply a breed description can list size, shape and colour, but not intelligence and character. Parson Jack held that these were more important than anything else in the dogs he bred, so Spud is intelligent, a great character, and definitely a Jack Russell Terrier.


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6 responses to “Five Photos Five Stories – day three A Breed Apart

  1. Reblogged this on TanGental and commented:
    Since I am on a doggy roll just now, I want to introduce you to the Archaeologist’s dog, Spud. He and Dog get along just fine and Spud is generally friendly and engaging. The Curious Archaeologist’s post below is as ever informative and interesting. However it fails on one count.

    He does not explain Spud’s glaring weakness and that is he clearly loathes my writing.

    We, the Textiliste and I were staying chez Archaeologist and while dinner was being prepared, I sat on the floor editing my first book, reading a printed version and making notes in the margin of changes I needed to make.

    The dogs, as dogs are wont to do, began a game of chase that involved jumping my legs as a hurdle. Each time they approached I lifted the papers in my hand and let them pass. Did I notice Spud glancing at the pages beginning to pile up on the floor? I cannot say. All I can say is on the third pass Dog bounded across the barrier and Spud followed before stopping, turning back, marking page 110 in time honoured fashion and recommencing his chase.

    I was told, early on, that one should never get upset at criticism; rarely is it given with ill intent. Pay attention and review the criticism before deciding whether it has merit.

    Page 110 was probably not my finest prose; it had a few typos and the storyline was weak thereabouts. It demanded some sort of change.
    However, he is the only critic who has quite literally pissed on my work.

    Personally, I’m a great believer that dog and owner adopt each other’s characteristics. I suspect sibling foul play…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. With two Jack Russells in the family, we didn’t know that

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Your ‘heliotropic’ dog sounds sweet and is a credit to the Jack Russell Terrier family! They are one of my favourites and I enjoyed your post very much; I had never heard that Kennel Club story. Well, well. Thanks!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Interesting. I find it woeful that people think to much of pedigree than traits these days to the point of line breeding that causes defects. Good to have a rescue dog!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Perhaps Parson Russell had an inkling of what might happen, and that was why he never allowed his own breed of dog to be written down, so there could never be a pedigree Jack Russell Terrier.


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