Let's talk Jagdterriers

If their very cool name doesn’t draw you in, the well-balanced temperament of the Jagdterrier will. This compact German hunting breed is a super enthusiastic dog, with a robust body and a brave outlook, both of which they carry forth into everything they do. The Jagdterrier is known to be cooperative when it comes to taking commands, both in puppyhood and into their later years, too. They enjoy being around their humans and will readily settle into life on the homefront, whether in a rural or urban setting.

Official name: Jagdterrier

Other names: German Jagdterrier, German Hunt Terrier, German Hunting Terrier

Origins: Germany

Black and white portrait of a Jagdterrier
 Drooling tendencies   Warm weather?  Medium
 Shedding level  Medium Suited to apartment living?   Medium
 Physical activity needs High Kid-friendly?
 Medium
 Compatibility with other pets  Very high Can stay alone?  Medium

We advise against leaving pets alone for long stretches. Companionship can prevent emotional distress and destructive behaviour. Speak to your veterinarian for recommendations.

 
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Illustration of a Jagdterrier
Male
33 - 40 cm Height
9 - 10 kg Weight
Female
33 - 40 cm Height
7.5 - 8.5 kg Weight

 

 Baby age  Birth to 2 months
 Puppy age  2 to 10 months
 Adult age  10 months to 8 years
 Mature age  8 to 12 years
 Senior age  From 12 years

Close-up of a Jagdterrier

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Get to know the Jagdterrier

All you need to know about the breed

Vivacious and lively, the Jagdterrier dog has a zest for life, and then some. This is a breed that’s known for their smarts as well as their bravery - a great combination when it comes to a working dog that doesn’t always know when to quit.

The Jagdterrier was bred in Germany as a hunter (their name literally translates from the German as “hunt terrier”) used to flush out smaller game underground. It was their grit and determination - typical to terriers - that made the Jagdterrier good at it, and kept the breed a favourite over the years.

That rough-and-ready manner is a welcome trait when it comes to their ability to roll with it, too. The Jagdterrier can adapt to living in a city apartment or in the country, just as long as they’re by their owner’s side. This is an exceedingly loyal dog who bonds closely to their people.

Sociable and reliable are words often used to describe the breed, as are the three “a’s”: Alert, athletic, and active - and maybe even a fourth, a super affable manner and a get-down-to-canine-business approach, with feistiness, above all, as the Jagdterrier‘s winning attribute.

Jag Terrier puppy stood looking at the camera

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2 facts about Jagdterriers

1. Drive and determination

The Jagdterrier has so many great qualities but one that should be top of mind is their high prey drive. This is a dog that’s used to chasing - and likes to. Take caution with other furry friends at home, and watch interactions to keep everyone safe.

2. Let me count the ways

As a very high-energy and lively dog, the Jagdterrier requires a good dose of exercise - and enjoys doing it. There’s almost no activity they don’t take to, from chasing a ball inside to swimming, hiking, or catching flying discs to formal competitions of rally or agility, if it involves running and leaping, please, bring it on.

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History of the breed

Germany has produced strong and stalwart dog breeds over the years and the Jagdterrier is one. Although not as celebrated as a few of their compatriots, the small but mighty Jagdterrier was bred just after World War II by a group of men who wished to develop a spirited breed who was tenacious, versatile, obedient, and loved water, the kind of dog who would work well when out in the field, no matter the conditions.

They selected black and tan Fox Terriers obtained from a local zoo director to fashion an entirely new breed. The Jagdterrier was born, and the resulting dog’s scrappy manner proved perfect for the task he was originally bred for.

In just over a century, the Jagdterrier breed has become quite popular in their home country as well as worldwide. The German Hunting Terrier Club was started in 1926 and the breed was then recognised by the United Kennel Club in 1993.

Black and white portrait of a Jagdterrier

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From head to tail

Physical characteristics of Jagdterriers

1. Ears

Somewhat small, triangular ears, resting at side of head.

2. Body

Compact and firm body, all muscle.

3. Coat

Coat is either short and hard, or coarse and wiry, nearly always black and chestnut with grey, red, or yellow markings.

Jag Terrier sat in grass in the mountains, looking to the side

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Things to look out for

From specific breed traits to a general health overview, here are some interesting facts about your Jagdterrier
Jag Terrier sat in grass in the mountains

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Caring for your Jagdterrier

Grooming, training and exercise tips

The Jagdterrier has either a hard and sleek, close-lying coat or a short-haired, coarse one. Grooming both is a fairly straightforward task, with a weekly brushing being sufficient. Bathe them only when necessary. Brushing their teeth regularly - daily if you can get away with it. Nails should be trimmed and ears cleaned routinely. Exercise for your Jagdterrier is high on the list of routine tasks as well. This is a high-energy breed so will need at least three hours of walks or playtime each day. An enclosed garden is best for the Jagdterrier - with a fence that’s buried deep - since the dog, in typical terrier fashion, can also dig deep and may do so to take off in pursuit of a smaller furry friend. Train your Jagdterrier from an early age to get a jump on that gritty temperament. Their rustic roots make the Jagdterrier a very adaptable dog, with high intelligence which helps them to learn quickly. The terrier in them always needs an energetic outlet, which is just more Jagdterrier to enjoy.

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All about Jagdterriers

This highly active dog is a superb companion for an equally active owner. They have energy to burn, but can adapt to both urban and rural environments, as long as there’s room to run their compact bodies. The Jagdterrier is also great around children, once trained. They tend to be assertive around other pets so train them early for the best behaviour possible.

Terriers embody a determination and independence unique to this type of dog. Small and very muscled, they have been bred over the years to dig. Years of conditioning mean terriers will dig, and want to roam, but they’ll also benefit from training on the rules of the homefront as they apply.

Other breeds that might interest you.

Sources

1 - Veterinary Centers of America https://vcahospitals.com/ 

2 - Royal Canin Dog Encyclopaedia. Ed 2010 and 2020

3 - Banfield Pet Hospital https://www.banfield.com/

4 - Royal Canin BHN Product Book

5 - American Kennel Club https://www.akc.org/