Border Jack

Home > Dog Breeds > Border Jack
22-32 lbs
United States
Border Collie
Jack Russell Terrier
Border Collie Jack

The Border Jack hybrid likely originated in the United States within the past few decades, so there really isn’t much history available on the hybrid.  However, there is a rich history to be found in the parent breeds, the Border Collie and the Jack Russell Terrier (a.k.a. Parson Russell Terrier) . The Border Jack was bred for the agility sports and flyball as well as family companions.  The resulting hybrid is a medium-sized compact and strong bodied canine who possesses extreme amounts of energy which must be expended on a daily basis.  He can have the personality and appearance traits of either or both parent breeds, but his temperament is one of high energy, courage, loyalty and playfulness.  He will require moderate levels of grooming as he is a shedder.

Agility, Companion
Date of Origin
Border Collie, Jack Russell Terrier

Border Jack Health

Average Size
Male Border Jack size stats
Height: 16-22 inches Weight: 22-32 lbs
Female Border Jack size stats
Height: 16-22 inches Weight: 22-32 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Deafness
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Collie Eye Anomaly
Minor Concerns
  • Cataract
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy
  • Cerebellar Abiotrophy
Occasional Tests
  • Eye
  • Hearing
  • Hip X-Rays
  • Physical Examination

Border Jack Breed History

Since the Border Jack hybrid likely originated in the United States within the past few decades, the history of the hybrid is scant.  However, a rich history can be found on the parent breeds, the Border Collie and the Jack Russell Terrier.  The Border Collie originated in England and can be traced back to the first century when the invading Romans brought their own larger shepherding breeds to help to manage the flocks and herds.  Later, the breed was modified when the invading Vikings, bringing their own smaller spitz-like dogs to England, bred those with the existing breeds to get the smaller, stronger and more energetic Border Collie that we see today.  The Jack Russell Terrier can be traced back to the early 1800’s when, in Devonshire England, the young John (Jack) Russell (who later became a parson and hence the name of the breed, also called the Parson (Jack) Russell Terrier) stumbled upon an adorable Terrier bitch (thought to be a cross between a Fox Terrier and a Black and Tan Terrier). He was so taken by this delightful animal that he bought her on the spot and she is said to be the beginning of the new breed which he developed over his lifetime.  The Jack Russell Terrier was bred to hunt and flush out foxes and such from their lairs but without killing them.  Mr. Russell is thought to have utilized the Fox Terrier and perhaps the Beagle to obtain a taller Terrier breed without the “killer blood” of some other hunting breeds.  After his death, other breeds like Dachshunds, Corgis, assorted toys and Terriers were introduced into the breeding process, thereby eliminating the breed's ability to be recognized by the English Kennel Club despite its extreme popularity in the British Isles.  The Border Collie and the Jack Russell Terrier were later bred in the United States to create the Border Jack hybrid. The purpose behind this breeding seems to have been a desire to develop a breed which would have the quickness and agility to perform in sports flyball, a type of relay race in which dogs race over jumps, retrieve a ball and return.  This breeding combination produced a canine with significant skills to perform in these sporting areas.

Border Jack Breed Appearance

As a crossbreed canine, the Border Jack can inherit appearance traits from either or both of the breed parents.  Generally, the Border Jack’s body more closely resembles the Jack Russell Terrier with its narrow body and chest, small head and floppy ears that fall forward. Your Border Jack could have oval or almond-shaped dark eyes and they will give him an alert and intelligent expression. He will likely have a strong muzzle with tight lips and a scissors bite. His feet can be round or oval, compact, with moderately arched toes that point forward, thick and tough pads and nails which are of moderate length. Your Border Jack is of medium height (16 to 22 inches) and will weigh in from 22 to 32 pounds.

Border Jack Breed Maintenance

Your Border Jack is a moderate level shedder, so he’ll need moderate amounts of grooming and brushing.  This will reduce the excess hair in your home and will keep him clean and free of debris.  He should be brushed at least two times a week and only bathed when necessary.  Keeping up with the brushing routine will reduce the vacuuming you’ll need to do and will help reduce the irritants in the air for those in your household who suffer from asthma or other breathing problems.  Your Border Jack should have his ears checked and cleaned if necessary at least weekly to reduce the potential for infections.  He will need to have regular and routine eye examinations to monitor any of the eye problems which are known to afflict the parent breeds.  As with almost every other breed of canine, regular teeth examinations and cleanings will help to reduce the potential for periodontal disease which leads to tooth loss. 

Border Jack Temperament

Your Border Jack hybrid can take on the temperament of either or both of the parent breeds but rest assured that he will be courageous, loyal and playful first and foremost.  He loves his human family and will bond with them.  He is very good with children and older kids but, because he is so energetic and rambunctious, he should not be left alone with small children.  He is wary and cautious of strangers but this trait can be modified using early socialization techniques.  Early socialization should include not only humans but other dogs and cats as well. He is exceptionally intelligent, making training easier than some other breeds though may take more time since he is such a “busy” boy.  Since he has a “working” pedigree, be prepared to keep him well-exercised and mentally challenged. Keeping him well-exercised and mentally challenged will help to expend all of that energy and keep him from becoming bored and destructive.

Border Jack Activity Requirements

Your Border Jack has the propensity to have huge amounts of energy to expend.  He loves to run, jump, chase and play and can do so for hours.  He also loves to run with his human family … so, if you’re a runner, take him along!  He won’t complain or have any problems keeping up your pace and he’ll love you more for it!  For all of his energy needs, he is a canine which can live happily in an apartment, provided you are willing to provide him with ample exercise opportunities and play time activities.  He can live in any climate in both urban as well as rural environments, though extra protection may be required when outside in the colder climates.  He will also do quite well in a family home with or without a fenced yard, again, provided he’s exercised appropriately.

Border Jack Owner Experiences

7 Years
2 People
the most fun loving and affectionate dog we have the pleasure of owning after rescueing from being dumped at 6weeks old
1 month ago
2 Years
2 People
High Five
Agility training
Service Dog Training
I adopted Tessie when she was just over a year old. She came from a hoarding situation with over 600 dogs and we think she had very little contact with humans before she was rescued. Once in a shelter, after weeks of training, she was deemed unadoptable and was scheduled to be put down. Luckily, her foster mom took her in and we adopted from her. She was terrified when we first met her but I am a sucker for saving the damned. She is now mostly rehabilitated and doesn't mind humans but would prefer they stop reaching out towards her. Because of her breed, she is wicked smart, and after spending some time with my family's dogs she picked up on normal dog things like begging, "sit", drinking from the toilet, and belly rubs. She was learning so quickly and as I have RA and had developed severe panic attacks, we decided to train her to be my service dog. She now is public access trained and will jump up and lick my face during panic attacks, lay on me while I am anxious, and massage my back when I have muscle spasms. She has a kind of malleable energy where she can jump and run in circles for an hour, hike up the flatirons, or just lay in bed with me all day. Unfortunately, she is not the best with kids just yet. She isn't aggressive at all, but she does jump up and nip at their ankles to herd them. And if they run she wants to run too and play and bark; which I've found, does not look great to parents. She has never hurt anyone but she just doesn't understand they can't play like dogs. During her service dog time out and about, though, she doesn't seem too interested in them unless they come straight up to her or she is particularly unexercised. She is absolutely devoted to me, affectionate as can be, and hikes perfectly off leash. She is the best trained dog I personally know, and honestly, I don't put that much effort in. She is my best friend and I wouldn't ask for anyone different. 10/10 would recommend!
4 months ago
Book me a walkiee?
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd