Are Jack Russells Good With Cats? Do They Get Along?

Are Jack Russells Good With Cats? Do They Get Along?

Jack Russell owners and future owners are curious whether they can raise a cat with a JRT. Recently, a few of my friends asked me, ‘are Jack Russells good with cats?’. As an owner of two JRTs, I thought to share my experiences and insights about this topic.

So, are Jack Russells good with cats? Jack Russell Terriers are good with cats when socialized and build trust in each other. Building trust for each other is the main thing for a successful co-exist of a dog and cat. It will be easier to build their friendship if both cats and dogs are younger. Most of the time, they build trust quickly; if so, their bond will be unbreakable.

There are many pictures and videos on the internet that Jack Russell Terriers and cats have become best friends. That is every pet owner’s ultimate dream.

We will explore the reality of raising a Jack and a Cat together. And also, I discuss the proven method and guide for making them co-habitat under the same roof.

Let’s get started! Feel free to jump straight to the subtopic you want using the following table of content.

Are Jack Russells Good with Cats? Fast Facts

There are few things you should consider when you plan to raise a JRT with a cat. The main thing is Jack Russell’s socialization level. If the JRT has a friendly attitude towards strangers and other pets, there is no need to worry. He will quickly build a good relationship with the cat. 

And also, the age of the JRT and the cat is another key consideration, in my opinion. According to the age factor, we can see there are few possible situations.

Are Jack Russells Good with Cats? Fast Facts
  • Jack Russell puppy and a kitten

If you are planning to raise a JRT puppy and a kitten at the same time, that is the easiest way. Both are at a younger age, and they will grow together, sharing the same space. They will not see any difference with each other that builds trust quickly.

  • JRT puppy and a grown cat

If you are a cat owner and decide to raise a JRT puppy, you may worry about their co-habitant. In this situation, you can expect a little bit of resistance from the cat at the beginning.

You will see, Jack Russell pup will have a high interest in the cat although, the cat may consider it as a disturbance because of his pride. However, they will start making contacts in a short time without any harm.

  • Grown Jack Russell Terrier and a Kitten

It would be a little bit challenging when a Jack Russell owner considers raising a kitten. If you do so, you have to keep your eyes open. Typically, Jack Russells have extreme energy, contrary to their body size. His small move can hurt the kitten badly.

Therefore, you have to socialize them step by step by taking enough time. Jack Russell wants to be the leader; to do so, they like to show their power. That would not be tolerable for a tiny kitten.

If you move them wisely, you will be able to make friends in a short time. We will discuss the correct approach in this post later. 

  • Grown JRT and a grown cat

This is the most challenging situation. You have to understand that both of them are fully grown according to their lifestyle. They have their trust level towards other animals.

Therefore, it would be best to take time to let them identify step by step until they build up trust towards each other.

The jealousy level of the pets is another crucial fact in this case. If any of them have a jealous attitude towards others, you have to put more effort to make them friends. However, I am going to tell you the easiest way to do it. 

So finally, are Jack Russells good with cats? Yes, of course. It totally depends on their age, aggressiveness and level of understanding.

Therefore, pet owners are responsible for making the pace for them to build trust with each other. Then, they will bring that friendship to the next level as siblings.

Do Jack Russells get along with cats or hate them?

Do Jack Russells hate cats?

Jack Russells do not hate cats. JRTs may have an aggressive attitude at the first instance you meet him with a cat. It is the nature of most strong dog breeds.

They want to show their strength at first sight to take the lead. Therefore, you can expect aggressive behaviour from the JRT. However, it is not because of the hate.

There needs to be enough time to understand each other. After a few weeks, you can expect a friendly but defensive attitude. That is because of their trust level.

Mostly, Jack Russells have less confidence in others. Therefore, they try to show their strength to make the other surrender.

However, I know that Jack Russells have big hearts. They are warm-hearted pets with a high emotional level. If they start loving a cat, they will do anything to keep their relationship.

Will a Jack Russell kill a cat? Can they?

Jack Russell Terriers have the strength to kill a cat. We know that JRTs have an ancestral predatory heritage. They used to be hunting dogs that kill small foxes and rabbits.

Read – Jack Russell Terrier Breed Facts

However, I can assure you that there are scarce opportunities nowadays for JRTs to kill a cat. Most JRTs are trained well nowadays. They behave well and know to control their predatory behaviors.

Jacks have excessive energy. Therefore, there is a possibility of hurting cats when they play. However, every dog knows to control their energy and to be careful not to harm their playmates.

Everything depends on Jack Russell’s attitude. That is why I recommend you to train them well and socialize them at their young age to avoid their destructive behaviors.

Can Jack Russells live with cats?

Can a Jack Russell terrier live with a cat?

Yes, of course. There are enough real-time proofs for the co-existence of Jack Russell and cats. As I said earlier, Jacks have big hearts contrary to their aggressive behaviours. Once a cat and JRT become friends, they will tolerate each other to their maximum.

Read – Can Jack Russells kill mouses or rats?

It will take plenty of time to build their relationship. After that, you can let them alone for hours without any issue. If both of them are growing together from a younger age, you don’t need to put extra effort to make them friends.

The only issue is the excessive playing desire of the JRTs and the lazy attitude of most cats. It will infringe the cat’s freedom that causes a long-term rejection.

Therefore, you have to make their space separate. If so, there will not be an issue for a cat to co-exist with a Jack Russell under the same roof.

How do you introduce a Jack Russell to a cat?

There are few easy things you can do to introduce a JRT to a cat. This method is valid for any age considerations that I mentioned earlier. However, you will see faster results if both JRT and Cat are at their young age.

Keep in mind the following when you introduce a JRT and a Cat.

  • Take enough time to introduce them – Let them stay on their boundaries and keep the space in the early days. Once they get used to seeing each other, they will share their space. It takes time to build trust. Therefore, don’t be in a hurry to introduce them forcefully. Let it happen by making the environment.
  • Early age socialization – Jacks need to be trained well and socialized at their early age. It will create an obedient dog that can control his anger and destructive behaviors. You should have the ability to control them by commands if you plan to raise several pets under one roof.
  • Create a friendly environment – Dogs care about their spaces and boundaries more than cats. Therefore, don’t let them make conflicts about their territories or pets. Try to keep their belongings separately. In Particular, take the cat away when JRT is eating.
  • Patience – Your patience is the key to socializing pets with each other. That is not a complex task nor an easy task. You have to act accordingly with patience when your JRT and cat are moving around. Sometimes, you will have to put some extra effort or cost to make the house environment for two pets until they share the space.
  • Use a Leash – Using a leash for JRT would be helpful to control his anger towards the cat. You can keep him in one place using the leash. However, keep in mind to use the leash when you are not around with them. Otherwise, it would be an extra burden for the Jack Russell Terrier.
  • Don’t force – This is an essential factor for introducing dogs and cats. The force may cause damage to the confidence and have a long-term impact on becoming friends. Therefore, let them move voluntarily by making the pace.
  • Speak with JRT – You can keep telling your JRT that the cat is his brother. We know that dogs can understand what people say. Let him understand that the cat is also a part of the family. Then, he will build an unbreakable bond with the cat quickly.

Conclusion – Are Jack Russell Terriers Good with Cats?

Yes, of course. We have discussed all the relevant facts relating to the co-existence of a Jack Russell Terrier and Cats. Also, we discussed the possible situations depending on their age and the correct way of introducing them.

I hope this post helped you clarify whether a Jack Russell and a Cat can live under the same roof.

Thank you for reading this post, and stay tuned with Jack Russell Owner, for reading about loving four-legged friends. Cheers from Shaggy and Lenny!


  • George Brown

    George B. is the founder of the JRO Organization. He believes in creating a better world for domestic animals. He believes domestic animals are more vulnerable than other animals, especially dogs, since they have been used to depending on their owners for generations. So, he started JRO to share his ideas and insights while helping vulnerable dogs worldwide. George runs multiple projects on street dogs in developing countries, especially Sri Lanka.

    [email protected]

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