Do Jack Russell Terriers Need Haircuts?

Do Jack Russell Terriers Need Haircuts? Or Shavings?

Grooming is an essential part of caretaking for any dog breed. It even determines the health level of your pet. Not only does it help you to keep a healthy fur coat, but it also keeps your dog’s overall health intact. 

So, do Jack Russells need haircuts? Yes, JRTs need haircuts. Smooth-coated Jacks don’t need regular haircuts. But, Rough/Broken haired and Wire-haired Jack Russells need regular haircuts and grooming. To maintain healthy fur, you need to groom your dog on a regular schedule. But the effort you put into it depends on the type of fur your Jack Russell features.

Let’s get started!

Do Jack Russells Need Haircuts?

As I mentioned before, your Jack Russell’s haircut depends on its fur type. Let me clarify that first. There are three main fur types in JRTs.

If you own a JRT with a smooth coat, it will save you a lot of trouble because grooming that cute thing is effortless. A regular sweep with a brush and a bath every month, and you’re good to go.

You wouldn’t even have to worry about giving these Jack Russells haircuts. But make sure that you’re using high-quality dog shampoo. That’s very important.

On the other hand, it’s completely different if you have a rough / broken coated JRT or – the next level – a wire-haired one. These two are a little tricky, and their thick and long hair should never miss a regular groom and a haircut.

They will be bundles of joy if you do your Jack Russells haircut and groom methodically. 

The above two types of fur can gather dirt even without you noticing. Such that your Jack Russell’s shedding will increase, along with so many other complications. And you don’t want that now, do you? 

How Can You Cut Or Trim A Jack Russell’s Hair? 

So, as we discussed before, a smooth-haired JRT won’t need haircuts and trims often. If you happen to feel that it’s time for your Jack Russell’s haircut, you can trim the excess growth with a pair of blunt scissors. Believe me; it will just be once in a couple of years, at most.

For Other Two Fur Types, There Are Main 2 Methods To Groom Your Dog. That’s fur stripping and shaving.

In my opinion, fur stripping is the best method to do your Jack Russell’s haircut. You can do it at home by yourself, or if you don’t feel comfortable enough, a professional groomer can have it done for you.

But fur stripping is not that complex. You will save a few hundred bucks if you learn how to do this. 

I recommend that you give it a shot, so let’s see how it’s done. Before going into details, the following are the essential tools you need to fur strip your JRT.

  • Combs (wide tooth + fine tooth)
  • Wire brush
  • Serrated stripping knives (dull blade + share blade) 
  • Thinning scissors
  • Rubber mat – optional (will help you to keep your dog steady during haircut) 

The process of stripping

Let me give you a few quick tips before diving in. 

  • There are two types of stripping methods. You can use tools to strip your dog or hand strip. The latter doesn’t use any tools. Instead, you pull out the loose long hair with your hand. We will look through how to strip your dog with tools in detail.
  • Fur stripping can take a long time, so better be ready to spend a few hours of your time to give your Jack Russell’s haircut. 
  • Also, be sure to have plenty of treats at hand. It will come in handy at keeping your pet steady and calm.

Step 01 – Start from the backbone

Hold the stripping knife at an angle using your thumb and index finger. Then comb small parts of the hair.

Don’t rush but take your time. This process needs all your attention. And slowly work towards the neck. 

Step 02Count down all the body areas that have long hair

Don’t leave your Russell with a bad haircut. So, make sure that you cover all body parts on both sides of the dog. Pay attention to the chest area, back, legs, tail, neck, and sides.

Your JTR might sometimes resist, especially when you’re stripping its legs, face, or tail. So, please give him a small treat and make sure to engage it with a conversation to get the best result. 

Step 03 – Opt for a more modern tool like the FURminator

FURminator is a brush with metallic teeth and has blunted outer teeth and sharper inner teeth. It’s an easier way to de-shed your dog and get the undercoat trimmed.

This tool will also help you to discard the removed fur efficiently. It makes the process more accessible, and who doesn’t want that?

Step 04 – Bath. Avoid this as much as you can

You can bathe your dog after giving the haircut. But my advice is, don’t. After grooming, give another thorough brush to your JRT and save him from the gruesome bath.

Only go through with a wash only if it’s vital. You do not want more shedding all over your house right after Jack Russell’s haircut. 

So that’s the first way to groom your Jack Russell. The second method is Shaving. We will discuss it in the next subtopic.

Is It Ok To Shave A Jack Russell?

I personally do not recommend shaving. Why? For a start, you won’t even notice the tiny and short fur shed by your Russel.

After the shave, the hair will be so short, and how can you clean it up if it’s hard even to see? It’ll be like an airborne virus! But that doesn’t mean that you should never shave your dog.

Once again, if brushing and stripping won’t do any good in stopping the dog’s shedding, you will have no choice other than to go for shaving. 

But I did warn you! And honestly, a dog with decently long hair looks better than a very short-haired one. What do you think? Yay or nay? 

How Often Do Jack Russells Need To Be Groomed?

While smooth-haired Jack Russell Terriers only need to be brushed several times per week, other types need regular grooming. But that doesn’t mean you will have to go through that process every month. You will only have to groom and trim their hair twice a year, at most. 

So, how do you give your Jack Russell’s haircut? Do you know any other suitable methods of grooming your dog? Let me know in the comments.

Have fun with grooming your dog, and we’ll see you in the next episode.


  • 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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