Rough Coat Jack Russell Terrier: What You Need to Know is reader-supported. If you buy a product through a link on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you.

Jack Russell Terriers are known for their high-energy, intense loyalty the larger-than-life personalities. This makes the JRT one of the more desirable dogs you can choose to adopt.

Part of adopting a dog like the Jack Russell is understanding their unique needs when it comes to providing proper care.

Grooming certainly falls under the category of proper care. Jack Russells can have several different coat types when it comes to the fur and all coat types have some unique traits and needs.

In this brief discussion, we are going to focus on the rough coat Jack Russell Terrier.

We will cover the needs of the rough coat JRT when it comes to brushing and bathing.

Finally, we will cover what you need to know when it comes to shedding and other hygiene needs.

Let’s dive into it.

Jack Russell Terrier Coat Types

The Rough Coat Jack Russell

One thing you may encounter when going through the adoption phase with a Jack Russell Terrier is the physical appearance of the dog and the coat type.

For example, I have a full-bred Jack Russell Terrier that is known as a “smooth coat”.

This gives my Jack Russell Terrier the appearance of a shiny coat and short pin-needle-type hairs with moderate shedding.

JRTs also are bred in rough coat variations that offer several different color combinations.

The primary thing to understand about the rough coat Jack Russell Terrier is that the fur will be longer and much coarser.

The fur may even have some curly features.

Typically, you will see rough coat Jack Russell Terriers with fur that grows 1-2 inches in length.

It’s also important to understand that the grooming needs of the rough coat JRT compared to the other coat options will require some additional grooming (we will cover this later in the discussion)

Next, I want to discuss the physical look of the rough coat JRT in a bit more detail.

Sizing and Appearance of the Rough Coat Jack Russell

Rough Coat Jack Russell Terrier

The rough coat Jack Russell is not going to differ from any other coat type when it comes to the overall height and weight of the dog.

You will still be adopting a dog that will weigh between 13 and 17 pounds and stands around 10-12 inches tall.

As stated previously, the rough coat JRT has a compact and muscular body with a rough, wiry coat that can come in a variety of colors, including white, black, brown, and tan.

Rough-coat JRTs will also often have a docked tail that occurs shortly after being born.

The Rough coat is going to present as long hair as opposed to a smooth coat JRT and potentially have slight curls at the end of the hair.

Color options will be the same with both coat types of the JRT, but the grooming needs certainly differ.

Let’s dive into those details next.

Grooming Needs of the Rough Coat Jack Russell

The Rough Coat Jack Russell has a rough, wiry coat that requires regular grooming to keep it healthy and looking good.

You will have 4 major areas to focus on when it comes to providing the proper grooming and hygiene techniques for a rough-coat Jack Russell Terrier.

Here is a look at them.


Brushing is always going to be a part of your routine for your rough coat JRT.

Regular brushing is best. At a bare minimum, I would aim for several times per week and if possible, it may be in your best interest to provide a quick brushing daily.

This will help keep dirt and debris out of your JRTs coat and allow you to spread out the bathing even further.


Trimming is one of the areas that will be necessary with a rough coat JRT, but the good news is that it won’t be very often.

For effective trimming, you will simply trim the loose hair near the dog’s face with a pair of dog-trimming scissors.

You will also only be aiming to remove a very small amount of length during the trimming.

Your goal is just to even out the hair on both sides of the face for your JRT.

Think of this as more of a tidy-up job for your JRT when it comes to appearance.

Without it, the face hair with a rough coat JRT may get along and look unkept but with a few trimmings, you can keep your JRT looking neat and fresh.

Hair Stripping

Typically stripping is recommended with a rough coat JRT twice per year.

Stripping is the process of removing the JRTs undercoat and allows for dead hair and debris to be removed from the coat helping to keep the skin and coat healthy.

Stripping is a job that is a bit tedious and easy to make mistakes.

In my opinion, you are going to be best suited to allow a professional to perform a stripping for your JRT a few times per year.

It may cost a bit more money to have it done for you, but you will know it’s being done correctly.

Sometimes it’s worth just spending a few extra dollars.


Bathing is the last part of the grooming and hygiene regimen you will need to worry about with a rough coat JRT.

Assuming you keep up with the other steps listed such as trimming, stripping, and brushing, you can spread baths out to once every few months.

More than this can cause additional shedding and skin irritation.

Plan on providing roughly 6 baths per year with a rough coat JRT for optimal results.

The Takeaway

Overall, the rough coat Jack Russell will be very similar in appearance to any other JRT with slightly longer and curlier hair.

They may require a few additional steps when it comes to the grooming process, but they also tend to shed a bit less than other coat types such as the smooth coat JRT which is definitely a positive.

The Rough Coat Jack Russell is a unique and lovable dog that is a great choice for active families that are looking for a loyal and energetic companion.

With proper training and exercise, this breed can make a great family pet and lifelong friend.

Be prepared to provide the required grooming to keep your JRT happy and healthy and you will be in great shape.

Luna and I wish you the best of luck if you are planning to adopt in the immediate future.

Josh Martin- Founder and Creator of Terrier Owner

Josh Martin is the proud owner of a female Jack Russell Terrier Named Luna. Josh founded to share the stories of owning a Terrier and to help all terrier owners with the struggles, excitement and common questions that come with being a new terrier parent.

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