A good way to accept the assertive or stubborn nature of a dog is to study how dogs use that nature. Sheepdogs are known to be more assertive than other dog breeds. A Border Collie is an example. The dog is tenacious enough to intimidate cattle or other animals, even humans.
From the beginning, Jack Russell Terriers were intended for persistent and tenacious hunting and stalking for prey. The dog will literally go into another animal’s house to get it by hook or by crook to get out. The terrier will want to bark, pinch, and bite to enter unfamiliar, even hostile, territory and dominate the animal’s owner.
How can you translate this field behavior into the four corners of your home? Some influencing factors are how assertive your dog is and how independent he is. Generally, the higher the dog’s pack status, the more likely it is to think independently. Independent dogs are not used to checking their owners’ approval or disappointment before acting. What makes Jack Russells challenging for most dog owners is that they think fast and are quite creative. I know a certain female JRT who rolls on her back when approached, and is a submissive dog by nature. In most breeds, the most submissive dogs will yield to a leader and, in fact, will prefer a poor leader over themselves. But this same dog will not back down when facing a forest predator that surpasses her, she is so persistent in defeating vermin.
How does a dog trainer-owner handle all of this? Dealing with simply extra dominant dogs is solved by doing even more obedience training. But highly assertive dogs like the JRT are marked in their own genes to persist and insist on getting what they want. So the point is, there is no quick two-step way to get it done. While a Rottweiler won’t want to follow the line after a series of obedience training, the Jack Russell Terrier training report card will seem unpredictable. The assertive nature of the dog simply seeks to find an escape in one way or another that allows him to do things his way. But it could get worse; A dog with no physical or mental challenges, or Jack Russell Training will only feel more driven to have you as the target of their assertive and creative endeavors!