A Parson Russell Terrier is smart, loving, courageous, determined, lively, and if properly raised and socialized they should show no aggression toward other dogs. They can be excellent family companions or they can be the biggest challenge you have ever had in a companion.
Markings, coat type, and color, are all things that potential companion owners consider in their list of attributes for their new puppies; however the most important single consideration should be their new puppies' temperament. The personality traits of your puppy will be something you remember and treasure for a lifetime.
When talking about temperament, we're not just talking about a single trait, that's either good or bad, temperament encompasses a wide spectrum of canine behavior that is controlled not by one gene but many. Therefore it is a challenge for any breeder, to breed dogs with consistently excellent-temperaments, so not every puppy in every litter is capable of being the ideal companion for every family.
Certainly not all of what a dog becomes is due to genetics. Temperament is formed by nature and nuture. Therefore new owners need to recognize their part in developing their puppies' temperament. It is essential to provide an environment in which the puppy can flourish and develop confidence. That means plenty of socialization opportunities, puppy kindergarten, consistent rules, and general training through the use of positive reinforcement. We strongly recommend clicker training.
As breeders we do our best to give our puppies an excellent start in life. Each litter is socialized with children, adults, and other breeds of dogs, as well as being taken for car rides and walks in different places. We also temperament test and structurally evaluate our puppies.
If possible meet the sire and dam of the litter. Temperament is inherited although it can be modified and enhanced with training and proper socialization. There are also certain characteristics that will be found in families. For example, we have one family line of dogs that smile when they get excited or see someone new.
The best puppy for most first-time owners is a puppy that is confident and gives consistent eye contact. These are the puppies that follow you with their eyes as you walk around their enclosure or room. When you pick up a puppy roll it over on it's back and craddle it securely in your arms, and watch for the puppy's reaction. The puppy that avoids eye contact and struggles to turn itself over is going to be very independent and a handful to train, as opposed to the puppy that lies comfortably in your arms and looks lovingly into your eyes.
Living with a Parson is like living with an affectionate shadow. As a breed, Parsons long to be with their owners; for that reason they are not suited to being left alone for long periods of time. However this generally makes them excellent travelling companions. It is very common for a Parson to follow you from room to room to see what you will do next. Parsons enjoy the active life and can get into mischief if they get bored.
So remember to choose carefully. A Parson's average lifespan is 14-16 years of age. Adding a Parson is a long-time commitment for any family.