Jessie Regalbuto is a 15 lb, 11 year old white alpha bitch who is the oldest and highest ranking dog member in our pack. I have standard poodles for almost 25 years, other than my first dog Mandy who was an Airedale, Jessie is the only breed I've strayed with. Jessie was to be my husbands dog, ever since he was 16 when he first met a tiny dynamo named Dixie he had wanted a Jack Russell. So, 11 years ago when I was feeling like we needed to add another canine to our group I gave in and let him choose his girl.
I did all the research that you are suppose to do being that this was an entirely a new breed for me. This was back in 1996 just before the Jack Russell boom. After pouring through all the JRT sites on the net and talking to numerous breeders we headed out to see some in person. The first pups we saw were at a farm where all the puppies in the litter were taking turns tormenting a pot bellied pig. The Mom was tiny and pretty cute but very aloof, it was when we saw Dad that we decided to get in the car and continue on our search. He was huge and resembled a rats nest, not the cute little smooth white fireball my husband had in mind.
So back in the car to see some more JRTs. Our next stop was another farm where the puppies were so tiny and scattered that we didn't even bother to have a look. The man clearly didn't even know how many there were suppose to be or where they were, this was obviously not the place for us.
Back at home I started with more research when I found The Bowery. With an impressive website and meticulous grounds around their home this looked like it might just be the place for us. I called and talked to the breeder for a long time and she had puppies available. The breeder had alot of dogs and many were International imports. She told me the good and the bad about the breed which is a must with a good breeder and I was just about sold on the idea of adding this new breed to our home.
After discussing the ins and out of a Jack Russell my husband he was sold, a quick call and we were on our way. Jessie came from Bancroft, Ontario and like where Tilley came from it is a beautiful part of Canada. As we pulled into the driveway we could see all the different jacks in their beautifully built pens. Once we met the breeder she brought us into her home and introduced us to two puppies she had pulled as a good match for our family.
In all honesty I chose the puppy who was not Jessie. A broken coat white girl with just the tiniest spot above one eye. She was sweet and a little longer legged that the other puppy. But we were there to find a dog for my husband so I stepped back and shut up. There was no choice for him it was Jessie. This was the dog he wanted and he really didn't give the other puppy a second look. With the tiny wriggling white puppy in his arms he had found his dog.
The trip home was pretty typical for a new pup, she threw up on the kids and they grossed out completely. Once home she immediately took the "top dog" status and at the young age of 12 weeks had her own 60 lb male standard poodle servant. Its been pretty much the same way since then.