Pup fits perfectly

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Great mates: Dion Steers with his new dog Chester, a seven-month-old smooth-coated Jack Russell. Photo by Megan Fisher

Jack Russell puppy Chester has big paws to fill. Before getting him, owner Dion Steers ran around with kelpies and heelers, but the cards are on Chester’s side — he’s the perfect size for the machinery worker.

Is he your first small dog?

Yep. He is my first Jack Russell. Before, I had kelpies and heelers.

Why did you go for a Jack Russell?

I was looking for a small dog. I always wanted a tractor dog and he fit the bill. He goes everywhere with me and does everything. In the tractor, spreading, spraying, even shooting.

How old is he?

About seven months. I got him from a breeder in Shepparton.

Just getting started: Chester is still growing into himself. The little guy will be able to match attitudes with a kelpie once he’s worked up a bit of confidence. Photo by Megan Fisher

Where does he spend most of his time?

In the ute.

How is he around other dogs?

Very good, he’s a playful fella. My partner got her own Jack Russell after I did, and he’s good around the puppy.

Are you planning to turn them into a breeding pair?

Probably not — too much work.

It’s a dog’s life: Chester is set to live a good life, constantly at his owner’s feet, in addition to tapping into his breed’s original purpose and tagging along for some shooting. Photo by Megan Fisher

PS: The name Chester is pretty fitting for a Jack Russell. The breed was created by an English reverend who wanted a good hunting dog capable of ‘worrying’ foxes without maiming them. Chester is both an old English name (short for Rochester) and the name of a cathedral city in England one of the last cities to fall to the Normans and the only English city to retain its medieval defence walls in their entirety. Predictably, the name Chester means ‘fortress’ or ‘walled town’ not too far off what sitting in a header must feel like.

Words: Daneka Hill

Pictures: Megan Fisher