Irish Water Spaniel

Irish Water Spaniel
Sporting Group

Irish Water Spaniel - General Information

Weight: male: 55-65, female: 45-58 lbs

Height: male: 22-24, female: 21-23 inches

Color(s): solid liver

Character: A breed of ancient lineage, the Irish Water Spaniel is an active, energetic, and willing companion. They are strongly built and have rugged endurance. A true sporting dog, they are bold, alert, and inquisitive. Irish Water Spaniels are often referred to as the clown of the Spaniel family.

Temperament: Irish Water Spaniels are highly intelligent, confident, and devoted. They demand attention and are a "whole family" dog. This is a breed that truly enjoys human contact. They are best suited for families with older considerate children. If properly introduced, they will get along well with other pets. They are generally quiet and bark only when necessary. The Irish Water Spaniel is protective, reserved, and wary with strangers. However, they are not aggressive. This breed displays a joyous exuberance and zest for life.

Care: This breed is high maintenance and requires extensive grooming. To prevent matting they must be brushed daily. Regular professional trimming of the coat is an absolute must. Bathing should only be done when necessary using a mild shampoo to protect the natural oil of the coat. The Irish Water Spaniel is prone to elbow and hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism, and eye problems. This breed may slobber and drool.

Training: With a desire to please, the Irish Water Spaniel is capable of learning a great deal. However, they can be independent and stubborn. Early socialization and obedience are recommended. Irish Water Spaniels respond best to firm, fair, and consistent training methods. They quickly become bored with repetition, so short varied sessions are ideal. It is important that family members establish leadership or this breed will refuse commands.

Activity: The Irish Water Spaniel requires an inordinate amount of daily exercise. They enjoy swimming, retrieving, family activities, hunting, and a long walk. This breed is not recommended for apartment dwelling. Their love of the outdoors makes them better suited for the country or suburbs. They do best with a large yard.