English Springer Spaniel general features, temperament, health

English Springer Spaniel dog breed photo

FCI # 125, Origin: Great Britain, Group 8.2 Flushing Dogs

Height: 18-21 in, Weight: 40-55 pounds

Grooming: Medium, Shedding: Medium, Coat: Long, silky, slightly wavy coat.

Color: white with black or liver markings, tricolor.

Ease of training: High, Energy level: High, Span of life: 12-14 years.

Breed: English Springer Spaniel is the oldest breed of hunting Spaniels, that were bred in England. He came from the Norfolk Spaniel, which is a larger and more massive dog, that looks like a small Setter. Spaniel differs from the Setter mainly by the fact that the Springer Spaniel is not making a point. Duke Norfolk took a large part in the creation of this breed and the Spaniel was called with his name. However, the description of the breed called Springer Spaniel (which means, that the dog jumps and scares the hidden game from grass or bushes) is mentioned in the XVI century - in the book written by John Caius, that was published in 1576 Norfolk Spaniels, most likely, appeared from crossing the Old English Water Spaniel  with the Sussex Spaniel, or other Spaniels. It is also quite possible, that to them there was poured the blood of Black and Tan Terrier. 

At the end of XIX - beginning of the XX centuries the hunters, lovers of Spaniels, were intensively improving the working qualities and the exterior, and the hunting skills of Norfolk Spaniels. In 1902  the Kennel Club of Great Britain officially recognized this Spaniels as a separate breed, and adopted the name - "the English Springer Spaniel". In the first half of XX century in Great Britain the breeders have paid a great attention mostly to improving the exterior of their Spaniels, but the hunting qualities of this dogs were also not left unattended. The English Springer Spaniels were constantly involved in trials and competitions for the hunting dogs and very often they were receiving the highest marks.

There are three types of the English Springer Spaniel, known in the world: English type, American type and the working type.

Dogs of American type are very beautiful. Briefly they can be described by the motto "a lot of neck and not much of the back." A luxurious long hair, set high neck and tail, that is set in line with the back; well pronounced angles of the hind limbs, a tendency to shortening of the muzzle - all this is on the verge of or even beyond the original standard of the English Springer Spaniel.

English Springer Spaniel dog breeds

A clear preference is given for coloration with a distinct saddle on the back of the dog. You can easily distinguish between the American type of the breed and a native British type by the presence of a large, well-defined spots instead of ticking, and and also by the sloping line of the back.

In 1903 in England the Springer Spaniel fanciers, unfortunately, separated into two camps: from one side - the hunters, from the other side - the supporters of shows and exhibition organizers. For the show type of a Springer Spaniel it is very common to have a darker and longer coat. Field Springer Spaniels (working dogs) are distinguished by the shorter coats. They can also be completely white in color, except for imposing freckles. These dogs were bred specifically for use in hunting.

Since 1958 in England the Springer Spaniel can get the title of a champion at the exhibition without any verification of his working characteristics, which inevitably led to the excessive specialization of the litters. Show dogs are very impressive by the exterior, but too large for them to be successfully used in the work - for hunting game. This dogs usually do not meet the level, that is acquired by the English field competitions fanciers.  The latter, in turn, are breeding dogs, purely utilitarian, not paying any attention to the aesthetic criteria. Thus, one breed of dog in Great Britain is actually split into two types, each type is designed for specific kind of competitions, and the requirements of those competitions and shows are constantly increasing.

General Features: English Springer Spaniels are dogs of medium size.They clearly stand out from the other varieties of Spaniels in the first place due to their color. On the face they always have a clearly-marked white spot. Coat color can be black and white or liver and white - this two patterns are the most common in Springer Spaniels.Coat of the representatives of this breed is long enough and thick, soft and silky, of course, if properly cared of and well groomed.The eyes of this breed have a round shape.From all types of Spaniels, the English Springer Spaniel is the tallest and has a relatively light type of constitution.

Both breeds (Cocker and Springer) originate from one ancestor. Modern Springer Spaniel always gives an impression of a proportional, compact, strong, lively dog.English Springer Spaniel has a balanced, mobile type of behavior. He is very cheerful, sociable, easily trained and obedient. This dog is very elegant in all movements - for the Springer Spaniel is characteristic a free flying gate, noble head with expressive, intelligent eyes and a clearly marked white spot on his forehead.The coat of English Springer Spaniel comes in all recognized colors, characteristic to Spaniels, but the most preferred would be white with black or liver markings, or any of them, but with tan markings (tricolor).

Temperament: Courageous, strong, energetic, fast, and having a keen flair and a great stamina, the English Springer Spaniel is a hunting dog, working both: on the land and in coastal thickets. He is actively searching for the game in the bushes and when he found the bird, he firmly jump at it (that is how, actually, appeared the name of the breed - from the English "to spring" - to jump, to flush) and picks the game up to the air for the shot of a hunter. The English Springer Spaniel is an excellent retriever, especially when there is a need to get the killed birds and wounded game from the water.

English Springer Spaniel by nature is very kind, this dog is rarely used as a guard, because the Spaniels in general are not inclined to be aggressive. This dogs make just perfect nannies for children, because they are very careful and attentive in everything and anything they do. Cheerful disposition and always playful mood does not allow such an active pet to sit still and quiet for a long time in the same place. On the walks you will nave to keep an eye on your English Springer Spaniel constantly and - unless the dog is not properly trained for the basic obedience course - it is better not to let him run out of your sight for another second.

English Springer Spaniel breed photo

These dogs have a very good noses, and as soon as they are on the street, they immediately begin to search and sniff the area, looking  for something unusual and suspicious. Excessive curiosity allows them to easily assimilate the new knowledge, gained as a result of training  - which is vital for the English Springer Spaniel to maintain good physical shape.

This dog is a bit hot-tempered and irritable, so the future owner of an English Springer Spaniel should consider himself involved in a patient and flexible training.

The English Springer Spaniel today is primarily an upland gun dog. Anyone who is looking for a company to hunt, must know that the Springer has an unsurpassed working qualities. Hunting with a well-trained Springer Spaniel is a real joy.

At home - in Great Britain - no other breed can compare with a Springer Spaniel in popularity among hunters. This sturdy working dog, whose many talents attracted attention of both: the hunters for birds and the fans of hunting animals - is ideal for virtually any type of hunting.

The English Springer Spaniel is never afraid of shots, genetically has an excellent retrieving qualities. This dog is always carefully scouring the area, leaving no "white spots". However, the English Springer Spaniel fearlessly goes into the water and he is not afraid of any flow. He is very delicate in retrieving the game (this dog must never spoil the bird with his teeth). Exceptional endurance allows them to move for quite a long time on the rugged terrain. The British were trying to get the most obedient animals, obeying to the will of the owner at any time and hunting under any circumstances, and in addition, those dogs had to lead close to the game.

On the field trials the English Springer Spaniel must never give any voice, otherwise the dog will be disqualified and removed from the competitions. Springer Spaniels are very smart and easy to train. Most of the representatives of this breed in all situations instinctively are trying to keep in touch with the owner. Springer demonstrates an innate tendency to retrieve the game, which unfortunately can not be said about many Cockers, which sometimes needs a careful training for retrieving.

Choosing a good hunting Cocker Spaniel is a difficult task in Europe. Most breeders because of the increased interest in Cockers, as a companion dogs, do not pay enough attention to the working qualities of their dogs-producers and the offspring.

The English Springer Spaniel will do very well in the city apartment, but his owner must never forget, that Springer is first of all a hunting dog and he  requires enough open space and active exercises.

The English Springer Spaniel needs only daily brushing and combing. In addition, there must be done also a trimming of the fur on the ears, tail and near the paws.

Health problems: Generally quite healthy breed, the English Springer Spaniels still may have some health issues. Some dogs of this breed are prone to hip dysplasia, epilepsy and some blood disorders. Due to the shape of their ears, the English Springer Spaniels may have ear infections pretty often. Also this dogs tend to overeat and they gain weight easily.

Do You Want to Get This Dog Breed for Free ?