A medium sized dog with a friendly and happy appearance, the English Springer Spaniel is both athletic and relaxed in appearance. The breed has an easily identified coat that is white with spots or patches of black or brown, or with liver or blue roan, or tri colored. Often the spots or patches have flecks of white throughout. The coat itself can be wavy and rather long, especially on the ears that hang down below the lower jaw. The breed has a broad and strong head and muzzle that is proportional to the rest of the body. The tradition is to dock the tail relatively short, but docking is no longer required and has been banned in many areas. The English Springer Spaniel enjoys running and playing, and is overall a very athletic and sturdy dog.
Temperament of an English Springer Spaniel
An excellent companion dog, the English Springer Spaniel is a wonderful addition to a house with children. They are typically good with other pets provided they are properly socialized. Sometimes the breed tends to be a bit active and energetic while they are maturing, but they do very well in the house with proper training and consistent discipline. The English Springer Spaniel, like most hunting breeds, will need to be constantly monitored when outdoors and should be kept in a well-fenced yard. They are easy to train but can be stubborn at times. They do not do well when left alone, and can develop bad barking habits when they are bored or isolated.
Grooming & Shedding of an English Springer Spaniel
The medium length of the hair requires constant grooming with a pin brush or stiff bristled brush, but the breed should only be bathed when necessary to avoid excessive drying of the skin and hair. Since the English Springer Spaniel has ears that hang down, they can become easily infected. Proper cleaning of the ears on a regular basis is important. In addition the hair between the pads of the feet should be trimmed to avoid matting and possible foot injuries.
History of the English Springer Spaniel
Springer Spaniels were originally developed from the line of setters and hunting dogs brought from Europe to England. There were English Springer Spaniels used in hunting all through the Renaissance. The Duke of Norfolk began intensely breeding Springer spaniels, so named because game “sprang” out when flushed by the dogs, in the 1800s. The breed became popular in American in the 1700’s where the breed was specifically bred for both hunting and show.
Health Issues with an English Springer Spaniel
Major Concerns: canine hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, PRA (progressive renal atrophy)
Minor Concerns: ectropion, entropion (eye disorders)