Basics of Dog Breed : Irish Water Spaniel

Posted on November 28 2018

Basics of Dog Breed : Irish Water Spaniel

The Irish Water Spaniel is a medium-sized dog with an elegant and balanced appearance. With a well-developed frame and musculature, this dog has a compact and stocky body.

Race history

The Irish Water Spaniel came  down from Persian dogs arrived in Ireland via the Iberian Peninsula without much certainty. His ancestors had specialized in waterfowl hunting since the early 17th century. The breed of the Irish Water Spaniel became particularly popular from the second half of the 19th century. The Irish Water Spaniel Club was founded in 1890. The breed was definitively recognized by the FCI (Federation Cynologique Internationale) on December 28, 1954.

Physical characteristics

Its hair: forming small curly, dense and thick curls, non-woolly texture, but oily appearance. Smoother hair draws a "V" at the throat. Abundant fringes on the forelegs.
Its color: brown unicolor, dark brown.
Its head: well proportioned as a whole and in relation to the rest of the body. The skull is domed, rather long and of good width. Presence of long soft curls. The truffle large, well developed and dark brown color. The muzzle is long, strong and rather square, the teeth articulated in scissors.
Its ears: low hanging, dangling, well applied along the cheeks, very long, lobe-shaped and covered with long curled loops.
Its eyes: almond-shaped, of relatively small size, of dark amber to dark hazel color, displaying a look full of intelligence.
Its body: strong, muscular, barrel-shaped. The neck is rather long, curved and well attached to the shoulders. The back is short and wide, the kidney well down and wide and chest well down.
Its tail: thick at its attachment, covered with short loops 10 cm in length, tapering towards its end in point. Worn practically at the level of the back.

Behavior with others

The Irish Water Spaniel is a dog full of pride, intelligence, vitality and drive . Loyal and very playful , he is a great companion for the whole family . The Irish Water Spaniel is also, and above all, a fiery and enduring hunting assistant . In addition to looking for waterfowl , he can also behave as a stallion and is just as good at reporting.


Intelligent, very attached to his master and hardworking, the Irish Water Spaniel boasts a  tremendous capacity for learning . It is to educate with a good balance between firmness and softness.

Living conditions

The Irish Water Spaniel can adapt to life in the city and apartment if it is sufficiently and frequently walked, and if it has the opportunity to evolve in a natural setting from time to time. However, he prefers to live in the countryside or closer to swampy or scrubby areas.


The Irish Water Spaniel is a robust and strong dog. However, the breed has predispositions to diseases or abnormalities that it is important to monitor:  dysplasia of the hip and follicle, absence or loss of hair , drop or fragility of the claws in  particular.

Maintenance and hygiene

The Irish Water Spaniel loses very little hair . Its maintenance is simple ; it consists mainly of combing and brushing regularly, as well as the care of one's claws and the inside of one's ears.

It is recommended to  brush and comb the dog twice a week  using a large metal comb, a medium comb and a pimper brush. His ears are to inspect after outings and his claws to maintain regularly.

Physical activity

The Irish Water Spaniel is  needed for long walks every day  to ventilate and stimulate. These outings are  to embellish games and exercises  that appeal to both intelligence and physical abilities.

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