American Water Spaniel

The American Water Spaniel is an all-American dog breed that was carefully bred and created to be a versatile hunting dog. These dogs absolutely love water and if you live near any body of water, this might just be the breed for you.

The American Water Spaniel is commonly abbreviated to AWS and it is a dog breed that specialized in chasing and retrieving various types of waterfowl and other small prey. They can make pretty good family pets and companions that will love the active lifestyle and will enjoy everything you and your family would like to do outdoors.

American Water Spaniel Height


15–18 in (38–46 cm)

American Water Spaniel Weight


25–45 lb (11–21 kg)

American Water Spaniel Origin



American Water Spaniel Life Expectancy

Life Expectancy:

10–14 years

Dog Breed Characteristics

Energy Level
Grooming Needs
Exercise Needs
Kid Friendly
Dog Friendly
General Health

The American Water Spaniel is a fairly muscular dog that has a moderately curly coat. It is a medium-sized breed that is very active and has decent substance. The AWS’s head should always be in proportion to their bodies, not too big and not too small.

The American Water Spaniel’s nose should be either brown or black and their eyes should be slightly rounded and never appear bulging. The eyes can range from light brown to dark brown and yellow eyes should always be disqualified. Their ears are above the eye line and should be lobular and long.

These dogs have well-developed bodies and are mostly judged by their overall balance and proportion rather than the size restrictions. Their tails are moderately long and curved in a “rocker” fashion. Their legs are also moderately long, straight, and muscular. The AWS has a great overall bone structure.

American Water Spaniel standard


  • Group 8 Retrievers, Flushing Dogs, Water Dogs. Section 3 Water Dogs. With working trial.
  • height - 15-18 in (38-46 cm)
  • weight - males 30-45 lbs (13,5-21 kg), females 25-40 lbs (11-18 kg)
  • date of acceptance - 11/2/1979


  • Hound Group
  • height - 15-18 in (38-46 cm)
  • weight- male 30-45 lbs (13,5-21 kg), females 25-40 lbs (11-18 kg)
  • year of acceptance - 1940

American Water Spaniel temperament

The American Water Spaniel is a lively and active family companion if their physical needs are met and if they are allowed to live an active lifestyle. They are generally very friendly and affectionate, especially towards their family. The AWS is people-oriented and loves spending time with their family. They hate to be left alone and if that scenario happens, they will most likely start excessively barking and can even become destructive.

The working American Water Spaniel is enthusiastic but not as enthusiastic as some of the most famous working spaniels. They are also very talented and skilled in retrieving, their skill is almost equal to the skill of a Golden or Labrador Retriever. They do need a firm and fair leadership because they can become a bit stubborn and then they might not perform at their highest. If their training is done properly, you will have a tireless hunting dog that can go toe-to-toe with the best of them.

American Water Spaniel training and socialization

Every dog breed in the world needs proper training and socialization to fulfill their potential and the American Water Spaniel is no different. They have a natural instinct for hunting and retrieving and those instincts can be polished and trained to become a great hunting ability.

Make sure that you start socializing your American Water Spaniel puppy as soon as possible. Introduce your AWS puppy to different situations and environments so that they can learn how to properly handle themselves. To help your puppy develop in a stable and well-behaved dog, expose them to different sights, sounds, people, and other dogs so they can learn proper behavior and social rules.

When you start training an American Water Spaniel, make sure that your training method involves a lot of praises, treats, and food, and pretty soon you will start noticing great results. These dogs do not respond well to harsh training methods, punishment, and fear. They can become overly shy or even aggressive. They are fairly intelligent and even if you are no the most experienced dog-owner, you can still handle and train the American Water Spaniel pretty well.

World Dog Finder team