Welsh Springer Spaniel

The Welsh Springer Spaniel is a Welsh hunting dog breed that was developed for the purpose of field hunting. These dogs used to flush, or spring different types of game for the Welsh hunters to catch.

Like many other dogs breeds, the Welsh Springer Spaniel is also highly energetic and requires daily activity to remain perfectly healthy and happy. Unlike other gundog breeds, these dogs have an extremely soft and tender side which allows them to be the perfect family companion.

Welsh Springer Spaniel

Height:

17-19 in (43-48 cm)

Welsh Springer Spaniel

Weight:

35-55 lb (16-25 kg)

Welsh Springer Spaniel

Origin:

Great Britain

Welsh Springer Spaniel

Life Expectancy:

12-15 years

Breed History

The exact age and origin of the Welsh Springer Spaniel remain a mystery. The early spaniels were separated into two groups, land and water spaniels. The early spaniel breeders used to crossbreed those dogs and they tried to create a dog with specific characteristics and traits.

It is believed that the Welsh Springer Spaniel is a descendant of the early Welsch Cocker Spaniel. There is even some evidence of this breed found in Renaissance paintings. Those paintings depicted a land spaniel that looks like the Welsh Springer Spaniel.

welsh springer spaniel

This breed was the favorite hunting breed of the British royals and nobles throughout the 18th and 19th centuries. English Springer Spaniels took that place when more and more nobles started trading Welsh Springers for English Springers. The Welsh Springer Spaniel was revived and repopularized during the Victorian era and in the late 19th century, first Welsh Springers were imported to the US. There they gained popularity and captured the hearts of Americans all across the US.

Dog Breed Characteristics

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

The Welsh Springer Spaniel is a strong and sturdy built dog. They give an impression of great stamina and endurance. These dogs are slightly longer than they are tall. Traditionally, these dogs had their tails docked but that tradition has been banned in many countries.

The Welsh Springer Spaniel has a medium-length muzzle that is fairly straight and medium-sized dark eyes.

Their ears hang moderately low, close to their cheeks. The tail should be set low and never carried or curled above their backs.

FCI standard

This is a fairly old breed that is fully recognized and registered by the FCI. As a fully recognized breed, it has a breed standard in place, and that standard places the Welsh Springer Spaniel in Group 8 (Retrievers-Flushing Dogs-Water Dogs), Section 2 (Flushing Dogs). These dogs have a working trial.

According to the FCI standard, the male Welsh Springer Spaniel has an average height of 19 in (48 cm) while the females should be on average 18 in (46 cm). There is no specific mention of the weight but as a general rule, this dog's weight should be in proportion to its size.

The Welsh Springer Spaniel was registered by the FCI on the 30th of December 1954.

AKC standard

The Welsh Springer Spaniel was imported fairly early to the United States of America. As a governing cynology body in the US, the AKC accepted and registered this breed. They also have a full Welsh Springer Spaniel standard in place.

This standard said that male Welsh Springers should have a height between 18 and 19 in (46-48 cm) and females should have a height between 17 and 18 in (43-46 cm). Male dogs should weigh between 40 and 55 lbs (18-25 kg) while female dogs should have a weight of 35 to 50 lbs (16-22,5 kg).

The Welsh Springer Spaniel was registered by the AKC in 1914.

welsh spaniel

Coat

Welsh Springer Spaniel has a soft and straight coat that should never be wiry or wavy. Their coat served as protection from cold weather and rough terrain. These dogs are easy to groom and regular brushing will keep the dog looking at his best.

Welsh Springer Spaniel coat colors:

  • Rich red and white

Brush their teeth at least three times a week to prevent tartar buildup and infections. Make sure you use products that are made especially for dogs as human products could potentially harm them. Trim their nails if they don’t wear them down naturally. A good indication is if you can hear them clicking on the floor while they walk. Clean their ears and check for signs of redness or infections. Use a cotton cloth and never insert anything in their ear canal. You can always check with your Vet about the products you should use and the proper technique.

Exercise

Welsh Springer Spaniel is a highly energetic and active breed. They were bred to work all day, so these dogs need a lot of daily exercise. These dogs need an active lifestyle to be happy. They love to be outside and be part of the action, whether running and chasing balls, playing, jumping or jogging. If you are thinking about getting a Welsh Springer Spaniel, make sure you have enough free time and energy to spend it outside playing and training your Welsh Springer Spaniel. If your schedule can’t allow you that, consider getting some less active breed. Except for daily activity, these dogs also need consistency. They like things to happen at the same time every day.

Temperament

The Welsh Springer Spaniel is an enthusiastic dog breed. They are eager to please their owner and that is a trait that makes them extremely trainable. They can, however, be strong-willed and stubborn, but not all of them are going to be like that.

These dogs form strong bonds with their families and love to be included in all family activities, no matter what they are. They can be shy so early socialization is a must.

They are also really agile, alert, and can be fairly energetic. These dogs are great competitors in dog sports such as agility, flyball, and rally.

Welsh Springer Spaniel and children

This breed is usually great with children. It is important that they have been exposed to children since they were puppies and most of these dogs are extremely gentle around small kids.

They are the best fit for older children that love to play with dogs. The Welsh Springer Spaniel is energetic so it is a great way for your kids to have a great playing partner that can easily keep up with them the whole day, and your dog has a healthy outlet for spending their excess energy.

Other pets

The Welsh Springer Spaniel is usually good around other pets. Early socialization is the key to make them great and sociable. They can get along with different animals but can perceive birds as their prey, after all, it is in their genes.

Health problems

The Welsh Springer Spaniel is generally considered a healthy breed, but they are prone to some health issues and concerns like any other dog breed. These dogs have an average lifespan of 12-15 years. 

When getting any breed, the breeder must show you health tests that they have done for their breeding dogs. Dogs must be adequately tested because taking a chance and hoping that the puppy’s parents are healthy is a risk no one should ever take. Only healthy dogs should be bred because that is the only way to assure that bloodlines will remain healthy and without any problems. Health problems associated with this breed are;

  • Hip dysplasia - Genetic problem affecting hips resulting from an improperly formed hip joint.
  • Entropion - A defect causing the eyelid to roll inward.
  • Epilepsy - Brain problem causing mild to severe seizures.

Welsh Springer Spaniel breeders

If you believe that this is the right breed for you, make sure you get a dog from a reputable Welsh Springer Spaniel breeder. It is important that you ask the breeder for the health certificates of both of the puppy’s parents and of the puppies themselves.

Ask the breeder for advice and let them help you decide if the Welsh Springer Spaniel is the best possible breed for you.

Buying a dog from a responsible breeder will cost you more money, but you can be sure that you will get a healthy puppy. If you are unable to buy a dog, we advise you to search for local animal shelters because there is a chance you can find a Welsh Springer Spaniel dog in it.

When you bring your new puppy home start with the training and socialization immediately. By doing so, you will end up with a well-behaved dog whom you can trust. Provide him with enough daily exercise for him to be happy. With this dog, you must be firm and you must be an alpha for him to listen to you. If you devote your time and energy to this dog, you can be sure that you will end up with a companion for life.

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World Dog Finder team

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Updated at31.07.2020.

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