The English Springer Spaniel was specially bred for hunting birds, and retains these qualities to this day. In general, the spaniel is a fairly old breed that was very common in medieval Europe. Especially in England, Spain and France, although other countries also did not lag behind. The aristocracy was extremely fond of these dogs for their wonderful character, aesthetic appearance and ability to hunt.
Spaniels were mentioned in the law of Wales as early as AD 300. So – judge for yourself how long they have been working with people. Dogs very reminiscent of today’s English Springer Spaniels are depicted in works of art from the 16th and 17th centuries.
Even before the invention of firearms, the spaniel was used as a dog that drove birds out of bushes and thickets, into open areas, where hunters were waiting for them. To catch birds and small animals, hounds with nets attached to them, as well as bows and arrows, were used. After the invention of firearms, the principles of hunting have changed somewhat, however, spaniels here have shown themselves as well as possible.
Interestingly, dogs of the same litter during the 19th and early 20th centuries in England were classified by their hunting use, not by breed. Smaller dogs were used to hunt woodcocks – they were called cocker spaniels. Larger puppies from the same litter were called Springers, and were also used for some hunting games.
But that all changed in 1902. The Kennel Club of England allocated a separate position in its own studbook for the English Springer Spaniel and classified them separately at the show a year later – in 1903. At this show, the famous dog breeder and judge Mr. William Arkwright gave his assessment.
The Dog Challenge certificate went to the dog Will Beachgrove, owned by Mr. Winton Smith, and the bitch of Mr. Harry Jones, named Fansom. In 1906 Will Beachgrove became the first champion of the breed. Until the end of the 30s, the beginning of the 40s of the 20th century, there was no division into field and show dogs, however, gradually such a division appeared.
Field dogs have a sharper sense of smell, speed, endurance and working capacity, moreover, today field and show dogs do not interbreed. Both types have a hunting instinct and can be paired with a hunter, but very few English Springer Spaniels can perform well in the field or on show. The last two-time champion (champion in field and conformation competitions) was a dog named “Green Valley Punch” in 1938.
They are relatively small dogs of strong constitution. They have a square muzzle with a slightly bulging forehead, and ears that hang down the sides of their heads. The limbs are medium, the tail is usually docked. The fur is medium in length, straight or slightly wavy. The color is black and white or brown and white.
The English Springer Spaniel is always very human-oriented, showing tremendous love and affection among his family. This breed is strongly attached to its owners, and since, in principle, it has great love for people, it is not a dog of one owner. She does not choose a specific person for love, but simply loves her loved ones with whom she grows day by day.
By the way, precisely because of their great affection, these dogs are not recommended to be left alone for a long time, and to leave them alone during the day, when the whole family is either at work or at school (who is where). The dog will experience inner suffering from this. In addition, at an early age, if the dog is left alone even for a short time, and then you come home, then urination may appear for joy. In fact, you can work with it.
For example, try not to show strong emotions and generally ignore the dog as soon as you come home, and only notice it when 5-10 minutes have passed. Thus, you will not support your pet’s excessive emotionality, and he will gradually learn to perceive what is happening more evenly. But you need to start from an early age.
The English Springer Spaniel has a high level of energy and needs daily walks, physical activity, active play, and in general an active pastime. Moreover, if you go with your dog to the park, you’d better keep it on a leash and let it go in a strictly fenced area.
Since, firstly, she will most likely hunt for birds, since instinct operates here, and secondly, she can simply go not only to hunt beyond your sight, ignoring the commands, but also simply to explore the surrounding world, which so attractive and wonderful. A pet can feel great both in a city apartment and in the courtyard of a private house, where he will feel great freedom.
However, the English Springer Spaniel is not well suited for watchdog functions, since when strangers approach your house or fence, it will certainly bark, but it will not attack intruders. Simply because of humanity. So, if you want a reliable and dangerous watchdog, we mean – dangerous for intruders, this breed should not be chosen.
Children are perceived well, especially if they grow up next to them. Other pets, such as cats, even hamsters or guinea pigs, can be well received if they are taught to be around them from an early age. They have high intelligence and are usually obedient.
The English Springer Spaniel breed has excellent learning ability, it needs training, and training. You can teach them a wide variety of commands, so the dog has a good memory and generally loves to learn and acquire new knowledge.
In addition, these dogs feel the inner pleasure of interacting with the owner, from encouragement and generally from working in tandem with a loved one. Classes should be positive, without rudeness, you definitely need patience, a sense of humor and a lot of goodies and praise.
The English Springer Spaniel has a fairly long coat that needs to be brushed at least twice a week, and preferably three. The nails are trimmed three times a month. Bathe your dog at least once a week or more. The ears are cleaned three times a week and after walking in the forest or park, as usually the spaniel with its hanging ears collects all the dust and dirt, the eyes are cleaned daily.
Springer spaniels are generally healthy dogs. When you get this breed you should expect the following health problems to occur:
- dysplasia of the hip joint is a hereditary disease;
- retinal dysplasia – a malformation of the retina with which a dog is born;
- progressive retinal atrophy;
- skin conditions – peeling, oily, itching, pyoderma (infection) and accidental hair loss. There are genetic factors as well as other factors such as allergies associated with the development of skin diseases;
- Ear infections – Ear infections are common in English Springer Spaniels due to drooping ears;
- deficiency of phosphofructokinase in some individuals there is a hereditary deficiency of this enzyme.