|Irish Water Spaniel|
A "Clown" with Gusto
The Irish Water Spaniel is one of the oldest spaniels.
Descriptions of them are found in 1000 yr. old manuscripts.
Archaeologists have found, in Ireland, Irish Water Spaniel
type skull remains, dating back to the 7th, or 8th century.
Whether it existed in several different varieties is anyone's
guess, but it is known that several similar spaniels existed
in Ireland. Probably several of them or all, played a roll
in the development of today's water spaniel.
A dog by the name of Boatswain
(1834 - 1852) sired many outstanding gun and show
specimens and is credited as being the first of the breed
as it is known today. The pedigrees prior to Boatswain are
sketchy, but following him, a clear type was bred, shown and
accepted by fanciers. By the late 1800s the breed was being
shown in both Britain and America. In 1875, it was the third
most popular sporting dog. Since that time however, in spite
of its outstanding qualities and appearance, the breed is
rarely seen today in either the show ring or home.
The Irish Water Spaniel is a medium size dog,
sturdily built and with lots of bone, well balanced and shows
no legginess nor coarseness. He has a distinctive topknot,
particular to this breed, and consisting of long loose curls,
growing to a well-defined peak between the eyes and falling
over the tops of the ears and occiput. The dog's tail is also a
distinctive feature and is often referred to as a rat tail.
The Irish Water Spaniel is a very good natured dog,
excellent with children, loving to play the role of a clown and
doing everything he can with enthusiasm and gusto including
guarding their house. They require considerable exercise
both physically and mentally which it enjoys. The curly coat
needs brushing several times a week and scissoring every
few months. They are outstanding family pets,
well worth the time and effort to locate.
Irish Water Spaniel
Dog Height: 22 - 24 in. (55.9 - 61 cm).
Dog Weight: 55 - 65 lb. (25 - 29.5 kg).
Bitch Height: 21 - 23 in. (53 - 58 cm).
Bitch Weight: 45 - 58 lb. (20.5 - 26 kg)
Life Expectancy: 10 - 13 years.