The American Water Spaniel is a skilled swimmer specializing in waterfowl. If you want to learn more about this awesome hunting dog, go ahead and read on!
American Water Spaniel: The All-Around Hunting Dog
Aside from their hunting skills, the American Water Spaniel is also a great family pet. There was a time when they were known as the American Brown Spaniel. The UKC (United Kennel Club) recognized it as the American Water Spaniel because of Dr. Fred J. Pfeifer’s work in saving the breed through starting up a kennel, advertising them, and actually petitioning for its recognition. The AWS is mainly used as a hunting dog. They are considered as the Wisconsin’s state dog. An American Water Spaniel loves human companionship and can be barkers when bored and when there are strange noises, which also make them a great watchdog.
What does an American Water Spaniel look like?
Both male and female American Water Spaniels stand around 15 to 18 inches tall. However, females weigh slightly smaller than males; females are about 25 to 40 lbs. while males weigh around 35 to 45 lbs. This pooch is double-coated and curly. Its coat color may vary from brown, liver, or chocolate. Occasionally, they may have a white color on their chest or toes. When it comes to their body, American Water Spaniels are longer compared to other spaniels. They have hairy ears and long muzzles.
What is an American Water Spaniel like?
They bond strongly with whoever gives them the attention. They can become manipulative and stubborn if you haven’t established yourself as their alpha. This is an active dog who loves swimming and retrieving. In addition, they can also be trained for some dog sports and activities.
The AWS do not want to be left alone for long periods of time. If this happens, he can get bored and lonely, resulting in some destructive behavior. Without proper training, they are inclined to acquire dog behavior problems such as digging and chewing. There are some AWSs who become aggressive and territorial with unfamiliar dogs but are friendly with other family pets.
If you do not want your AWS to be stubborn or timid, you must ensure to refrain any harsh treatment. This pooch responds well to gentle training with the use of rewards such as giving treats or praises.
Happy, eager, and charming; aloof with strangers, and a little stubborn. – American Kennel Club
What are the possible health concerns of the American Water Spaniel?
Generally, this fido is a healthy dog like any other but is also prone to some health concerns relative to its breed. These health issues you need to be aware of include Growth Hormone-Responsive Dermatitis, Hip Dysplasia, Allergies, Pattern Baldness (Saddle Alopecia), Cataracts, Epilepsy, Retinal Dysplasia, Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), and Hypothyroidism.
There’s no assurance they will have these issues and you can avoid these health concerns by being aware of them and by caring for your dog responsibly.
How to groom and care for the American Water Spaniel?
As an active dog, the AWS needs a lot of exercise and playtime. Engage him in a daily walk in the neighborhood, some running, or a game of fetch. If their energy is not exhausted, there’s a tendency for them to resort in excessive barking or destructive chewing.
Brush its coat weekly and trim its nails once or twice a month. Regularly check its ears as they are prone to ear infection because of their long, droopy, hairy ears.
Are American Water Spaniel dogs hypoallergenic?
There are no such thing as 100% non-allergenic dogs, but there are some considered to be hypoallergenic dog breeds. These breeds tend to produce less dander and shed minimally. However, the American Water Spaniel is not one of them. The AWS is not considered hypoallergenic since they are shedders. Their loose hair can trigger allergic reactions to allergy sufferers. If you’re thinking of bringing home an American Water Spaniel, make sure you don’t have any allergies to dog hair or dander.
Watch how an American Water Spaniel retrieves a swan in this short video:
It can be challenging having an American Water Spaniel as a pet if you don’t have a backyard for it to play and roam around with but giving it enough exercise or time in the park may solve this. Let it play with water from time to time since they are known and bred for it. You should know how to responsibly handle and care for them since they can be stubborn and manipulative.
Do you have an American Water Spaniel? What other facts can you tell about this breed? Share your stories in the comments section below!
If you’re looking for more dog breeds, you can check out this profile about the Weimaraner dogs and puppies.
Featured image via Waterway AWS