Irish Water Spaniel Dog Breed Information - All About Dogs

Irish Water Spaniel

Irish Water Spaniel



The Irish Water Spaniel is a fairly rare breed and the highest of the entire family of spaniels. This breed was bred in Ireland in the mid-19th century for the purpose of game searching, and it’s equally good on any terrain. This breed was very popular during the second half of the 19th century but was replaced by the Labrador Retriever. As a result, the Irish Water Spaniel dog became extremely rare, especially outside his homeland. The Irish Water Spaniel was officially recognized by the AKC in 1884.

Height: 21-24 inches  Weight: 45-65 pounds  Lifespan: 10-12 years


Strong and energetic breed, the Irish Water Spaniel is an active hunter and reliable companion. He has a strong constitution and is full of vitality. Water Spaniels are excellent hunting dogs; they are brave, alert and inquisitive. Irish Water Spaniels often have a peculiar sense of humor and are considered to be the ultimate clowns of the spaniel family. Comparable Breed: The Portuguese Water Dog and Irish Setter.


The Irish Water Spaniel has a high level of intelligence, he is very confident and loyal to his master. Water Spaniels require constant attention and are great family dogs. This is a breed that gets great pleasure from communicating with the man. Generally, the Irish Water Spaniel is suitable for families with older children. If properly socialized, this dog will easily find a common language with other pets. The Water Spaniel is a pretty quiet dog that will bark only if it is really needed. The Irish Water Spaniel is always ready to defend his family, he is very cautious with strangers, though never aggressive. Dogs of this breed are always cheerful and willing to please their master.

Coat / Care:

A distinctive feature of the Irish Water Spaniel is his hair. The dog’s body is covered with small curls, and the tail, muzzle and lower part of the hind legs are decorated with smooth and short hair. Usually, the dog’s coat is slightly crunchy and brown in color. Outside layer of the coat is the same length as a dense undercoat, which is a perfect protection from the cold water. Shedding is virtually absent. Irish Water Spaniels require a fairly complex care. In addition to the daily thorough cleaning, which prevents tangling of the hair, professional trimming is a must. To prevent the natural protective properties from damaging, bathe your pet only in the case of urgent need, using a mild shampoo.

Health Problems:

The Irish Water Spaniel is generally healthy dog breed, but like all breeds, they can be prone to Hip Dysplasia, Elbow Dysplasia, Hypothyroidism, Follicular Dysplasia, Cataracts, Entropion, Paronychia, Distichiasis, Megaesophagus, Vaccination Sensitivity, Drug Sensitivity, Epilepsy, Allergies and Eye Infection. The Irish Water Spaniel has a life expectancy of 10 to 12 years.

Weight / Height

The male Irish Water Spaniel dog breed’s height is around 22 – 24 inches and weighs around 55 and 68 pounds. Female Irish Water Spaniel dogs can reach a size from 21 – 23 inches and weighs between 45 and 58 pounds.


With his great desire to win the praise, the Irish Water Spaniel is a very apt student. However, he tends to be quite independent and stubborn, so make sure to carry out early socialization and the general course of obedience. Hard, consistent but fair teaching methods are the most efficient. However, keep in mind that monotonous repetition can quickly discourage the dog from learning, so the classes must be composed of short and varied lessons. Irish Water Spaniel will try to seize dominance and he may refuse to obey commands.


The Irish Water Spaniel requires a considerable amount of daily physical activity. This dog likes to swim, take part in all family activities, hunting, and he especially enjoys long walks. Therefore, Irish Water Spaniel is not recommended for apartment living. Since these spaniels love to be outside, they are suited for a house in the countryside that has a spacious yard.

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