Did you know?
At the 2007 Westminster Kennel Club dog show, “Felicity’s Diamond Jim”, (James), an English Springer Spaniel won Best in Show.
James is the 6th of this breed to win Best in Show at Westminster.
English Springer Spaniel
Histories are more full of examples of the fidelity of dogs than of friends. – Alexander Pope
The English Springer Spaniel is one of the oldest of the spaniels who take their name from Spain where they originated. An ancient classification of dog, spaniels were mentioned in various sources as early as 1328. Spaniels are divided into two groups, land spaniels and water spaniels.
English Springer Spaniels are land spaniels and are named for their expertise in the field springing at game to flush it out (make it run or fly away) for the hunter. Highly prized for his ability to retrieve game without puncturing it with his teeth, today the Springer is used to find, flush and retrieve game for the gun.
Developed in England, they were once called Norfolk Spaniels.
Today, the Springer Spaniel is often used as a sniffer dog. In addition to their skills in locating illegal drugs, Springers have been trained to sniff out weapons and explosives, illegal cell phones in prisons, bumblebee nests, illegal immigrants, and blood. He sniffing and locating skills have also been put successfully to the test as a search and rescue dog.
Photos displayed courtesy of Greg Boone, Boone’s Kennel Perm Reg’d, New Brunswick
The English Springer is a medium sized dog. He stands up to 20 inches (51 cm) at the shoulder and weighs 49-55 pounds (22-25 kg).
He has a thick, medium length flat or wavy, double coat. In keeping with his breed purpose, his coat is water, weather, and thorn proof. The Springer’s shiny coat may be black or liver with white markings or white with black or liver marking. It may also be blue or liver roan or tricolour (black and white or liver and white with tan markings). Any white portion of the coat may be flecked with ticking. There is feathering on the legs, ears, chest, and underbody. Shedding and grooming are definite factors to consider with this dog.
Like most sporting dogs, the English Springer Spaniel is best suited to an active home where he will be a cherished member of the family. Often the Springer Spaniel will attach himself to one person in the family. That person will be the subject of his utmost loyalty and devotion. The Springer will follow him everywhere. This is a sociable dog who enjoys the company of children and other people.
Friendly, loyal, energetic, devoted to his people and eager to please, the English Springer is a super companion and tolerates other pets well. However, he may need socialization with cats as they can trigger his hunting instincts.
An intelligent, willing and fast learner who is generally biddable, the English Springer Spaniel can sometimes be a little headstrong. Obedience training and socialization should begin early.
The English Springer has a high energy level and requires lots of exercise, as well as room to run off-leash. He needs to be tired out to maintain a happy mental balance.
As people-oriented as he is, the Springer can suffer from separation anxiety if left alone for long periods. That can lead to destructive behaviour due to boredom. He needs human company.
Since his long legs make him one of the fastest of the Spaniels, it should go without saying that he needs to live in a home with a fenced backyard with an active owner who can keep up with him! This dog loves to swim and will get wet whenever he has the chance!