Let me guess.
You are wondering whether Welsh springer spaniel will make a good pet. Or, you are just educating yourself on the breed.
Whatever your intention or goals are in connection with why you are here, we are glad you are in the right place.
Well, here’s the thing…
A lot of pet parents never take the time to learn more about their breed, which is dangerous. The beauty of knowing is you will know how to care about the breed and how to live with it.
In other words, this is not going to be a big challenge for you. In this guide, we want to educate you on everything about the Welsh Springer Spaniel. Armed with knowledge like this, you will decide on whether Welsh Springer Spaniel will make a good pet or not.
Sounds good, right?
Let’s get started.
Welsh springer spaniels belong to the Spaniel family. The breed has an independent streak. What that means is, this is a dog that loves to do things on their things with little to no supervision. And because of that Welsh springer spaniels become sensitive when treated unfairly.
These dogs are reserved to people they don’t know but they are loyal to members of the family. What we also found interesting is, they are athletic and well-muscled. That is why they are synonymous with hunters because they perform well in the game courtesy of their high prey drive.
When it comes to the family, you will notice the dogs are affectionate and excellent family companions. In fact, they are loving and less outgoing compared to the English springer spaniels. Her undivided affection and love are only directed to the members of the family and no one else.
Besides that, you will notice they have energy and like to stay active. That means, it is a breed that will need constant attention from you. It is also worth noting that his temperament is calm. What this means is, this is a dog you can leave to play with your kids. If you have always wanted a dog that will always follow you even if you go to the toilet, then Welsh Springer Spaniels takes the trophy.
Let's look at how the dog measures upon characteristics.
Let's agree on one thing. Welsh springer spaniel is affectionate dogs. What that means is, they have a high adaptability rating of 4 stars out 5. What's more, they don't like staying at home alone. Let's break down everything:
These dogs are introvert although friendly in nature to their owner. They will be happy and outgoing to the owner. What's more, you will enjoy their sense of humor. If you manage to give them plenty of exercise, training, and attention, Welsh springer spaniels will be your best friend. The dog is always alert and protective which makes them an excellent watchdog. The one caveat with this dog is that they are stubborn. In other words, these dogs will need constant training and positive reinforcement. Let's break down everything in details:
When it comes to health, Welsh Springer Spaniels are rated 3 stars out of 5. That is a fair rating because like all breeds, they also have their own health challenges. But if you groom them and watch their health well, you will stay with them for a very long time. Let's break down everything.
These dogs are trainable and eager to please. A typical spaniel has lots of enthusiasm. They are intelligent dogs that will learn new tricks quickly. Since they are reserved, early socialization and training are important. Let’s break down.
Before you settle for any breed, you have to know whether you can meet its physical needs or not. Welsh springer spaniel is a dog that has a high physical needs you must meet to make the dog happy. That said, the dog holds a 5 star out 5 rating. Here’s our breakdown:
The Welsh springer spaniel belongs to the spaniel family. This breed is a close relative of the English springer spaniel. They share a historical lineage. The biggest difference is that the Welsh are small, they have red and white markings but their personality traits are the same.
Most spaniels have their ancestral roots from the original ancient hunting spaniels of the Iberian Peninsula. Their name came from the word “Spaniard.” The Welsh springer spaniels existed in the 16th century in the United Kingdom, the red and white variety which are common in Wales existed in the 18th century.
In the 18th century, these breeds were popular with the nobles and gentry. They were known for their enthusiastic hunting skills. The dogs could push their prey to the trap. These dogs had excellent scenting abilities. Thanks to their webbed feet, these dogs are also super swimmers.
Later on, the English springer spaniel became more popular than the Welsh springer spaniel in the 19 century. In 1902, the Kennel Club in the UK decided to recognize these two breeds as different.
The gentry who lived in South Wales raised these breeds for years. One famous breeder in the 1900s called A.T. William was passionate about dog’s ability and lobbied for the preservation of this breed. William’s grandfather also had the same breed in the 1800s. William’s dog, called Corrin was the first Welsh Springer Spaniel to be photographed.
In the 1800s, Americans imported the Welsh springer spaniels which became famous which made the American Kennel Club (AKC) recognize them in 1906. While the numbers of Welsh springer spaniel continue to increase, these dogs are still rare. The dogs that are popular today are the English Springer Spaniel.
Welsh springer spaniel is a medium-sized dog that has a compact body. That said, the average height of the male Welsh springer spaniels is 43 to 48 cm while the male is 41 to 46 cm. When it comes to weight, the male weighs between 18kg to 20kg while the female weighs 16kg to 20kg.
This is a loyal dog that will be happy to please you. The dog is always happy to be with the family and children. Most importantly, participating in the family activities. The dog is small and has a low energy level.
The dog needs a parent who can show leadership traits or it may not listen to common commands. What's more, it may become overprotective. From experience, dogs that don't have parents who are consistent pack leaders struggle with protective tendencies.
These dogs tend to be reserved towards strangers and timid. Perhaps, the worst experience is where the dog is sensitive to your voice and won’t listen when they know they are stronger than you. But that’s not all, the dogs may also never respond well to harsh discipline.
As a Spaniel parent, you have to be calm and show excellent leadership skills to the dog. That explains why you need to train the dog to learn hunting, positive manners, listening to commands, and not wandering. One thing that you can't control is the hunting instinct of the dog. What that means is, you need to work with their natural ability rather than against it.
The best way to keep this dog at his best behavior is by introducing early socialization, plenty of activities, and training. Children and other pets will always love the dog's gentle side, especially when the dog was raised with them. Bear in mind that you may need to supervise your toddler when they are playing with the dog.
Welsh springer spaniel is a hard-working dog that will handle any terrain and he enjoys being outdoors most of the time. If you are not a hunter, you can give this dog two or three long walks per day to satisfy his exercising needs.
Although sometimes the Welshie can be stubborn, they will respond fast to consistent training and rewards. When they are puppies they will always test to see what they can get away with. That said, ensure you get him to a puppy school as early as possible.
Welsh Springers are healthy dogs. Like most breeds, they have their own health challenges. Bear in mind that not all Welshies will have these diseases. Some will be healthy throughout their life. That said, when you decide to buy a Welsh springer spaniel, you need to be aware of them.
When buying a Welsh springer spaniel puppy, it can be difficult to know whether they have these conditions such as hip and elbow dysplasia, hypothyroidism, eye problem, glaucoma, and atrophy.
That said, you need to find a reputable breeder who breeds the healthiest animal. Therefore, ensure they have an independent certification of the dog's parents and grandparents to know the family's health history. The dog's parents and grandparents must have been screened for these defects.
Ask your breeder for health clearance certification such as the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) for hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, von Willebrand's diseases, and hypothyroidism, Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF). You can confirm these certifications when you visit the OFA website (offa.org).
Any reputable breeder will give you all the tests results both positive and negative without holding any information. A careful breeder will ensure the dog you are buying is free from any genetic disease. Rest assured that with the advances in veterinary medicine today, the Welsh springer spaniel can still live an excellent life even if it has a genetic disease. One way to extend Welsh springer's life is to keep him in the right shape. Let's look at some of the diseases that may catch up with the dog:
Welsh springer spaniels are a people-oriented breed that loves the company of people. In other words, this is a dog that will need most of your time and attention. Since they are typical velcro dogs, they will cement a strong bond with you.
If you fail to give these dogs lots of attention they can suffer from separation anxiety. The dogs are a little bit reserved for strangers. That said early socialization and ongoing training to ensure the dogs don't develop nervousness are vital.
Welsh springer spaniel has a gentle temperament, therefore they make a perfect pet for children. However, the dogs tend to be over-excited when they play with kids and jump often. The thing you can do here is to train the dog so that it doesn't jump to every member of the family accidentally.
Welsh springer spaniel makes excellent sports competitors. What we mean is, they are strong swimmers and runners too. Since they have strong hunting instincts, you must ensure you have a solid recall and you never leave the dog unattended in a place where they will start chasing small animals.
Besides that, they tend to dig and are known for barking. These two habits can be problematic if the dog is not trained well or unchecked from time to time. To control the digging habit, you can give them an alternative form of stimulation like a designated digging sandpit.
When it comes to barking, you can reward alternative desirable behaviors. One thing you will love about these dogs is they are eager to please. What that means is, they will respond to gentle force-free training well. That said, training them to leave digging and barking will be easy if you do it well. These dogs shed little and therefore you will need to brush their coat at least once a week.
Welsh springers need 1.5 to 2.5 cups of high-quality dry food twice per day. How much the dog eats depends on his size, age, metabolism, and physical activity levels. Bear in mind that the quality of food you give the Welshie will play a role in his health and nourishment. Since these dogs are motivated by food, you need to be careful so that you don't overfeed. Obesity in dogs is a common problem and it can cause other serious health challenges.
These dogs have straight, flat, non-wiry soft coats. The coat is dense and can protect the dog from wet, cold, and hot weather. What's more, the dogs have moderate feathering on the forelegs, hind legs, chest, and belly.
Their ears and tail are lightly feathered too. The dog's coat color can be dark, rich red, and white. These dogs are easy to groom. All you need is to brush them regularly to make them look beautiful and prevent mats that cause shedding. Since the dog's ears hang down, ensure you clean them at least once a week.
Here are the common breed organizations and rescue groups where you can find Welsh Springer Spaniels:
Australia Welsh Springer Spaniel Rescue
There are a lot of rescue centers or breed organizations we have not listed here. If you don't see any rescue center listed in your area, you may need to contact the local breed club, and they will point you in the right direction. Welsh springer spaniel is a wonderful breed that will make an excellent family pet. As long as you give this dog plenty of exercise in a day, you can live with it comfortably in your apartment.