Spanish Water Dog
Breed Rating (1 Reviews)
This breed has a complicated history and it’s not quite clear where they come from. Wooly coated water dogs have been around for thousands of years. It is likely that this breed originated in Turkey and was brought over to Spain many years ago. They are similar to Portugese Water Dogs and Irish Water Spaniels. They were used to herd sheep, retrieve, guard sheep and property and also by fishermen to retrieve nets.
The SWD is a curious and intelligent breed. Their brains are always running at full speed. They like to be around those close to them and have a natural love for children. They do have a tendency to bond the most with their main trainer, but they still very much love every member of the family, including other dogs and even cats. They can sometimes try to herd toddlers. With strangers, the SWD will always be wary at first, but once you allow the stranger into your home and the dog gets used to the idea, they’ll be loving and affectionate. They have a strong guardian instinct and will warn you whenever anyone is at the door, early socialisation will help prevent excessive barking. They dislike being left alone for long periods of time and many people opt to cage train them to prevent any destruction in the home.
The SWD has a need to learn and an even stronger need to work. They are prone to boredom and one walk a day will not be enough for them. Food puzzles and toys are one way to keep them stimulated. Training needs to start from day one as they learn quickly and you should make the most of this whilst they are still young. A slightly firm, yet kind, hand will be needed to get the best out of them. With age they become stubborn. Retrieval, especially from water, is great fun for them and easily one of their favorite pastimes. Recall can be a problem in some individuals, though in general it is good.
This breed is energetic and will need a fair amount of exercise each day in order to fully wear them out. Usually a long walk and a play session will do the job. Spanish Water Dogs are a versatile breed that have been used as therapy dogs, in bomb detection and even search and rescue. They also excel in agility. Your main priority with this breed should be to keep them busy - a tired dog will be calm and content in the home. Once worn out, these dogs will happily curl up next to you and doze off.
Caring for their coats will take time. The coat naturally cords and should not be brushed as this will stop it from doing so. The occasional bath will help clean the coat, though be sure to let it dry naturally and not fluff it with a towel. Blotting the coat to remove most of the water is ok. Their coat doesn’t moult, so professional grooming is advised.
The Spanish Water Dog possesses an adaptable and easy-going nature. They are very versatile dogs which can be used for a variety of different jobs. Very athletic with heaps of stamina. Devoted to their families, this breed will make the perfect addition to any household.
Whilst mainly a healthy breed, both Canine Hip Dysplasia and Progressive Retinal Atrophy can both be seen in the breed. They can also suffer from ear infections if their ears stay wet for too long, and musculoskelatal injuries (particularly for dogs under 1 year old) can sometimes be an issue.
- Status: Common
- Life Expectancy: 10 - 14 years
- Weight: 40 - 50 lbs
- Height: 16 - 20"
- Rare: No
- Coat: Medium - Hypoallergenic
- Grooming Requirements: More than once per week
- Town or Country: Country
- Minimum Home Size: Small House
- Minimum Garden Size: Small to Medium Garden
- Breed Type: Gun Dog
- Size: Medium
- Energy Level: High
- Exercise Required: Up to 1 hour