Beautiful, playful, and affectionate: who could resist the charm of the Irish Water Spaniel? From the list of athletic and robust spaniels, the Irish Water Spaniel shines as one of the most significant in terms of height, appearance, and skills, especially on the water.
Similar to its distant cousins, this dog is known for its sporty feature, which makes it highly attractive to people who are often out on the field. One thing that the Irish Water Spaniel excels at is swimming; the breed’s large and muscular body allows it to swim incredibly fast. It is efficient on the water, making it an ideal sports dog. It already participated in various water activities, such as retrieving.
With all of the Irish Water Spaniel’s outstanding features, it is no doubt that this breed is a complete package for most dog lovers. Many dog enthusiasts, sportspeople, and hunters admire this athletic breed and often use it for different indoor and outdoor activities.
Origins of the Irish Water Spaniel
As seen in the history of other spaniel type breeds, the Irish Water Spaniel was once a part of the generalized division of breeds, which consists of two varieties: land and water spaniels.
As expected, the Irish Water Spaniel originated from old water spaniel breeds. Records show that in the 19th century, two water spaniels lived in Ireland, which breeders consider as the ancestors of the Irish Water Spaniel; these breeds are the South Country Water Spaniel and the North Country Water Spaniel. The Irish Water Spaniel heavily resembles these two strains, which also inherited their incredible water expertise.
Moreover, the Irish Water Spaniel is not just a mere descendant of the two spaniels; it was a product of further refinement made by an Irish sportsman, Justin McCarthy. His work led to the creation of the first purebred Irish Water Spaniel named Boatswain. During this time, the breed gradually gained recognition and also started to appear in dog shows.
It didn’t take long for the greatness of the Irish Water Spaniel to be recognized by English and Irish sportsmen. This event led to its introduction to the United States in the late 19th century, wherein it was among the most popular sporting dogs.
Characteristics of the Irish Water Spaniel
Height: 21 – 24 inches
Weight: 45 – 58 pounds
Life Expectancy: 12 – 13 years
The Irish Water Spaniel is the largest of all spaniel type breeds. It could stand up to twenty-four inches tall and weighs up to fifty-eight pounds. This dog boasts its incredible power and athleticism. Its size is ideal for various indoor and outdoor activities, allowing it to move easier.
In terms of its appearance, the Irish Water Spaniel is not tricky to identify. It has a unique set of coat, also known as the crispy curled coat, along with a ‘rat tail.’ Its coat comes in liver color and a waterproof feature, which makes it perfect for different water activities. Overall, the appearance of the Irish Water Spaniel combined with its muscular figure is an excellent combination for a beautiful and substantial breed.
Furthermore, the Irish Water Spaniel is not just strong and elegant; it also possesses other characteristics that make it highly attractive and adorable. One of its primary assets is its positive nature. Similar to other spaniel type breeds, the IWS is known for its playfulness on the field. If you are a person looking for a companion on the field, the IWS is the perfect dog that could match the energy of most people. In addition to its high-spirited nature, it is also brave; there is no other explanation when it comes to the Irish Water Spaniel’s courageous behavior, especially at work. This trait also makes it a useful guard dog, wherein it would never back down against a threat, but it is smart enough to distinguish its loved ones.
Overall, the Irish Water Spaniels holds several excellent qualities that make it shine among other breeds; it has the looks, sturdiness, good nature, and expertise in the field. This breed may not be as popular as other sporting dogs, but one thing is for sure, the Irish Water Spaniel is a remarkable canine companion.