Although a very rare breed, the American Water Spaniel has its own state-wide fan club as the State Dog of Wisconsin! A truly dual-purpose dog, bred for companionship and top-notch retrieval ability, the AWS is active, muscular, and medium in size. This breed’s unique coat can be solid liver, brown or dark chocolate and ranges from marcel (uniform waves) to closely curled.
The American Water Spaniel developed primarily in the Great Lakes region of the United States in the mid-1800s, with ancestors that include the Irish Water Spaniel and Curly-Coated Retriever. They were the first breed developed in this country as an all-around hunter that could retrieve from boats. Breed enthusiasts kept the AWS out of the show ring for a short time in fear of ruining his reputation as a hunter, but the breed became recognized by the AKC in 1940.
An excellent sporting and family dog, the American Water Spaniel possesses great energy and eagerness for the hunt yet is controllable in the field. Similarly, he loves his daily exercise but also enjoys just hanging out with his family. Friendly and eager to please, the AWS responds well to obedience training. His short coat requires regular brushing.
Sporting Group; AKC recognized in 1940.
- Ranging in size from 15 to 18 inches tall at the shoulder and 25 to 45 pounds.
- Gundog; retriever.
- Apartments are ok.
- Average sized yard.
- Moderate to extended daily exercise.
- Brush 1-2X/week.
- Infrequent bathing.
- Light shedding.