The breed: "Irish Water Spaniel"
Description of character
An Irish Water Spaniel is undeniably Irish as a true individualist,
and lively, opinionated and very intelligent. He must be able to work
difficult terrain and has presented a great perseverance, a strong body
and a remarkably
good nose at his disposal. The Irisher is indifferently to the
terrain or weather conditions. The coat is long enough to protect him
thorns and the like.
An Irish Water Spaniel is an excellent companion. He is loyal,
and remarkably little destructive concerning furnitur. An Irisher is,
if he has
been accustomed since childhood, good with kids and then markedly
The Irish Water Spaniel is a dog with a sense of humor and versatile
sporting purposes to find. Obedience, hunting and agility training is
to an Irisher.
It's a great dog that needs exercise. He does need a long walk every
loose its energy. To maintain a good coat, swimming is very important.
Irisher it’s no problem,
he would like
to plunge in every puddle. An Irish Water Spaniel is easy to train
whether he can or
can’t go into the water.
The Irish Water Spaniel places few demands on its premises. A bench
preference, so he in his own place to retreat. A place inside or
(provided free of draft) doesn’t hurt the Irisher. As a
kennel dog the IWS is
out of place, because he can’t sufficiently develop his
An Irisher adapts well to other animals in the manor. Especially young
take the good and bad habits quickly. Usually, the IWS will provoke the
animals to a challenging romp.
An Irish Water Spaniel requires a master who has authority over him and
spend enough time with him so he can develop as much as possible. The
much in return: the lively and humorous Irish Water Spaniel will
to please his family and will quickly learn to deliver newspapers and
to his master.
above text is based on the info booklet of the IWSVN.
N° 124 / 08.11.2002 / GB
PUBLICATION OF THE ORIGINAL VALID STANDARD
: The Irish Water Spaniel can be easily adapted
to suit most
forms of shooting he will hunt, often point and retrieve readily from
construction and nature of
the breed has traditionally made it the choice of the wildfowler.
Dogs, Water Dogs.
3 Water Dogs.
exact origins of the breed
remain obscure. Generally
it is thought
that Water Spaniels evolved from dogs that originated in Persia and came to Ireland
Irish reference to “ water
dogs that pursue water fowl” dates from 1600, so we know that
waterproof coats were used in Ireland
even before the advent of the fowling piece.
There is no real evidence of the ancestry of the
Irish Water Spaniel
except in its most peculiar feature-the rat tail.
This feature appears in no similar dog and
makes it very likely that the modern breed had an indigenous Irish
tail has given rise to
the names “ Whip Tail” and “ Rat
any event the descendants of these dogs were accepted and achieved
great success on show benches in the second half of the 19th
century. In 1890
the Irish Water Spaniel
Club was formed to promote the interests of the breed.
GENERAL APPEARANCE : Smart, upstanding, strongly built, compact or
/ TEMPERAMENT : Proud, combining great intelligence and
a bold and dashing eagerness of temperament, immense stamina and
loyalty. A good
family dog with a sense of humour but
discerning with strangers.
HEAD : Skull and head should be of
high in dome, good length and width allowing for large brain capacity. Top-knot should consist of
long loose curls
growing down into a well defined peak between the eyes and should not
be in the
form of a wig, i.e. growing straight across.
smooth. Hair grows
in a narrow line
forming a beard at the back of the lower jaw.
Large and well developed and of dark
Long, strong and
somewhat square in appearance
Strong and regular with scissors bite.
Comparatively small almond-shaped, dark
amber or dark hazel and very intelligent looking.
long and lobe-shaped in the leather, set low, hanging quite close to
and covered with long, twisted curls of hair.
strong and arching, (enabling the head to be carried well above the
the back) and strongly set into the shoulders.
be of good size, being as a whole so proportionate as to give a
appearance accentuated by the springing of the ribs, overall strong and
Short, broad and level, strongly coupled
to the hindquarters.
Deep and wide.
Deep, but not too wide or round between
the forelegs, though large girth with ribs well sprung behind the
carried well back.
Smooth, strong and thick at
root (where it is covered for 3 to 4 inches - 7.5cm to 10cm with short
curls), and gradually tapering, ending in a
fine point. It
should not be long enough
to reach the hock joint, and should be carried nearly level with the
back in a
Shoulders : Very powerful and sloping.
boned and straight, the forearm at
point of elbow in a straight line with the highest point of the
HINDQUARTERS : Very powerful.
: Well bent stifles.
: Hocks set low.
Large, somewhat round and spreading, well covered with hair, both over
between the toes, but free from any superfluous feather.
gait has a
characteristic peculiar to the breed, that of a rolling motion produced
: Dense, tight, crisp ringlets, entirely
free from woolliness but with a natural oiliness.
The back and sides of the neck should be
covered with curls similar to those on the body, the throat should be
the smooth hair forming a V-shaped patch from the back of the lower jaw
forelegs covered with
feather, which should be abundant all round though shorter in front. Below the hocks, the
hindlegs must be smooth
in front, but feathered behind down to the feet.
A very rich puce liver, white on chest objectionable.
departure from the foregoing points should be
considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be
should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the
welfare of the dog.
* White on Chest.
* Paleness of coat.
* Light eye.
* Woolliness of coat.
* Feather on front of
* Want of feather on front of forelegs.
* Splay feet.
* Feather on
* Feather on face.
* White on feet.
dog clearly showing physical or behavioural
abnormalities shall be disqualified.
NOTE : Male animals should have
two apparently normal testicles fully descended
into the scrotum.