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Irish Water Spaniel

Standing taller than any other breed of spaniel, and with a unique coloration showing a purplish hue described as puce liver, this breed has a powerful presence. The coat is comprised of tight ringlets and is naturally oily and water-repellent. The first 10cm (4in) of tail has curly hair, whereas the rest to the tip is either bare skin or is covered with straight hair.

History of Irish Water Spaniel

The Irish Water Spaniel may have been developed from the Portuguese Water Dog or a poodle, crossed with native Irish spaniels. The breed’s founder, Justin McCarthy, kept the breed’s origins a closely guarded secret and refused to reveal details of its precise ancestry.

Remark

This spaniel is a powerful swimmer and is large enough to retrieve game the size of geese from deep water.

Identification keys of Irish Water Spaniel

  • large nose, the colour of dark liver
  • long, oval-shaped ears
  • head set well above body
  • long curls on head
  • powerful, arching neck
  • short, straight tapering tail
  • V-shaped patch of smooth hair
  • smooth hair on front of hindlegs below the hocks
  • straight, powerful forelegs

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