AKC Dog Breeds: Field Spaniel

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Sporting  Group
Height:16-18 inches   Weight: 30-45 pounds  Color: black, liver or golden liver

Known for its level-headedness and perseverance, the Field Spaniel is a medium-sized flushing spaniel, built for activity and endurance in heavy cover and water. One of the rarest spaniel breeds (they nearly went extinct!), the Field possesses moderately long, pendulous ears and a single coat that is both dense and water-repellent. The Field Spaniel originated in England in the mid-1800s and was used to find, flush and retrieve both fur and feather from land and water. The breed was introduced to America in the 1880’s but did not become a distinct breed from Cockers until the 20th century, when it was decided that anything above 25 pounds qualified as a Field Spaniel, the larger of the two types of land spaniel. Due to the immense popularity of the Springer and Cocker Spaniels, the Field Spaniel is quite rare in the United States. The breed was registered with the AKC in 1894.

General Appearance
The Field Spaniel is a moderately-sized spaniel, slightly heavier and longer in body than the Cocker. The silky coat is generally a solid color, either liver or black. Some dogs have tan markings, and some are roan (speckled). A little bit of white in the chest area is permitted. The legs, chest, ears, tail and undersides are abundantly feathered, but never curled. Its muzzle is regular, neither too wide nor too pointed. The nose is large, with very open nostrils. The almond-shaped eyes are either hazel or chestnut brown with a serious, gentle and noble expression. Below the eyes it is lean and thin (this is an important characteristic for show dogs). The neck is strong and muscular. The moderately long, broad, fringed ears are pendant and the tail is docked.


A noble, docile, and graceful dog, the Field Spaniel is a breed that is responsive, intelligent, and affectionate. These dogs have a gentle nature and are eager to please, keen, and enthusiastic, with plenty to offer as family pets. A very active and energetic breed, the Field Spaniel loves to play, exercise, and join in with all sorts of activities, such as running, hiking, biking, and more. He is the ideal exercise companion as well as a good family pet, although his love of play means that he may be prone to getting himself messy and then traipsing mud and mess through the house! A very sociable and friendly breed, the Field Spaniel is well suited to the more inexperienced dog owner as well as the experienced. Field Spaniels love people, and will get on well with children, especially when raised with them - although he does not like to handled roughly so care should be taken around younger, more boisterous children. He will also get along well with other pets, and should be fine around strangers. Some Field Spaniels can be very independent, so confidence and assertiveness is needed in training. However, training should be fairly easy with this breed, as these dogs are intelligent, eager to learn, and obedient. The Field Spaniel is well suited to family life, and makes for a good family pet with a stable and well balanced nature.


The Field Spaniel is a medium to heavy shedder, and is therefore not really suited to allergy sufferers. Field Spaniels require combing and brushing at least twice weekly. Professional grooming is recommended at least four times a year. The ears should be checked and cleaned on a regular basis.

Health Problems and Life Expectancy

The life expectancy of the Field Spaniel is around 10-12 years. The Field Spaniel is prone to such health issues as hip dysplasia, thyroid disease, ear infections, and eye problems. They prefer cooler climates.

Activity Level
Field Spaniels need an inordinate amount of exercise, and are not suited for a sedentary family. They are at their best when given a chance to romp and run. The Field Spaniel is not recommended for apartment dwelling. They are moderately active indoors, but need a large securely fenced yard, or a home in the country. Swimming, playing ball, jogging, or hunting will keep this breed healthy and happy.


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