English Springer Spaniel Stats/Facts:
The English Springer Spaniel is a medium-sized sporting dog with a neat, compact body and a docked tail. They are one of the largest of the spaniels. Their coat is moderately long and glossy with feathering on their legs, ears, chest and brisket. Handsome and robust, they excel in the field by flushing out game. English Springer Spaniels make an excellent family companion as well as a good working dog. They must have human companionship and the freedom to exercise regularly.
Fanciers claim the coat is self-cleaning, but frequent and thorough brushing is needed to keep it lying close and free of dead hair. Some hand trimming is also required on head, throat and around feet to neaten the outline. Like all breeds with long, close-lying ears, the Springer's should be checked regularly. They are susceptible to injury, can pick up foreign bodies easily, and if not kept clean can become the focus of stubborn infections. An able field dog, the Springer enjoys life as a family pet and companion. This breed is eager to please, willing to obey and quick to learn.
Height: 19” for females - 20” for males
Weight: 40 lbs. average for females- 50 lbs. for males
Colors: Liver and white, black and white, tri-colored with tan markings- Tricolor: black and white or liver and white with tan markings, usually found on eyebrows, cheeks, inside of ears and under the tail. Any white portion of the coat may be flecked with ticking.
Coat: Close, straight and weather resistant; never coarse
Temperament: The typical Springer is friendly, eager to please, active, faithful, intelligent, quick to learn and willing to obey. Such traits are conducive to tractability, which is essential for appropriate handler control in the field. In the show ring, he should exhibit poise and attentiveness and permit himself to be examined by the judge without resentment or cringing. Aggression toward people and aggression toward other dogs is not in keeping with sporting dog character and purpose and is not acceptable.
With Children: Yes, with proper socialization.
With Pets: Yes
Special Skills: Field sports dog and family pet
Care and Exercise: Regular grooming of the English Springer Spaniel coat with a stiff bristle brush. Bathe only when necessary. Occasional trimming of ears and pads of the feet. It is recommended they receive professional grooming once or twice a year. English Springer Spaniels need long daily walks and the opportunity to run and play off leash.
Training: English Springer Spaniels may be headstrong, but are intelligent, learn easily and have a desire to learn.
Learning Rate: High, Obedience - High, Problem Solving - High
Activity: Indoors - Medium - High, Outdoors - High
Living Environment: English Springer Spaniels enjoy living in the house with a fenced in backyard. Does not do well in small apartment or with people who live a sedentary life.
Health Issues: Usually sound and healthy. May have eye abnormalities or ear infections.
Life Span: 10 - 15 Years
Litter Size: 7
Country of Origin: England
History: One of the oldest spaniels, they were originally known as the Norfolk Spaniel. They gained the title of "springer" because of their usefulness in "springing" game for the gun.
First Registered by the AKC: 1910
AKC Group: Sporting Group
What to Expect in Your Puppy’s First Year
from AKC New Puppy Handbook
In the early days of his life, your puppy’s whole world consisted of his dam’s quiet, nurturing warmth and the close comfort of his littermates. As his eyes opened and his hearing developed at two to three weeks, his world and his experience began to broaden-he learned to get his tiny legs under him, and he began to wrestle with his brothers and sisters. Bit by bit, play and other interaction with his dam and siblings helped him learn important lessons about how to behave with others (as in “Hey, let go of my ear!”). His breeder was sure to provide loving human interaction as well. Staying with his breeder and his family group and continuing to learn from them for his first eight weeks was crucial in helping your puppy develop a healthy, secure personality.
Now it’s up to you to give him the care he requires every day. There’s a lot involved-he needs nutritious food, plenty of attention, gently training, safe toys, a comfortable home and proper veterinary care. He’ll give boundless love in return! This important first year of his life is a fun and exciting time for both of you! As he grows physically, the wonderful bond between you will grow, too. Understanding your puppy’s needs in the weeks and months ahead will help you give him the right start as your health, happy companion for life.
At 8 to 12 Weeks: Your puppy is getting his act together physically. Toward his 12th week he’ll start shedding puppy teeth as permanent teeth emerge. By his 12th week, bladder control is improving. Remember, much as a toddler explores with hands and fingers, young puppies like to investigate things using their mouth. Combine this with the increasing urge to chew as permanent teeth start to come in, and you have one mouthy customer! Be prepared for this by providing him with lots of safe, chewable toys.
Know that your pups’ immune system is not fully developed until he’s about 12 weeks old. To help protect him from several serious canine disease, it’s crucial during this time to keep up with his vaccine schedule (his “puppy shots”) as recommended by your vet. It’s also very important to keep him away from other dogs, and form areas where other dogs may have soiled the ground, until he’s 12 weeks old.
Since his immunity isn’t established, your pup can’t yet venture to training classes or public places. But it is important for him to start meeting a variety of people. This can be done in the safety of your home—simply have visitors gently interact with your puppy whenever possible. Not until about 12 weeks, as your puppy gets better control of his bladder and bowel movements, can more focused housetraining begin. Right now, be sure to take your puppy out very frequently-after every time he eats, drinks, or awaken; after he has a bout of activity; and at least every hour or so in between. While you’re not with him, provide him with a safe, confined space that includes a place for him to sleep and a separate ‘toilet area’ where he can relieve himself.
Important “TO DO”s:
• Take your puppy out very frequently.
• Give him safe chew toys.
• Start ‘pre-training.”
• Keep up with vet visits.
LEAPS AND BOUNDS- 12 to 16 Weeks: Your puppy’s senses and motor skills are well developed now. He still needs to sleep a lot, but he’s full of energy when he’s awake. His bladder and bowel control are continuing to improve. His adult teeth are still coming in. While this is happening, sometimes puppy teeth don’t fall out as they should. Have your vet check your pup’s mouth on the next visit. Your pup is very inquisitive and interested in exploring the world around him. His brain is geared to soaking in everything around him. This coincides with a crucial phase in his development: He/She is in what is called the critical socialization period.
Through 4 months of age is the single most important period influencing how your dog will behave as an adult. Now is when the foundation is laid for the rest of his life in terms of his attitude toward you, other humans, and other dogs. It is extremely important for your pup to have good experiences now, being introduced to all kinds of people and things he’ll encounter during his life. Luckily, with his immune system finally matured, it/s now safe to take him to a wide variety of public places. It’s also important for him to play with other dogs as much as possible. Play with other dogs ensures that your pup will be dog-friendly as an adult and teaches him basic, important rules of intercanine behavior. Now is the time to enroll in a puppy class.
Now is the time to lay the foundation for a lifelong loving, positive relationship with your dog. Take the time to have FUN with your puppy!!
Housetraining Your New Puppy
Drs. Foster & Smith Educational Staff
Housebreaking Rule #1:
If you don't catch your puppy making an "accident," then don't punish him for it.
Housebreaking Rule #2:
When he does it right outside, praise him!
Housebreaking your new puppy doesn't have to be hard or messy, nor should it take very long if done right. Getting your dog to do its business outside is a matter of training, and the more attention you can give to your puppy during this crucial training, the shorter this awkward stage will last.
Forget the old myths about housebreaking
True or False: If your new puppy makes a mess in the house while you're not around, bring the dog over to the mess, hold his nose in it, and scold him. This will force him to learn that going in the house isn't acceptable under any circumstances.
The answer? FALSE. Unfortunately, this is one of the most prevalent housebreaking myths among new pet owners. The fact is, puppies that age can't fathom the cause/effect relationship between their natural bodily functions and why, 20 minutes later or more, you're yelling at them. This housebreaking method doesn't work, and really does more emotional harm than good.
Methods of housebreaking
1. Starting Inside: There are several ways to housebreak a puppy. With the first, you can put down papers or pretreated pads, encouraging them to use these areas for going to the bathroom. The pads are scented with a chemical that attracts the puppy to use them. Whenever you see them starting into their "pre-potty pattern," such as walking around and sniffing the floor, you gently pick them up without talking and carry them over to the papers/pad and then praise them when they go to the bathroom.
When all goes well and they are using the papers consistently, the papers are either moved closer to the door and/or another set is placed outside. The transition is made from concentrating the toilet habits to one spot inside the home to one spot outside the home. Finally, the papers inside are eliminated. The only problem with this method is that for a period of time it encourages the animal to eliminate inside the home. In our experience, housebreaking may take longer when this method is used.
2. Crate Training: The second popular method of housebreaking involves the use of a crate or cage. Make sure the crate isn't too large - just big enough to fit their sleeping blanket or mat. Dogs do not like to soil their beds because they would be forced to lay in the mess. It works, and while in these confines, most pups will control their bladder and bowels for a longer time than we would expect. Young puppies, at 8 or 9 weeks of age can often last for 7 or 8 hours, however, we would never recommend leaving them unattended in a crate for that long in most circumstances.
During housebreaking, whenever the puppy is inside the home but cannot be watched, he is placed in the crate. This might be while you are cooking, reading to the children, or even away from the home. The last thing you do before you put the puppy in the crate is take him outside to his favorite spot. The first thing you do when you take the animal out of the crate is another trip outside. No food or water goes in the crate, just a blanket and maybe a chew toy to occupy his time. Overnight is definitely crate time. As your faith in the puppy grows, leave him out for longer and longer periods of time.
Most people do not recognize an important advantage of crate training. It does more than just stop the animal from messing in the house. It also teaches the puppy something very important. The puppy learns that when the urge to urinate or defecate occurs, he can hold it. Just because the pup feels like he needs to relieve himself, the pup learns that he does not have to. This is thought to be the main reason why puppies that have gone through crate training have fewer mistakes later on.
3. Constant Supervision: The last method involves no papers, pads, or crates. Rather, you choose to spend all the time necessary with the puppy. This works very well for people who live and work in their homes, retired persons, or in situations where the owners are always with the animal. Whenever they see the puppy doing his "pre-potty pattern" they hustle him outside. It is important that the dog is watched at all times and that no mistakes are allowed to occur. When he is taken outside, use a leash or lead to keep him less distracted and watch the puppy closely - as soon as all goes as planned, he should be praised enthusiastically. Do not play until after the pup goes so he learns to go quickly on command.
Use Simple and Consistent Verbal cues
Specific verbal communications will also help the two of you understand what is desired. It is an excellent idea to always use a word when it is time to head to the bathroom. We like "Outside?" Remember that whenever you use a verbal command or signal, it is important that everybody in the family always uses the same word in the same way.
Once outside, we try to encourage the pup to get on with the act in question. We use the phrase "Do your numbers." Others use 'Do It,' 'Potty,' or 'Hurry Up.' As soon as your pup eliminates, it is very important to praise them with a "Good Dog" and then come back inside immediately. Again, make this trip that started outside with a specific word "Outside" be for a purpose. If we are taking the pup out to play with a ball or go for a walk we will not use this word even if we know they will eliminate while we are outside.
If Accidents Happen
One of the key issues in housebreaking is to follow Rule Number One: If you do not catch your puppy doing it, then do not punish him for it! We do not care what someone else may tell you or what you read, if you find a mess that was left when you were not there, clean it up and forget it.
Discipline will not help because unless you catch the puppy in the act, he will have no idea what the scolding is for. At this point in his life a puppy's memory is very, very poor. Your puppy has urinated and defecated hundreds of times before he met you. Nobody made a fuss before and the pup will not relate the punishment, regardless of its form, together with something he has done without incident numerous times before. Especially if he did it more than 30 seconds ago! Puppies are just like our children. Unless something was really fun (and a repetitious act like going to the bathroom is not), they are not thinking about what they did in the past. They are thinking about what they can do in the future.
The same should be said as to your first reaction when you actually catch them in the act of urinating or defecating. Do not get mad. Quickly, but calmly, pick them up and without raising your voice sternly say "No." Carry them outside or to their papers. They are going to be excited, but stay there with them a while and if they finish the job, reward them with simple praise like "Good Dog."
Remember, though the housebreaking process may get frustrating at times - especially the times cleaning up the occasional accident - be patient and stay calm. If you want housebreaking to go quickly, regardless of the method you use, follow these simple tips and try to spend as much time as possible with your puppy.
Bill & Audrey Lundy
1845 24th Street
Slayton, MN 56172
Phone: (507) 836-8141