Do Springer Spaniels like Swimming?

August 12, 2022

Swimming is a brilliant activity to help keep your dog healthy, they love it. And Springer Spaniels are no exception.

It's a great way to help your Springer Spaniel cool down on a hot summer day or vary their exercise from a standard dog walk or a trip to the park with a ball.

There are many common questions new Springer Spaniel owners have about swimming and that is what this article will be focused on.

By the time you finish reading this article, you will know everything you need to about Springer Spaniel's swimming. There are actually quite a few interesting topics to discuss when thinking about swimming Springers.

Interest piqued? Let's get started!

Do Springer Spaniels like to Swim?

Yes, Springer Spaniels enjoy swimming.

They are a very active dog breed and are well known for their high energy and love for outdoor activities. Thanks to their history as hunting dogs most Springers will love any chance to jump in the water and have a swim.

No matter if it's in a river, pond, pool, or any other body of water. A Springer Spaniel will always be keen for a quick dip. They may even settle for rain puddles as they walk down the street to get their fix.

A Springer Spaniel doesn't need any encouragement to go for a swim!

When Should I Introduce Swimming to my Springer Spaniel?

As soon as possible.

It's a good idea to introduce your Springer Spaniel to water early on in a calm, relaxing manner. You want this first encounter to be a positive one as it will determine the space of their relationship with water for many the rest of their lives.

Do keep in mind that puppies shouldn't have too much exercise as they are still developing. Swimming will count towards this too so try to avoid full days out swimming.

Unfortunately, dogs don't know when they have had enough and will just keep going. Especially an energetic breed like an English Springer Spaniel!

How Should an Introduction to Water Go?

Gently and at their pace!

Take it easy and let your Springer go in at their own speed. New experiences can be scary and any negativity or pressure can just end up making it take longer.

That said they might be really bold and just leap in. Each dog is different.

Find a shallow body of water in a quiet area where they won't be too many distractions. If you are able to stand in it too that can help as you will be showing your dog it is safe and you can coax them in.

Remember to stay relaxed too. Dogs are really good at reading human emotions!

You can get a dog floatation jacket. This can help make your dog more comfortable the first few times. Once they realise how fun it is you'll struggle to get your Springer Spaniel out of the water!

If you are feeling a little nervous about it and have a little puppy you could start with a paddling pool in your back garden.

Reasons to Take your Springer Spaniel Swimming

Swimming is a brilliant activity for your English Springer Spaniel. There are many benefits to get from taking your dog for a swim.

Here are our top three.

Cool Down on a Hot Summer Day

Everyone loves to head out for an adventure on a nice day. Why not go to a place which will offer your Springer an opportunity to cool down a bit in the water?

It could be a trip to a nice lake, the park, or even just in the back garden if you are lucky enough to have a pool.

Keep in mind that dogs can't stand high temperatures very well and are at risk of heatstroke. As a good rule of thumb, anything over 20°C (68°F) is too hot for your dog.

Having a swim doesn't change these numbers so check the weather before heading out.

Vary Your Springers Exercise

Going for a walk or throwing the ball can get a bit boring after a while. It can feel like you are just going through the motions.

While your Springer will be happy with any opportunity to head outside varying their routine is a great way to engage their mind and swimming is a great way to give your dog a good workout.

They'll think, hey wait! We never go this way, what's happening?

Varying their schedule can help stimulate their mind too.

Burn Energy

Anyone who has even just seen a Springer Spaniel will tell you they are brimming with energy. Given they need at least two hours of exercise per day that isn't so shocking.

To put it in perspective most Spaniels need far less to stay satisfied. For example, the Cocker Spaniel one hour a day.

So, if you can allow your Springer to burn off some of that energy with a nice swim all the better. Maybe you'll even be lucky and they'll just rest when you get home. Unlikely, but you can always hope!

Great for Weight Loss for Dogs with Bad Joints

Another reason swimming is a brilliant dog activity is that it is a low-impact exercise. Unlike chasing a ball, or going for a walk which can be challenging for overweight or dogs with joint problems.

This makes swimming a great way for a Springer Spaniel who is a little out of shape to take steps toward becoming more healthy again and strengthen their joints.

If you are considering getting a dog who is overweight or has joint problems to swim it would be best to chat to your vet for expert advice on how to approach it. You don't want to move too quickly and overdo it.

Sometimes dogs can even be prescribed water therapy as canine physical therapy. A glowing endorsement for the benefits of dogs swimming!

Why Might Some Springer Spaniels not Like Water?

Although there is no shortage of reasons why a Springer Spaniel will want to swim there are also a few reasons why a dog may not like to swim.

Not Exposed Much as a Puppy

Just like a poorly socialised dog will likely have trouble connecting with other dogs and possibly people too as an adult, dogs who are not exposed to water when they are younger can be scared of it in later life.

If you have a puppy you need to make an effort to introduce them to water at a young age. Even if you don't go on a regular basis or don't have a good place to go locally it's still worth doing.

Springers live a long time! You don't know how your situation will change over that time.

Bad Experience in the Past

If your dog has had a bad experience in the past with water it's likely they won't be too keen to just jump in. This past trauma is their survival instincts kicking in.

It makes perfect sense really and people act exactly the same.

If this is your dog you may want to just avoid water. Don't force them to go, it could be dangerous for your dog and anyone else in the water.

Springer Spaniel Traits Help them Great in Water

Springer Spaniels have evolved over the years to become better at hunting dogs. This can be seen in many traits such as those long floppy ears for funnelling scents. However, a few of these traits actually make the Springer great in water.

Firstly, English Springer Spaniels have webbed feet. This helps propel the dog through the water towards ducks and other small prey.

Springers also have a double coat. The undercoat is shorter and thicker and helps the dog when running through wet or marshy land after game.

How Long Can a Springer Spaniel Swim?

Given the high level of physical activity an English Springer Spaniel needs they'll be able to swim for quite a long time.

There is no exact number you need to stick to here but I've seen a Springer spaniel come in and out of water for a few hours and still appear completely wired.

Try to judge this one as you see it.


So, do Springer Spaniels like water?

Yes. They love it!

You could say that English Springer Spaniels were bred to be great in water. From their history as a hunting dog breed retrieving game such as ducks through challenging terrain, to just enjoying a swim when the opportunity presents itself.

In a dog's eyes, you can't beat a good swim. And if you can find any water activities or water sports you can be sure your Springer Spaniel will be keen to participate.

In fact, it would be fair to say this straight across the Spaniel family.

If you are just taking your dog for a swim for the first time you will want to take it easy. Keep it somewhere relaxed and avoid deep waters. You may even want to pick up a doggy life jacket beforehand to make the experience go even smoother.

Why not take your dog out for a swim on the next nice day? You'll both have a great day out!

Allan  Noble
Hi, my name is Allan! I am the owner of Spaniel Advisor and I've got over seven years experience of owning Spaniels.  
I hope this article was helpful for you! 
Spaniel Advisor aims to be the top online resource for sharing information about all Spaniel breeds. 
Copyright 2022 - All Rights Reserved.