Welsh Springer Spaniel: Breed Information

October 9, 2022

Welsh Springer Spaniel is a medium-sized Spaniel, developed as a gun dog to flush birds and game.

They are most known for their rich red and white coat that can have freckles.

Welsh Springer Spaniels have lovely personalities as they are devoted to their owners. They are outgoing, friendly and alert. According to the Welsh Springer Spaniel Club, they are an unbelievably affectionate breed.

To know more about this uncommon breed, keep on reading. But be aware you might just want to get your first Welsh Springer Spaniel puppy right after this.

Breed History

Welsh Springer Spaniel is considered to be one of the oldest Spaniel breeds. There is a resemblance to Welsh Springer Spaniels in old tapestries from Renaissance. It originates from Wales.

Spaniels were originally divided between land and water Spaniels. Welsh Springer Spaniel was considered as the land spaniel variety.

Welsh Springer Spaniels were also used as hunting dogs for nobility as early as the 17th century.

While not as popular as many other Spaniel breeds, the Welsh Springer Spaniel is a recognised breed by the American Kennel Club since 1914. It is considered to be a dog from the sporting group.

While they were recognised by the American Kennel Club, they failed to gain popularity. So, by the end of World War II they were nearly non-existent in the United States.

Originally the dog breed was referred to as Welsh Spaniel or Welsh Cocker Spaniel.

Breed Overview of Welsh Springer Spaniel

Welsh Springer Spaniel is normally about 17 to 19 inches tall, with females shorter than males. They weigh between 35 to 45 pounds.

The coat of a Welsh Springer Spaniel dog is medium length thick straight coat with silky fur. The coat is never wavy. The coat is red and white, there may be patterns and red ticking. The legs are lightly feathered.

The eyes are brown in colour. The ears are small and pendulous. Welsh Springer Spaniel is a slightly smaller dog than the English Springer Spaniel. The nose is normally black or a shade of brown.

Welsh Springers have an average life expectancy of 12 to 15 years.

Breed Characteristics

Below are some average characteristics of Welsh Springers recognised by national breed club like the American Kennel Club :

  • Weight: Females 35 to 40 pounds, Males 40-45 pounds
  • Height: Male up to 19 inch, Female 17 to 18 inch
  • Life Span: 12 to 15 years
  • Breed's Coat: Medium length, rich red and white as breed standard
  • Grooming needs: Moderate
  • Classification: Gundog

What is the Difference of English Springer Spaniel and Welsh Springer Spaniel?

It is worth remembering that English Springer Spaniel and Welsh Springer Spaniel are completely different breeds.

While both are medium-sized, English Springer Spaniels tend to be taller. There are more options for coat colours in English Springers while Welsh Springer can only be rich red and white. They also both have distinctly shaped skulls.

The Welsh Springer can be more reserved and cautious of strangers.

Welsh Springer Spaniel Temperament

Welsh Springer Spaniel is a faithful companion and the perfect breed to be a family pet. These red and white Spaniels are smart, eager to learn and loyal. As Spaniels, they are also energetic dogs who love to run around and play.

While they like company, they do like a little bit of independence and can sometimes be a bit stubborn.

Compared with other Spaniels like English Springer Spaniels, Welsh Springers are a bit more reserved. He may not like strangers and requires early socialization to ensure he won't become a shy adult dog.

Welsh Springer Spaniel is happy to be outside and can be a good hunting companion or a working dog.

Harsh training methods will not work with a Welsh Springer Spaniel dog breed. They can be a rather stubborn as well as sensitive breed.

They can also get separation anxiety as they are keen family members and want to be glued to their owners at all times if possible.

Health Issues

Generally, Welsh Springer Spaniels are healthy dogs. However, they do have some health issues.

A reputable breeder should carry on tests to check for genetic disorders. You should be aware of this when purchasing a puppy. Health clearances can give you a lot of peace of mind when bringing a new puppy to your family.

Some of the health conditions they can have according to Welsh Springer Spaniel Club are elbow dysplasia as well as hip dysplasia.

Recommended tests for responsible breeders are hip evaluation as well as thyroid, ophthalmologist and elbow evaluation.

Also, those floppy ears can be prone to infections, so it is important these are checked and cleaned weekly. To keep breath fresh, teeth should be cleaned daily.


Welsh Springers are active and have loads of energy compared to many other breeds.

They are well suited for families with an active lifestyle, and they have high energy levels and needs. A long walk is recommended every day.

They are also very playful. They will be very happy to spend time in the garden playing with the whole family.

Grooming Welsh Springer Spaniel

Welsh Springer Spaniel's silky coat is red and white. It is flat, soft and dense enough to be waterproof. This means Welsh Spaniels are great living even in areas with more unpredictable weather. They can live in areas with wet and cold weather.

Grooming Welsh Springer Spaniels is overall low-maintenance activity. It is recommended to use a soft brush. A metal comb can help if there are any tangles. It can be hard to deal with matted areas.

Ears need to be cleaned weekly as they hang low and can be prone to ear infections. It is important to properly dry the ears after baths to ensure there is no moisture left.


Welsh Springers are generally easy to train, and they are eager to please.

However, Welsh Springers can be sensitive and do not like harsh treatment. This needs to be taken into consideration when training.

Positive reinforcement is best to keep them comfortable with training sessions. It can also make them eager to continue with training later on.

Training them requires patience, and it is better to keep training sessions short as well as positive.

Mental stimulation is also necessary to keep these intelligent dogs from being bored. Boredom can make the dog destructive, or other negative characteristics may appear.


Welsh Springer Spaniel does not need a special diet. The main thing is to ensure the dog's diet is good quality and matches the dog's age.

Food should be appropriate whether it is for an adult, puppy or a senior dog. For an adult, it is normally 1.5 to 2.5 cups divided between two meals a day.

Welshies can be prone to becoming overweight, so treats should only be given occasionally.

Is Welsh Springer Spaniels Good Family dogs?

Welsh Springer Spaniels can be excellent family dogs as they love affection and are very playful, friendly dogs. They will be happy to share long hikes or play sessions with their family members.

They can be great with kids, but it is better if they are accustomed to them from young age.

Welsh Springers can be very excited, especially when you just arrive home. So, if you have young kid they may accidentally be too much around them. You might want to consider training your dog not to jump up to people to make it safer around kids.

They can be good around other animals too. However, they can be timider if not used to pets. So, it is better to get them accustomed to other dogs and animals since they are puppies.

As they are hunting dogs, they may not be suitable around birds.

Pros and Cons of Owning a Welsh Springer Spaniel

If you are trying to decide whether this is the right puppy for you, here are some pros and cons.


Welsh Springers have many pros why having them can be great.

  • They are very low droolers
  • Great family pets
  • Active dogs, who are happy to join on an adventure due to their stamina and energy
  • Loyal


There are some drawbacks to this breed:

  • Can be more reserved compared to other Spaniels
  • Prone to separation anxiety
  • Some genetic health issues
  • Can be stubborn and sensitive

Can Welsh Springer Spaniel Live in an Apartment?

Welsh Springer Spaniels love to spend time with their owner and are willing to adapt to life in an apartment if required.

However, they are a highly energetic breed and are not best suited for apartment life. Ideally, they would love a big garden to roam around in.

Where to Get a Welsh Springer Spaniel?

If you do decide that this is the right dog breed for you, there are many options where to get a puppy from.

Breed Clubs like Welsh Springer Spaniel Club can be good to advise you in finding a reputable breeder. You will want to make sure the dog's parents have been health tested. It can cost up to £2000 for a puppy.

There may be some dogs found in shelters. However, always make sure you do plenty of research to make sure you can take care of the dog and never get one from a puppy farm.


Welsh Springer Spaniel, while being one of the oldest Spaniel breeds, may not be that well known as his cousin English Springer Spaniel. While originally bred to be hunting dogs, they can now also suit family life.

Overall, this red and white fluffy dog originating from Wales is a great companion to have. Welsh Springer Spaniels can be devoted to their owner and extremely loving.

At the same time, if you would like to have a dog who has the Spaniel energy, but can also be a bit more reserved, this may just be the dog breed for you.

Welsh Springer will require to be socialized from an early age to ensure they do not become timid around strangers. However, if they are socialised well, they will be friendly with others and also make great family pets.

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! 
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