Cookie Consent by Free Privacy Policy Generator Update cookies preferences
Skip to Content

Irish Water Spaniel

Size: Medium / Large

Weight: 45 - 65 lbs.

Height: 21" - 24"

Life Span: 12 - 14 years

Health Problems: Hypothyroidism; eye entropion; ear infections; chronic drooling

Origin: Ireland (1800s)

Also Known As: Parti-colored Setter

Group: Hunting

Category: Companion Dog, Retriever, Field Trials

Exercise Needs

The Irish Water Spaniel needs a daily swim, walk, romp or play. Retrieving and field trial activities are ideal for this breed.

Grooming Needs

The Irish Water Spaniel has a curly, dense coat with a tendency to get matted. Professional grooming is required. This breed is a low shedder, so it's a good option for owners with allergies.


This breed is a faithful and attentive hunting companion and pet. The Irish Water Spaniel prefers to be outside, rather than being an inside house pet. This breed is ideal for active families interested in bird hunting, swimming, hiking and other outdoor activities. These dogs have a protective nature, they are guarded with strangers. The breed does well with children and other pets, as long as they are properly introduced. This dog tends to be obedient with those family members who have established leadership, but may ignore the commands and calls of others that it perceives as weak.

Compatibility with Kids

Good with children.


It is unclear how the Irish Water Spaniel came into existence. Some believe that Portuguese fishermen visiting Ireland introduced the Portuguese Water Dog to the region, and it was later crossed with the Standard Poodle, Irish Setter or Curly-Haired Retriever.

Pet Facts

The Irish Water Spaniel has a waterproof coat, powerful muscles and extreme stamina, which makes it suitable for lengthy hunting expeditions. The breed is known for daring fowl retrieval attempts in freezing waters.

Dog Food for Your Irish Water Spaniel

Puppy Select 6 lb. Front Counter

Puppy Select Formula

Features our exclusive balance of nutrients for growing puppies.

Adult Select 6 lb. Front Counter

Adult Select Formula

Formulated for dogs of all ages, an excellent choice for multi-dog families.

Reduced Fat 6 lb. Front Counter

Reduced Fat Formula

30% less fat than Bil-Jac Adult Select.

Sensitive Solutions Skin & Stomach Support 6 lb. Front Counter

Sensitive Solutions Skin & Stomach Support

Features the SmartDefense™ System, with vitamins C & E.

The Dog Blog

Health and Nutrition, Grooming and Care

Blog Post Preview Image

Health and Nutrition, Wellbeing Tips, Lifestyle

Blog Post Preview Image