THE WELSH SPRINGER SPANIEL
(The American Kennel Clubs Standard and Description)
The Welsh Springer Spaniel is a dog of
distinct variety and ancient origin, who
derives his name from his hunting style
and not his relationship to other breeds.
He is an attractive dog of handy size,
exhibiting substance without
coarseness. He is compact, not leggy,
obviously built for hard work and
endurance. The Welsh Springer Spaniel
gives the impression of length due to
obliquely angled forequarters and well developed hindquarters. Being a
hunting dog, he should be shown in hard muscled working condition. His
coat should not be so excessive as to hinder his work as an active
flushing spaniel, but should be thick enough to protect him from heavy
cover and weather.
Size, Proportion, Substance
A dog is ideally 18-19 inches in height at the withers and a bitch is 17-18
inches at the withers. Any animal above or below the ideal to be
proportionately penalized. Weight should be in proportion to height and
overall balance. Length of body from the withers to the base of the tail is
very slightly greater than the distance from the withers to the ground. This
body length may be the same as the height but never shorter, thus
preserving the rectangular silhouette of the Welsh Springer Spaniel.
The Welsh Springer Spaniel head is unique and should in no way
approximate that of other spaniel breeds. Its overall balance is of primary
Head is in proportion to body, never so broad as to appear coarse nor so
narrow as to appear racy. The skull is of medium length, slightly domed,
with a clearly defined stop. It is well chiseled below the eyes. The top
plane of the skull is very slightly divergent from that of the muzzle, but
with no tendency toward a down-faced appearance. A short chubby head
is most objectionable.
Eyes should be oval in shape, dark to medium brown in color with a soft
expression. Preference is for a darker eye though lighter shades of brown
are acceptable. Yellow or mean-looking eyes are to be heavily penalized.
Medium in size, they are neither prominent, nor sunken, nor do they show
haw. Eye rims are tight and dark pigmentation is preferred.
Ears are set on approximately at eye level and hang close to the cheeks.
Comparatively small, the leather does not reach to the nose. Gradually
narrowing toward the tip, they are shaped somewhat like a vine leaf and
are lightly feathered.
The length of the muzzle is approximately equal to, but never longer than
that of the skull. It is straight, fairly square, and free from excessive flew.
Nostrils are well developed and black or any shade of brown in color. A
pink nose is to be severely penalized. A scissors bite is preferred. An
undershot jaw is to be severely penalized.
Neck, Topline, Body
The neck is long and slightly arched, clean in throat, and set into long,
Topline is level. The loin is slightly arched, muscular, and close-coupled.
The croup is very slightly rounded, never steep nor falling off. The topline
in combination with proper angulation fore and aft presents a silhouette
that appears rectangular. The chest is well developed and muscular with a
prominent forechest, the ribs well sprung and the brisket reaching to the
elbows. The tail is an extension of the topline. Carriage is nearly
horizontal or slightly elevated when the dog is excited. The tail is
generally docked and displays a lively action.
The shoulder blade and upper arm are approximately equal in length. The
upper arm is set well back, joining the shoulder blade with sufficient
angulation to place the elbow beneath the highest point of the shoulder
blade when standing.
The forearms are of medium length, straight and moderately feathered.
The legs are well boned but not to the extent of coarseness. The Welsh
Springer Spaniel's elbows should be close to the body and its pasterns
short and slightly sloping. Height to the elbows is approximately equal to
the distance from the elbows to the top of the shoulder blades. Dewclaws
are generally removed. Feet should be round, tight and well arched with
The hindquarters must be strong, muscular, and well boned, but not
coarse. When viewed in profile the thighs should be wide and the second
thighs well developed. The angulation of the pelvis and femur corresponds
to that of the shoulder and upper arm. Bend of stifle is moderate. The
bones from the hocks to the pads are short with a well angulated hock
joint. When viewed from the side or rear they are perpendicular to the
ground. Rear dewclaws are removed. Feet as in front.
The coat is naturally straight flat and soft to the touch, never wiry or wavy.
It is sufficiently dense to be waterproof, thornproof, and weatherproof. The
back of the forelegs, the hind legs above the hocks, chest and underside
of the body are moderately feathered. The ears and tail are lightly
feathered. Coat so excessive as to be a hindrance in the field is to be
discouraged. Obvious barbering is to be avoided as well.
The color is rich red and white only. Any pattern is acceptable and any
white area may be flecked with red ticking.
The Welsh Springer moves with a smooth, powerful, ground covering
action that displays drive from the rear. Viewed from the side, he exhibits
a strong forward stride with a reach that does not waste energy. When
viewed from the front, the legs should appear to move forward in an
effortless manner with no tendency for the feet to cross over or interfere
with each other. Viewed from the rear, the hocks should follow on a line
with the forelegs, neither too widely nor too closely spaced. As the speed
increases the feet tend to converge towards a center line.
The Welsh Springer Spaniel is an active dog displaying a loyal and
affectionate disposition. Although reserved with strangers, he is not timid,
shy nor unfriendly. To this day he remains a devoted family member and
Approved June 13, 1989
Effective August 1, 1989
We have included links and pages to help you find a Puppy or Breeder
or to simply help people learn more about this breed.
We invite Clubs, Organizations and Reputable Breeders to submit
links and information to help make this site as informative as possible.
CONTACT: Stacy at
SPORTING BREEDS CENTRAL
Sporting Breeds Central WELSH SPRINGER SPANIEL Breeders Directory and Litter Ads
The WELSH SPRINGER SPANIEL Parent Club
WELSH SPRINGER SPANIEL Rescue Organizations
WELSH SPRINGER SPANIEL Kennel Clubs