I think I might like to have an English Springer Spaniel - What do I need to know about the Breed ? 

The English Springer Spaniel is a breed that can offer all things to all people. They are highly sociable dogs and bond to man strongly. Please do not consider one unless you intend to be around most of the time. A well-trained and socialised adult will of course be capable of being left for a couple of hours, but puppies need constant attention if they are to grow up well adjusted.

They love the company of everyone and for the most part get along well with other dogs. It makes no difference to them if they are working to the gun, providing help to security services, striding around the Show Ring, playing in the garden or just snoozing on the settee!

If you are thinking about choosing an English Springer Spaniel as the Breed you would like to live with, please carefully consider the following:

  • As most people just want a ‘pet' it would be a good idea firstly to make sure you find out all that you can about the Breed and decide which lines you want - 'show' or 'working'.
  • Whilst initially one breed of dog, the mid-twentieth century saw The English Springer Spaniel beginning to divide into two distinct lines known to us today as the ‘Show' English Springer Spaniel and the ‘Working' English Springer Spaniel.
  • The ‘Show bred' as opposed to the ‘Working bred' ESS can be bigger, with heavier bone and a slightly different shape to the dome of the head, ear set and length and muzzle. (see the picture of two ESS heads above which shows the 'show type' at the back and the 'working type' at the front)
  • Contrary to the description - you don't have to show the 'show' type nor do you have to work the 'working' type !
  • Some people might find the ‘Show' type ESS more aesthetically pleasing and consider them to have a more 'laid back' attitude whilst still proving to be highly intelligent, totally biddable and always ready for fun. The 'Working' type ESS has a keen sense of smell, coupled with high working ability and endurance. Both types, however, have the instinct to work and can be trained to the gun - and both types can make very good pets.

There are some excellent books on the English Springer and reading about the Breed could help you better understand the kind of ESS you may consider making part of your family.

Next Steps -
  I would like to own an English Springer - so how and where can I find a Breeder ?

  • By contacting any ESS Breed Club in the area nearest to you. Breed Clubs will be able to pass you on to a breeder who has puppies available or who may be able to give you advice on other topics relating to the Breed.
  • Several Breed Clubs have ‘working' sections. If this is the type of ESS you want, the Breed Club Secretary will put you in contact with the respective Secretary. (Clubs with ‘working' sections are marked with an asterisk (*) on the Breed Club List)
  • By contacting The Kennel Club and obtaining a list of breeders of ESS puppies available.

You should ask as many questions as you like when inquiring about the purchase of a puppy. The breeder should also be asking YOU questions, so that they can ascertain your suitability as an owner of their stock.

So ... rather than choose at random, we suggest that when you are looking for a breeder of English Springer Spaniels you should be recommended by:

An English Springer Spaniel Breed Club;

A Reputable English Springer Spaniel Breeder; or

The Kennel Club

and remember ... if you are enquiring about puppies from an advertisement in any publication, puppies do not normally leave their breeder until they are at least 7 - 8 weeks of age - and please ensure that the breeder in question satisfies the criteria set by The Kennel Club and the Breed Clubs i.e. the General Code of Ethics and the Ethical Guidelines for Breeders.

and finally ...

The most important thing to do is to take pleasure from this loving breed. Then you may experience many happy years of unconditional love and companionship.  We at the ESSC, hope that you discover fun and enjoyment from your English Springer, as we have.

© English Springer Spaniel Club