The Clumber Spaniel is quite a character with somewhat of a mysterious past and ancestry. There are some people who believe the breed originated in either Spain or France, but one thing people know for a fact is that the person responsible for how the breed was developed and refined to the dog we find today, was an English Duke. The Duke of Newcastle owned vast estates of which one was called Clumber Park – from whence comes the breed's name. The Clumber Spaniel is an old, established and well trusted breed of hunting dog with the first one being shown in the UK way back in 1859.
Originally bred as hunting dogs for the larger estates in England during the 18th and 19th centuries, the Clumber Spaniel was the dog sent in to flush out birds it was then up to other breeds of hunting dogs, namely Labradors and retrievers to fetch the fallen birds. Much like many breeds of spaniels, Clumbers love water and are happy to retrieve things in watery environments. The nobility of the day prized the breed highly and today, in this modern world it is Princess Anne who boasts being the patron of the Clumber Spaniel Club of England.
These lovely looking spaniels are great around children, making them the perfect choice as a trusted and loving family pet. They are incredibly loyal and calm characters that shows a lot of affection to their owners. The one thing to bear in mind is the breed does tend to slobber a bit which is due to the shape of their soft mouths – but this is a very small price to pay for such a gorgeous looking and loyal four legged friend especially as Clumber Spaniels are so good with kids.
The breed is deep chested and somewhat short legged which is probably what makes them such powerful hunting dogs. But they are very affectionate creatures too, always eager to please which is very much a spaniel trait. However, anyone wanting to own one of these loyal dogs, would need to be a pretty energetic person because the breed has a tendency to get lazy if allowed to, only demonstrating sudden bursts of energy and then nothing at all which means they are prone to put on too much weight! Another thing the breed is good at is snoring! When a Clumber Spaniel drops off, they go into a deep sleep which is usually accompanied by some snoring.
Clumber Spaniels very often bond with one member of a family which is the loyal side of their natures. They have a very appealing look about them with their wrinkled brow and thoughtful expression. Males usually weigh in at around 34 kg and stand no taller than 50 cm with bitches being a little lighter in weight and a good 10 cm shorter.
It's quite hard to find Clumber Spaniel puppies with a lot of breeders having pretty long waiting lists of people hoping to give one a loving home. The breed is known to have a long lifespan too – they can live anything from 10 to 15 years if well looked after.
If you do hold out and go on a waiting list from a well respected and established breeder, the next step is to make sure your new puppy gets all the training they need to live happy, relaxed and contented lives. Because Clumber Spaniels are so intelligent, they are very easy to train and adore obedience training. The breed doesn't have a nasty bone in their bodies, which is why they make such great pets for families with young children.
When it comes to health issues, there are certain illnesses Clumber Spaniels are prone to and this includes hip dysplasia as well as some spinal problems. This is more than likely due to the fact they are quite heavy boned with rather long backs. The other health issues are entropion and ectropion which are due to their heavy frowns and furrows. These are conditions that cause the eyelid to turn in or out, and which irritates the eye causing all sorts of infections.
The ideal home for this busy canine is one where they would not be left on their own for long periods of time, and where they are not the “only” dog in the house. Clumber Spaniels can become a little destructive if they are left to their own devices. Boredom can be a real issue which leads to all sorts of problems that are best avoided.
Although, the breed is a great choice as a family pet, it's always a good idea to keep an eye on them when they are around very small children simply because of their size. Clumber Spaniels need regular exercise, they like to romp around outside which is why they are not a good choice for people who live in flats or apartments even if there is a small garden.
The breed does need regular grooming too but it's a great way to keep a pet looking good whilst at the same time forming a wonderfully strong bond with them. Frequent grooming helps with the hair problem too because having white coats that shed, it can cut down on fur being left everywhere around the home. When it comes to diet, Clumber Spaniels need to be fed a well balanced diet that includes raw food so they stay nice and healthy.
A Clumber Spaniel may not look like your average spaniel breed, but their natures say it all. They might not be the perfect choice for everyone, but if you live in the country or in town and boast a large well fenced garden, this loving breed will make a super family pet. They are very loyal and fun dogs to have around the home and they're great with other animals too!