English Springer Spaniel Care

The English Springer Spaniel, a medium-sized, athletic hunting breed, actually comes in two varieties: those meant for show, and dogs utilized for hunting and other work. While the two variants differ slightly in appearance, they essentially need the same care. Overall English Springer Spaniel care will take a moderate amount of work, and will need to include a good bit of daily exercise. Also, a Springer Spaniel needs home training to help curb its tendency for excessive urination (a trait common to all spaniel breeds).

Here you'll find plenty of details on looking after a Springer Spaniel: puppy advice and development, exercise needs, diet and nutrition (which includes a Springer Spaniel weight guide for feeding), and more. See the following sections for your definitive Springer Spaniel guide!

English Springer Spaniel Breed Development

As a medium-sized breed, the English Springer Spaniel growth rate for puppies typically spans 17-19 months from birth to full maturity. And since this breed's lifespan averages 12 years, a senior Springer Spaniel is one nine years of age or older.

Physical Development: Springer puppies grow steadily in height and length for the first 8-9 months, then those growth rates slow while the adolescent "fills out" with muscle and fat. And when do Springer Spaniels stop growing? These dogs normally reach their adult height and weight (an average of 20 inches and 50 pounds) at 11-12 months of age.

Social Development: Pups reach adolescence at about six months, sexual maturity at about nine months, and full mental maturity by about 18 months.

For further details on English Springer Spaniel development, see the following:

English Springer Spaniel Exercise Needs

Since these dogs are energetic hunting dogs, English Springer Spaniel exercise requirements are fairly high. Springers are also intelligent and task-oriented, so they'll need activities that both condition them physically (walking, fetch) and stimulate them mentally (games, canine sports). Springers are good swimmers, and adult dogs make great jogging companions.

Specifically how much exercise does a Springer Spaniel need each day? Adults, depending on their age and overall activity levels, will need about an hour of dedicated exercise per day. You can start exercising your Springer puppy when it's three months old by taking it on short walks, then you can increase the walks' length as the pup grows.

Precautions with Springer Spaniel exercise guide:

  • Don't exercise puppies too hard before they're nine months old
  • High prey drive means a leash is required when exercising in public
  • Yards must be securely fenced to keep the dog from running off
  • Possible separation anxiety; exercises should be done together with people

Exercising your English Springer Spaniel every day is a must. Though Springers are generally happy and good-natured, without consistent activity they'll become anxious and destructive, and they'll bark nonstop. Regular exercise will be great for both the dog's and your own peace of mind! Some exercise ideas:

  • Walking/Jogging: Two 20-minute walks (or 15-minute jogs) per day is a good target
  • Fetch/Frisbee: Springers love chasing a ball, stick, or Frisbee
  • Hide-and-Seek: Great indoor activity; give the dog a treat when it finds you
  • Swimming: These dogs normally love the water
  • Dog Park: If properly socialized, Springer Spaniels enjoy the company of other dogs
  • Canine Sports: Springers can excel at obedience or agility trials and other events
  • Hiking: Excellent bonding activity

When indoors, giving your Springer Spaniel access to balls or toys will allow the dog to burn excess energy. It's also good to have a regular daily exercise schedule for the dog, such as walks or jogs after breakfast and dinner and playtime in the afternoon.

English Springer Spaniel Maintenance

In terms of overall maintenance, these dogs don't need a ton of care. English Springer Spaniel shedding is moderate year-round, and drooling isn't an issue.

Springers have medium to long, double-layered coats that normally have longer feathering on the ears, chest, legs, and underbelly. The coats shed a fair amount all year long, so owners can brush their Springers once or twice per week to minimize the Springer Spaniel shedding, and to keep the coats from matting or tangling (particularly on the longer featherings). Hair cleanup--vacuuming the floors, and lint rollers on clothes and furniture--will be necessary from time to time for owners of these dogs.

And a Springer Spaniel rarely drools. If your English Springer Spaniel is drooling excessively, that might be a sign of a medical issue, in which case a veterinarian's care is needed.

English Springer Spaniel Diet

The English Springer Spaniel diet will need to include animal proteins and healthy carbs, vitamins and minerals, and omega fatty acids--nutrients every dog needs to maintain its health in the long term. This means the best English Springer Spaniel dog food is premium dry kibble, as it has balanced portions of the above-listed ingredients. If consistently fed a premium brand like Royal Canin, Springer Spaniel dogs will be much healthier and longer-living.

Specifically how much should a Springer Spaniel eat? Adult Springer Spaniel feeding portions are about 2½ cups of dry food per day, divided into two meals. Springer Spaniel puppy food portions are a bit smaller: depending on the pup's age, about 1¾ cups per day, divided into three meals (not two) until six months of age.

For more info on how much to feed a Springer Spaniel, here's a handy Springer Spaniel puppy feeding guide:

*--Around this time, transition to adult food by mixing in adult formula with the puppy formula, in slowly increasing amounts with each meal, for one week.

Try if possible to stick to the above-listed portions. Though they're not especially prone to obesity, if constantly overfed (and under-exercised), these dogs certainly can become overweight--and a fat Springer Spaniel will have numerous health problems and a potentially shortened lifespan. You can help control your Springer Spaniel's weight by having consistent feeding and exercise schedules, by not feeding the dog table scraps, and by not leaving food in the dog's bowl all the time.

If you're worried your English Springer Spaniel is overweight, try this simple test: run a hand along the dog's side, and if you can't feel any ribs, it's diet time--which means less food and more exercise!

Living Environment

English Springer Spaniels are probably better suited to living inside. While they'll do all right sleeping outdoors (and will need a lot of outdoor exercise), they'll be much happier dwelling indoors with their human family members. It's good for owners to know, though, that Springers, like other spaniel breeds, are prone to excessive urination when excited, and will need lots of obedience training to minimize that tendency. And for the English Springer Spaniel, apartment living simply isn't a good idea, as these dogs are just too active and athletic for such confined spaces.

Another consideration for owners of a Springer Spaniel: weather. Springers might get cold in very frigid temperatures, but are otherwise adaptable to most climates. Overall, these dogs can live in all but very cold regions.