Field Spaniel Dog Breed Information and Personality Traits

Sensitive, affectionate and devoted with a tendency to be timid toward strangers, the field spaniel is viewed as a hunter and retriever, but also as a loving family pet. Because of its sensitivity and docility, gentle training is a must.

Field Spaniel at a glance
The Field Spaniel Dog Breed

The field spaniel loves to retrieve, is fond of water and has the potential to be a competent hunter, retriever and tracker as well as a loving family pet.


Weight Range:

Male: 35-50 lbs.
Female: 35-50 lbs.

Height at Withers:

Male: 18 in.

Female: 17 in.


Floppy ears (naturally)


Exercise Requirements: >40 minutes/day
Energy Level: Very energetic
Longevity Range: 12-14 yrs.
Tendency to Drool: Moderate
Tendency to Snore: Low
Tendency to Bark: Low
Tendency to Dig: Low
Social/Attention Needs: High

Bred For:

Bird flushing, retrieving


Length: Medium
Characteristics: Straight
Colors: Black, liver, golden, tan points or white markings
Overall Grooming Needs: Moderate

Club Recognition:

AKC Classification: Sporting
UKC Classification: Gun Dog
Prevalence: Rare

Today, a spaniel that weighs more than 25 pounds (11 kilograms) need not be all black to be considered a field spaniel.

This breed comes in several other coat colors: liver, roan or any combination of these colors with tan markings. No matter what the color, though, the coat is long and silky and may be slightly wavy.

Field spaniels today are larger than cocker spaniels but smaller than springer spaniels. Males average 18 inches tall, while females are generally about 17 inches tall. Both males and females weigh from 35 to 55 pounds (16 to 25 kilograms).

The eyes are either hazel or chestnut brown; the ears are long, broad and fringed with hair. The tails are usually docked.

Field spaniels generally live from 12 to 14 years.


Field spaniels are mild-mannered, sensitive and affectionate dogs. They tend to be reserved or even timid with strangers, but they are utterly devoted to their human companions.

Even though the field spaniel may exhibit some emotional reserve, the dog is no Casper Milquetoast when given a job to do. These dogs love to retrieve and are fond of water. Their hunting instincts may cause them to roam. They enjoy being active and need both regular exercise and time with their owner if they are to thrive.

Today's field spaniel has the potential to be a competent hunter, retriever and tracker as well as a loving family pet.

Living With:

The field spaniel's sensitivity and docility make gentle, non-coercive training a must. Equally important is steady and consistent exposure to a wide variety of people, places and situations, especially when the dog is a puppy. The dog is fine for families with considerate, well-supervised children.

Long leash walks will provide the exercise the dog needs and still keep it under your control.

Grooming needs of the field spaniel are minimal to moderate; brushing once or twice a week should be adequate to maintain the coat.


The field spaniel was developed in England during the second half of the 19th century in an effort to produce a medium-sized, all-black hunting dog that could work equally well on land, in water or in dense cover.

Several spaniel varieties were being developed during this period, and considerable interbreeding took place among them. However, with the advent of the formal dog show, classifications among spaniels became more formal, too. Eventually, spaniels under 25 pounds (11 kilograms) were designated as cocker spaniels; spotted dogs became English springer spaniels; and solid-colored dogs that weighed more than 25 pounds (11 kilograms) were given the name field spaniel.