Springer Spaniels are energetic dogs that are friendly and love to play. Usually living for 12-14 years, they make great pets for those that love the outdoors and can help them to expend their energy.
The Springer Spaniel name developed when hunters began breeding these spaniels as working companions that could literally ‘spring’ into action and help them hunt and capture game. Their size, energy and agility made them the perfect breed for this pursuit.
Before the 1900s, there was less distinction between Spaniel breeds. But after years of careful breeding, there are now multiple spaniel breeds, with Welsh and English Springer Spaniels sharing similar Spaniel characteristics.
Although Welsh Springer Spaniels are distinguishable by their red and white coats and are shorter in height, both Welsh and English Springer Spaniels have beautiful curly coats in common, which need to be properly groomed to prevent matting and tangling.
Springer Spaniels need regular grooming to prevent their coats from becoming matted. As they are energetic, outdoorsy dogs, their coats are often subjected to water and mud, so it’s important to establish a regular brushing routine to remove any dirt and tangles from their coat that could worsen or turn into mats if left unattended.
Remember that grooming involves more than just brushing. Keep on top of your Springer Spaniel’s nails to ensure they don’t become overgrown and painful, and regularly check their ears as they can be prone to infection.
Depending on whether your Springer Spaniel is a show dog or simply a companion, how often you groom your Springer Spaniel will differ. Show dogs need to be properly groomed weekly, while companion Springer Spaniels can be bathed and groomed as little as once every couple of months, ensuring you brush them several times weekly.
Springer Spaniel grooming at home is a simple and effective way to keep on top of your dog’s coat in between professional grooming appointments.
Frequent brushing helps to eliminate any mats and tangles that have occurred. Choose a slicker brush or dog comb and a good detangle spray to gently work out tangles and small mats in your dog’s coat. A mat splitter can also be a handy tool for dealing with more difficult mats. If mats develop in sensitive areas, or if you’re unsure how to remove them, always seek a professional groomer’s advice.
If blow-drying your Springer Spaniel’s coat, always choose a low to medium heat setting and ensure the coat is completely dry before brushing to prevent tangles from forming.
Springer Spaniels should only need bathing around once every two to three months, resulting in a fresh-smelling coat that appears light and shiny. Ensure you give your Springer a good brush first to remove any matting or dead hair!
Once your Springer Spaniel reaches six months old, you’ll need to start clipping its coat to ensure it retains its natural shape and looks good! Show dogs will need to be clipped in a much more specialist way, but a standard Springer Spaniel trim will require you to work around the inside of the ears, the top outside of the ear, the top of the head, then the chest, throat, feet and hocks.
Several different clips are a popular choice for Springer Spaniels. Here are the most common Springer Spaniel haircuts:
English Springer Spaniels have known success at elite dog competitions, and with their healthy and athletic shape and stunning long coats, it's clear why they're loved by show judges worldwide.
A show cut sees a Springer Spaniel's hair left longer on the torso to display its athletic build. English Springer Spaniels generally have their ear hair left longer, whereas their Welsh counterparts often have ear hair at a shorter length.
A show cut requires much more maintenance, as their longer-length hair needs daily brushing to prevent mats and tangles.
A puppy cut is a great choice if you don't show your dog, as it's much lower maintenance and will help your Springer Spaniel to stay cooler in the warmer months.
Much like puppy cuts for other breeds, a Springer Spaniel puppy cut sees the groomer trim your dog's hair to a couple of inches all over its body. The ears are typically kept a little longer with this cut to preserve some of that Springer Spaniel character.
As the coat is kept short, there's less need to brush it regularly to prevent tangles, but it's still worth brushing the coat once a week to stimulate both the coat and the skin. If the ears are kept longer, check these regularly for tangles.
A natural Springer Spaniel cut allows them to show off their gorgeous, natural curls. The best way to achieve it is to bathe them and let their coats air dry to let their curls settle naturally.
Having a natural cut doesn't mean that their coats shouldn't be trimmed. A light trim with feathering around the legs, the ears and the torso is enough to keep their coats healthy. With this cut, frequent brushing is recommended to prevent their curls from matting.
Heavy-duty, high-speed clippers are best for clipping Springer Spaniels due to their longer, thicker coat. We recommend choosing a blade to cut through dog hair smoothly and efficiently. If you need more help choosing the correct clippers for your dog, read our blog on ‘How To Choose The Best Dog Clippers’.