Brittany vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison

Brittany vs American Water SpanielBrittany is originated from France but American Water Spaniel is originated from United States. Brittany may grow 6 cm / 3 inches higher than American Water Spaniel. Both Brittany and American Water Spaniel are of same weight. Both Brittany and American Water Spaniel has almost same life span. Brittany may have more litter size than American Water Spaniel. Brittany requires Low maintenance. But American Water Spaniel requires Moderate maintenance

Basic Information

Group:
Gun dog
Gun dog
Origin:
France
United States
Height Male:
43 - 52 cm
16 - 21 inches
36 - 46 cm
14 - 19 inches
Height Female:
40 - 50 cm
15 - 20 inches
34 - 44 cm
13 - 18 inches
Weight Male:
14 - 20 kg
30 - 45 pounds
11 - 20 kg
24 - 45 pounds
Weight Female:
12 - 18 kg
26 - 40 pounds
11 - 18 kg
24 - 40 pounds
Life Span:
12 - 13 Years
10 - 14 Years
Litter Size:
1 - 12
4 - 6
Size:
Medium dog
Medium dog
Other Names:
Brittany Spaniel Brittany Wiegref Epagneul Breton French Brittany
Amerikanischer Wasserspaniel • AWS • AM Water Spaniel
Colors Available:
tricolor, orange roan, liver roan, black roan
Liver, Brown, Dark Chocolate
Coat:
Flowing Medium length
DOuble, Wavy and Curly, thick
Shedding:
Moderate
Moderate
Temperament:
Alert, Energetic, Friendly, Gentle, Intelligent, Loyal, Playful, Sweet
Alert, Intelligent, Loyal, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Stubborn, Territorial
Grooming:
Low maintenance
Moderate maintenance
Trainability:
Moderate
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
Yes
No

History

brittanyOne of the most intense bird dog breeds in existence is the Brittany, bred for hunt. The breed used to be called the Brittany Spaniel, but since the breed is closer to a setter or pointer, that moniker has been dropped. The Brittany is named for the French Province in which they were originally developed. Sometime from the 17th to the 19th centuries, the breed was developed. Images of a very similar dog can be found on 17th century paintings and tapestries. However, the first written description comes from 1850 by a Reverend Davies, describing a hunting episode. The breed was recognized officially in the early part of the 20th century and made a splash at the 1900 Paris Dog Show.

The first official standards were written in about 1907 and the breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1934.The Brittany is expected to point to and then retrieve birds and other small ground game. Because the Brittany both points and retrieves they are known in the U.K. as a Hunt, Point and Retrieve breed or an HPR, and they have more Dual Champions than the rest of the AKC Sporting group.

There are actually two types of Brittanys in the minds of many breeders. There is the “French” Brittany and the “American” Brittany. When the breed arrived in the United States in 1931 they became immensely popular in a short period of time. In 1942 American Breeders began the American Brittany Club, rewriting the French standard to fit the dog they knew. Today there are definitely difference between the two sub-sets that can easily be seen. The French dog is smaller than the American dog. The American dog is a runner pacing ahead of the hunter while the French dog works more closely with their human companions. Another visible difference is that the French accept black spotted Brittanys, while in the United States a black spotted coat is considered a fault. Both sub-sets are known for their willingness to follow human directions, their eagerness for the hunt, and their agility and speed.

Unfortunately, the European wars took their toll on this breed as they did on many others. Following the second World War, their numbers in Europe were drastically reduced. The French had stop breeding them altogether during the war. It was in this depleted gene pool that the French agreed to accept the black spotted Brittany. Along with the U.S., Canada also does not recognize the black spotted Brittany.

american water spanielThe American Water Spaniel was developed in the United States. He is the state dog of Wisconsin and was developed there in the 19th century. The bloodlines of this spaniel are varied but certainly include the English Water Spaniel and the Irish Water Spaniel. Even though they are the state dog of Wisconsin they were almost extinct when Dr. Fred J. Pfeifer rescued the breed. The numbers had fallen after World War II because hunting was now a recreational sport and not needed to provide food for the family. He then started a breed club and wrote a breed standard, both of which were recognized by the United Kennel Club and the American Kennel Club. When first developed the American Water Spaniel was known as the American Brown Spaniel. It was bred with a curly, thick coat so that it cold be sustained in Wisconsin winters and cold water. It was bred to hunt grouse, water fowl and prairie chickens as well as furry land animals. Pfeifer advertised his dogs for sale everywhere using a mailer that read: “, "The American Brown Spaniel is distinctively an American production. Hunters have known this type for years and it was through their efforts that this dog was propagated.... For years we have bred only selective stock, breeding for gameness, stability, courage, intelligence, and beauty. They are dogs to admire and trust under all conditions whether in the home circle or in the field with the outdoor man."[2]

In Wisconsin, around the wolf River and the Fox River, hunters were looking for a water dog that could also hunt on land. They needed a dog that could work a variety of fowl and game but who was small enough for a skiff and strong enough for the artic water temperatures of Wisconsin in the Winter. So, in addition to the spaniels named above, other breeds such as the Curly Coated Retriever, the Poodle, Native Indian dogs and the Sussex Spaniel were intermixed. When first developed the American Water Spaniel was known as the American Brown Spaniel. It was bred with a curly, thick coat so that it cold be sustained in Wisconsin winters and cold water. It was bred to hunt grouse, water fowl and prairie chickens as well as furry land animals. The American Water Spaniel was then itself used to develop another new breed, the Boykin Spaniel. In 1985 Wisconsin declared the American Water Spaniel to be the official state dog. Even so there remain only a few thousand dogs in existence. Though recognized by the AKC, they are neither spaniels nor retrievers and remain unclassified. Because of this they cannot compete in AKC field trials, but they do compete in AKC hunt tests. Though rare, the American Water Spaniel is a great hunting dog, retriever and companion.

Description

brittany puppyThe Brittany is much like other hunting dogs – pointers and retrievers – in size and stature. He is solid and strong but not heavy. He is compact with an average size head and floppy ears, docked tails or short natural tails, and expressively intelligent looking eyes. He is athletic, energetic, and alert. He has a long, elastic and free gait. The French dog is smaller and the dog with black spots is accepted. The American Brittany is larger and only a tri-color of orange, liver and white is acceptable.

american water spaniel puppyThe American Water spaniel is a midsized, muscular dog. There is nothing flashy about his looks or his work performance. He is however a consistent, competent swimmer and hunter. His brown coat is wavy or tightly curled, waterproof and dense. His feet have thick pads and webbed toes. The AWS is intelligent, happy, and easy going. He is a very versatile hunting dog on land and in water. The breed has not changed much since it originated in the 19th century. They can be liver, chocolate or brown. The eyes should be the same as the color of the coat. They have broad skulls with wide, long ears and an undocked tail.

They have a square, medium sized muzzle and wide nose. They have a bite that is level or scissors. The legs of the muscular American Water Spaniel are medium in length and the tail is full, with a medium length, curved and feathered. The dewclaws might or might not be removed.

Health Problems

brittany dogThe breed is a hardy one and Brittanys are mostly healthy dogs. In Europe 1 in 5 dogs dies of old age and that age is usually 14 or 15 years. They do have a few issues that they may be susceptible to. These would include:

Ears – prone to infections

Hip Dysplasia – bones don’t fit well into joints

Epilepsy – mild or serious seizures are possible.

Hypothyroidism – Low levels of thyroid hormone

Canine Discoid Lupus Erythematosus – autoimmune disease

american water spaniel dogThe American Water Spaniel is a hardy, healthy breed without a lot of the genetic concerns of other breeds. Some of the concerns of this breed include vision, cardiac, hip dysplasia and degenerative myelopathy. They might also have skin issues and metabolic disorders.

Caring The Pet

Feeding

brittany puppiesDon’t overfeed your Brittany. Keep him at hunting weight by feeding a half a cup up to 2 cups per day depending on the size of your dog and activity levels. Serve this in two meals not one.

Health issues

Ears – prone to infections – make sure that you check them and wipe them out routinely to prevent infections.

Hip Dysplasia – bones don’t fit well into joints – this can be genetic or otherwise, causing lameness and arthritis. If severe it can require surgery to correct.

Epilepsy – mild or serious seizures are possible. This can be genetic/hereditary but is set off by an infectious disease of the brain, head injury, poison, tumor, or metabolic disorder. There is no cure, but medication can be very effective.

Hypothyroidism – Low levels of thyroid hormone – can cause drooping eyelids, obesity, lethargy, mental difficulties or irregular heat cycles or all of this. Medication is available as it is for humans but must be taken daily for the rest of the dog’s life

Canine Discoid Lupus Erythematosus – autoimmune disease that is rare in dogs. Cats and humans can also have it. It is a skin disease and does not become the more serious and deadly Systemic Lupus. The Discoid version of this disease causes loss of pigmentation and a scaling on the nose which can then progress to the skin around the ears, eyes and genitals. There could be ulcerated lesions and tissue death in more severe cases. Sun exposure can make the condition worse.

Exercise and games

The Brittany is a hunting dog that acts like a pointer but will retrieve fowl and birds in the water or on land. If you don’t hunt, the Brittany can still be your family dog. They need lots of exercise and mental stimulation. They need a job if they are not going to hunt and expect them to be distracted by every bird they see. Try flyball, agility, FAST CAT, field trials and dock diving. They are very task oriented and have boundless energy. They excel at obedience and confirmation as well.

Feeding

american water spaniel puppiesFeeding the American Water Spaniel is no mystery. They need a high quality dry dog food with an eye toward calorie consumption. Some AWS have a tendency to become obese. Treats are important to the AWS in training but can add to the obesity concerns.

Health

Like other isolated breeds that were bred true, the genetic issues we see in many other popular breeds are not seen as much in the American Water Spaniel. They do however have a few issues to contend with.

Eyes: These issues appear to be inherited with progressive retinal atrophy and cataracts. Many AWS that develop cataracts do so at a very young age, usually under a year. Metabolic: Diabetes, hypothyroidism, glandular disorders and epilepsy. Baldness and Cardiac Issues. Orthopedic: Hip dysplasia. There is no evidence to suggest any elbow dysplasia. Additional concerns are hypothyroidism, allergies, epilepsy, diabetes and glandular disorders which Of course, the American Water Spaniel is an athlete who loves to be outdoors. He loves to swim, run and hunt. He needs daily exercise, or he can become loud and destructive. They thrive on having a job and they are not happy if they don’t have one. They are good at agility, obedience, dock diving and field trials. They also enjoy flyball and barn hunt.

Characteristics

brittany dogsThe Brittany is particularly trainable and friendly. They love to play and are sweet-natured. They don’t due well with harsh correction though and a stern look will cause them to wither. Socialize them young or they can become shy around strangers. They are loyal and family oriented. They can easily become attached to their humans.

american water spaniel dogsBred to work the American Water Spaniels are loyal to their people, want to please them, but are not so great with strangers. They are stubborn and love to be the center of attention. They are often one person or one family dogs. They need an owner who is the pack leader and willing to put in the time to train them. However, they are a versatile breed and need variety in training and activities rather than repetitive activities. They are prone to resource guarding, slow maturation and dominance. These negative traits are dissipated with a strong leader, good training and a lot of daily activity. They are sensitive as well as stubborn. Do not use a punishment-oriented training with them. They will respond out of love and loyalty or not at all. This is a breed that wants to be the alpha over the people and will do so if you let him. Keep them fenced as being hunters they love to wander and will leave home whenever they can.

Comparison with other breeds

  1. English Springer Spaniel vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  2. Brittany vs American Cocker Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  3. Brittany vs Boykin Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  4. Brittany vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  5. Brittany vs Braque d'Auvergne - Breed Comparison
  6. Brittany vs Barbet - Breed Comparison
  7. Brittany vs Blue Picardy Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  8. Brittany vs Canadian Pointer - Breed Comparison
  9. English Setter vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  10. French Brittany vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  11. Pudelpointer vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  12. Picardy Spaniel vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  13. Ariege Pointer vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  14. Pont-Audemer Spaniel vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  15. Irish Water Spaniel vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  16. Deutsch Drahthaar vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  17. Clumber Spaniel vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  18. Stabyhoun vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  19. Styrian Coarse Haired Hound vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  20. Vizsla vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  21. Large Munsterlander vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  22. Tyrolean Hound vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  23. Cockalier vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  24. Braque du Bourbonnais vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  25. Cesky Fousek vs Brittany - Breed Comparison
  26. English Springer Spaniel vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  27. English Setter vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  28. French Brittany vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  29. Boykin Spaniel vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  30. Pudelpointer vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  31. American Water Spaniel vs American Cocker Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  32. American Water Spaniel vs Barbet - Breed Comparison
  33. Picardy Spaniel vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  34. Braque d'Auvergne vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  35. Ariege Pointer vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  36. Pont-Audemer Spaniel vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  37. Irish Water Spaniel vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  38. Blue Picardy Spaniel vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  39. Canadian Pointer vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  40. Deutsch Drahthaar vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  41. Clumber Spaniel vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  42. Stabyhoun vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  43. Styrian Coarse Haired Hound vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  44. Vizsla vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  45. Large Munsterlander vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  46. Tyrolean Hound vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  47. Cockalier vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  48. Braque du Bourbonnais vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison
  49. Cesky Fousek vs American Water Spaniel - Breed Comparison

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