Everything you need to know to buy or adopt a Brittany Spaniel puppy or adult dog.


BE PREPARED

For Your New

Brittany!

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Raise and train your dog the RIGHT way and he will live a long, healthy, well-behaved life – and both of you will be happy!

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Brittany Spaniel dog breed

Buying or Adopting a Brittany Spaniel

By Michele Welton. Copyright © 2000-2017


Is a DOG really the right pet for you?

I've been helping people choose and find dogs for over 35 years now, and I have to say that for many people, dogs are not ideal pets.

Pros AND Cons of Owning a Dog


Should you get a purebred, crossbred, or mixed breed dog?

Don't set your sights on any purebred dog until you read these three eye-opening articles:

The Truth About Purebred Dogs

The Truth About Crossbred Dogs

The Truth About Mixed Breed Dogs


Is a Brittany Spaniel the right breed for you?

Brittany Spaniels: What's Good About 'Em, What's Bad About 'Em

Brittany Spaniel Health Problems


Are YOU right for a Brittany Spaniel?

Can you provide what this breed needs?

  • Someone home most of the day
  • Fenced yard (6-8 feet high, not an electronic/underground fence)
  • Restricted exercise when young – until maturity (at least 18 months old), exercise restricted to multiple short (20 minute) walks, fetch games, and playing with other dogs – no forced running (beside a jogger or bicyclist), no long-distance treks, minimal jumping
  • Ample exercise after maturity – enough ongoing exercise that your Brittany Spaniel stays slim and is tired enough to sleep contentedly and not get into mischief
  • "Mental exercise" – interesting activities that keep the mind stimulated, such as a challenging dog sport (agility, rally obedience, musical freestyle, tracking, flyball, field trials); challenging dog toys; a homemade obstacle course; tricks and games such as Musical Toys and Hide 'n Seek; instructions in my training book, Teach Your Dog 100 English Words
  • Brushing – moderate
  • Trimming/clipping – every few months
  • An indoor lifestyle, except for exercise and bathroom breaks
  • A meat-heavy diet, either homemade or commercial – meat is expensive, so people with less money should opt for a smaller dog
  • An owner with enough money to treat the health problems Brittany Spaniels are prone to (pet health insurance can really help here!)
  • An owner who is okay with moderate/heavy shedding
  • Commitment to provide thorough socialization – introducing your Brittany Spaniel to lots of people and other animals
  • Commitment to establish the right Leader-Follower relationship with your Brittany Spaniel, teaching him to listen to you and do what you say

Should you get a male or female Brittany Spaniel?

Symbols for male and female Male Dogs vs. Female Dogs
Which one makes a better pet?


Should you get a young puppy, an older puppy, or an adult dog?

Girl hugging a dog Puppies vs. Adult Dogs
What age should your new Brittany Spaniel be?


Where can you buy or adopt a Brittany Spaniel?

In the United States, the word spaniel has been dropped from the official breed name, but it's still called Brittany Spaniel in most of the rest of the world. Out of 189 breeds in the American Kennel Club, where 1 is most popular and 189 is least popular, Brittanys rank 25th. So they're quite popular and it's not hard to find one.

Adopting From Dog Rescue Organizations
Brittany Spaniels are often available from Dog Rescue groups. Brittanys may be turned over to Rescue because they need too much exercise. Owners often give up their Brittany when the dog is a mismatch for their sedentary lifestyle and now he's barking and chewing destructively because he's restless and bored. You would need to provide these dogs with the exercise and constructive activities that they are lacking. Other Brittanys are given up simply because of changed family circumstances, and these dogs may have no behavior problems at all.

Adopting From Public Animal Shelters and Humane Societies
Brittany Spaniels are sometimes found here, although Brittany Rescue groups do try to move their breed out of shelters and into their rescue network.

Buying From a Dog Breeder
You can buy a Brittany from a show breeder, who breeds Brittanys to match a detailed standard of appearance for the dog show ring.

Or you can buy a Brittany from a performance breeder (field breeder or bird-dog breeder), who emphasizes an energetic temperament for hunting use. Some Brittany breeders are a combination of show/performance, though how they prioritize those two goals can vary greatly.

You can also buy a Brittany from people who "just breed pets" or "just had one litter." But should you? Be sure to read the article to learn more about these people.

Here's one difference between a responsible breeder and an irresponsible breeder – BOTH PARENTS of a Brittany Spaniel puppy should have:

  • a certificate from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF) – dated within the past year – certifying the dog to be free of eye diseases
  • a certificate from the Orthopedic Foundation of America (OFA) or PennHip certifying the dog to have normal hips

If a seller can't show you those certificates, the puppies are higher risk for health problems. You might choose to accept that risk. But then you need to be willing (and able) to pay a couple thousand bucks for future surgeries and lifelong meds if your Brittany Spaniel ends up with cataracts and hip dysplasia.

Puppy in a pet shop window Pet Shop Puppies: Buying a Puppy From a Pet Store
Brittany Spaniels are sometimes found in pet shops. I have plenty to say about buying a puppy from a pet shop!


Related Articles

Girl holding up a puppy and looking at him How To Choose a Good Brittany Spaniel Puppy
How to test the temperament and personality of Brittany Spaniel puppies and pick the best puppy in a litter.


Pedigree parchment AKC Registered Puppies: Are AKC Papers Important?
Should you consider buying only AKC registered Brittany Spaniel puppies? Do AKC papers and pedigrees really matter?


To help you train and care for your dog

book cover To learn more about training your dog to be calm and well-behaved, my dog training book is Teach Your Dog 100 English Words. It's a unique Vocabulary and Respect Training Program that will teach your dog to listen to you and do whatever you ask.

book cover My dog buying guide, Dog Quest: Find The Dog Of Your Dreams, will teach you everything you need to know about finding a good-tempered, healthy dog.

book cover My dog health care book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy, shows you how to help your dog live a longer life while avoiding health problems and unnecessary veterinary expenses.