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Clumber Spaniels: the most honest dog breed review you'll ever find about Clumber Spaniel temperament, personality, and behavior.

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Clumber Spaniel dog breed

Clumber Spaniel Temperament
What's Good About 'Em,
What's Bad About 'Em

Clumber Spaniel Temperament, Personality, Behavior, Traits, and Characteristics, by Michele Welton. Copyright © 2000-2016

The mild-mannered, almost imperturbable Clumber Spaniel sometimes puts on aristocratic airs, yet he also plays the clown, greeting people with two tennis balls stuffed into his mouth and his entire rear end wagging.

Adults spend much of their time lying around and looking sleepy, but this massive dog needs regular exercise to stay fit.

Outdoors he comes alive and moves with great determination -- he has been called "a great bustling creature."

Fetching and ball playing are good sources of exercise, though too much twisting and jumping could injure a disk in his long back.

Most Clumber Spaniels are friendly with strangers and other animals. This is not a guard dog.

Though stubborn, he does respond to persuasive, persistent, motivational obedience training, especially if it includes food. He resists harshness or force by refusing to move.

He does have a mischievous streak, but because of his easygoing approach to life, he is seldom a problem even when he doesn't obey very quickly.

If you want a dog who...

  • Is an unusual-looking spaniel -- built long and low to the ground, and very, very heavy
  • Is somewhat phlegmatic indoors -- a true couch potato
  • Comes alive outdoors and romps about with enthusiasm
  • Is polite with everyone
  • Is uncommon

A Clumber Spaniel may be right for you.

If you don't want to deal with...

  • A heavy dog who wants to sit on your feet, lie on your lap, and lean his weight against your leg
  • Providing enough exercise to keep his big body in shape
  • Stubbornness
  • Regular brushing and combing
  • Constant heavy shedding
  • Slobbering and drooling
  • Gassiness (flatulence)
  • Serious health problems and a short lifespan
  • Waiting lists (hard to find)

A Clumber Spaniel may not be right for you.

But you can avoid or minimize some negative traits by
  1. choosing the RIGHT breeder and the RIGHT puppy
  2. or choosing an ADULT dog from your animal shelter or rescue group – a dog who has already proven that he doesn't have negative traits
  3. training your dog to respect you
  4. avoiding health problems by following my daily care program in 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy

More traits and characteristics of the Clumber Spaniel

If I was considering a Clumber Spaniel, I would be most concerned about...

  1. Providing enough exercise and mental stimulation. Clumber Spaniels were developed to run through the fields seeking game birds. An occasional walk around the block, isn't enough. They MUST have regular opportunities to vent their energy with a vigorous romp. Otherwise they will become bored -- which they usually express by becoming destructive. Clumber Spaniels are big-time chewers who can make a shambles of your home in no time at all.

  2. Stubbornness. Despite their easygoing nature, Clumber Spaniels are not Golden Retrievers. They are not pushovers to raise and train. Most Clumber Spaniels are extremely stubborn and can be manipulative. You must show them, through absolute consistency, that you mean what you say.

    To teach your Clumber to listen to you, "Respect Training" is mandatory. My Clumber Spaniel Training Page discusses the program you need.

  3. Grooming. To keep their silky coat free of mats, Clumber Spaniels require regular brushing and combing, and occasional trimming.

  4. Heavy shedding. Clumber Spaniels shed a LOT. You'll find white hair and fur all over your clothing, upholstery, carpeting, under your furniture, on your countertops -- even in your food. Frequent vacuuming will become a way of life. Make sure you're REALLY up for this.

  5. Slobbering. Most people are not prepared for how much Clumber Spaniels slobber and drool, especially after eating or drinking. When they shake their heads, you will literally be toweling saliva and slime off your clothes, furniture, and walls.

  6. Gassiness (flatulence) that can send you running for cover. Fortunately, Clumber Spaniels who are fed a natural diet of real meat and other fresh foods have much less trouble with gassiness. See my Clumber Spaniel Health Page for more information.

  7. Health problems. Clumber Spaniels suffer from a VERY high rate of hip dysplasia. Eye problems are also a concern in the breed.

  8. Finding one. In the United States, only about 200 new Clumber Spaniel puppies are registered each year. (Compare that to over 60,000 new Golden Retriever puppies!)

book cover To learn more about training Clumber Spaniels to be calm and well-behaved, consider my dog training book, Teach Your Dog 100 English Words.

It's a unique Vocabulary and Respect Training Program that will make your Clumber Spaniel the smartest, most well-behaved companion you've ever had.

Teaches your dog to listen to you, to pay attention to you, and to do whatever you ask him to do.

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 healthy Clumber Spaniel. Health problems have become so widespread in dogs today that this book is required reading for ANYONE who is thinking of getting a purebred, crossbred, or mixed breed dog.

If you'd like to consult with me personally about whether the Clumber Spaniel might be a good dog breed for your family, I offer a Dog Breed Consulting Service.

book cover Once you have your Clumber Spaniel home, you need to KEEP him healthy -- or if he's having any current health problems, you need to get him back on the road to good health.

My dog health care book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy is the book you need.

Raise your dog the right way and you will be helping him live a longer, healthier life while avoiding health problems and unnecessary veterinary expenses.

Please consider adopting an ADULT Clumber Spaniel...

When you're acquiring a Clumber Spaniel PUPPY, you're acquiring potential -- what he one day will be. So "typical breed characteristics" are very important.

But when you acquire an adult dog, you're acquiring what he already IS and you can decide whether he is the right dog for you based on that reality. There are plenty of adult Clumber Spaniels who have already proven themselves NOT to have negative characteristics that are "typical" for their breed. If you find such an adult dog, don't let "typical breed negatives" worry you. Just be happy that you found an atypical individual -- and enjoy!

Save a life. Adopt a dog.

Adopting a Dog From a Dog Breed Rescue Group

Adopting a Dog From the Animal Shelter