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Sussex Spaniel Breed Summary

Intelligent, Calm, Gentle and Affectionate

Highly intelligent and calm, the Sussex Spaniel was named after the location of where the breed originated from in Sussex, England. The Sussex Spaniel originated in the 1800s and was one of the first breeds to be recognized and implemented into the Stud Book when the AKC was formed in 1884. The Sussex Spaniel was first tied to a man by the name of Mr. Fuller who was credited with the creation of the breed. The average lifespan of the Sussex Spaniel ranges 13 to 15 years. The breed weighs an average of 35 to 45 pounds with a height average of 13 to 15 inches tall. The Sussex Spaniel is described as having a deep chest and heavy bone. It has wavy-coated ears and large, hazel eyes. The expression is often described as that of a sad puppy gaze. Its color is described as a vivid golden-liver. The original purpose of this smart, eager dog was to track and flush small game but evolved its purpose to include bird flushing and retrieving. The breed is loved for its steady way into the field and its effective ability to flush and retrieve birds. Also known to be an affectionate and loveable family dog, the Sussex Spaniel will bark, making him a sufficient watchdog. Daily brushing is recommended for this breed due to its wavy, flowy locks. The Sussex Spaniel does well with regular exercise but loves to spend time with its family as well.
Kennel Club Group Sporting
Lifespan 10 – 12 years
Height (at the withers) 13in - 15in
Weight 35lb - 45lb
Coat Medium, Dense and Wavy coat
Color Black or Brown
Eye color Hazel
Common health issues Eye disease: Multi-focal retinal dysplasia (MRD), Hip dysplasia, Elbow dysplasia
The Sussex Spaniel has a lower energy level than other Spaniels. The breed is considered an easy-going and friendly companion, ideal for families due to a calm demeanor with a cheerful disposition. This breed is skilled at hunting which may be hindered due to its knack for barking. This friendly dog loves people and enjoys children, faring well with other animals too, as long as it is trained at an early stage of development. This loving dog is patient with people in general and gives others a chance. The Sussex Spaniel does make an effective watchdog due to its determination to protect its family and may be hesitant towards other people when it is first introduced to them but does warm up to them. The Sussex Spaniel is relatively easy to train and will often go along with the training as long as positive reinforcement is used. It is important to be patient and praise your dog when training.
The Sussex Spaniel was named after Sussex, England – its origination. The breed originated in the 1800s after it was first spotted with a Mr. Fuller. Mr. Fuller is often credited with developing the golden-liver color variation seen in the Sussex Spaniel. While the ancestry documentation is scarce, it is said that the Sussex Spaniel was once bred with a Clumber Spaniel as well as a Field Spaniel in order to increase the gene pool. Phineas Bullock, who developed the Field Spaniel, is also credited with modifying the Sussex Spaniel. Breeders Moses Woolland and Campbell Newington are credited with saving the breed from extinction. The Sussex Spaniel's original purpose included being able to hunt on foot, a large amount of game. The Sussex Spaniel was considered one of the best options for a sporting breed in the 1800s. While the Sussex Spaniel was an effective hunter, its slow speed in the field in addition to its tendency to bark created for hesitant hunters. To date, the Sussex Spaniel is considered to be a rare breed due to its close encounters with breed extinction. The Sussex Spaniel is often loved for the great use of his nose in the field as well as a determined mission to track down game. The Sussex Spaniel was first mentioned in a magazine called Sportsmen's Cabinet in 1803. In 1862, the Sussex Spaniel was exhibited at the Crystal Palace dog show. In 1884, the Sussex Spaniel was one of the first 10 breeds accepted into the newly founded AKC.