The Irish Water Spaniel is a breed of dog that is the largest and one of the oldest of spaniels. It is one of the rarer breeds with the American Kennel Club in terms of registrations.
The Irish Water Spaniel is a sturdy, cobby dog native to Ireland. The coat, consisting of dense curls, sheds very little. The color is liver/puce and has a very definite purple hue unlike the color of any other known breed. The non-shedding characteristic of the coat means that people usually allergic to dogs might have less of an allergic reaction to Irish Water Spaniels. Like most dogs of the American Kennel Club Sporting group, the Irish Water Spaniel is essentially an active, willing and energetic companion. Because it has been bred from stock used to fetch game and return it to hand without a fuss, it has the natural instinct of wanting to please. Its keen sense of working as a team makes it a relatively easy dog to train and discipline. Because of its great intelligence and quizzical nature, it has the reputation of being the clown of the spaniel family and will do ordinary things in extraordinary ways to achieve that which is asked of it. Some individual dogs can be very wary of strangers and not every IWS can be trusted to get along with other pets. Early socialization and training is a must.