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Are Springer Spaniels Good Family Dogs?

Are Springer Spaniels Good Family Dogs?

Are you thinking of getting a Springer Spaniel but don’t know whether the breed will make a great family dog? Do you have small children or a baby on the way and aren’t sure if they’re the right fit for your family? Here’s everything you need to know about whether Springer Spaniels are good family dogs. 

Are Springer Spaniels Good Family Dogs? Yes, Springer Spaniels can make great family dogs! They’re a happy-go-lucky, fun and excitable breed who love being involved in whatever their family is doing. They do best with families who want to include them as much as possible in their day-to-day lives. 

Read on to find out how Springer Spaniels are around babies, what you can do to prepare your dog for the new arrival, and what children must avoid doing when playing with your Springer Spaniel.

Never use the advice in this article as a substitute for professional veterinary advice or treatment. I am NOT a Vet, qualified dog trainer or dog behaviourist. This article is based on research, personal opinion and experience of owning dogs over the last 12+ years. 

Are Springer Spaniels Good With Babies?

Yes, Springer Spaniels can be great with babies. They’re a kind and patient breed that are often gentle around babies. However, they do need to be trained to remain calm, it’s not something they automatically know. They’re keen to learn and eager to please which does make training easier. 

Without proper training, Springer Spaniels can live up to their name and be very bouncy! Especially if they’re not getting enough exercise each day.

This means they could accidentally knock over a baby’s crib or pushchair if they jumped up to them.

This is how to prepare your Springer Spaniel to be around a baby:

Show Your Springer Spaniel Your Baby’s Belongings 

It can be helpful for you to set up any furniture and accessories before you bring your baby home. Cribs, prams, car seats, high chairs and anything else your baby might need, can be put in place early.

This gives your Springer Spaniel time to adjust to the sights, scents and sounds of these new items so they can get used to them quicker.

You could even bring home a blanket that your baby has used, so you can introduce their smell to your Springer Spaniel.

Play Baby Sounds

Playing the sounds that babies make can help your Springer Spaniel get used to them before they meet your new baby.

Although Springers are generally not startled by new or loud noises, some still can be.

The high-pitched crying of a baby can be confusing or unsettling for your Springer Spaniel, so it’s best to get them used to them before your baby gets home. 

Reward Your Springer Spaniel For Being Calm

Springer Spaniels can be excitable, but luckily, they’re also easy to train if you’re consistent.

Reward them for showing calm behaviour around your baby. Keeping all 4 feet on the floor, not jumping up, not pawing and not running around too quickly should all be encouraged.

This sets your Springer Spaniel up for success by teaching them exactly how you want them to behave around your baby. 

Teenager hugging her Springer Spaniel outside with a speech bubble that says 'I love being with my family'
Teenage Girl With Her Springer Spaniel

Give Your Springer Spaniel Their Own Toys

Springer Spaniels were originally bred as working gundogs. They were used to flush ‘spring’ game birds out of hiding, hence their name.

They would then also often retrieve the birds once they’d been shot. Because of this, many often like to carry things around in their mouths as they would have done when they were working. 

It can be hard for your Springer Spaniel to understand why they can’t carry round your baby’s soft toys. After all, they often look a lot like their own dog toys!

So, make sure they have plenty of their own toys to play with and that any baby toys are kept away from them. 

Keep Exercising Your Springer Spaniel Daily

Springer Spaniels are very active dogs with lots of energy, so they need plenty of exercise. It’s important to try and maintain this as much as possible before and after your new baby arrives.

Without enough exercise, Springer Spaniels can quickly become bored, frustrated and less tolerant.

If you are struggling to keep up with their exercise levels, you could ask friends or family or a dog walker to help you. 

Create A Safe Place For Your Springer Spaniel

Although Springer Spaniels often form very close bonds with members of the family, they still may want time alone sometimes.

Create a safe place for them to retreat to if they’re feeling overwhelmed or they need a break. 

Do Mental Enrichment Activities With Your Springer Spaniel

Springer Spaniels are highly intelligent dogs, with very busy, active minds. It’s important that they have lots of things to do to keep their brain occupied, alongside plenty of physical exercise.

Activities such as hide and seeking for treats, snuffle mats and games of find the toy can all be great fun for your Springer Spaniel.

This can also help to keep them busy for a while, so you can concentrate on your baby. 

Little girl with her Springer Spaniel outside in the grass with a speech bubble that says 'I love being with my family'
Girl With Her Springer Spaniel

Are Springer Spaniels Good With Children?

Yes, Springer Spaniels are great with children and they can form close friendships with each other! They’re a lively and comical breed who love to run around and play. They’re quick to pick up new things, which helps them to adapt to life in busy households.

However, Springer Spaniels can be very boisterous and excitable, even more so if they’re bred from working lines. This can be a bit too much for some younger children or toddlers to deal with.

They might accidentally knock them over when they’re playing or be a bit too rough around them.

But, with consistent training, Springer Spaniels can quickly learn how to behave more calmly around kids of any age. 

It’s also important to remember to teach your children – and their friends – how to behave around your Springer Spaniel too. It works both ways! 

This is what children must not do around your Springer Spaniel:

Don’t Disturb Your Springer Spaniel At Mealtimes

Springer Spaniels are a greedy breed, who usually really love their food! This means that they can value it really highly, so don’t like being disturbed when they’re eating.

It’s best that the whole family leave them alone when they’re eating their meals or enjoying a tasty treat. 

Don’t Sit Or Lay On Your Springer Spaniel

Some children may be tempted to try and ride on a Springer Spaniel’s back as part of a game, or lay on top of them.

However, this is very dangerous for the dog as their muscles won’t be strong enough to hold the weight of even a small child.

It would also be dangerous for the child as they could fall off or cause the Springer Spaniel to even react if scared or hurt. 

Let Your Springer Spaniel Rest

Springer Spaniels have really high stamina levels so will often want to be on the go all day if you let them! However, it’s still important that they have time to rest too.

Encourage your kids to let them sleep and don’t disturb them when they do.

Don’t Pull Your Springer Spaniel’s Tail or Ears

Not all Springer Spaniels have full length tails, some may have been docked when they were puppies, especially if they’ve been bred as working gundogs.

However, children should never be allowed to pull their tails as this can hurt and startle them too.

Their long, wavy-haired ears can also be tempting for children to pull, but this shouldn’t be allowed either. 

Little boy hugging his Springer Spaniel outside in the snow with a speech bubble that says 'I love being with my family'
Boy With His Springer Spaniel

Treat Your Springer Spaniel Kindly

Although they tend to be a kind and patient breed, this doesn’t mean Springer Spaniels won’t growl or snap if they’re scared or being hurt.

They can form really strong bonds with the children in their family, but they won’t want to spend time with them if the kids frighten or hurt them.

Kids should never be allowed to hit, push, pull the fur, or handle the Springer Spaniel roughly. 

Are Springer Spaniels Good With Older People?

Springer Spaniels can be great with older people, provided that they’re still able to give them plenty of exercise.

They’re a very kind and loving breed who really enjoy spending as much time as possible with their owners.

This can be great if their owner has recently retired and has plenty of time to spend taking them out and about! 

However, they can be very strong and can pull on the leash a lot if they don’t get trained not to. This can make it more difficult for some older people to handle them when they’re out walking.

If a Springer Spaniel isn’t getting enough exercise regularly, they can become even more bouncy and boisterous because they have a lot of pent-up energy. This can be too much for some older people to deal with.

Provided an older person can give a Springer Spaniel enough physical exercise and mental stimulation each day to keep them happy, then they can live a great life alongside each other.

So there you have it! Springer Spaniels are good family dogs that love getting involved in everything their family is doing. This fun and excitable breed do best with families who are keen to include them as much as possible in their everyday lives. 

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