Sussex Spaniel Overview
Named after their origin, the Sussex Spaniel hails from Sussex, England. They were designed as hunters of small game, slow and steady and able to work in any and all conditions. The breed has both spaniel and hound heritage, and will scent on trails like many hounds. The breed is also strong, sturdy and brave, with an overall look of bulk and compactness in one package.
Sussex Spaniel Characteristics
The Sussex is built very low to the ground like many other breeds of dog such as the Dachshund or Corgi. They feature feathering on their legs and body like many spaniels, and have a blocky shaped head similar in appearance to Clumber and English Springer Spaniels. The large droopy ears and docked tail give them an almost comical appearance, combined with spaniel sweetness.
Sussex Spaniel Temperament
Like most spaniels, the Sussex is calm and easygoing, however, Sussex can be hesitant to greet new people at times. With family, the breed is loving and loyal, easily clinging to family members and wanting to go where they go. The breed also does well with children and other animals. Unlike other spaniels, and due to his hound heritage, the Sussex may be more vocal than most.
Sussex Spaniel Care
On average, the Sussex lives 12 to 14 years. Several health concerns include deafness, ear infections, eye issues, heart diseases such as pulmonary stenosis and patent ductus arteriosis, and tetralogy of fallot along with hypothyroidism. Many of these diseases are congenital and present at birth.
Sussex Spaniel Coat
Regular brushing and trimming are needed to keep the coat of the Sussex in shape. They are prone to ear infections due to extensive feathering and dropped ears leading to trapped moisture. Their low body profile also means the feathering on the legs and body is more prone to gathering dirt and debris, and should be washed often.
Sussex Spaniel Training
Socialization and training from puppyhood are needed to prevent the Sussex from thinking he is in charge. Good socialization combined with an early training program will help the best features of the Sussex prevail. The breed is intelligent, and will quickly pick up on tasks once they are known to him.
Sussex Spaniel Activity
Unlike other spaniels, the Sussex is more low-key and does not need as much exercise. Daily walks and playtime are more than enough to provide physical exercise for the breed. However, mental tasks such as scenting, retrieval or other games will help keep him mentally happy and from becoming destructive.