Clumber Spaniel

The Clumber Spaniel dog breed was originally created to find and retrieve game birds for hunters. Today, there is an effort to re-establish the Clumber Spaniel as an exceptional gundog, and many Clumber Spaniels compete in field trials. They can also be found in the show ring and competing in tracking, obedience, rally, and other dog sports. Last, but definitely not least, they make super family companions.

See all Clumber Spaniel characteristics below!

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Adoption
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Feeding a Puppy
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Breed Characteristics:

Adaptability
Adapts Well to Apartment Living5More info +

Contrary to popular belief, small size doesn't necessarily an apartment dog make — plenty of small dogs are too high-energy and yappy for life in a high-rise. Being quiet, low energy, fairly calm indoors, and polite with the other residents, are all good qualities in an apartment dog.

See Dogs Not Well Suited to Apartment Living

Good For Novice Owners5More info +

Some dogs are simply easier than others: they take to training better and are fairly easygoing. They're also resilient enough to bounce back from your mistakes or inconsistencies. Dogs who are highly sensitive, independent thinking, or assertive may be harder for a first-time owner to manage. You'll get your best match if you take your dog-owning experience into account as you choose your new pooch.

See Dogs That Are Good For Experienced Owners

Sensitivity Level4More info +

Some dogs will let a stern reprimand roll off their backs, while others take even a dirty look to heart. Low-sensitivity dogs, also called "easygoing," "tolerant," "resilient," and even "thick-skinned," can better handle a noisy, chaotic household, a louder or more assertive owner, and an inconsistent or variable routine. Do you have young kids, throw lots of dinner parties, play in a garage band, or lead a hectic life? Go with a low-sensitivity dog.

See Dogs That Have Low Sensitivity Levels

Tolerates Being Alone2More info +

Some breeds bond very closely with their family and are more prone to worry or even panic when left alone by their owner. An anxious dog can be very destructive, barking, whining, chewing, and otherwise causing mayhem. These breeds do best when a family member is home during the day or if you can take the dog to work.

See Dogs Poorly Suited To Be Alone

Tolerates Cold Weather5More info +

Breeds with very short coats and little or no undercoat or body fat, such as Greyhounds, are vulnerable to the cold. Dogs with a low cold tolerance need to live inside in cool climates and should have a jacket or sweater for chilly walks.

See Dogs Poorly Suited For Cold Weather

Tolerates Hot Weather2More info +

Dogs with thick, double coats are more vulnerable to overheating. So are breeds with short noses, like Bulldogs or Pugs, since they can't pant as well to cool themselves off. If you want a heat-sensitive breed, the dog will need to stay indoors with you on warm or humid days, and you'll need to be extra cautious about exercising your dog in the heat.

See Dogs Poorly Suited For Hot Weather

All Around Friendliness
Affectionate with Family5More info +

Some breeds are independent and aloof, even if they've been raised by the same person since puppyhood; others bond closely to one person and are indifferent to everyone else; and some shower the whole family with affection. Breed isn't the only factor that goes into affection levels; dogs who were raised inside a home with people around feel more comfortable with humans and bond more easily.

See Dogs Less Affectionate with Family

Incredibly Kid Friendly Dogs3More info +

Being gentle with children, sturdy enough to handle the heavy-handed pets and hugs they can dish out, and having a blasé attitude toward running, screaming children are all traits that make a kid-friendly dog. You may be surprised by who's on that list: Fierce-looking Boxers are considered good with children, as are American Staffordshire Terriers (aka pit bulls). Small, delicate, and potentially snappy dogs such as Chihuahuas aren't so family-friendly.

**All dogs are individuals. Our ratings are generalizations, and they're not a guarantee of how any breed or individual dog will behave. Dogs from any breed can be good with children based on their past experiences, training on how to get along with kids, and personality. No matter what the breed or breed type, all dogs have strong jaws, sharp pointy teeth, and may bite in stressful circumstances. Young children and dogs of any breed should always be supervised by an adult and never left alone together, period.

See Dogs Not Kid Friendly

Dog Friendly4More info +

Friendliness toward dogs and friendliness toward humans are two completely different things. Some dogs may attack or try to dominate other dogs even if they're love-bugs with people; others would rather play than fight; and some will turn tail and run. Breed isn't the only factor; dogs who lived with their littermates and mother until at least 6 to 8 weeks of age, and who spent lots of time playing with other dogs during puppyhood, are more likely to have good canine social skills.

See Dogs That Are Not Dog Friendly

Friendly Toward Strangers3More info +

Stranger-friendly dogs will greet guests with a wagging tail and a nuzzle; others are shy, indifferent, or even aggressive. However, no matter what the breed, a dog who was exposed to lots of different types, ages, sizes, and shapes of people as a puppy will respond better to strangers as an adult.

See Dogs That Are More Shy

Health Grooming
Amount Of Shedding5More info +

If you're going to share your home with a dog, you'll need to deal with some level of dog hair on your clothes and in your house. However, shedding does vary greatly among the breeds: Some dogs shed year-round, some "blow" seasonally -- produce a snowstorm of loose hair -- some do both, and some shed hardly at all. If you're a neatnik you'll need to either pick a low-shedding breed, or relax your standards.

See Dogs That Shed Very Little

Drooling Potential5More info +

Drool-prone dogs may drape ropes of slobber on your arm and leave big, wet spots on your clothes when they come over to say hello. If you've got a laid-back attitude toward slobber, fine; but if you're a neatnik, you may want to choose a dog who rates low in the drool department.

See Dogs That Are Not Big Droolers

Easy To Groom1More info +

Some breeds are brush-and-go dogs; others require regular bathing, clipping, and other grooming just to stay clean and healthy. Consider whether you have the time and patience for a dog that needs a lot of grooming, or the money to pay someone else to do it.

See Dogs That Require More Grooming

General Health2More info +

Due to poor breeding practices, some breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, such as hip dysplasia. This doesn't mean that every dog of that breed will develop those diseases; it just means that they're at an increased risk. If you're buying a puppy, it's a good idea to find out which genetic illnesses are common to the breed you're interested in, so you can ask the breeder about the physical health of your potential pup's parents and other relatives.

See Dogs More Prone To Health Problems

Potential For Weight Gain5More info +

Some breeds have hearty appetites and tend to put on weight easily. As in humans, being overweight can cause health problems in dogs. If you pick a breed that's prone to packing on pounds, you'll need to limit treats, make sure he gets enough exercise, and measure out his daily kibble in regular meals rather than leaving food out all the time.

Size3More info +

Dogs come in all sizes, from the world's smallest pooch, the Chihuahua, to the towering Great Dane, how much space a dog takes up is a key factor in deciding if he is compatible with you and your living space. Large dog breeds might seem overpowering and intimidating but some of them are incredibly sweet! Take a look and find the right large dog for you!

See Medium Dogs

See Small Dogs

Trainability
Easy To Train4More info +

Easy to train dogs are more adept at forming an association between a prompt (such as the word "sit"), an action (sitting), and a consequence (getting a treat) very quickly. Other dogs need more time, patience, and repetition during training. Many breeds are intelligent but approach training with a "What's in it for me?" attitude, in which case you'll need to use rewards and games to teach them to want to comply with your requests.

See Dogs That Are Challenging To Train

Intelligence3More info +

Dogs who were bred for jobs that require decision making, intelligence, and concentration, such as herding livestock, need to exercise their brains, just as dogs who were bred to run all day need to exercise their bodies. If they don't get the mental stimulation they need, they'll make their own work -- usually with projects you won't like, such as digging and chewing. Obedience training and interactive dog toys are good ways to give a dog a brain workout, as are dog sports and careers, such as agility and search and rescue.

See Dogs That Have Low Intelligence

Potential For Mouthiness5More info +

Common in most breeds during puppyhood and in retriever breeds at all ages, mouthiness means a tendency to nip, chew, and play-bite (a soft, fairly painless bite that doesn't puncture the skin). Mouthy dogs are more likely to use their mouths to hold or "herd" their human family members, and they need training to learn that it's fine to gnaw on chew toys, but not on people. Mouthy breeds tend to really enjoy a game of fetch, as well as a good chew on a chew toy that's been stuffed with kibble and treats.

Prey Drive5More info +

Dogs that were bred to hunt, such as terriers, have an inborn desire to chase and sometimes kill other animals. Anything whizzing by — cats, squirrels, perhaps even cars — can trigger that instinct. Dogs that like to chase need to be leashed or kept in a fenced area when outdoors, and you'll need a high, secure fence in your yard. These breeds generally aren't a good fit for homes with smaller pets that can look like prey, such as cats, hamsters, or small dogs. Breeds that were originally used for bird hunting, on the other hand, generally won't chase, but you'll probably have a hard time getting their attention when there are birds flying by.

See Dogs That Have Low Prey Drive

Tendency To Bark Or Howl1More info +

Some breeds sound off more often than others. When choosing a breed, think about how the dog vocalizes — with barks or howls — and how often. If you're considering a hound, would you find their trademark howls musical or maddening? If you're considering a watchdog, will a city full of suspicious "strangers" put him on permanent alert? Will the local wildlife literally drive your dog wild? Do you live in housing with noise restrictions? Do you have neighbors nearby?

See Dogs That Are Mostly Quiet

Wanderlust Potential4More info +

Some breeds are more free-spirited than others. Nordic dogs such as Siberian Huskies were bred to range long distances, and given the chance, they'll take off after anything that catches their interest. And many hounds simply must follow their noses, or that bunny that just ran across the path, even if it means leaving you behind.

See Dogs Less Prone To Wander

Exercise Needs
Energy Level3More info +

High-energy dogs are always ready and waiting for action. Originally bred to perform a canine job of some sort, such as retrieving game for hunters or herding livestock, they have the stamina to put in a full workday. They need a significant amount of exercise and mental stimulation, and they're more likely to spend time jumping, playing, and investigating any new sights and smells. Low-energy dogs are the canine equivalent of a couch potato, content to doze the day away. When picking a breed, consider your own activity level and lifestyle, and think about whether you'll find a frisky, energetic dog invigorating or annoying.

See Dogs That Have Low Energy

Intensity1More info +

A vigorous dog may or may not be high-energy, but everything he does, he does with vigor: he strains on the leash (until you train him not to), tries to plow through obstacles, and even eats and drinks with great big gulps. These dynamos need lots of training to learn good manners, and may not be the best fit for a home with young kids or someone who's elderly or frail. A low-vigor dog, on the other hand, has a more subdued approach to life.

See Dogs With Low Intensity

Exercise Needs2More info +

Some breeds do fine with a slow evening stroll around the block. Others need daily, vigorous exercise -- especially those that were originally bred for physically demanding jobs, such as herding or hunting. Without enough exercise, these breeds may put on weight and vent their pent-up energy in ways you don't like, such as barking, chewing, and digging. Breeds that need a lot of exercise are good for outdoorsy, active people, or those interested in training their dog to compete in a high-energy dog sport, such as agility.

See Dogs That Don't Need Tons of Exercise

Potential For Playfulness5More info +

Some dogs are perpetual puppies -- always begging for a game -- while others are more serious and sedate. Although a playful pup sounds endearing, consider how many games of fetch or tag you want to play each day, and whether you have kids or other dogs who can stand in as playmates for the dog.

See Dogs That Are Less Playfull

Vital Stats:

Dog Breed Group: Sporting Dogs
Height: 1 foot, 5 inches to 1 foot, 8 inches tall at the shoulder
Weight: 55 to 85 pounds
Life Span: 12 to 12 years
  • With his large head, low body, and substantial build, the Clumber Spaniel is often described as a dog who plods along with no great speed, agility, or energy, but that description doesn't do him justice. It's true that he's a slow worker, but he has power and endurance, as well as great enthusiasm.

    He comes alive when he hits bird scent and is painstakingly thorough in exploring it until he either finds his prey or decides to move on. He's a perfect choice for the hunter who wants to enjoy his sport at a relaxed pace with a dog who will stay close at hand.

    The Clumber works at a trot and is capable of going all day long at this pace. He wasn't bred to be a water retriever, but most Clumbers swim well and their heavy coat protects them from cold water. Those used as duck dogs don't have any problem breaking ice to retrieve their game.

    This medium-size dog is the heaviest of the spaniel breeds with a long body that helps him move through underbrush. (That long body also gives him a surprisingly far reach when it comes to food on kitchen counters.) He's characterized by a massive head, dark amber eyes, and a medium-length white coat with lemon or orange markings.

    Calm and sedate, the Clumber is a sweet and gentle dog who enjoys the company of his people. He bonds to the entire family but sometimes chooses one person as his special favorite. Nicknamed the "retired gentleman's spaniel," he's a good choice for first-time dog owners because of his easygoing temperament.

    The Clumber will adjust his activity level to your needs. His sporting heritage means he enjoys a good walk and can excel in the field or at a variety of dog sports, but he's also quite fond of hearth and home, especially if he can nap on top of your feet.

    The Clumber is playful and intelligent, mischievous and stubborn, dignified and charming. A whole host of such adjectives have been applied to this breed, but suffice it to say that he's a much-loved member of the family who thrives on attention. Children who play ball with him will find him to be a tireless friend.

    He's happy to occupy himself by carrying things around in his mouth, a habit he begins in earliest puppyhood and continues throughout his days. It's not unusual to see him wriggle his whole body as he greets someone, all the while with a favorite toy or other object in his mouth.

    The Clumber is not an easy-care dog, but neither does he require the same devotion to grooming as, say, a Poodle or Afghan Hound. He does shed, sometimes heavily, and needs daily brushing if you want to keep loose hair off your clothes and furniture. Nor is he recommended for the neat at heart. Clumber Spaniels shed, slobber, and track dirt into the house. If any type of mess bothers you, choose a different breed.

    Clumber Spaniels need daily exercise, which can be satisfied by one 20- or 30-minute walk or a 15- or 20-minute walk or playtime twice a day. While Clumbers make excellent walking companions, they're not suited to accompanying joggers. The breed has a high incidence of hip dysplasia, and jogging can put unnecessary strain on their joints.

    Training is fairly easy with this intelligent breed, although there are exceptions to every rule. In general, however, Clumbers respond well to praise and positive reinforcement in the form of food rewards or play. Their gentle dispositions can be easily damaged if they are corrected harshly. Instead, be fair and consistent in what you ask, and reward him every time you see him doing something you like.

    People who love Clumbers say that once you have one, you'll never want to be without one. Whether he's your hunting buddy or a family friend, the Clumber will return your affection and loyalty many times over — and will warm your feet as part of the bargain.

  • Highlights

    • Clumber Spaniels are rare and finding a breeder who has puppies may take time. Expect to spend time on a waiting list.
    • Clumber Spaniels can be destructive whether through boredom or play. Their strong jaws allow them to demolish many household items with ease and they can destroy many so-called indestructible toys. It is important to take this into consideration before purchasing a Clumber and to take the time to dogproof your house.
    • Clumber Spaniels are notorious counter surfers. They may be short, but their long bodies enable them to reach even the deepest of counter spaces.
    • Clumbers can figure out how to break into refrigerators, cupboards, and drawers.
    • Clumber Spaniels are not for neat freaks. They are heavy shedders and require daily grooming to keep their coats healthy and free of dead hair. Even then, you will find their hair in every part of the house.
    • Clumbers slobber.
    • Clumber Spaniels are an excellent breed for first-time dog owners. They are generally an easy breed to care for and are only moderately stubborn. They have a sweet temperament, and their intelligence makes them a wonderful companion.
    • Clumber Spaniels need 20 to 30 minutes of exercise daily, broken up into two or three short walks or a single walk.
    • It is very important to maintain your Clumber Spaniel at a healthy weight to avoid stress on his joints. The breed has a high incidence of hip dysplasia and can become obese very easily.
    • Clumber Spaniels do very well in apartments if their exercise needs are met.
    • Clumber Spaniels generally do very well with children and other dogs and animals, but it is still important to properly socialize your puppy to prevent timidity.
    • To get a healthy dog, never buy a puppy from an irresponsible breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Look for a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs to make sure they're free of genetic diseases that they might pass onto the puppies, and that they have sound temperaments.
  • History

    The romantic story behind the Clumber's origin is that the French Duc de Noailles shipped his entire kennel of spaniels to the Duke of Newcastle in England to save his prized dogs during the French Revolution.

    Little evidence has been found to support this story, however, and a 1788 painting of the Duke of Newcastle — a year before the French Revolution — depicts him with several white and lemon dogs who clearly have the look of today's Clumber. And the spaniels take their name from the Duke's estate, Clumber Park, in Nottingham. However they got there, the Duke's gamekeeper, William Mansell, is credited with shaping the breed as we know it today.

    The Clumber Park Spaniel was quite popular with noble hunters in the mid-19th century. They even had a royal fan in Edward, Prince of Wales (later Edward VII), who kept them at his Sandringham House estate.

    The first Clumber Spaniel was imported into North America in 1844 by a British officer, Lieutenant Venables, who was stationed in Nova Scotia, Canada. The first American Kennel Club registration of a Clumber Spaniel, Bustler, was in 1878, but the Clumber Spaniel Club of America wasn't founded until 1972. The Clumber is a rare breed, ranking 121st among the 155 breeds and varieties recognized by the AKC.

  • Size

    Male Clumbers stand 18 to 20 inches at the shoulder and weigh 70 to 85 pounds; females are 17 to 19 inches and weigh 55 to 70 pounds.

  • Personality

    The Clumber personality ranges from reserved and dignified to "I love everyone." In the field they are quiet workers, and you will find them to be quiet at home as well. They will alert you to danger but aren't indiscriminate barkers.

    Although they have a reputation for being sweet and gentle, they can also be determined and self-willed. Spaniels like to get their way. And adolescent male Clumbers can be hooligans. They can become pushy and possessive if you don't establish your leadership early on. Be kind but firm with them, never harsh. That will only make them dig in their paws. Instead, establish clear rules and enforce them so your Clumber knows what you expect.

    Clumbers can develop bad habits such as counter surfing, fridge raiding, and chewing; in fact, they're sometimes referred to as Scavenger Spaniels. They'll steal food from little kids — they probably originated that saying about taking candy from a baby — so crate them while your child is eating. Remember, if they can reach a kitchen counter, they can reach your child's high chair.

    Correct these behaviors early — even if they make you laugh — before they become ingrained. Keep food and trash well out of reach, and put child locks on cabinets to keep your Clumber from breaking into the pantry. When you see him chewing on something he shouldn't, calmly take it away and replace it with a sturdy chew toy.

    Temperament is affected by a number of factors, including heredity, training, and socialization. Puppies with nice temperaments are curious and playful, willing to approach people and be held by them. Choose the middle-of-the-road puppy, not the one who's beating up his littermates or the one who's hiding in the corner.

    Always meet at least one of the parents — usually the mother is the one who's available — to ensure that they have nice temperaments that you're comfortable with. Meeting siblings or other relatives of the parents is also helpful for evaluating what a puppy will be like when he grows up.

    Like every dog, the Clumber needs early socialization — exposure to many different people, sights, sounds, and experiences — when they're young. Socialization helps ensure that your Clumber puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog.

    Enrolling him in a puppy kindergarten class is a great start. Inviting visitors over regularly, and taking him to busy parks, stores that allow dogs, and on leisurely strolls to meet neighbors will also help him polish his social skills.

  • Health

    Clumbers are generally healthy, but like all breeds, they're prone to certain health conditions. Not all Clumbers will get any or all of these diseases, but it's important to be aware of them if you're considering this breed.

    If you're buying a puppy, find a good breeder who will show you health clearances for both your puppy's parents. Health clearances prove that a dog has been tested for and cleared of a particular condition.

    In Clumbers, you should expect to see health clearances from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) for hip dysplasia (with a score of fair or better), elbow dysplasia, hypothyroidism, and von Willebrand's disease; from Auburn University for thrombopathia; and from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF) certifying that eyes are normal. You can confirm health clearances by checking the OFA web site (offa.org).

    • Hip Dysplasia: This is a heritable condition in which the thighbone doesn't fit snugly into the hip joint. Some dogs show pain and lameness on one or both rear legs, but you may not notice any signs of discomfort in a dog with hip dysplasia. As the dog ages, arthritis can develop. X-ray screening for hip dysplasia is done by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals or the University of Pennsylvania Hip Improvement Program. Dogs with hip dysplasia should not be bred. If you're buying a puppy, ask the breeder for proof that the parents have been tested for hip dysplasia and are free of problems. Hip dysplasia is hereditary, but it can also be triggered by environmental factors, such as letting a puppy gain too much weight too quickly or injuries incurred from jumping or falling on slick floors. Because of the breed's short stature, Clumber hips do not look normal compared to those of other breeds, so a veterinarian looking at their hip x-rays must take that into account. That said, Clumbers have a high incidence of hip dysplasia, so it's essential for them to maintain a healthy weight to avoid stressing their joints. Your Clumber is highly likely to have hip dysplasia, but if you don't let him get overweight it probably won't cause any serious problems. Chondroitin sulfate/glucosamine supplements can be useful in managing any discomfort from hip dysplasia.
    • Hypothyroidism: Hypothyroidism is caused by a deficiency of thyroid hormone and may produce signs that include infertility, obesity, mental dullness, and lack of energy. The dog's fur may become coarse and brittle and begin to fall out, while the skin becomes tough and dark. It can be managed very well with a thyroid replacement pill daily. Medication must continue throughout the dog's life.
    • Ectropion: This defect is the rolling out or sagging of the eyelid, usually the lower one, leaving the eye exposed and prone to irritation and infections such as conjunctivitis. Severe cases can be treated with surgery.
    • Entropion: This defect, which is usually obvious by six months of age, causes the eyelid to roll inward, irritating or injuring the eyeball. One or both eyes can be affected. If your Clumber has entropion, you may notice him rubbing at his eyes. The condition can be corrected surgically, but wait until your Clumber is fully grown. Once his head finishes developing, at two to three years of age, the condition may correct on its own.
    • Ear infections: Clumber Spaniels can be prone to ear infections because their floppy ears trap moisture. The warm, moist environment inside the ear is ideal for bacterial growth. Check ears regularly for signs of infection such as a bad odor, redness, or tenderness. The Clumber with an ear infection may also shake his head frequently or paw at it. Take him to your veterinarian for a diagnosis. Clumbers with frequent ear infections may have food allergies.
  • Care

    Clumber Spaniels can do well in apartments or condos if their low to moderate exercise requirements of a 20- to 30-minute daily walk or playtime are met.

    That said, don't forget that they're essentially a large dog. If you live in a fifth-floor walkup, will you be able to carry your adult Clumber up and down the stairs when he gets sick or too old to climb them? It's something to think about.

    Generally, Clumbers are quiet and are not known as a breed that barks a lot. A fenced yard keeps them safe from loss or theft.

    Besides walks, Clumbers enjoy playing fetch. When they're puppies, however, it's important to restrict any running on hard surfaces or jumping on and off furniture or sliding around on slick floors and crashing into the wall. All of those activities can injure their still-developing joints. Your Clumber pup will chase a ball for as long as you'll let him, even if he's tired, so it's up to you to limit his activity. Give him a break after the fifth fetch or so.

    Crate training
    is a wonderful tool to help in house training, and a crate also provides a safe haven for your Clumber Spaniel when you are gone. Clumbers are known for their ability to get into things, even as adults, so this ensures that both your dog and your belongings are safe when you are away.

    Some Clumbers are prone to colitis, inflammation of the large bowel. If your Clumber has soft stools that contain spots of blood or mucus but otherwise appears healthy, he may have colitis.

    Put him on a 24-hour fast, make sure he has access to plenty of water, then give him bland meals such as chicken and rice for the next couple of days. Gradually reintroduce his normal diet. If colitis recurs frequently, ask your veterinarian about giving your Clumber a diet formulated for dogs with sensitive digestive systems.

  • Feeding

    Recommended daily amount: 2 to 2.5 cups of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two meals. Puppies may eat as much as 4 to 6 cups a day.

    NOTE: How much your adult dog eats depends on his size, age, build, metabolism, and activity level. Dogs are individuals, just like people, and they don't all need the same amount of food. It almost goes without saying that a highly active dog will need more than a couch potato dog. The quality of dog food you buy also makes a difference — the better the dog food, the further it will go toward nourishing your dog and the less of it you'll need to shake into your dog's bowl.

    If you're unsure whether he's overweight, give him the hands-on test. Place your hands on his back, thumbs along the spine and the fingers spread downward. You should be able to feel but not see his ribs. If you can't feel the ribs, he needs less food and a longer walk.

    For more on feeding your Clumber, see our guidelines for buying the right food, feeding your puppy, and feeding your adult dog.

  • Coat Color And Grooming

    The Clumber Spaniel has a soft, medium-length coat that's thick and straight, lying flat on the body. The ears, legs, and belly have moderate feathering — a longer fringe of hair — and there's a frill below the neck, longer hair that's sometimes referred to as an apron. Clumbers are easy to prepare for the show ring because they're supposed to look natural, with no shaving or trimming except to tidy the feet, rear legs, and tail.

    Their bodies are primarily white, usually with lemon or orange markings around the eyes and on the head or ears. Sometimes they have freckles on their muzzle — the area of the head in front of the eyes — and on the legs, body, and at the base of the tail. Clumbers who will be show dogs should have as few markings on the body as possible, but freckles and markings on the body don't affect their ability to be a family friend.

    Clumber Spaniels are considered to be average to heavy shedders, and there will be days when it seems as if it's snowing Clumber hair in your home. Daily brushing is a must to keep loose hair to a minimum. Other than that, all you really need to do is trim the hair on their rear legs and tail and between the pads of the feet to keep them looking neat. Ask a breeder or groomer to show you how.

    A Clumber Spaniel's white coat can hold a significant amount of dirt and debris, so feel free to bathe him as often as you think necessary. As long as you're using a shampoo made for dogs, regular baths won't affect his coat except to make it look clean instead of dingy. Just be sure to rinse thoroughly to prevent itchiness from shampoo residue.

    Begin accustoming your Clumber to being brushed and examined when he's a puppy. Handle his paws frequently — dogs are touchy about their feet — and look inside his mouth and ears. Make grooming a positive experience filled with praise and rewards, and you'll lay the groundwork for easy veterinary exams and other handling when he's an adult.

    As you groom, check for sores, rashes, or signs of infection such as redness, tenderness, or inflammation on the skin, in the ears, nose, mouth, and eyes, and on the feet. Your careful weekly exam will help you spot potential health problems early.

    The Clumber Spaniel is prone to ear infections, so preventive care is important. This can be as simple as drying your dog's ears after swimming and checking the ears regularly for signs of infection such as a bad smell, redness, or tenderness.

    The Clumber with an ear infection may also shake his head frequently or scratch at his ears. Gently wipe out the ear — only the part you can see — with a cotton ball moistened with a cleaning solution recommended by your veterinarian. Never stick cotton swabs or anything else into the ear canal or you might damage it.

    Brush your Clumber's teeth at least two or three times a week to remove tartar buildup and the bacteria that lurk inside it. Daily brushing is even better if you want to prevent gum disease and bad breath.

    Trim nails regularly if your dog doesn't wear them down naturally. If you can hear them clicking on the floor, they're too long. Short, neatly trimmed nails keep your legs from getting scratched when your Clumber enthusiastically jumps up to greet you.

  • Children And Other Pets

    It's been said that Clumbers and kids go together like ice cream and cake. Clumbers generally love kids, especially kids who throw a ball for them to fetch. They are usually protective of children in the family and are more likely to walk away than to snap or growl if they're getting unwanted attention from a child.

    If your Clumber puppy is raised with your toddler, you'll probably see a beautiful friendship blossom. The toddler may accidentally get flattened once in a while by an exuberant young Clumber, but he'll be licked until he's back on his feet.

    Nonetheless, dogs are individuals, just like people. Not every Clumber who is raised with kids will take to them, especially if the kids are poorly behaved. Adult Clumbers who haven't been brought up with kids may do best in families with older children who understand how to interact with dogs.

    Some Clumbers may be reticent around children they don't know, and like most dogs, they don't like being charged by tiny toddlers — or anyone else. Protect your dog from these assaults, and teach the children you encounter how to approach a dog safely.

    Always supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent any biting or ear or tail pulling on the part of either party. Teach your child never to approach any dog while he's eating or to try to take the dog's food away. No dog should ever be left unsupervised with a child.

    Clumber Spaniels also do very well with other dogs and animals, especially if they are raised with them. They are birdy, however, and you should protect pet birds until you're sure your Clumber understands they're off-limits.

    Some spaniels can learn that fact, if they're taught from puppyhood, but don't assume that it will happen with every dog. You may always need to keep the two separated, if only so your Clumber doesn't pull your parakeet's tail or your parrot won't take a bite out of your Clumber's sensitive nose.

  • Rescue Groups

    Clumbers are often purchased without any clear understanding of what goes into owning one. There are many Clumbers in need of adoption and or fostering. There are a number of rescues that we have not listed. If you don't see a rescue listed for your area, contact the national breed club or a local breed club and they can point you toward a Clumber rescue.