In general, most breeders agree that the various breeds of the Sporting Spaniel family, with two possible exceptions, have a common source in their origin. Their name indicates that these dogs are native of Spain. From Spain the ancestral stock spread to other countries, especially England, where most of the present day breeds like Springers, Cockers, etc., were developed. Differences in the type of spaniel are attributed to different breeding methods.
The Clumber and the Irish Water Spaniel, which in reality is actually a retriever, are the two breeds that don’t share the common spaniel ancestry. Although little or nothing is actually known of their source or methodology used to breed them.
The Irish Water Spaniel is reported by some to have been developed in Ireland by one enthusiast, but the Clumber Spaniel is thought to carry much of the blood of the old Alpine Spaniel, a dog very similar in type to the Saint Bernard. Another version advanced and advocated bv Irish Water Spaniel authorities concerning the origin of that breed is that it resulted from a cross of the Irish Setter and believe it or not, the Poodle.
The various Spaniel types are as follows:
- Cocker Spaniel
- Clumber Spaniel
- English Springer Spaniel
- The Field Spaniel
- Irish Water Spaniel
- Sussex Spaniel
- The Welsh Springer Spaniel
- Welsh Terrier
- West Highland White Terrier (Argyllshire Terriers)