Clumber Spaniel is a rectangular-shaped dog, with a long body and short, thick legs. No one really knows where or how the Clumber Spaniel came to be. The breed got its name from Clumber Park in Nottinghamshire, England, where the Duke of Newcastle’s gamekeeper hunted with these dogs. The breed is also portrayed in many old paintings, some from the 1700s, looking remarkably like today’s Clumbers. The Basset Hound is thought to be one of the breeds used to develop the Clumber.
Standing 17 to 20 inches tall and weighing between 55 and 80 pounds, the Clumber Spaniel is a sturdy dog. He has a large head with dropped ears and large amber eyes. The tail is docked. The Clumber Spaniel’s coat is straight and flat, and the ears, belly, and legs are feathered. The Clumber Spaniel is white, with either lemon or orange markings on the ears, around the eyes, and at the base of the tail. This breed sheds year-round. To control some of the hair in the house, daily to every-other-day brushing is needed. The feathering on the belly and legs needs combing and brushing to keep it free of mats. It’s advisable to keep the feet trimmed for ease of cleaning. The heavy ears need regular cleaning to prevent problems.
The Clumber Spaniel is a slow, steady dog and is not the right breed for someone who wants a jogging partner. These dogs do need exercise, though, and enjoy walks and a game of fetch. The Clumber Spaniel is not a watchdog. He may initially be standoffish with strangers, but is affectionate and friendly with people he knows. Early, upbeat, and fun training is a good idea for all Clumbers. Avoid heavy-handed techniques and too much repetition.
This intelligent dog breed will shut down if training is too rough. Clumber Spaniels enjoy several dog sports, including agility, obedience, and hunt tests. The Clumber Spaniel loves to spend time with the family. Although he can be left alone occasionally, he does not like to be left at home alone for long hours every day. He is great with kids and loves to play games.
The Clumber Spaniel dog breed is also good with other dogs and pets. One drawback to the breed is the drool; Clumbers do drool, often in great quantities, especially when anticipating food or treats. Health concerns include hip dysplasia, allergies, and eye, ear, and back problems.
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The mild-mannered, almost imperturbable Clumber Spaniel sometimes puts on aristocratic airs, yet he also plays the clown, greeting people with two tennis balls stuffed into his mouth and his entire rear end wagging.
Adults spend much of their time lying around and looking sleepy, but this massive dog needs regular exercise to stay fit.
Outdoors he comes alive and moves with great determination — he has been called “a great bustling creature.”
Fetching and ball playing are good sources of exercise, though too much twisting and jumping could injure a disk in his long back.
Most Clumber Spaniels are friendly with strangers and other animals. This is not a guard dog.
Though stubborn, he does respond to persuasive, persistent, motivational obedience training, especially if it includes food. He resists harshness or force by refusing to move.
He does have a mischievous streak, but because of his easygoing approach to life, he is seldom a problem even when he doesn’t obey very quickly.