A hunter’s companion, bred to find, flush, and fetch game, the spaniel’s exact origin is unknown.
Some scholars speculate the type originated in Spain, hence the name. Other research suggests that they originated in Asia and migrated west, to Europe and beyond. Spaniels go back to at least the 14th century, but their ancestry may be even older.
Today, the AKC recognizes the following spaniel-type breeds:
- American Water Spaniel
- Boykin Spaniel
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
- Clumber Spaniel
- Cocker Spaniel
- English Cocker Spaniel
- English Springer Spaniel
- English Toy Spaniel
- Field Spaniel
- Irish Water Spaniel
- Nederlandse Kooikerhondje
- Sussex Spaniel
- Welsh Springer Spaniel
With their pendulous ears, gentle expressions, and affectionate temperaments, it is easy to develop a modern-day love affair with the dogs of this ancient breed family. Here are a few videos that showcase why it’s so easy to love a spaniel.
1. The Sheet Cake
Behold, three Cocker Spaniels enjoying a giant sheet cake in the shape of a bone. Happy Birthday, Mocha. This video is a gift to us all, which kind of makes it feel like it’s our birthday, too. That Mocha, she truly is a jolly good fellow.
2. Good Shake
Somebody call Taylor Swift because this Clumber Spaniel is shakin’ it off! It’s possible the T. Swift song was actually inspired by this very video. Oh yeah, but Taylor likes cats. So never mind. At least we know another celebrity, by the name of Oprah, is a dog lover and, in fact, owns a few spaniels herself. Now that’s the ultimate consolation.
3. Goodbye to the “Haters”
The caption of this video says it all. This sassy Boykin Spaniel, Roux, is waving “bye” to his “haters.” That’s a savage move, Roux. But to be honest, we respect it.
4. The Siren
Somebody call an ambulance! Because the sight of Duke the Cav stopped our hearts! All “A Night at the Roxbury” jokes aside, this video of Duke howling like a siren is hilarious. What a sweet little goofball.
5. Ring My Bell
Um, who is working the front desk? That’s the question Ebba the Nederlandse Kooikerhondje must be asking herself. Ring bell for service, it’s a simple concept people! It’s already past check-in time. Doesn’t anyone work in this town?
6. Big Grin
If you’re having a bad day, this is the perfect video to watch. Audrey the Field Spaniel is training to be a service dog and has the biggest smile on her face while doing it. Our hearts just grew three sizes.
7. Cool Shades
If Roux the Boykin Spaniel is waving goodbye to his haters, then Audrey the Field Spaniel is blocking out her haters with these cool shades! But it’s hard to imagine either of these dogs having haters. How could anyone come remotely close to not liking these sublime creatures? It’s definitely all love.
8. Ribbit Ribbit
Oh man, Alice the Cav is a spectacular Instagram account that is chock full of cuteness. In this video, the most adorable little Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppies are wearing green little booties and hopping around like little frogs! Some people think they’re funny looking, but booties do serve an important purpose — they help protect a dog’s paw pads from snow, ice, and salt during cold weather.
9. The Wind in His Fur
To round out this video roundup, here is a majestic Clumber Spaniel enjoying a summer boat ride. The wind blowing in this Clumber Spaniel’s fur in this video is truly the wind beneath our wings.
Have a spaniel in your life that you want to shower with some love (as if you don’t already)? Check out our breed-specific products in the AKC Shop! We have a spaniel spaniel mug for you, and toys, games, and more for your pup!