Penny is a 10 year old female Irish Water Spaniel Cross. On first meeting, She was a little shy and nervous of me but after taking her for a walk on arrival home she soon became my best friend. As a typical water spaniel she is food and toy orientated. She has never chewed anything or destroyed her toys, she just likes to play with them. She can be a little eager when taking treats and will wolf her food down, I have been feeding her in a slow feeder bowl which does seem to of helped.
She does need to gain more weight, which I think will happen once she is in a stress free environment and potentially after being spayed. I have been giving her 2 good size meals as well as treats in between, she’s never had an upset stomach. On lead she is reasonably well behaved often walking by your side and looking up at you for reassurance. She shows no reaction towards people, cyclists, joggers or horse riders while out. The only time I struggle with her is when we see another dog or a cat.
She does then lunge and growl and try to get at the other animal. I luckily live in a relatively quiet area so it is very rare that I have had to experience that so she would probably be happier in a rural area where there are plenty of quiet country walks for her. I have tried to socialize her with other dogs whilst she has been with me but I have only managed to get her to happily walk with my elderly, very placid and non reactive springer as yet. She definitely needs to be in a pet free home and any introductions to other dogs need to be very careful. I have not taken her far in a car but the journeys we have done she has been fine with.
I have a crate in my boot which she has travelled in with no problem. She is an extremely loving dog, once you have her trust she will do anything to please. She is very active for an older dog so will need a good couple of walks a day as well as plenty of ball throwing in between. She loves treat filled Kong’s and likki mats. She will happily settle with you once you sit down though and loves a good tummy tickle. Although I have not been able to bring her into my house due to her issues with other animals, she has been very clean in her kennel so I have no doubt that she will be clean in a home environment.
Other concerning behavior she has shown has usually been when she is highly stressed, she has attacked her own reflection in a mirror and on the side of my car. I can only presume she has thought it was another dog but it would be worth keeping an eye on her as she settles as I can’t be certain as to whether she would be the same with oven doors, tv or windows. The only time I have seen her react negatively to a person was at the vets. She was already stressed due to the other dogs on the car park and did snap at the vet when she was examining her head area so I would recommend any new owner use a muzzle when taking her to a vets or possibly groomers, especially for the first time.
She has let me bath and towel dry her so I think once she trusts someone she will be fine. She does have an old head injury which has caused her to be slightly paralyzed on the right side of her face so sometimes her eye will not open fully. It doesn’t seem to bother her but is something to be aware of as she may not appreciate strangers around her head area. Ideally she would be better with an older couple or family who can provide her with a calm and relatively stress free home environment so that she can get all the love and attention she deserves in her retirement years. I hope this helps as she really does deserve an amazing home. You can’t help but fall in love with this girl.