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Portuguese Water Dog

General Description

Portuguese Water Dogs are medium-sized dogs weighing from 35 to 60 pounds. Males are 20 to 23 inches at the shoulder; females are smaller at 17 to 21 inches tall. The body is well-muscled and built for work. The head is longer than the muzzle and the ears are dropped.

General Health

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

Hereditary Illnesses

Portuguese Water Dogs are at risk of hip dysplasia, a crippling disorder of the hip socket that requires costly surgery to treat and often leaves the dog stricken with arthritis later in life. Additionally, the breed can be affected by a number of genetic eye abnormalities.

Character and Temperament

Quarrelsome, Docile, Impetuous, Obedient, Intelligent, Brave

Food

No special requirements

Exercise

Portuguese Water Dogs are energetic and need 30 minutes to an hour of vigorous exercise daily. They love swimming and make excellent jogging companions. Without proper exercise and mental stimulation, Portuguese Water Dogs can become destructive. They especially like to chew.

Grooming

The Portuguese Water Dog has a profuse single coat that can be either wavy or curly. They require regular bathing and brushing. This robust dog can be bathed as frequently as every week up to no longer than every 6 weeks.

Origin

Portuguese Water Dogs are originally from the Portuguese region of the Algarve, from where the breed expanded to all around Portugal's coast, where they were taught to herd fish into fishermen's nets, retrieve lost tackle or broken nets, and act as couriers from ship to ship, or ship to shore.

Stats

Average Dog Size

20-23

Average Dog Weight

41-59

Average Bitch Size

17-21

Average Bitch Weight

35-50

Average Life Expectancy

12-15


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