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Portuguese Water Dog

PortugeseWaterDog

A True Family Pet

Affectionate, Loves to swim, Working group

Portuguese Water Dogs are extraordinary pets. While it is interesting to learn about the breeding purpose of Portuguese Water Dogs, their genetics actually influence health, outward appearance and behavior. Some behaviors make the Portuguese Water Dog and some can be quite irritating! Understanding her unique needs will help you keep her healthy and will create a stronger bond between the two of you. Explore this page to learn more about where she came, which health conditions are a risk to her and how to keep her feeling her best.

Breed Details

Height:Male: 20-22"; Female: 17-20" Weight:Male: 42-55 lb; Female: 35-49 lb Lifespan:10-14 years

Size
4

1=small 5=large

Grooming requirements
2

1 = little grooming - 5 = much grooming

Energy level
3

1 = low energy - 5 = high energy

Ease of training
3

1 = difficult - 5 = easy

Affection toward owners
4

1 = independent - 5 = very affectionate

Friendliness toward strangers
2

1 = shy - 5 = very friendly

Grooming: Regular brushing and grooming is needed to keep her coat beautiful.

Dental: Portuguese Water Dogs generally have good teeth, and you can keep them perfect by brushing them at least twice a week!

Ear Care: Clean her ears weekly, even as a puppy. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!

Routine Care: She's a smart dog with lots of energy, so keep her mind and body active, or she'll get bored. That's when the naughty stuff starts. She loves the water, and swimming is a great form of exercise for your Portuguese Water Dog. She is an athletic dog that excels at dog sports like obedience, agility, flyball and rally.

She is people oriented and loyal. With enough exercise and a confident owner she is a calm and loving family member.

Positive Traits:

  • Easily motivated and trainable

  • Great with kids and other dogs: a true family pet

  • Highly active and eager to have a purpose

  • Hypoallergenic coat sheds very little

  • Lively, with a friendly personality

  • Loyal and easygoing with the people she knows

Negative Traits:

  • Requires vigorous, frequent exercise and space to run

  • Easily bored if not given something to do, which leads to barking and chewing

  • Can be rambunctious and rowdy, especially as a younger dog

  • Is a bit “mouthy”—likes to carry and chew things

  • Needs frequent attention from her family

  • Can be independent and strong-willed

Whether you are considering adding a new Portuguese Water Dog to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every Portuguese Water Dog will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. By exploring the health concerns specific to the Portuguese Water Dog you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. She’s counting on you to be her health expert.

Some health issues a Portuguese Water Dog might encounter:

Hypoadrenocorticism (Addison's)

Hip and Elbow Dysplasia

Mammary Tumors

Lymphoma

Bleeding Tumor

Eye Problems

The Portuguese Water Dog originated in Portugal and was breed to assist fisherman. Porties would herd fish, retrieve fallen equipment, and act as messengers between boats. PWDs are known to be excellent swimmers and divers. They were bred for their stamina, swimming ability, and weatherproof coats. The PWD can have one of two coat varieties; curly or wavy. The Portie is a highly intelligent, athletic, and spirited companion. With her even-tempered, outgoing, and amusing demeanor she’ll thrive in homes with active and fun-loving pet parents.

Consult with a veterinarian if your Portuguese Water Dog shows signs of the following:

  • General listlessness, droopy facial expression, vomiting, diarrhea

  • General reluctance to run or play

  • Swollen lymph nodes or glands, unexplained weight loss

  • Pale gums, labored breathing, weakness, or sudden collapse

  • Blinking, redness, pain or itchiness around the eyes

  • Cloudiness to eye lens

  • Redness, squinting or greenish eye discharge

  • Increased blinking, extra tears and squinting

  • Dilated pupils in daylight, or increased "eye shine" at night

  • Chronic vomiting or diarrhea

  • Bruises easily or bleeds a lot from a small wound

  • Excessive licking or chewing, pawing at face and/or ears, head shaking, face rubbing

  • Pain or straining to urinate, bloody urine

  • Any abnormal shaking, trembling, or excessive involuntary tremors

  • Underbite, drooling, dropping food

  • Dull coat, hair loss, sluggish, weight gain

  • Care

    Grooming: Regular brushing and grooming is needed to keep her coat beautiful.

    Dental: Portuguese Water Dogs generally have good teeth, and you can keep them perfect by brushing them at least twice a week!

    Ear Care: Clean her ears weekly, even as a puppy. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!

    Routine Care: She's a smart dog with lots of energy, so keep her mind and body active, or she'll get bored. That's when the naughty stuff starts. She loves the water, and swimming is a great form of exercise for your Portuguese Water Dog. She is an athletic dog that excels at dog sports like obedience, agility, flyball and rally.

  • Characteristics

    She is people oriented and loyal. With enough exercise and a confident owner she is a calm and loving family member.

    Positive Traits:

    • Easily motivated and trainable

    • Great with kids and other dogs: a true family pet

    • Highly active and eager to have a purpose

    • Hypoallergenic coat sheds very little

    • Lively, with a friendly personality

    • Loyal and easygoing with the people she knows

    Negative Traits:

    • Requires vigorous, frequent exercise and space to run

    • Easily bored if not given something to do, which leads to barking and chewing

    • Can be rambunctious and rowdy, especially as a younger dog

    • Is a bit “mouthy”—likes to carry and chew things

    • Needs frequent attention from her family

    • Can be independent and strong-willed

  • Health Concerns

    Whether you are considering adding a new Portuguese Water Dog to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every Portuguese Water Dog will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. By exploring the health concerns specific to the Portuguese Water Dog you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. She’s counting on you to be her health expert.

    Some health issues a Portuguese Water Dog might encounter:

    Hypoadrenocorticism (Addison's)

    Hip and Elbow Dysplasia

    Mammary Tumors

    Lymphoma

    Bleeding Tumor

    Eye Problems

  • History

    The Portuguese Water Dog originated in Portugal and was breed to assist fisherman. Porties would herd fish, retrieve fallen equipment, and act as messengers between boats. PWDs are known to be excellent swimmers and divers. They were bred for their stamina, swimming ability, and weatherproof coats. The PWD can have one of two coat varieties; curly or wavy. The Portie is a highly intelligent, athletic, and spirited companion. With her even-tempered, outgoing, and amusing demeanor she’ll thrive in homes with active and fun-loving pet parents.

  • Watch Out For

    Consult with a veterinarian if your Portuguese Water Dog shows signs of the following:

    • General listlessness, droopy facial expression, vomiting, diarrhea

    • General reluctance to run or play

    • Swollen lymph nodes or glands, unexplained weight loss

    • Pale gums, labored breathing, weakness, or sudden collapse

    • Blinking, redness, pain or itchiness around the eyes

    • Cloudiness to eye lens

    • Redness, squinting or greenish eye discharge

    • Increased blinking, extra tears and squinting

    • Dilated pupils in daylight, or increased "eye shine" at night

    • Chronic vomiting or diarrhea

    • Bruises easily or bleeds a lot from a small wound

    • Excessive licking or chewing, pawing at face and/or ears, head shaking, face rubbing

    • Pain or straining to urinate, bloody urine

    • Any abnormal shaking, trembling, or excessive involuntary tremors

    • Underbite, drooling, dropping food

    • Dull coat, hair loss, sluggish, weight gain

Portuguese Water Dog Discussions

Share your thoughts and experiences, ask questions, or just show your love for the Portuguese Water Dog breed here!

Select Another Breed

To view the sources for the information listed on this page, see our Dog Breed Guide Reference page.

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