Sponsored Links

Sussex Spaniel

He looks serious, but he is a cheerful and friendly family dog. He is calm, friendly and loyal.

Overall Status

Height 13 to 15 inches at the shoulder
Temperament Friendly, Merry, Even-Tempered
Weight 35 to 45 pounds
Life Expectancy 10 to 15 years
Coat Color Brown, Red
Barking Level Frequent

Quick Factors

Dog Friendly
Exercise Need
Grooming Needs
Strangers Friendly
Family Affectionate
Sponsored Links

Daily Care

Grooming Tips

Sussex Spaniels are moderate shedders and daily brushing will keep loose hair under control and keep the coat healthy. They only require trimming around the feet. Bathe a Sussex as needed, which will vary depending upon the individual dog's activity level.

Check the ears on a weekly basis for signs of infection, irritation, or wax build up. This is especially important because the long, heavy ears of Sussex do not allow proper air circulation, leaving them prone to infections. Cleanse regularly with a veterinarian-approved cleanser and cotton ball.

Brush the teeth at least once per week to prevent tartar buildup and fight gum disease. Additionally, nails should be trimmed once per month if the dog does not wear the toenails down naturally.

Exercise Tips

Because the Sussex Spaniel is a hunting breed, it requires a fair amount of daily exercise. Sussex Spaniels should be given a daily walk as well as plenty of outdoor play time. Lack of exercise for this breed can lead to the development of behavioral problems.

Feeding Tips

Given that the Sussex Spaniel is a medium-sized hunting breed, it is best to use a dog food formula that is specialized for active dogs.

This is a very slow-growing breed. The Sussex Spaniel should do well on high-quality dog food, whether commercially manufactured or home-prepared with your veterinarian’s supervision and approval. Any diet should be appropriate to the dog’s age (puppy, adult, or senior).

Intact Sussex are almost neveroverweight, as they tend to only eat as much as they need. Learn about whichhuman foodsare safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet.Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.

Health Tips

The average life span of the Sussex Spaniel is 12 to 14 years. Breed health concerns may include congenital deafness,ear infections, distichiasis, retinal dysplasia,hip dysplasia,hypothyroidism,patent ductus arteriosus,prostate cancer, pulmonary stenosis and Tetralogy of Fallot.


The Sussex Spaniel is a fast learner, but you do need to be calm and consistent in training this breed. These dogs respond to a firm pack leader and should be started with training and socialization early. Because the Sussex Spaniel is able to bark, you will need to focus on training him to respond to a “Hush” command or teach him that one bark is sufficient.

Sussex can be stubborn; they have long memories and will never forget nor forgive rough handling. Sussex owners should strive to convey to the dog clearly what they want, and give the dog lots of praise when he gets it right.


The Sussex Spaniel is a fairly rare breed. It was developed in the 1800s in Sussex, England. It is a small-game hunter and companion dog. The breed was probably developed from crosses of spaniels with hounds. The dogs were used as field hunting dogs. Their slow pace along with their fine nose, good strength and stamina made them popular for hunters on foot flushing and retrieving upland game.

The breed’s numbers plummeted during World War II. An English breeder by the name of Joy Freer is credited for saving the breed. Joy owned eight of these dogs which she saved and fed during the war. Most of today's Sussex Spaniels are direct descendants from her dogs.

The Sussex Spaniel was recognized by the AKC in 1884. It was one of the original nine breeds recognized by the AKC. Some of the Sussex Spaniel's talents include: tracking, hunting, retrieving and watchdog. It is the only spaniel to bay while hunting.

Picture & Video