The Sussex Spaniel is a breed of dog developed in Sussex in southern England. It is a low, compact spaniel and is similar in appearance to the Clumber Spaniel. They can be slow paced, but can have a clownish and energetic temperament.
Illustration courtesy of the Swedish Kennel Club
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The Sussex Spaniel was within the first ten breeds to be acknowledged by the AKC when it was formed in 1884.
This compact, fun-loving spaniel was bred in Sussex, England (and from there the breed gets its name, as well!) in the late 1700’s. Originally a companion for hunters, the breed experienced a resurgence in popularity in the early 2000’s. However, they are still hard to come by! In the 2017 AKC breed popularity rankings, the Sussex ranked as number 161 out of 190.
As you might expect given the Sussex’s short stature, they were bred to flush birds from the brush; their sturdy bodies allow them to power through the underbrush. Today, Sussex spaniels are often kept as companions, and it’s not hard to see why. With soft wavy fur that requires regular brushing, floppy ears, and sad eyes, this pup’s expression belies the breed’s nature. Easygoing, friendly and affectionate, the Sussex Spaniel is an ideal family dog. Though they enjoy play fetch and taking walks, they only need a medium level of activity to keep them content– however, they have an excellent nose that can make them prone to leash pulling. If you are looking for a calm pet that will get along with people from all walks of life, but still be an excellent watchdog, this may be the dog for you!