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seen at his best, though, no doubt, he can do excellent work as an ordinary retriever, and is often used as such.

But Nature (or Mr. McCarthy's art) has specially formed and endowed him for the amphibious sport indicated above, and has provided him with an excellent nose, an almost waterproof coat, the sporting instincts of a true son of Erin, and, above all, a disposition full of good sense ; he is high-couraged, and at the same time adaptable to the highest degree of perfection in training. His detractors often accuse him of being hard-mouthed, but this charge is not well founded. Many a dog which is used to hunt or find game as well as to retrieve it, will often kill a wounded bird or rabbit rather than allow it to escape, while there are many Irish Water Spaniels who, under normal circumstances, are just as tendermouthed as the most fashionable of black Retrievers. Besides his virtues in the field, the Irish Water Spaniel has the reputation-a very well-founded one-of being the best of pals.

Most people are well acquainted with the personal appearance of this quaint-looking dog. The points regarded as essential are as follows :

Colour-The colour should always be a rich dark liver or puce without any white at all. Any white except the slightest of " shirt fronts " should disqualify. The nose of course should conform to the coat in colour, and be dark brown. Head-The head should have a capacious skull, fairly but not excessively domed, with plenty of brain room. It should be surmounted with a regular topknot of curly hair, a most important and distinctive point. This topknot should never be square cut or like a poodle's wig, but should grow down to a well defined point between the eyes. Eyes-The eyes should be small, dark, and set obliquely, like a Chinaman's. Ears-The ears should be long, strong in leather, low set, heavily ringleted, and from 18 to 24 inches long, according to size. Muzzle and Jaw-The muzzle and jaw should be long and strong. There should be a decided " stop," but not so pronounced as to make the brows or forehead prominent. Neck-The neck should be fairly long and very muscular. Shoulders-The shoulders should be sloping. Most Irish Water Spaniels have bad, straight shoulders, a defect which should be bred out. Chest-The chest is deep, and usually rather narrow, but should not be so narrow as to constrict the heart and lungs. Back and Loins-The back and loins strong and arched. Fore-legs--The fore-legs straight and well boned. Heavily feathered or ringleted all over. Hind-legs-The hind-legs


with hocks set very low, stifles rather straight, feathered all over, except inside from the hocks down, which part should be covered with short hair (a most distinctive point). Feet-The feet large and rather

spreading as is proper for a water dog, well clothed with hair. SternThe stern covered with the shortest of hair, except for the first couple of inches next the buttocks, whiplike or stinglike (a most important point), and carried low, not like a hound's. Coat-The coat composed entirely of short crisp curls, not woolly like a Poodle's, and very dense. If left to itself, this coat mats or cords, but this is not permissible in show dogs. The hair on the muzzle and forehead below the topknot is quite short and smooth, as well as that on the stern. General Appearance-Is not remarkable for symmetry, but is quaint and intelligent looking. Height-The height should be between 21 and 23 inches.

III. THE ENGLISH WATER SPANIEL.-In the Kennel Club's Register of Breeds no place is allotted to this variety, all Water Spaniels other than Irish being classed together. Despite this absence of official recognition there is abundant evidence that a breed of Spaniels legitimately entitled to the designation of English Water Spaniels has been in existence for many years, in all probability a descendant of the old "Water-Dogge," an animal closely resembling the French " Barbet," the ancestor of the modern Poodle. They were even trimmed at times much in the same way as a Poodle is nowadays, as Markham gives precise directions for " the cutting or shearing him from the nauill downeward or backeward." The opinion expressed by the writer of The Sportsman's Cabinet, 1803, is that the breed originated from a cross between the large water dog and the Springing Spaniel, and this is probably correct, though Youatt, a notable authority, thinks that the cross was with an English Setter. Possibly some strains may have been established in this way, and not .differ very much in make and shape from those obtained from the cross with the Spaniel, as it is well known that Setters and Spaniels have a common origin.

In general appearance the dog resembles somewhat closely the Springer, except that he may be somewhat higher on the leg, and that his coat should consist of crisp, tight curls, almost like Astrakhan fur, everywhere except on h:s face,

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