Generally about the breed

Portuguese Water Dog is a very old breed. There is evidence to suggest that it can be dated back to approximately 600 century BC.The Portuguese water dog may have been the Roman Empire "Lion Dog". In 1297 a monk wrote about how a sailor was rescued from a deep lake outside a Portuguese village of a dog with black, wiry, long hair, cut from last rib and a crest on the tip of the tail. In the book "famine Prevention", published in 1621 by the English writer Gervase Markham, he describes in detail the breed. Water Dog is also painted by the artist Reingale in the year 1803.

A photo from the book "famine Prevention"

A photo from the book "famine Prevention"

The breed is believed to come from the interior of Asia when it landed in Portugal, where its desire for water work was taken advantage of and developed by the fishermen. They guarded their master's boat and gear, and received the same pay as an adult fisherman, which were fish. When it wasn´t fishing season the dogs were together with sheep and fed theirself mainly on wild rabbits.

In the past it was a common sight to see the Portuguese water dogs on the fishing boats around the Portuguese peninsula. Nowadays they are in greatest number in the Algarve. Previously, each ship had one or more water dogs proudly standing in the bow, careful when the fishing nets was hauled aboard. The number of water dogs were determined by the size of boats.The dogs waited patiently for the fish to try to escape, as they without command jumped into the water to feetch the fleeing fish. These admirable divining skills was also used to retrieve broken lines and lost gear, down to a depth of 4 meters. They also used to carry messages between boats and between boats and the shore. Distances of 8 km is documented.

During this time, the Portuguese water dog had the opportunity to mix herself with other races in England and Ireland. It is anticipated that the water dogs are the progenitor of the old English retrievrarna, flat and curly coated retriever. In Ireland, it influenced the today's Kerry Blue Terrier. In the 1600's and 1700's Portuguese fishermen were fishing in the rich fishing grounds off Newfoundland. When the dogs were at shore they mated with the native females, which the Indians had. Then the offspring of these dogs were very happy in the water work, lhe Indians let them breed with each other and a new race arose the St. John-dog. After the English mixed in St. Bernads dogs arose the modern Newfoundland dog. This dog was too big and clumsy to use for water work so they mixed them with the breed spaniel and Labrador Retriever was born.

The Portuguese water dog is believed to be involved in all water-retrieving breeds. In the 1800s the technology improved and wireless communication was used between ships and the shore, water dog was no longer necessary in the same way as before. This meant that the number of individuals dropped dramatically. In 1903, the estimated number of Portuguese water dog was 110 and in 1934 there were 105 individuals.



The traditional cut which also applies to exhibitions in Sweden and other FCI member countries, means that the hair on the nose, buttocks, and most out of the tail is cut very short, other furs, including the last third part of the tail were left uncut. This is the cut which was applied to water the dogs when they were used as working dogs in Portugal. There is an explanation of why they were cut so precisely:

The rear- In order to give the dogs more freedom of movement when swimming.

The nose- To prevent fur obstruction as they swim and dive.

Head and trunk- Submitted fullycoated to warm and protect vital organs and to act as a buoyancyaid

Front leg- leave uncut, as protection when the dog with its own power could get out into the boat itself.

Tail- Finally, a rocker in the tip to enhance the tail function as rudders.

                                                                                                      Champion "Leago" 1931-1942                                                                                                     "Leago" is the model for the Portuguese waterdog`s standard

                                                                                                      Champion "Leago" 1931-1942                                                                                              

"Leago" is the model for the Portuguese waterdog`s standard

The breed comes to Sweden

In 1980, the first Portuguese water dog was importde to Sweden. Their mother's name was "Foursome's Primavera ". She was brown, born in Norway and were descended directly from Portugal and the United States. This female was mated with her brother "Foursome`s Pescador" and a litter of seven puppies was the first to be born in Sweden. Until 1995 was only a few litters born each year, but there after the numbers slowly behan to rise until this decade when the number of registered dogs has increased in rapid pace. In 2005 there were an estimated 700 water dogs in Sweden.


 Living with Portuguese Water Dog

A water dog is very patient against children and other animals, making it suitable as a family dog. It loves being in the center of events. Where it is most lively, where you will find your water dog. Where children run and fall over it, insisting it to be maintained, with a watchful eye over everything that happens. Usually the dog is a reliable babysitter, who does not let a child leave the site without adult supervision. It loves to play and is included on all pranks you can think of. The most important thing for a Portuguese water dog is that it may be with you. To pull a sled in the winter is as much fun as swimming in the summer, a quiet walk or a quick bike ride as well. It is also quite nice to be in front of the TV and be scratched on it´s belly. A water dog likes to watch TV or enjoyes sitting in a window scouting for what is happening outside.

Hunt can be fun sometimes and also the various activities of working dogs, especially agility, which includes both speed and action. Something that is a must for a dog of this breed is the ability to run free several times a week. The Temper of a Portuguese water dog shouldbe cheerful and friendly, often without being excessively fond of other people. It is a typical family dog, who is extremely loyal.

It has the reputation among the enthusiasts as very intelligent, then it can quickly penetrate your and others' behavior. Water Dog has a well developed ability to learn from other dogs. This is the deliberate use to implement something that it will or will not do. Water Dog is not a barking dog but they are usually noisy. They greet happy with beeps, whistles and growling sounds. This may not be construed as aggrevisitet, but is part of the race's way of showing happiness. Normally a water dog does not enter into a fight as far as possible, when several dogs are able to collaborate on a small boat. However, if it becomes attacked, it doesn´t hesitate to fight and win. One can feel safe with a Portuguese water dog, as it would not allow any family member to beinjured.

Water Dog can also be appropriate for an inexperienced dog owner, even if it is a race of strong will, great intelligence and enormous ingenuity. If you start early in the peace and quiet to show your puppy what rules apply for so is it rarely any obedience problems. But you who are looking to buy a water dog and who have not had a dog before, should go at least one course in everyday obedience. What you must never forget is the breed's long history. A water dog could perform their duties without command and therefore can be quite obstinate about what it wants. The motivation must be high if it is to carry out their duties for us, satisfaction. This means that it is not as easy to train as a typical working dog. A Portuguese water dog is an easy learner but loses its interest fast. One must therefore be equipped with a great deal of patience and humor, if you want to achieve something with their dog in the various working dog activitys.

A Portuguese water dog is good to have as a pure pet, but the majority of Portuguese water dogs are very fond of activities and requires a lot of attention, otherwise there is a risk that they get into trouble. There are many who train and compete with their water dogs, both in service branches, agility and show rings. In 1994 we got the breed's first rescue dog, and we can boast European and World Winner titles in exhibition contexts. Internationally, there are water dogs, who works as an eye dogs, drug dogs, therapy dogs and service dog.


Allergy Dog?

There is no possibility to provide guarantees to people with allergies, but this race is considered to be hypoallergenic. This is mainly because it has no undercoat and shed sparingly. If you have problems with allergies, it might be wise to visit a water dog family before possible. takes the decision to buy your own dog. Breed club will help you be happy to make contact with a family that you can visit. We are spread over almost the entire country.

Like the vast majority of dog breeds is also the Portuguese water dog affected by some diseases. Breed club with farmers actively working to minimize them. This means course not all puppies are guaranteed healthy, but it gives the little puppy better conditions to live a long and healthy life.



Since the breed is active and needs a lot of incentive to do well, it is important to the activation, both physically and mentally. For the dog to feel good so do the exercisproperlye every day and also some brainteaser.Find happy to problems that dog gets to solve, learn little tricks and let it look for things, it pays tribute to the most water dogs. Water dog is a retrieving dog and would like to carry objects. Don´t ban the dog for the retrieve of objects like gloves and shoes, but far rather change the subject to which it may carry. In the summer, swimming is an ideal activity to occupy your dog with water.

As in all races will motivation to work vary between individuals. To get a dog that suits you, ask the breeder for help in choosing the right type of puppy. If you choose to share your life with a Portuguese water dog, you should have a sense of humor. They are playful clowns who like to deal both with self and others.