For centuries, different Spaniel breeds were used for hunting purposes by French nobility and royalty, but it was not until the beginning of the 20th century, when the Spaniel breeds of France were separated into different purebred breed. It is believed, that the Picardy Spaniel is one of the oldest of all those spaniel breeds, next to the French Spaniel and the Picardy Spaniel can be seen on many old paintings, for example by Jean Babtiste Oudry.
The Picardy Spaniel is named after a French region called Picardy, which is located in northern France. This region is full of wetlands, lush woodlands and plains of grain, which all provide great cover for birds and the Picardy Spaniel was used in this region for hunting those birds.
Speaking of hunting, the Picardy Spaniel is just an amazing hunter. This is extremely versatile breed capable of hunting on land, but also in water. If the Picardy Spaniel is well trained, they are capable of searching the game, pointing, tracking and retrieving, they are just all around hunters. This breed has a long history of hunting and even today, many of them are used for this purpose.
The Picardy Spaniel is often times described as an affectionate, intelligent, lively and social dog breed. It is true, that they are quite good with kids, they are relatively laid back indoors and they are pretty easily trainable. But, you should never forget that this is a hunting dog breed. They were bred for the hunt for centuries, which means they are not the typical companion dogs. They will be happiest, if they are allowed to hunt. If you are not using this dog for hunting than they will need tons of daily physical and mental exericse to stay healthy and happy. This is definitely not a dog for everyone, because they have high prey drive, they can be little bit head harded and they are very very active. BTW, most of the Picardy Spaniels are still bred by hunters and they are meant for the hunting life.
Even though the Picardy Spaniel was quite popular among the French royalty in the past, they are pretty rare these days. One of the reason is, that just like many other French dogs, their population declined a lot during the two world wars. Since then, their numbers got bigger and this breed is not on the verge of extinction, but it is still considered as a rare breed, especially outside France. But it is possible to find them in other European countries and in North America as well.
The Picardy Spaniel has a beautiful coat and color. The coat is dense, medium long and slightly harsh. There are slight waves and typical feathering on the tail and legs. The breed standard describes the color as grey mottling with brown patches, most often marked with tan on the head and limbs. The coat is truly great looking.
The Picardy Spaniel is a medium to large sized dog breed with athletic and muscular body and average height between 22-25 inch, which is 56-64 cm and the weight is typically between 20-25 kg, which is 44-55 pounds. The females are naturally little bit smaller than males.
It seems that all the Picardy Spaniels just love swimming. I am sure there will be some exceptions of Picardy Spaniels who does not like water, but majority of them will jump into any river or lake if possible. This is a strong and skilled swimmer and big water lover.
9) Not a guard
If you are looking for a guard or watchdog, than the Picardy Spaniel is not the best choice for you. They are just too people friendly and it is almost impossible to train them to guard. They would probably invite the burglar into your home, rather than deter him.
This is usually very healthy dog breed with average lifespan around 14 or 15 years. Just like many hunting dogs with long ears, even the Picardy Spaniel is prone to ear infections. Because of that you should regularly check and clean the ears. There are no other health issues associated with this breed.