The Polish Hunting Spaniel is a compact dog of medium size, with strong and athletic body built for great mobility in harsh working conditions in fields, forrests and meadows, but also in water. Just like majority of Spaniels, even the Polish Hunting Spaniel has the great looking big hanging ears, gentle expression in their darker colored eyes and overall very noble and relatively large head.
The average height of Polski Spaniel Mysliwski is between 39-48 cm, which is 15-19 inch and weight is usually between 12-26 kg, which is 26-57 lbs. Females tend to be slightly smaller than males.
The coat of Polski Spaniel Mysliwski is in medium length, with longer fringes of hair on ears, back of the limbs, on the tail and on the belly. The coat is very often slightly wavy or curly. The most common colors is chocolate roan with patches of different shades, less often it is black roan. White tip of the tail is also quite common.
The main utilization of the Polish Hunting Spaniel is, of course, hunting and their personality and character is excelent for it. They are known for their courage and intelligence, problem solving ability, determination for the hunt, stronger prey drive and extraordinary sense of smell, all very important traits for excellent hunter.
These dogs have high energy level and they can hunt tirelessly for hours, even in harsh terrain and in bad weather, without any problems. Because of that, they are best suited for active people who will provide them with enough outdoor exercise.
But of course, this is not only a hunter, but also loving, loyal and affectionate companion dogs. The Polski Spaniel Mysliwski is often times described as balanced and sociable companion that enjoys company of other people, including older kids. Of course, you should never leave any dog breed with a very young child unsupervised.
It is also important to mention that some of the Polish Hunting Spaniels are pretty alert and watchful and that they like to bark. Because of that, they might alert you when they will hear or see something suspicious around their home and around your property which can make them okay watchdogs.
First mentions about hunting Spaniel dogs in Poland comes from 19th century. It is believed that these spaniels are the ancestors of the Polski Spaniel Mysliwski and it could be different breeds of Spaniels brought from different part of Europe, very likely from England or France. Most likely it was mainly Cockers and Springer Spaniels, but possibly also Field and Sussex Spaniels.
At the beginning of the 20th century, most of these Spaniels were crossbred in Polish kennels, since they were bred for their purpose. And since all the Spaniels in Poland served the same purpose, hunting, there was nothing wrong in creating one universal merged breed. Probably the best known person who supported this breeding was princess Izabella Radziwiłłowa, who bred these dogs until the start of Second World War, which was absolutely devastating for Poland, so as for the dogs in Poland. Many of them died, some of them were brought to Russia and only few of them remained in Poland, espeially on its eastern borders.
In 1980s, a scientist and hunter, dr. Andrzej Krzywiński, who ran his own kennel, started to be interested in the remaining Spaniel population in Poland. And since there was a demand for smaller hunting dogs, he started re-developing the Polish Hunting Spaniel. He searched for remaining hunting Spaniels that matched the old description and bred them for their great working abilities, hunting passion and amazing temperament.
Health and grooming
The maintenance and grooming of this breed is not extremely hard, but they do need regular brushing to keep their beautiful coats in good condition, to remove dead and loose hair and dirt from it and to prevent tangling. You should take proper care about the longer feathering on the ears and other areas with longer fur, as they are more prone to tangling. You should also regularly check their eyes, ears, nails and teeth and clip them or clean them if needed.
This is still relatively young dog breed and there are no scientific studies about its health, but it seems that it is usually pretty healthy dog breed with average lifespan around 13 years. They might be prone to the same health issues as Springers or Cockers, which includes some eye problems such as entropion and cataracts, joint problems such as hip dysplasia, diabetes or skin dermatitis, but none of those is extremely common with the Polish Hunting Spaniel.