About the PWD

Today, while the Portuguese Water Dog is out of its days-of-old job on the sea, you can find them participating in conformation (dog shows), agility, obedience, rally, dock-diving, barn hunt, therapy dogs, and water-work, that was created to keep thier unique history alive.  They learn quickly with proper training and have a great memory. The modern PWD, whether employed on a boat, kept as a pet, or a working/performance dog, loves water and attention and prefers to be engaged in activity within sight of a human partner. This is not a breed to be left alone for long periods of time, indoors or out as it needs human companionship. They will find a way out of fencing.  


SIZE:  Males are 20 - 23 inches (22" is ideal) a the shoulder.   Females 17 - 21 inches (19" is ideal).  Weight - Males are 42 to 60 lbs.  Females are 35 to 50 lbs.  Proportionally, they are off-square, slighly longer than tall.  Substance - strong bone, solid, muscular build,  & "well knit".  


TEMPERAMENT:  Spirited, self-willed, exhuberant, resistant to fatigue, of exceptional intelligence.  Temperament is 100% Nature AND 100% Nuture. In other words, you will get out of your dog what you put into your dog.  Needs training starting at puppyhood.  All training should  begin at day one and must be positive  reinforcement or dog will shut down.   Socialization is also key in creating a dog that will be a joy to live with during its lifetime. 


HYPO-ALLERGENIC: The Portuguese Water Dog is considered a dog breed good for people with allergies due to the fact that they do not have seasonal shedding of fur (in fact, they have a single coat of hair; not fur).  They put off less dander too and do not have a "doggie odor". However, some people are going to react to the proteins as found in dog saliva and will not be able to tolerate the PWD nor any dog.  No dog is ever truly "hypo-allergenic".  


TWO COAT TYPES:  Curly and Wavy. Curly coat: "Compact, cylindrical curls, somewhat lusterless. The hair on the ears is sometimes wavy."Wavy coat: "Falling gently in waves, not curls, and with a slight sheen."   COLORS:  Black, Black with white, Various shades of brown,  White, White with black, White with brown,  Double ticked (Silver and brown).  They are not tri-colored nor brindle. 


TWO CLIPS:  The Retriever and The Lion.  The retriever cut is left 1 inch long evenly over the body (although some owners prefer the muzzle or the base of the tail shorter). In the lion cut, the hindquarters, muzzle, and the base of the tail are shaved and the rest of the body is left full length.  Both cuts are acceptable in the conformation ring, with no preference given to either one.  Since the Portuguese Water Dog does not shed, its hair continuously grows, therefore, it must be groomed regularly.  Slicker brushes and combs work well and should be done every few days to avoid matting.  Some people opt to have their dogs professionaly groomed every 4 to 8 weeks.  Even with professional grooming, the Portuguese Water Dog needs to be brushed at least weekly. 




Jake, a brown-fox wavy.  

20", 50 lbs male


Brutus, black curly. (Jake's son)

20.75", 55 lbs male


Moxsea, a non-dilute brown wavy. (brown has not faded). (Daughter to Brutus.)

19" , 45 lbs female.


Tessa, black with some white, wavy coat.  (Daughter to Moxsea.)

19.5",  48 lbs female. 


Portuguese Water Dogs are such a versatile breed.  Loves to train and are willing Workers!


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