Portuguese Water Dog


The Portuguese Water Dog has a distinct appearance. It is a breed with above average physical ability. It only has a single layer coat that is either wavy or curly. The coat is plentiful all over its body. It has a large head that is in balance with the rest of its body. The breed’s ears are set high and are average in size. Its facial features are dark. The neck does not angle, but transitions smoothly to its strong back. Its chest is deep and moderately wide. The shoulders are well muscled. The breed has a definite stop and a wide nose. It stands on straight front legs that are muscular. The back legs are also straight and moderately muscled.


The owner of a Portuguese Water Dog must be able to provide the breed with ample opportunities for physical activity. The breed has a high energy level. It longs to please its owner. This breed has a very high learning capacity and responds well to training. However, it can be stubborn. It is fine with children and may do fine with other pets. The key to the breed getting along with other pets is it being raised with the pet (s).

Height and Weight

Male height: 20-23 inches Male weight: 42-60 Female height: 17-21 inches Female weight: 35-50 pounds

Health Problems

The Portuguese Water Dog tends to live a long life, but there are some health problems associated with this breed. The most common serious conditions that plague this bred include hip dysplasia and progressive retinal atrophy (PRA).

Ideal Living Conditions

While the Portuguese Water Dog will do best outdoors where it can get more exercise, it is a breed that longs to be in close contact with its family. This breed will do fine indoors with regular opportunities for exercise.


Physical activity comes natural for the Portuguese Water Dog. The breed is a natural swimmer and enjoys retrieving. As long as it has significant space to play and run around, outdoors types should obtain the exercise they need.

Life Expectancy

The Portuguese Water Dog has an average life expectancy of 10-14 years.

Litter Size

The Portuguese Water Dog has an average litter size of 4-8 puppies.


The Portuguese Water Dog requires special attention. The coat should be brushed several times during the week and clipped on a regular basis. It is recommended that the ears are checked and cleaned as a part of routine grooming.


The Portuguese Water Dog originated in Portugal.


Gun Dog


The Portuguese Water Dog’s coat can be a solid color of black, brown, or white. A combination coat of the solid colors is also acceptable.