Portuguese Water Dog
The Portuguese Water Dog, also known as the Cão De Água Português, is a very good swimmer and diver. It was used on the Portuguese coast to guard ships and help with fishing. It is very intelligent, robust and sociable. Due to its cheerful nature, the Cão De Água Português gets on very well with children and is a popular pet and family dog.
The Portuguese Water Dog first stands out due to its strong build. The long, deep black, curly or wavy coat is typical. The long hair is usually evenly distributed over the body.
Although most Portuguese Water Dogs are black, the coat color is very diverse. There are black, brown, white and bi-colored specimens.
The character traits of the Portuguese Water Dog are described in very different ways. While some describe them as quarrelsome or stubborn, others speak of a very obedient and frugal nature.
Dogs are individuals. It is difficult to say which character traits he will develop most clearly in the course of his life. The Portuguese Water Dog needs a lot of training, attention and activity. In this way, the positive characteristics of the breed come to the fore.
If the Cão De Água Português is trained early and consistently and sufficiently challenged mentally and physically, it can be a very balanced companion. If this is not the case, he quickly reacts like an overexcited and underchallenged child.
Due to his pronounced sensory perception, he is enthusiastic about any kind of activity. He is also often used as a therapy and rescue dog. As the name suggests, he particularly enjoys swimming.
The right food
The Portuguese Water Dog has no more or less nutritional requirements than other dog breeds. When choosing food, you should look for high-quality and balanced ingredients.
Depending on your pet's age, physical activity and energy consumption, you should adjust the portions so that your Cão De Água Português is neither overfed nor underfed.
You should always discuss any allergies or intolerances with your vet. They will recommend the ideal food for your dog.
Health & Care
Grooming the long coat of the Cão De Água Português is very laborious and time-consuming. The coat must be combed thoroughly with a comb and brush at least twice a week.
In summer, the coat should be shortened or clipped regularly. With a good clipper and experience, this can also be done at home. The so-called "lion cut" is mandatory for show dogs.
It is important to always trim the fur between the claws of the post. Especially with long fur, painful claws can get caught here. The hair in the ears should also be plucked regularly.
As already mentioned, the Portuguese Water Dog needs all kinds of utensils for grooming. A narrow, large-toothed comb and a brush are necessary to detangle the coat. A good clipper is also needed. This should also be able to work its way through the curly hair of your pet.
In addition to the grooming utensils, the Cão De Água Português can never get enough activity. In addition to a selection of long and short leads of your choice, training gadgets are always a good idea. Clickers and various search and activity games are very popular. Retrieving objects such as dummies and balls should also always be available in sufficient quantities.
Origin & History
As the name suggests, the Portuguese Water Dog comes from Portugal, more precisely from the beautiful Algarve. There it was indispensable as a real working dog for the fishermen.
The water dog corralled the schools of fish, guarded them and retrieved escaped fish. It also communicated with the fishermen and reported broken nets, land or sandbanks.
Even in pre-Christian times, the Cão De Água Português is said to have carried out his work on ships. He carried messages from one ship to another.
In the 20th century, the portie became less and less important for fishing as industrialization progressed. In 1970, it was the rarest dog in the world with only 50 specimens left.
Let's hope that the popularity of this great dog will increase again with Barack Obama. After all, we want to be able to enjoy this bright breed for many years to come.