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German Quail Dog Breed Description

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Breed Organization

United Kennel Club (UKC)

Native Country

Other Names
German Spaniel, Deutscher Wachtelhund, Wachtelhund

Life Expectancy
Approximately 12-14 Years

Litter Size
Average 5 Puppies

Breed Group

General Description

The German Spaniel is a strong boned, muscular, medium sized gundog with long thick wavy hair. It is solidly-built which allows it to retrieve heavy game such as hares and foxes. The ears are fairly long and should reach from half way to the nose, to the tip of the nose. Body length, from the nose to the base of the tail is twice the length of the dogs height. The coat is short and fine on the head, and of long on the body, where it is strong, thick, wavy or curly, with enough undercoat to provide protection. It has a well feathered coat which is usually either brown or brown roan. Although brown, it can have white markings chest and/or legs, and may have white ticking anywhere on its body. Other colors that the coat can come in include red and white, and solid red. Plain black coats do not occur in the breed.

Breed Standard

Head: Chiseled. Skull flat, not too broad. Very slight stop. Curved nosebridge. Muzzle equal in length to the skull. Thin lips. Large, brown nose.
Ears: Set on high, flat, not curled, not too long or thick, hanging just behind the eyes. Covered with long, often curly hair.
Eyes: Medium-sized, almond-shaped, slanting, preferably dark brown.
Body: Long. Solid neck without dewlap. High, long withers. Chest deep, well let-down. Short, broad, deep loin. Moderate tuck-up. Very short, solid back Flat, long croup.
Tail: Set on high, carried straight or hanging down, wagged energetically in the presence of game. Docked by one-third its length. Well-feathered.
Hair: Long, tough, dense, wavy. Slightly curly (like Astrakhan lamb's wool) or flat. Often curly on the neck, ears, and croup. Short on the head. Backs of the legs well-feathered.
Coat: Solid dark brown with white spots on the chest and toes or with tan markings (red to yellow) above the eyes and on the muzzle, legs, and around the anus. Whole-colored in shades of fox red or fawn red.
- Roan-brown: roan background (white and brown hairs closely mixed), often with a brown head and brown blotches or a brown mantle covering the entire body. Spotted brown and white (with a white background), harlequin (white background with brown spots and flecks and brown blotches), or tricolor (roan, spotted, or harlequin with tan markings as in the solid-colored variety).
Size: Dog: 48 to 54 cm (19-21.3 in). Bitch: 45 to 51 cm (17.5-20 in).


Known in German as the German Quail Dog, meaning "quail dog" because of his favorite game, the German Spaniel was developed around 1890 in Germany by the breeder F. Roberth. Several breeds were used in creating this spaniel, particularly an old German breed called the St ber and various longhaired water dogs. The German Spaniel is not well-known outside his native land.


Tough and courageous, the German Spaniel can work on all kinds of terrain, mainly woods and swampland. This active tracker and flusher uses his voice on the trail and hunts all small game but also pests (fox) and large game. He is a good retriever as well as a bloodhound able to track wounded game. He is affectionate and makes a good pet. He needs firm training.

He needs space and exercise, as well as daily brushing and regular attention to the ears.


Hunting Dog, Companion Dog.


Providing the puppy is of good stock, the breed is very hearty.

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