Dogs and All About Them
Robert Leighton

Part 3 out of 7

by men for running down the gazelle or coursing the hare. The earliest
references to him are far back in the primitive ages, long before
he was beautifully depicted by Assyrian artists, straining at the
leash or racing after his prey across the desert sands. The Egyptians
loved him and appreciated him centuries before the pyramids were
built. In those days he wore a feathered tail, and his ears were heavy
with a silken fringe of hair. His type was that of the modern Arabian
Slughi, who is the direct and unaltered descendant of the ancient
hound. The glorious King Solomon referred to him (Proverbs xxx. 31)
as being one of the four things which "go well and are comely in
going--a lion, which is strongest among beasts, and turneth not away
from any; a Greyhound; an he goat also; and a king against whom there
is no rising up."

That the Greyhound is "comely in going," as well as in repose, was
recognised very early by the Greeks, whose artists were fond of
introducing this graceful animal as an ornament in their decorative
workmanship. In their metal work, their carvings in ivory and stone,
and more particularly as parts in the designs on their terra-cotta
oil bottles, wine coolers, and other vases, the Greyhound is
frequently to be seen, sometimes following the hare, and always in
remarkably characteristic attitudes. Usually these Greek Greyhounds
are represented with prick ears, but occasionally the true rose ear
is shown.

All writings in connection with Greyhounds point to the high
estimation in which the dog has always been held. Dr. Caius, when
referring to the name, says "The Greyhound hath his name of this word
gre; which word soundeth gradus in Latin, in Englishe degree, because
among all dogges these are the most principall, occupying the chiefest
place, and being simply and absolutely the best of the gentle kinde
of Houndes."

It was not until the reign of Queen Elizabeth that coursing in England
was conducted under established rules. These were drawn up by the then
Duke of Norfolk. The sport quickly grew in favour, and continued to
increase in popularity until the first coursing club was established
at Swaffham in 1776. Then in 1780 the Ashdown Park Meeting came into
existence. The Newmarket Meeting in 1805 was the next fixture that
was inaugurated, and this now remains with the champion stakes as
its most important event. Afterwards came the Amesbury Meeting in
1822, but Amesbury, like Ashdown, although for many years one of the
most celebrated institutions of the description, has fallen from its
high estate. Three years later came the Altcar Club. But it was not
until eleven years after this period that the Waterloo Cup was
instituted (in 1836), to win which is the highest ambition of
followers of the leash.

At the present time the run for the Waterloo Cup, which at the
commencement was an eight dog stake, is composed of sixty-four
nominations, the entry fee for which is P25. The winner takes P500,
and the cup, value P100, presented by the Earl of Sefton, the runner
up P200, the third and fourth P50 each, four dogs P36 each, eight
dogs P20 each, and sixteen dogs P10 each. The thirty-two dogs beaten
in the first round of the Cup compete for the Waterloo Purse, value
P215, and the sixteen dogs run out in the second round for the
Waterloo Plate, value P145. The winner in each case taking P75, and
the runner up P30, the remainder being divided amongst the most
forward runners in the respective stakes. The Waterloo Cup holds the
same position in coursing circles as the Derby does in horse racing.

The National Coursing Club was established in 1858, when a stud book
was commenced, and a code of laws drawn up for the regulation of
coursing meetings. This is recognised in Australia and other parts
of the world where coursing meetings are held. The Stud Book, of which
Mr. W. F. Lamonby is the keeper, contains particulars of all the
best-known Greyhounds in the United Kingdom, and a dog is not allowed
to compete at any of the large meetings held under Coursing Club rules
unless it has been duly entered with its pedigree complete. In fact,
the National Coursing Club is more particular in connection with the
pedigrees of Greyhounds being correctly given, than the Kennel Club
is about dogs that are exhibited; and that is saying a great deal.
It holds the same position in coursing matters as the Jockey Club
does in racing. It is in fact, the supreme authority on all matters
connected with coursing.

Various opinions have been advanced as to the best size and weight
for a Greyhound. Like horses, Greyhounds run in all forms, and there
is no doubt that a really good big one will always have an advantage
over the little ones; but it is so difficult to find the former, and
most of the chief winners of the Waterloo Cup have been comparatively
small. Coomassie was the smallest Greyhound that ever won the blue
ribbon of the leash; she drew the scale at 42 lbs., and was credited
with the win of the Cup on two occasions. Bab at the Bowster, who
is considered by many good judges to have been the best bitch that
ever ran, was 2 lbs. more; she won the Cup once, and many other
stakes, as she was run all over the country and was not kept for the
big event. Master McGrath was a small dog, and only weighed 53 lbs.,
but he won the Waterloo Cup three times. Fullerton, who was a much
bigger dog, and was four times declared the winner of the Cup, was
56 lbs. in weight.

There are very few Greyhounds that have won the Waterloo Cup more
than once, but Cerito was credited with it three times, namely, in
1850, 1852, and 1853, when it was a thirty-two dog stake. Canaradzo,
Bit of Fashion, Miss Glendine, Herschel, Thoughtless Beauty, and
Fabulous Fortune, are probably some of the best Greyhounds that ever
ran besides those already alluded to. Bit of Fashion was the dam of
Fullerton, who shares with Master McGrath the reputation of being
the two best Greyhounds that ever ran. But Master McGrath came first.
During his remarkable career in public he won thirty-six courses out
of thirty-seven, the only time that he was defeated being the 1870
at his third attempt to win the Waterloo Cup, and the flag went up
in favour of Mr. Trevor's Lady Lyons. He, however, retrieved his good
fortune the following year, when he again ran through the stake.

Fullerton, who, when he won all his honours, was the property of
Colonel North, was bred by Mr. James Dent in Northumberland. Colonel
North gave 850 guineas for him, which was then stated to be the
highest price ever paid for a Greyhound. He ran five times altogether
for the Waterloo Cup, and was declared the winner on four occasions.
The first time was in 1889, when he divided with his kennel companion
Troughend. Then he won the Cup outright the three following years.
In 1893, however, after having been put to the stud, at which he
proved a failure, he was again trained for the Cup, but age had begun
to tell its tale, and after winning one course he was beaten by Mr.
Keating's Full Captain, in the second. This was one of the two
occasions upon which out of thirty-three courses he failed to raise
the flag. On the other he was beaten by Mr. Gladstone's Greengage,
when running the deciding course at Haydock Park.

It appears like descending from the sublime to the ridiculous to
mention the Greyhound as a show dog, after the many brilliant
performances that have been recorded of him in the leash, but there
are many dogs elegant in outline with fine muscular development that
are to be seen in the judging ring. Mr. George Raper's Roasting Hot
is one of the most prominent winners of the day; he is a fawn and
white, as handsome as a peacock and, moreover, is a good dog in the
field. On one occasion after competing successfully at the Kennel
Club Show at the Crystal Palace, he was taken to a coursing meeting
where he won the stake in which he was entered. A brace of very
beautiful bitches are Mr. F. Eyer's Dorset Girl and Miss W. Easton's
Okeford Queen.

Although, as a rule, the most consistent winners in the leash have
not been noted for their good looks, there have been exceptions in
which the opposite has been the case. Fullerton was a good-looking
dog, if not quite up to the form required in the show ring. Mr.
Harding Cox has had several specimens that could run well and win
prizes as show dogs, and the same may be said of Miss Maud May's fine
kennel of Greyhounds in the North of England. In the South of England
Mrs. A. Dewe keeps a number of longtails that when not winning prizes
at the Crystal Palace and elsewhere are running at Plumpton and other
meetings in Sussex.

The following is the standard by which Greyhounds should be judged.

* * * * *

HEAD--Long and narrow, slightly wider in skull, allowing for
plenty of brain room; lips tight, without any flew, and eyes
bright and intelligent and dark in colour. EARS--Small and fine
in texture, and semi-pricked. TEETH--Very strong and level, and not
decayed or cankered. NECK--Lengthy, without any throatiness, but
muscular. SHOULDERS--Placed well back in the body, and fairly
muscular, without being loaded. FORE-LEGS--Perfectly straight, set
well into the shoulders, with strong pasterns and toes set well up
and close together. BODY--Chest very deep, with fairly well-sprung
ribs; muscular back and loins, and well cut up in the flanks.
HIND-QUARTERS--Wide and well let down, with hocks well bent and close
to the ground, with very muscular haunches, showing great propelling
power, and tail long and fine and tapering with a slight upward curve.
COAT--Fairly fine in texture. WEIGHT--The ideal weight of a dog is
from 60 pounds to 65 pounds, of a bitch from 55 pounds to 60 pounds.



For elegance of style, cleanliness of habit, and graceful movement,
few dogs can equal the Whippet, for which reason his popularity as
a companion has increased very greatly within the past decade. No
more affectionate creature is to be found, yet he possesses
considerable determination and pluck, and on occasion will defend
himself in his own way.

Too fragile in his anatomy for fighting, in the ordinary sense of
the word, when molested, he will "snap" at his opponent with such
celerity as to take even the most watchful by surprise; while his
strength of jaw, combined with its comparatively great length, enables
him to inflict severe punishment at the first grab. It was probably
owing to this habit, which is common to all Whippets, that they were
originally known as Snap-Dogs.

The Whippet existed as a separate breed long before dog shows were
thought of, and at a time when records of pedigrees were not
officially preserved; but it is very certain that the Greyhound had
a share in his genealogical history, for not only should his
appearance be precisely that of a Greyhound in miniature, but the
purpose for which he was bred is very similar to that for which his
larger prototype is still used, the only difference being that rabbits
were coursed by Whippets, and hares by Greyhounds.

This sport has been mainly confined to the working classes, the
colliers of Lancashire, Yorkshire, Durham, and Northumberland being
particularly devoted to it. As a rule the contests are handicaps,
the starting point of each competitor being regulated by its weight;
but the winners of previous important events are penalised in
addition, according to their presumed merit, by having a certain
number of yards deducted from the start to which weight alone would
otherwise have entitled them. Each dog is taken to its stipulated
mark according to the handicap, and there laid hold of by the nape
of the neck and hind-quarters; the real starter stands behind the
lot, and after warning all to be ready, discharges a pistol, upon
which each attendant swings his dog as far forward as he can possibly
throw him, but always making sure that he alights on his feet. The
distance covered in the race is generally 200 yards, minus the starts
allotted, and some idea of the speed at which these very active little
animals can travel may be gleaned from the fact that the full distance
has been covered in rather under 12 seconds.

In order to induce each dog to do its best, the owner, or more
probably the trainer stands beyond the winning post, and frantically
waves a towel or very stout rag. Accompanied by a babel of noise,
the race is started, and in less time than it takes to write it the
competitors reach the goal, one and all as they finish taking a flying
leap at their trainer's towel, to which they hold on with such
tenacity that they are swung round in the air. The speed at which
they are travelling makes this movement necessary in many cases to
enable the dog to avoid accident, particularly where the space beyond
the winning mark is limited. For racing purposes there is a wide
margin of size allowed to the dogs, anything from 8 lbs. to 23 lbs.,
or even more, being eligible; but in view of the handicap terms those
dogs which possess speed, and scale 9 to 12 lbs. amongst the
light-weights, and over 17 lbs. in the heavy ones, are considered
to have the best chance.

Probably there is no locality where the pastime has maintained such
a firm hold as in and around Oldham, one of the most famous tracks
in the world being at Higginshaw, where not infrequently three hundred
dogs are entered in one handicap. The Borough grounds at Oldham and
the Wellington grounds at Bury are also noted centres for races. It
is a remarkable but well recognised fact that bitches are faster than
dogs, and in consequence the terms upon which they are handicapped
are varied. The general custom is to allow a dog 2-1/2 to 3 yards
advantage for every pound difference in weight between it and the
gentle sex.

One of the fastest dogs that ever ran was Collier Lad, but he was
almost a Greyhound as regards size. Whitefoot, whose owner challenged
the world, and was considered to be quite unbeatable, was a Whippet
in every sense of the word, and was a nice medium weight, though
probably Capplebank's time of 11-1/2 seconds stands alone. The best
of the present-day racing dogs are Polly fro' Astley (15 lbs.) and
Dinah (11-1/2 lbs.), and of those which promise well for the future,
Eva, whose weight is only 9-3/4 lbs., is most prominent.

The training of Whippets is by no means easy work, and is more
expensive than most people imagine. The very choicest food is deemed
absolutely necessary, in fact a Whippet undergoing preparation for
an important race is provided with the most wholesome fare. Choice
mutton-chops, beef-steaks and similar dainties comprise their daily
portion. Of course exercise is a necessity, but it is not considered
good policy to allow a dog in training to gambol about either on the
roads or in the fields. Indeed, all dogs which are undergoing
preparation for a race are practically deprived of their freedom,
in lieu of which they are walked along hard roads secured by a lead;
and for fear of their picking up the least bit of refuse each is
securely muzzled by a box-like leather arrangement which completely
envelops the jaws, but which is freely perforated to permit proper
breathing. Any distance between six and a dozen miles a day, according
to the stamina and condition of the dog, is supposed to be the proper
amount of exercise, and scales are brought into use every few days
to gauge the effect which is being produced. In addition to this
private trials are necessary in the presence of someone who is
accustomed to timing races by the aid of a stop-watch--a by no means
easy task, considering that a slight particle of a second means so
many yards, and the average speed working out at about 16 yards per
second--nearly twice as fast as the fastest pedestrian sprinter, and
altogether beyond the power of the fleetest race-horse.

Colour in the Whippet is absolutely of no importance to a good judge,
though possibly what is known as the peach fawn is the favourite among
amateur fanciers. Red fawns, blue or slate coloured, black, brindled
of various shades, and these colours intermingled with white, are
most to be met with, however. In some quarters the idea is prevalent
that Whippets are delicate in their constitution, but this is a
popular error. Probably their disinclination to go out of doors on
their own initiative when the weather is cold and wet may account
for the opinion, but given the opportunity to roam about a house the
Whippet will find a comfortable place, and will rarely ail anything.
In scores of houses Whippets go to bed with the children, and are
so clean that even scrupulous housewives take no objection to their
finding their way under the clothes to the foot of the bed, thereby
securing their own protection and serving as an excellent footwarmer
in the winter months.

Probably in no other breed, except the Greyhound, do judges attach
so little importance to the shape of the head; so long as the jaws
are fairly long and the colour of the eyes somewhat in keeping with
that of the body, very little else is looked for in front of the ears.
As in the case of racing competitors, really good dogs for show
purposes are much more difficult to find than bitches. The best of
the males are not so classical in outline as the females, though some
of them are as good in legs and feet--points which are of the greatest
importance. Though it is not quite in accordance with the standard
laid down by the club, it will be found that most judges favour dogs
which are about 17 lbs. weight, and bitches which are between 15 lbs.
and 16 lbs., the 20 lbs. mentioned in the standard of points, without
variation for sex being considered altogether too heavy. Appearances
are sometimes deceptive, but these dogs are rarely weighed for
exhibition purposes, the trained eye of the judge being sufficient
guide to the size of the competitors according to his partiality for
middle-size, big, or little animals.

The South Durham and Yorkshire Show at Darlington has the credit for
first introducing classes for Whippets into the prize ring. Previous
to this it had not long been generally recognised as a distinct breed,
and it is within the last twenty years that the Kennel Club has placed
the breed on its recognised list.

The following is the standard of points adopted by the Whippet Club:--

* * * * *

HEAD--Long and lean, rather wide between the eyes and flat on
the top; the jaw powerful yet cleanly cut; the teeth level and
white. EYES--Bright and fiery. EARS--Small, fine in texture and
rose shape. NECK--Long and muscular, elegantly arched and free from
throatiness. SHOULDERS--Oblique and muscular. CHEST--Deep and
capacious. BACK--Broad and square, rather long and slightly arched
over the loin, which should be strong and powerful. FORE-LEGS--Rather
long, well set under the dog, possessing a fair amount of bone.
HIND-QUARTERS--Strong and broad across stifles, well bent thighs,
broad and muscular; hocks well let down. FEET--Round, well split up,
with strong soles. COAT--Fine and close. COLOUR--Black, red, white,
brindle, fawn, blue, and the various mixtures of each. WEIGHT--Twenty



There is plenty of proof that Foxhounds were the very first of the
canine races in Great Britain to come under the domination of
scientific breeding. There had been hounds of more ancient origin,
such as the Southern Hound and the Bloodhound; but something different
was wanted towards the end of the seventeenth century to hunt the
wild deer that had become somewhat scattered after Cromwell's civil
war. The demand was consequently for a quicker hound than those
hitherto known, and people devoted to the chase began to breed it.
Whether there were crosses at first remains in dispute, but there
is more probability that the policy adopted was one of selection;
those exceptionally fast were bred with the same, until the slow,
steady line hunter was improved out of his very character and shape.
At any rate, there are proofs that in 1710 hounds were to be found
in packs, carefully bred, and that at that time some of the hunts
in question devoted attention to the fox.

The first known kennel of all was at Wardour Castle, and was said
to have been established in 1696; but more reliable is the date of
the Brocklesby, commenced in 1713. The first record of a pack of
hounds being sold was in 1730, when a Mr. Fownes sold his pack to
a Mr. Bowles. The latter gentleman showed great sport with them in
Yorkshire. At that time Lord Hertford began to hunt the Cotswold
country, in Gloucestershire, and was the first to draw coverts for
fox in the modern style. Very soon after this it became the fashion
of the day to breed hounds. Many of the nobility and large landowners
devoted much of their time and money to it, and would take long
journeys to get fresh blood. It was the rule to breed hounds on the
most scientific principles, and by 1750 there were fifty such
breeders, including the fifth Duke of Beaufort, Lord Lincoln, Lord
Stamford, Lord Percival, Lord Granby, Lord Ludlow, Lord Vernon, Lord
Carlisle, Lord Mexbro, Sir Walter Vavasour, Sir Roland Winns, Mr.
Noel, Mr. Stanhope, Mr. Meynell, Mr. Barry, and Mr. Charles Pelham.
The last-named gentleman, afterward the first Lord Yarborough, was
perhaps the most indefatigable of all, as he was the first to start
the system of walking puppies amongst his tenantry, on the Brocklesby
estates, and of keeping lists of hound pedigrees and ages. By 1760
all the above-named noblemen and gentlemen had been breeding from
each other's kennels. The hounds were registered, as can be seen now
in Lord Middleton's private kennel stud book, through which his
lordship can trace the pedigrees of his present pack for a hundred
and sixty years to hounds that were entered in 1760, got by Raytor,
son of Merryman and grandson of Lord Granby's Ranter. Another pedigree
was that of Ruby, who is credited with a numerous progeny, as she
was by Raytor out of Mr. Stapleton's Cruel by Sailor, a son of Lord
Granby's Sailor by Mr. Noel's Victor. This shows well how seriously
Foxhound breeding was gone into before the middle of the eighteenth
century. Portraits prove also that a hound approaching very closely
to those of modern times had been produced at this early period. By
such evidence the Foxhound had outstripped the Harrier in size by
nearly five inches, as the latter does not appear to have been more
than eighteen inches, and the early Foxhound would have been
twenty-three inches. Then the heavy shoulder, the dewlap, and jowl
of the Southern Hound had been got rid of, and the coat had been
somewhat altered. The old school of breeders had evidently determined
upon great speed and the ability to stay, through the medium of deep
ribs, heart room, wide loins, length of quarter, quality of bone,
straightness of fore-leg, and round strong feet; the slack loined,
loosely built, and splayfooted hound of former generations had been
left behind. To such perfection, indeed, had the Foxhound attained,
that long before the close of the eighteenth century sportsmen were
clamouring as to what a Foxhound could do.

With so much prominence given to the Foxhound in the comparatively
short period of forty or fifty years, it is no wonder that individual
hounds became very celebrated in almost every part of the country.
Mr. Pelham's Rockwood Tickler and Bumper were names well known in
Yorkshire, and Lord Ludlow's Powerful and Growler were talked of both
in Lincolnshire and Warwickshire. From the first, indeed, it appeared
that certain hounds were very much better than others, and old
huntsmen have generally declared for one which was in the whole length
of their careers (sometimes extending to fifty years) immeasurably
superior to all others they had hunted. Harry Ayris, who was for just
half a century with Lord FitzHardinge, declared to the day of his
death that nothing had equalled Cromwell; Osbaldeston said the same
of Furrier, and Frank Gillard never falters from the opinion that
Weathergage was quite by himself as the best hound he ever hunted.
The Foxhound Kennel Stud Book abounds in the strongest proofs that
hereditary merit in their work has been transmitted from these
wonderful hounds, and they really make the history of the Foxhound.

There have been many great hounds; but there must be the greatest
of the great, and the following twelve hounds are probably the best
England has ever seen:--Mr. Corbet's Trojan (1780), Lord Middleton's
Vanguard (1815), Mr. Osbaldeston's Furrier (1820), Lord Henry
Bentinck's Contest (1848), Lord FitzHardinge's Cromwell (1855), Mr.
Drake's Duster (1844), Sir Richard Sutton's Dryden (1849), the Duke
of Rutland's Senator (1862), Duke of Rutland's Weathergage (1874),
the Earl of Coventry's Rambler (1874), Mr. E. P. Rawnsley's Freeman
(1884), and the Grafton Woodman (1892).

Breeding Foxhounds is one of the most fascinating of all the pleasures
of animal culture, as the above list, so full of extreme merit, can
be traced for nearly a hundred and thirty years.

It cannot be said that the prices paid for Foxhounds in very recent
times have greatly exceeded those of the past. In 1790 Colonel
Thornton sold Merkin for four hogsheads of claret, and the seller
to have two couples of the whelps. Then in 1808 Mr. John Warde sold
a pack of hounds to Lord Althorpe for 1,000 guineas, and the same
gentleman sold another pack for the same sum a few years later. In
1838 Lord Suffield offered 3,000 guineas for Mr. Lambton's pack, and
afterwards sold it to Sir Matthew White Ridley for 2,500. In 1834
Osbaldeston sold ten couples of bitches, all descendants of Furrier,
for 2,000 sovereigns, or P100 a hound--a record that was almost
eclipsed at the sale of Lord Politmore's hounds in 1870, when
twenty-two couples of dog-hounds sold for 3,365 guineas.

Of late years there has been the sale of the Quorn for, it was said,
P3,000, and the late Lord Willoughby de Broke valued the North
Warwickshire for the county to purchase at P2,500. In 1903 the
Atherstone was valued by Mr. Rawlence, the well-known representative
of Tattersall's, at P3,500, or something like P50 a hound, and that
has been considered very cheap. If, therefore, modern prices have
not greatly exceeded those of the far past, there has not been any
particular diminution, and there is no doubt about it that if certain
packs could be purchased the prices would far exceed anything ever
reached before.

Foxhounds have very much improved in looks during the past
five-and-twenty years, and unquestionably they are quite as good
in the field or better. Whenever hounds have good foxes in front of
them, and good huntsmen to assist or watch over them, they are as
able as ever, notwithstanding that the drawbacks to good sport are
more numerous now than they used to be. The noble hound will always
be good enough, and ever and anon this is shown by a run of the Great
Wood order, to hunt over five-and-twenty to thirty miles at a pace
to settle all the horses, and yet every hound will be up. There has
been a slight tendency to increase size of late years. The Belvoir
dog-hound is within very little of 24 inches instead of 23-1/2, the
standard of twenty years ago, and this increase has become very
general. In elegance of form nothing has been lost, and there can
be no other to possess beauty combined with power and the essential
points for pace and endurance in the same degree as a Foxhound.

A detailed description of the Foxhound is here given:--

* * * * *

HEAD--Somewhat broad, not peaked like the Bloodhound, but long from
the apex to the frontal bones, eyebrows very prominent, cheeks cut
clean from the eye to the nostril, ears set low and in their natural
condition thin and shapely, but not large, nose large, jaw strong
and level, and small dewlaps, expression fierce, and with the best
often repellent. EYES--Very bright and deeply set, full of
determination, and with a very steady expression. The look of the
Foxhound is very remarkable. NECK--Should be perfectly clean, no skin
ruffle whatever, or neck cloth, as huntsmen call it. The length of
neck is of importance, both for stooping and giving an air of majesty.
SHOULDERS--The blades should be well into the back, and should slant,
otherwise be wide and strong, to meet the arms, that should be long
and powerful. LEGS AND FEET--The bone should be perfectly straight
from the arm downward, and descend in the same degree of size to the
ankles, or, as the saying is, "down to his toes." The knee should
be almost flat and level; there should be no curve until coming to
the toes, which should be very strong, round, cat-shaped, and every
toe clean set as it were. FORE-RIBS AND BRISKET--Deep, fine ribs are
very essential, and the brisket should be well below the elbows. BACK
AND LOINS--Back should be straight. A hollow back offends the eye
much, and a roach back is worse. The loin wide, back ribs deep and
long, a slight prominence over the croup. QUARTERS AND HOCKS--The
quarters cannot be too long, full, showing a second thigh, and meeting
a straight hock low down, the shank bone short, and meeting shapely
feet. COAT--The coat is hard hair, but short and smooth, the texture
is as stiff as bristles, but beautifully laid. COLOUR--Belvoir tan,
which is brown and black, perfectly intermixed, with white markings
of various shapes and sizes. The white should be very opaque and
clear. Black and white, with tan markings on head and stifles. Badger
pied--a kind of grey and white. Lemon pied, light yellow and white.
Hare pied, a darker yellow and white. STERN--Long and carried gaily,
but not curled; often half white. HEIGHT--Dogs from 23-1/2 to 24
inches; bitches from 22 to 22-1/2 inches.



The Harrier is a distinct breed of hound used for hunting the hare--or
rather it should be said the Association of Masters of Harriers are
doing their utmost to perpetuate this breed; the Harrier Stud Book
bearing witness thereto: and it is to be deplored that so many Masters
of Harriers ignore this fact, and are content to go solely to Foxhound
kennels to start their packs of Harriers, choosing, maybe, 20 inch
to 22 inch Foxhounds, and thenceforth calling them Harriers. It is,
indeed, a common belief that the modern Harrier is but a smaller
edition of the Foxhound, employed for hunting the hare instead of
the fox, and it is almost useless to reiterate that it is a distinct
breed of hound that can boast of possibly greater antiquity than any
other, or to insist upon the fact that Xenophon himself kept a pack
of Harriers over two thousands years ago. Nevertheless, in general
appearance the Harrier and the Foxhound are very much alike, the one
obvious distinction being that of size.

Opinions differ as to what standard of height it is advisable to aim
at. If you want to hunt your Harriers on foot, 16 inches is quite
big enough--almost too big to run with; but if you are riding to them,
20 inches is a useful height, or even 19 inches. Either is a good
workable size, and such hounds should be able to slip along fast
enough for most people. Choose your hounds with plenty of bone, but
not too clumsy or heavy; a round, firm neck, not too short, with a
swan-like curve; a lean head with a long muzzle and fairly short ears;
a broad chest with plenty of lung room, fore-legs like gun barrels,
straight and strong; hind-legs with good thighs and well let down
hocks; feet, round like cats' feet, and a well-set-on, tapering stern.
Such a make and shape should see many seasons through, and allow you
to be certain of pace and endurance in your pack. It is useless to
lay down any hard and fast rule as to colour. It is so much a matter
of individual taste. Some Masters have a great fancy for the dark
colouring of the old Southern Hound, but nothing could look much
smarter than a good combination of Belvoir tan with black and white.
Puppies, as a rule, a week or two after they are whelped, show a
greater proportion of dark marking than any other, but this as they
grow older soon alters, and their white marking becomes much more
conspicuous. As in the case of the Foxhound, the Harrier is very
seldom kept as a companion apart from the pack. But puppies are
usually sent out to walk, and may easily be procured to be kept and
reared until they are old enough to be entered to their work.
Doubtless the rearing of a Harrier puppy is a great responsibility,
but it is also a delight to many who feel that they are helping in
the advancement of a great national sport.

* * * * *

There is nothing to surpass the beauty of the Beagle either to see
him on the flags of his kennel or in unravelling a difficulty on the
line of a dodging hare. In neatness he is really the little model
of a Foxhound. He is, of course, finer, but with the length of neck
so perfect in the bigger hound, the little shoulders of the same
pattern, and the typical quarters and second thighs. Then how quick
he is in his casts! and when he is fairly on a line, of course he
sticks to it, as the saying is, "like a beagle."

Beagles have been carefully preserved for a great many years, and
in some cases they have been in families for almost centuries. In
the hereditary hunting establishments they have been frequently found,
as the medium of amusement and instruction in hunting for the juvenile
members of the house; and there can be nothing more likely to instil
the right principles of venery into the youthful mind than to follow
all the ways of these little hounds.

Dorsetshire used to be the great county for Beagles. The downs there
were exactly fitted for them, and years ago, when roe-deer were
preserved on the large estates, Beagles were used to hunt this small
breed of deer. Mr. Cranes' Beagles were noted at the time, and also
those of a Colonel Harding. It is on record that King George IV. had
a strong partiality for Beagles, and was wont to see them work on
the downs round about Brighton. The uses of the Beagle in the early
days of the last century, however, were a good deal diversified. They
were hunted in big woodlands to drive game to the gun, and perhaps
the ordinary Beagle of from 12 inches to 14 inches was not big enough
for the requirements of the times. It is quite possible, therefore,
that the Beagle was crossed with the Welsh, Southern or Otterhound,
to get more size and power, as there certainly was a Welsh
rough-coated Beagle of good 18 inches, and an almost identical
contemporary that was called the Essex Beagle. Sixty years ago such
hounds were common enough, but possibly through the adoption of the
more prevalent plan of beating coverts, and Spaniels being in more
general use, the vocation of the Beagle in this particular direction
died out, and a big rough-coated Beagle is now very rarely seen.

That a great many of the true order were bred became very manifest
as soon as the Harrier and Beagle Association was formed, and more
particularly when a section of the Peterborough Hound Show was
reserved for them. Then they seemed to spring from every part of the
country. In 1896 one became well acquainted with many packs that had
apparently held aloof from the dog shows. There was the Cheshire,
the Christ Church (Oxford), Mr. T. Johnson's, the Royal Rock, the
Thorpe Satchville, the Worcestershire, etc., and of late there have
been many more that are as well known as packs of Foxhounds. One hears
now of the Chauston, the Halstead Place--very noted indeed--the
Hulton, the Leigh Park, the Stoke Place, the Edinburgh, the Surbiton,
the Trinity Foot, the Wooddale, Mrs. G. W. Hilliard's, Mrs. Price's,
and Mrs. Turner's.

Beagle owners, like the masters of Foxhound kennels, have never been
very partial to the ordinary dog shows, and so the development of
the up-to-date Beagle, as seen at recent shows, is somewhat new. It
is just as it should be, and if more people take up "beagling" it
may not be in the least surprising. They are very beautiful little
hounds, can give a vast amount of amusement, and, for the matter of
that, healthy exercise. If a stout runner can keep within fairly easy
distance of a pack of well-bred Beagles on the line of a lively Jack
hare, he is in the sort of condition to be generally envied.

* * * * *

DESCRIPTION OF THE BEAGLE: HEAD--Fair length, powerful without being
coarse; skull domed, moderately wide, with an indication of peak, stop
well defined, muzzle not snipy, and lips well flewed. NOSE--Black,
broad, and nostrils well expanded. EYES--Brown, dark hazel or hazel,
not deep set nor bulgy, and with a mild expression. EARS--Long, set
on low, fine in texture, and hanging in a graceful fold close to the
cheek. NECK--Moderately long, slightly arched, the throat showing
some dewlap. SHOULDERS--Clean and slightly sloping. BODY--Short
between the couplings, well let down in chest, ribs fairly well
sprung and well ribbed up, with powerful and not tucked-up loins.
HIND-QUARTERS--Very muscular about the thighs, stifles and hocks well
bent, and hocks well let down. FORE-LEGS--Quite straight, well under
the dog, of good substance and round in the bone. FEET--Round, well
knuckled up, and strongly padded. STERN--Moderate length, set on high,
thick and carried gaily, but not curled over the back. COLOUR--Any
recognised hound colour. COAT--Smooth variety: Smooth, very dense
and not too fine or short. Rough variety: Very dense and wiry.
HEIGHT--Not exceeding 16 inches. Pocket Beagles must not exceed 10
inches. GENERAL APPEARANCE--A compactly-built hound, without
coarseness, conveying the impression of great stamina and vivacity.



It has never been made quite clear in history why the Spaniards had
a dog that was very remarkable for pointing all kinds of game. They
have always been a pleasure-loving people, certainly, but more
inclined to bull-fighting than field-craft, and yet as early as 1600
they must have had a better dog for game-finding than could have been
found in any other part of the world. Singularly enough, too, the
most esteemed breeds in many countries can be traced from the same
source, such as the Russian Pointer, the German Pointer, the French
double-nosed Griffon, and, far more important still, the English
Pointer. A view has been taken that the Spanish double-nosed Pointer
was introduced into England about two hundred years ago, when
fire-arms were beginning to be popular for fowling purposes. Setters
and Spaniels had been used to find and drive birds into nets, but
as the Spanish Pointer became known it was apparently considered that
he alone had the capacity to find game for the gun. This must have
been towards the end of the seventeenth century, and for the next
fifty years at least something very slow was wanted to meet the
necessities of the old-fashioned flintlock gun, which occupied many
minutes in loading and getting into position. Improvements came by
degrees, until they set in very rapidly, but probably by 1750, when
hunting had progressed a good deal, and pace was increased in all
pastimes, the old-fashioned Pointer was voted a nuisance through his
extreme caution and tortoise-like movements.

There is evidence, through portraits, that Pointers had been
altogether changed by the year 1800, but it is possible that the
breed then had been continued by selection rather than by crossing
for a couple of decades, as it is quite certain that by 1815 sportsmen
were still dissatisfied with the want of pace in the Pointer, and
many sportsmen are known to have crossed their Pointers with Foxhounds
at about that time. By 1835 the old Spanish Pointer had been left
behind, and the English dog was a perfect model for pace, stamina,
resolution, and nerve. The breed was exactly adapted to the
requirements of that day, which was not quite as fast as the present.
Men shot with good Joe Mantons, did their own loading, and walked
to their dogs, working them right and left by hand and whistle. The
dogs beat their ground methodically, their heads at the right level
for body scent, and when they came on game, down they were; the dog
that had got it pointing, and the other barking or awaiting
developments. There was nothing more beautiful than the work of a
well-bred and well-broken brace of Pointers, or more perfect than
the way a man got his shots from them. There was nothing slow about
them, but on the contrary they went a great pace, seemed to shoot
into the very currents of air for scent, and yet there was no
impatience about them such as might have been expected from the
Foxhound cross. The truth of it was that the capacity to concentrate
the whole attention on the object found was so intense as to have
lessened every other propensity. The rush of the Foxhound had been
absorbed by the additional force of the Pointer character. There has
been nothing at all like it in canine culture, and it came out so
wonderfully after men had been shooting in the above manner for about
forty years.

It was nearing the end of this period that field trials began to
occupy the attention of breeders and sportsmen, and although Setters
had been getting into equal repute for the beauty of their work, there
was something more brilliant about the Pointers at first. Brockton's
Bounce was a magnificent dog, a winner on the show bench, and of the
first Field Trial in England. Newton's Ranger was another of the early
performers, and he was very staunch and brilliant, but it was in the
next five years that the most extraordinary Pointer merit was seen,
as quite incomparable was Sir Richard Garth's Drake, who was just
five generations from the Spanish Pointer. Drake was rather a tall,
gaunt dog, but with immense depth of girth, long shoulders, long
haunches, and a benevolent, quiet countenance. There was nothing very
attractive about him when walking about at Stafford prior to his
trial, but the moment he was down he seemed to paralyse his opponent,
as he went half as fast again. It was calculated that he went fifty
miles an hour, and at this tremendous pace he would stop as if
petrified, and the momentum would cover him with earth and dust. He
did not seem capable of making a mistake, and his birds were always
at about the same distance from him, to show thereby his extraordinary
nose and confidence. Nothing in his day could beat him in a field.
He got some good stock, but they were not generally show form, the
bitches by him being mostly light and small, and his sons a bit high
on the leg. None of them had his pace, but some were capital
performers, such as Sir Thomas Lennard's Mallard, Mr. George
Pilkington's Tory, Mr. Lloyd Price's Luck of Edenhall, winner of the
Field Trial Derby, 1878; Lord Downe's Mars and Bounce, and Mr. Barclay
Field's Riot. When Sir Richard Garth went to India and sold his kennel
of Pointers at Tattersall's, Mr. Lloyd Price gave 150 guineas for

The mid-century owners and breeders had probably all the advantages
of what a past generation had done, as there were certainly many
wonderful Pointers in the 'fifties, 'sixties, and 'seventies, as old
men living to-day will freely allow. They were produced very
regularly, too, in a marvellous type of perfection.

Mr. William Arkwright, of Sutton Scarsdale, Derbyshire, has probably
the best kennel in England at the present time. He discovered and
revived an old breed of the North of England that was black, and bred
for a great many years by Mr. Pape, of Carlisle, and his father before
him. With these Mr. Arkwright has bred to the best working strains,
with the result that he has had many good field trial winners. For
a good many years now Elias Bishop, of Newton Abbot, has kept up the
old breeds of Devon Pointers, the Ch. Bangs, the Mikes, and the
Brackenburg Romps, and his have been amongst the best at the shows
and the field trials during the past few years. There are, of course,
exceptions to the rule that many of the modern Pointers do not carry
about them the air of their true business; but it would appear that
fewer people keep them now than was the case a quarter of a century
ago, owing to the advance of quick-shooting, otherwise driving, and
the consequent falling away of the old-fashioned methods, both for
the stubble and the moor. However, there are many still who enjoy
the work of dogs, and it would be a sin indeed in the calendar of
British sports if the fine old breed of Pointer were allowed even
to deteriorate. The apparent danger is that the personal or individual
element is dying out. In the 'seventies the name of Drake, Bang, or
Garnet were like household words. People talked of the great Pointers.
They were spoken of in club chat or gossip; written about; and the
prospects of the moors were much associated with the up-to-date
characters of the Pointers and Setters. There is very little of this
sort of talk now-a-days. Guns are more critically spoken of. There
is, however, a wide enough world to supply with first-class Pointers.
In England's numerous colonies it may be much more fitting to shoot
over dogs. It has been tried in South Africa with marvellous results.
Descendants of Bang have delighted the lone colonist on Cape partridge
and quails, and Pointers suit the climate, whereas Setters do not.
The Pointer is a noble breed to take up, as those still in middle
life have seen its extraordinary merit whenever bred in the right
way. As to the essential points of the breed, they may be set down
as follows:--

* * * * *

HEAD--Should be wide from ear to ear, long and slanting from the top
of the skull to the setting on of the nose; cheek bones prominent;
ears set low and thin in texture, soft and velvety; nose broad at
the base; mouth large and jaws level. NECK--The neck should be very
strong, but long and slightly arched, meeting shoulders well knit
into the back, which should be straight and joining a wide loin. There
should be great depth of heart room, very deep brisket, narrow chest
rather than otherwise, shoulders long and slanting. LEGS AND
FEET--Should be as nearly like the Foxhound's as possible. There
should be really no difference, as they must be straight, the knees
big, and the bone should be of goodly size down to the toes, and the
feet should be very round and cat-shaped. HIND-QUARTERS--A great
feature in the Pointer is his hind-quarters. He cannot well be too
long in the haunch or strong in the stifle, which should be well bent,
and the muscles in the second thigh of a good Pointer are always
remarkable. The hocks may be straighter than even in a Foxhound, as,
in pulling up sharp on his point, he in a great measure throws his
weight on them; the shank bones below the hock should be short.
COLOUR--There have been good ones of all colours. The Derby colours
were always liver and whites for their Pointers and black breasted
reds for their game-cocks. The Seftons were liver and whites also,
and so were the Edges of Strelly, but mostly heavily ticked.
Brockton's Bounce was so, and so were Ch. Bang, Mike, and Young Bang.
Drake was more of the Derby colour; dark liver and white. Mr.
Whitehouse's were mostly lemon and whites, after Hamlet of that
colour, and notable ones of the same hue were Squire, Bang Bang, and
Mr. Whitehouse's Pax and Priam, all winners of field trials. There
have been several very good black and whites. Mr. Francis's,
afterwards Mr. Salter's, Chang was a field trial winner of this
colour. A still better one was Mr. S. Becket's Rector, a somewhat
mean little dog to look at, but quite extraordinary in his work, as
he won the Pointer Puppy Stake at Shrewsbury and the All-Aged Stake
three years in succession. Mr. Salter's Romp family were quite
remarkable in colour--a white ground, heavily shot with black in
patches and in ticks. There have never been any better Pointers than
these. There have been, and are, good black Pointers also. HEIGHT
AND SIZE--A big Pointer dog stands from 24-1/2 inches to 25 inches
at the shoulder. Old Ch. Bang and Young Bang were of the former
height, and the great bitch, Mr. Lloyd Price's Belle, was 24 inches.
For big Pointers 60 pounds is about the weight for dogs and 56 pounds
bitches; smaller size, 54 pounds dogs and 48 pounds bitches. There
have been some very good ones still smaller.



I. THE ENGLISH SETTER.--In some form or other Setters are to be found
wherever guns are in frequent use and irrespective of the precise
class of work they have to perform; but their proper sphere is either
on the moors, when the red grouse are in quest, or on the stubbles
and amongst the root crops, when September comes in, and the partridge
season commences.

Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, is supposed to have been the first
person to train setting dogs in the manner which has been commonly
adopted by his successors. His lordship lived in the middle of the
sixteenth century, and was therefore a contemporary of Dr. Caius,
who may possibly have been indebted to the Earl for information when,
in his work on _English Dogges_, he wrote of the Setter under the
name of the Index.

Though Setters are divided into three distinct varieties,--The
English, the Irish and the Gordon, or Black and Tan--there can be
no doubt that all have a common origin, though it is scarcely
probable, in view of their dissimilarity, that the same individual
ancestors can be supposed to be their original progenitors. Nearly
all authorities agree that the Spaniel family is accountable on one
side, and this contention is borne out to a considerable extent by
old illustrations and paintings of Setters at work, in which they
are invariably depicted as being very much like the old liver and
white Spaniel, though of different colours. Doubt exists as to the
other side of their heredity, but it does not necessarily follow that
all those who first bred them used the same means. Of the theories
put forward, that which carries the most presumptive evidence must
go to the credit of the old Spanish Pointer. Where else could they
inherit that wonderful scenting power, that style in which they draw
up to their game, their statuesque attitude when on point, and, above
all, the staunchness and patience by which they hold their game
spellbound until the shooter has time to walk leisurely up, even from
a considerable distance?

But, apart from the question of their origin, the different varieties
have many other attributes in common; all perform the same kind of
work, and in the same manner; consequently the system of breaking
or training them varies only according to the temper or ideas of those
who undertake their schooling.

Few dogs are more admired than English Setters, and those who are
looked upon as professional exhibitors have not been slow to recognise
the fact that when a really good young dog makes its appearance it
is a formidable rival amongst all other breeds when the special prizes
come to be allotted.

Seen either at its legitimate work as a gun dog or as a domestic
companion, the English Setter is one of the most graceful and
beautiful of the canine race, and its elegant form and feathery coat
command instant admiration. Twenty years ago it was known by several
distinct names, among the more important being the Blue Beltons and
Laveracks, and this regardless of any consideration as to whether
or not the dogs were in any way connected by relationship to the stock
which had earned fame for either of these time-honoured names. It
was the great increase in the number of shows and some confusion on
the part of exhibitors that made it necessary for the Kennel Club
to classify under one heading these and others which had attained
some amount of notability and the old terms have gradually been

Doubtless the English Setter Club has done much since its institution
in 1890 to encourage this breed of dog, and has proved the usefulness
of the club by providing two very valuable trophies, the Exhibitors'
Challenge Cup and the Field Trial Challenge Cup, for competition
amongst its members, besides having liberally supported all the
leading shows; hence it has rightly come to be regarded as the only
authority from which an acceptable and official dictum for the
guidance of others can emanate.

The following is the standard of points issued by the English Setter

* * * * *

HEAD--The head should be long and lean, with well-defined stop. The
skull oval from ear to ear, showing plenty of brain room, and with
a well-defined occipital protuberance. The muzzle moderately deep
and fairly square; from the stop to the point of the nose should be
long, the nostrils wide, and the jaws of nearly equal length; flews
not too pendulous. The colour of the nose should be black, or dark,
or light liver, according to the colour of the coat. The eyes should
be bright, mild, and intelligent, and of a dark hazel colour, the
darker the better. The ears of moderate length, set on low and hanging
in neat folds close to the cheek; the tip should be velvety, the upper
part clothed with fine silky hair. NECK--The neck should be rather
long, muscular, and lean, slightly arched at the crest, and clean
cut where it joins the head; towards the shoulder it should be larger,
and very muscular, not throaty with any pendulosity below the throat,
but elegant and bloodlike in appearance. BODY--The body should be
of moderate length, with shoulders well set back or oblique; back
short and level; loins wide, slightly arched, strong and muscular.
Chest deep in the brisket, with good round widely-sprung ribs, deep
in the back ribs--that is, well ribbed up. LEGS AND FEET--The stifles
should be well bent and ragged, thighs long from hip to hock. The
forearm big and very muscular, the elbow well let down. Pasterns
short, muscular, and straight. The feet very close and compact, and
well protected by hair between the toes. TAIL--The tail should be
set on almost in a line with the back; medium length, not curly or
ropy, to be slightly curved or scimitar-shaped, but with no tendency
to turn upwards; the flag or feather hanging in long, pendant flakes;
the feather should not commence at the root, but slightly below, and
increase in length to the middle, then gradually taper off towards
the end; and the hair long, bright, soft and silky, wavy but not
curly. COAT AND FEATHERING--The coat from the back of the head in
a line with the ears ought to be slightly wavy, long, and silky, which
should be the case with the coat generally; the breeches and
fore-legs, nearly down to the feet, should be well feathered. COLOUR
AND MARKINGS--The colour may be either black and white, lemon and
white, liver and white, or tricolour--that is, black, white, and tan;
those without heavy patches of colour on the body, but flecked all
over preferred.

* * * * *

II. THE IRISH SETTER.--Though this variety has not attained such
popularity as its English cousin, it is not because it is regarded
as being less pleasing to the eye, for in general appearance of style
and outline there is very little difference; in fact, none, if the
chiselling of the head and colour of the coat be excepted. The
beautiful rich golden, chestnut colour which predominates in all
well-bred specimens is in itself sufficient to account for the great
favour in which they are regarded generally, while their disposition
is sufficiently engaging to attract the attention of those who desire
to have a moderate-sized dog as a companion, rather than either a
very large or very small one. Probably this accounts for so many lady
exhibitors in England preferring them to the other varieties of
Setters. We have to go over to its native country, however, to find
the breed most highly esteemed as a sporting dog for actual work,
and there it is naturally first favourite; in fact, very few of either
of the other varieties are to be met with from one end of the Green
Isle to the other. It has been suggested that all Irish Setters are
too headstrong to make really high-class field trial dogs. Some of
them, on the contrary, are quite as great in speed and not only as
clever at their business, but quite as keen-nosed as other Setters.
Some which have competed within the past few years at the Irish Red
Setter Club's trials have had as rivals some of the best Pointers
from England and Scotland, and have successfully held their own.

The Secretary of the Irish Setter Club is Mr. S. Brown, 27, Eustace
Street, Dublin, and the standard of points as laid down by that
authority is as follows:--

* * * * *

HEAD--The head should be long and lean. The skull oval (from ear to
ear), having plenty of brain room, and with well-defined occipital
protuberance. Brows raised, showing stop. The muzzle moderately deep
and fairly square at the end. From the stop to the point of the nose
should be fairly long, the nostrils wide, and the jaws of nearly equal
length; flews not to be pendulous. The colour of the nose dark
mahogany or dark walnut, and that of the eyes (which ought not to
be too large) rich hazel or brown. The ears to be of moderate size,
fine in texture, set on low, well back, and hanging in a neat fold
close to the head. NECK--The neck should be moderately long, very
muscular, but not too thick; slightly arched, free from all tendency
to throatiness. BODY--The body should be long. Shoulders fine at the
points, deep and sloping well back. The chest as deep as possible,
rather narrow in front. The ribs well sprung, leaving plenty of lung
room. Loins muscular and slightly arched. The hind-quarters wide and
powerful. LEGS AND FEET--The hind-legs from hip to hock should be
long and muscular; from hock to heel short and strong. The stifle
and hock joints well bent, and not inclined either in or out. The
fore-legs should be straight and sinewy, having plenty of bone, with
elbows free, well let down, and, like the hocks, not inclined either
in or out. The feet small, very firm; toes strong, close together,
and arched. TAIL--The tail should be of moderate length, set on rather
low, strong at root, and tapering to a fine point, to be carried as
nearly as possible on a level or below the back. COAT--On the head,
front of legs, and tips of ears the coat should be short and fine;
but on all other parts of the body and legs it ought to be of
moderate length, flat, and as free as possible from curl or wave.
FEATHERING--The feather on the upper portion of the ears should be
long and silky; on the back of fore and hind-legs long and fine; a
fair amount of hair on the belly, forming a nice fringe, which may
extend on chest and throat. Feet to be well feathered between the
toes. Tail to have a nice fringe of moderately long hair, decreasing
in length as it approaches the point. All feathering to be as straight
and as flat as possible. COLOUR AND MARKINGS--The colour should be
a rich golden chestnut, with no trace whatever of black; white on
chest, throat, or toes, or a small star on the forehead, or a narrow
streak or blaze on the nose or face not to disqualify.

* * * * *

III. THE BLACK AND TAN SETTER.--Originally this variety was known
as the Gordon Setter, but this title was only partly correct, as the
particular dogs first favoured by the Duke of Gordon, from whom they
took the name, were black, tan, and white, heavily built, and somewhat
clumsy in appearance. But the introduction of the Irish blood had
the effect of making a racier-looking dog more fashionable, the
presence of white on the chest was looked upon with disfavour, and
the Kennel Club settled the difficulty of name by abolishing the term
"Gordon" altogether.

Very few of this variety have appeared at field trials for several
years past, but that cannot be considered a valid reason for
stigmatising them as "old-men's dogs," as some narrow-minded faddists
delight in calling them. On the few occasions when the opportunity
has been presented they have acquitted themselves at least as well
as, and on some occasions better than, their rivals of other
varieties, proving to be as fast, as staunch, and as obedient as any
of them. A notable example of this occurred during the season of 1902
and 1903, when Mr. Isaac Sharpe's Stylish Ranger was so remarkably
successful at the trials.

It is very difficult to account for the lack of interest which is
taken in the variety outside Scotland, but the fact remains that very
few have appeared at field trials within recent years, and that only
about four owners are troubling the officials of English shows
regularly at the present time.

In France, Belgium, Norway, and especially in Russia this handsome
sporting dog is a far greater favourite than it is in Great Britain,
not only for work with the gun, but as a companion, and it is a fact
that at many a Continental dog show more specimens of the breed are
exhibited than could be gathered together in the whole of the United

The want of an active organisation which would foster and encourage
the interests of the Black and Tan Setter is much to be deplored,
and is, without doubt, the chief cause of its being so much neglected,
for in these strenuous days, when almost every breed or variety of
breed is backed up by its own votaries, it cannot be expected that
such as are not constantly kept in prominence will receive anything
more than scant consideration.

The Black and Tan Setter is heavier than the English or Irish
varieties, but shows more of the hound and less of the Spaniel. The
head is stronger than that of the English Setter, with a deeper and
broader muzzle and heavier lips. The ears are also somewhat longer,
and the eyes frequently show the haw. The black should be as jet,
and entirely free from white. The tan on the cheeks and over the eyes,
on the feet and pasterns, should be bright and clearly defined, and
the feathering on the fore-legs and thighs should also be a rich,
dark mahogany tan.

Amongst the oldest and most successful owners of Setters who have
consistently competed at field trials may be mentioned Colonel Cotes,
whose Prince Frederick was probably the most wonderful backer ever
known. Messrs. Purcell-Llewellyn, W. Arkwright, Elias and James
Bishop, F. C. Lowe, J. Shorthose, G. Potter and S. Smale, who may
be considered the oldest Setter judges, and who have owned dogs whose
prowess in the field has brought them high reputation. Mr. B. J.
Warwick has within recent years owned probably more winners at field
trials than any other owner, one of his being Compton Bounce. Captain
Heywood Lonsdale has on several occasions proved the Ightfield strain
to be staunch and true, as witness the doughty deeds of Duke of that
ilk, and the splendid success he achieved at recent grouse trials
in Scotland with his Ightfield Rob Roy, Mack, and Dot, the first-named
winning the all-aged stake, and the others being first and third in
the puppy stake. Mr. Herbert Mitchell has been another good patron
of the trials, and has won many important stakes. Mr. A. T. Williams
has also owned a few noted trial winners, and from Scotland comes
Mr. Isaac Sharpe, whose Gordon Setter, Stylish Ranger, has effectually
put a stop to the silly argument that all this breed are old men's

Many of the older field trial men hold tenaciously to the opinion
that the modern exhibition Setter is useless for high-class work,
and contend that if field-trial winners are to be produced they must
be bred from noted working strains. Doubtless this prejudice in favour
of working dogs has been engendered by the circumstance that many
owners of celebrated bench winners care nothing about their dogs being
trained, in some cases generation after generation having been bred
simply for show purposes. Under such conditions it is not to be
wondered at that the capacity for fine scenting properties and the
natural aptitude for quickly picking up a knowledge of their proper
duties in the field is impaired. But there is no reason why a good
show dog should not also be a good worker, and the recent edict of
the Kennel Club which rules that no gun dog shall be entitled to
championship honours until it has gained a certificate of merit in
field trials will doubtless tend towards a general improvement in
the working qualities of the breeds whose providence is in the
finding and retrieving of game.



It is obviously useless to shoot game unless you can find it after
it has been wounded or killed, and from the earliest times it has
been the habit of sportsmen to train their dogs to do the work which
they could not always successfully do for themselves. The Pointers,
Setters, and Spaniels of our forefathers were carefully broken not
only to find and stand their game, but also to fetch the fallen birds.
This use of the setting and pointing dog is still common on the
Continent and in the United States, and there is no inaccuracy in
a French artist depicting a Pointer with a partridge in its mouth,
or showing a Setter retrieving waterfowl.

The Springer and the old curly-coated water-dog were regarded as
particularly adroit in the double work of finding and retrieving.
Pointers and Setters who had been thus broken were found to
deteriorate in steadiness in the field, and it gradually came to be
realised that even the Spaniel's capacity for retrieving was limited.
A larger and quicker dog was wanted to divide the labour, and to be
used solely as a retriever in conjunction with the other gun dogs.
The Poodle was tried for retrieving with some success, and he showed
considerable aptitude in finding and fetching wounded wild duck; but
he, too, was inclined to maul his birds and deliver them dead. Even
the old English Sheepdog was occasionally engaged in the work, and
various crosses with Spaniel or Setter and Collie were attempted in
the endeavour to produce a grade breed having the desired qualities
of a good nose, a soft mouth, and an understanding brain, together
with a coat that would protect its wearer from the ill effects of
frequent immersion in water.

It was when these efforts were most active--namely about the year
1850--that new material was discovered in a black-coated dog recently
introduced into England from Labrador. He was a natural water-dog,
with a constitution impervious to chills, and entirely free from the
liability to ear canker, which had always been a drawback to the use
of the Spaniel as a retriever of waterfowl. Moreover, he was himself
reputed to be a born retriever of game, and remarkably sagacious.
His importers called him a Spaniel--a breed name which at one time
was also applied to his relative the Newfoundland. Probably there
were not many specimens of the race in England, and, although there
is no record explicitly saying so, it is conjectured that these were
crossed with the English Setter, producing what is now familiarly
known as the black, flat-coated Retriever.

One very remarkable attribute of the Retriever is that notwithstanding
the known fact that the parent stock was mongrel, and that in the
early dogs the Setter type largely predominated, the ultimate result
has favoured the Labrador cross distinctly and prominently, proving
how potent, even when grafted upon a stock admittedly various, is
the blood of a pure race, and how powerful its influence for fixing
type and character over the other less vital elements with which it
is blended.

From the first, sportsmen recognised the extreme value of the new
retrieving dog. Strengthened and improved by the Labrador blood, he
had lost little if any of the Setter beauty of form. He was a
dignified, substantial, intelligent, good-tempered, affectionate
companion, faithful, talented, highly cultivated, and esteemed, in
the season and out of it, for his mind as well as his beauty.

It is only comparatively recently that we have realised how excellent
an all-around sporting dog the Retriever has become. In many cases,
indeed, where grouse and partridge are driven or walked-up a
well-broken, soft-mouthed Retriever is unquestionably superior to
Pointer, Setter, or Spaniel, and for general work in the field he
is the best companion that a shooting man can possess.

Doubtless in earlier days, when the art of training was less
thoroughly understood, the breaking of a dog was a matter of infinite
trouble to breeders. Most of the gun dogs could be taught by patience
and practice to retrieve fur or feather, but game carefully and
skilfully shot is easily rendered valueless by being mumbled and
mauled by powerful jaws not schooled to gentleness. And this question
of a tender mouth was certainly one of the problems that perturbed
the minds of the originators of the breed. The difficulty was overcome
by process of selection, and by the exclusion from breeding operations
of all hard-mouthed specimens, with the happy effect that in the
present time it is exceptional to find a working Retriever who does
not know how to bring his bird to hand without injuring it. A better
knowledge of what is expected of him distinguishes our modern
Retriever. He knows his duty, and is intensely eager to perform it,
but he no longer rushes off unbidden at the firing of the gun. He
has learned to remain at heel until he is ordered by word or gesture
from his master, upon whom he relies as his friend and director.

It would be idle to expect that the offspring of unbroken sire and
dam can be as easily educated as a Retriever whose parents before
him have been properly trained. Inherited qualities count for a great
deal in the adaptability of all sporting dogs, and the reason why
one meets with so many Retrievers that are incapable or disobedient
or gun-shy is simply that their preliminary education has been
neglected--the education which should begin when the dog is very

In his earliest youth he should be trained to prompt obedience to
a given word or a wave of the hand. It is well to teach him very early
to enter water, or he may be found wanting when you require him to
fetch a bird from river or lake. Lessons in retrieving ought to be
a part of his daily routine. Equally necessary is it to break him
in to the knowledge that sheep and lambs are not game to be chased,
and that rabbits and hares are to be discriminated from feathered

Gun-shyness is often supposed to be hereditary; but it is not so.
Any puppy can be cured of gun-shyness in half a dozen short lessons.
Sir Henry Smith's advice is to get your puppy accustomed to the sound
and sight of a gun being fired, first at a distance and gradually
nearer and nearer, until he knows that no harm will come to him.
Companionship and sympathy between dog and master is the beginning
and end of the whole business, and there is a moral obligation between
them which ought never to be strained.

Both as a worker and as a show dog the flat-coated Retriever has
reached something very near to the ideal standard of perfection which
has been consistently bred up to. Careful selection and systematic
breeding, backed up by enthusiasm, have resulted in the production
of a dog combining useful working qualities with the highest degree
of beauty.

A very prominent admirer and breeder was the late Mr. S. E. Shirley,
the President of the Kennel Club, who owned many Retrievers
superlative both as workers and as show dogs, and who probably did
more for the breed than any other man of his generation.

_From the Painting by Maud Earl_]

Mr. Shirley's work was carried on by Mr. Harding Cox, who devoted
much time and energy to the production of good Retrievers, many of
which were of Mr. Shirley's strain. Mr. Cox's dogs deservedly achieved
considerable fame for their levelness of type, and the improvement
in heads so noticeable at the present time is to be ascribed to his
breeding for this point. Mr. L. Allen Shuter, the owner of Ch. Darenth
and other excellent Retrievers of his own breeding, claims also a
large share of credit for the part he has played in the general
improvement of the breed. Mr. C. A. Phillips, too, owned admirable
specimens, and the name of the late Lieut.-Colonel Cornwall Legh must
be included. Many of Colonel Legh's bitches were of Shirley blood,
but it is believed that a breed of Retrievers had existed at High
Legh for several generations, with which a judicious cross was made,
the result being not only the formation of a remarkable kennel, but
also a decided influence for good upon the breed in general.

But since the Shirley days, when competition was more limited than
it is at present, no kennel of Retrievers has ever attained anything
like the distinction of that owned by Mr. H. Reginald Cooke, at
Riverside, Nantwich. By acquiring the best specimens of the breed
from all available sources, Mr. Cooke has gathered together a stock
which has never been equalled. His ideas of type and conformation
are the outcome of close and attentive study and consistent practice,
and one needs to go to Riverside if one desires to see the highest
examples of what a modern flat-coated Retriever can be.

Since Dr. Bond Moore imparted to the Retriever a fixity of character,
the coats have become longer and less wavy, and in conformation of
skull, colour of eye, straightness of legs, and quality of bone, there
has been a perceptible improvement.

As there is no club devoted to the breed, and consequently no official
standard of points, the following description of the perfect Retriever
is offered:--

* * * * *

GENERAL APPEARANCE--That of a well-proportioned bright and active
sporting dog, showing power without lumber and raciness without
weediness. HEAD--Long, fine, without being weak, the muzzle square,
the underjaw strong with an absence of lippiness or throatiness.
EYES--Dark as possible, with a very intelligent, mild expression.
NECK--Long and clean. EARS--Small, well set on, and carried close
to the head. SHOULDERS--Oblique, running well into the back, with
plenty of depth of chest. BODY--Short and square, and well ribbed
up. STERN--Short and straight, and carried gaily, but not curled over
the back. FORE-LEGS--Straight, pasterns strong, feet small and round.
QUARTERS--Strong; stifles well bent. COAT--Dense black or liver, of
fine quality and texture. Flat, not wavy. WEIGHT--From 65 lb. to 80
lb. for dogs; bitches rather less.

* * * * *

As a rule the Retriever should be chosen for the intelligent look
of his face, and particular attention should be paid to the shape
of his head and to his eyes. His frame is important, of course, but
in the Retriever the mental qualities are of more significance than
bodily points.

There has been a tendency in recent years among Retriever breeders
to fall into the common error of exaggerating a particular point,
and of breeding dogs with a head far too fine and narrow--it is what
has been aptly called the alligator head--lacking in brain capacity
and power of jaw. A perfect head should be long and clean, but neither
weak nor snipy. The eye should be placed just halfway between the
occiput and the tip of the nose.

It is pleasing to add that to this beautiful breed the phrase
"handsome is as handsome does" applies in full measure. Not only is
the average Retriever of a companionable disposition, with delightful
intelligence that is always responsive, but he is a good and faithful
guard and a courageous protector of person and property. It has
already been said that the majority of the best-looking Retrievers
are also good working dogs, and it may here be added that many of
the most successful working dogs are sired by prize-winners in the
show ring.


The curly-coated Retriever is commonly believed to be of earlier
origin than his flat-coated relative, and he is of less pure descent.
He probably owes ancestral tribute to the Poodle. Such a cross may
conceivably have been resorted to by the early Retriever breeders,
and there was little to lose from a merely sporting point of view
from this alien introduction, for the Poodle is well known to be by
nature, if not by systematic training, an excellent water dog, capable
of being taught anything that the canine mind can comprehend. During
the early years of the nineteenth century the Poodle was fairly
plentiful in England, and we had no other curly-coated dog of similar
size and type apart from the Irish Water Spaniel, who may himself
lay claim to Poodle relationship; while as to the Retriever, either
curly or flat coated, he can in no sense be assigned to any country
outside of Great Britain. The presumption is strong that the
"gentleman from France" was largely instrumental in the manufacture
of the variety, but whatever the origin of the curly-coated Retriever
he is a beautiful dog, and one is gratified to note that the old
prejudice against him, and the old indictment as to his hard mouth,
are fast giving place to praise of his intelligence and admiration
of his working abilities.

Speaking generally, it seems to be accepted that he is slightly
inferior in nose to his flat-coated cousin, and not quite so easy
to break, but there are many keepers and handlers who have discovered
in individual specimens extraordinary merit in the field combined
with great endurance. It is not certain that any great improvement
has been effected in the variety during recent years, but there are
particular dogs to-day who are decidedly better than any that existed
a dozen years or more ago, when such celebrities as True, Old Sam,
King Koffee, Ben Wonder, Doden Ben, Lad and Una, were prominent, and
there is no doubt that the curly coats attained show form in advance
of the flat-coated variety.

The coat of the curly Retriever plays a very important part in his
value and personality. There are many kinds of coat, but the only
true and proper one is the close-fitting "nigger curl," of which each
knot is solid and inseparable. A coat of this quality is not capable
of improvement by any method of grooming, for the simple reason that
its natural condition is in itself perfect. The little locks should
be so close together as to be impervious to water, and all parts of
the body should be evenly covered with them, including the tail and
legs. A bad class of coat, and one which readily yields to the faker's
art, is the thin open curl which by careful manipulation can be
greatly improved. Another bad quality of coat is one in which, upon
the withers and over the loins in particular, the curls do not tighten
up naturally, but are large, loose, and soft to the feel. Regarding
the dog as a whole, the following may be taken as an all-round

* * * * *

GENERAL APPEARANCE--That of a smart, active, clean-cut and alert dog,
full of go and fire--a sportsman from stem to stern. HEAD--Long and
not weedy in the muzzle, nor thick and coarse in the skull, but
tapering down and finishing with a stout broad muzzle. SKULL--Should
be flat and moderately broad between the ears, which are rather small,
and well covered with hair. EARS--Should lie close to the side of
the head, but not dead in their carriage. FACE--The face should be
smooth, and any indication of a forelock should be penalised. EYE--The
eye should in all cases be dark and not too deeply set. NECK--Well
placed in the shoulders and nicely arched, of moderate length and
yet powerful and free from throatiness. SHOULDERS--Well laid back
and as free from massiveness as possible, though there is a decided
tendency in this variety to such a fault. LEGS--Straight and well
covered with coat. The bone should show quality and yet be fairly
abundant. FEET--Compact and hound-like. BODY--Should show great power,
with deep, well-rounded ribs. As little cut-up in the flank as
possible. TAIL--Strong at the base, set on in a line with the back
and tapering to a point, the size of the curls upon it diminishing
gradually to the end. HIND-QUARTERS--Should show great development
of muscle, with bent hocks, the lower leg being strong and the hind
feet compact. Any suspicion of cow hocks should be heavily penalised.
COLOUR--Mostly a dull black. Some liver-coloured dogs are seen with
very good coats and bodies, but their heads are generally thick and
coarse, and the colour of their eyes does not always match, as it
should do, with the colour of the coat. A few dogs of this colour
have achieved distinction on the show bench.

* * * * *


Within recent years the original smooth-coated Labrador dog has taken
its place as a recognised variety of the Retriever and become
prominent both at exhibitions and as a worker. It is not probable
that any have been imported into England for the past quarter of a
century, but without the assistance of shows or imported blood they
have survived marvellously. Thanks especially to the kennels of such
breeders as the Dukes of Buccleuch and Hamilton, the Earl of Verulam,
Lords Wimborne, Horne, and Malmesbury, the Hon. A. Holland Hibbert,
Sir Savile Crossley, Mr. F. P. Barnett, Mr. C. Liddell, Mr. O. L.
Mansel, and others equally enthusiastic.

To the Duke of Buccleuch's kennel we are probably more indebted in
the last twenty years than to any other. Its foundation was laid in
two bitches by a dog of the Duke of Hamilton's from a bitch of Lord
Malmesbury's. At Drumlanrig, as well as on the Duke's other estates,
they have been most particular in preserving the purity and working
qualities of their strain. And the same may be said of the Hon. A.
Holland Hibbert, whose principal dogs are not only typical in
appearance, but broken to perfection. The Duchess of Hamilton's
kennels have been responsible for some of the best field trial winners
of the present day. As far as looks are concerned, one cannot say
that the Labrador compares favourably with either the flat or the
curly coated Retriever, but that is immaterial so long as he continues
to work as he is doing at present.



I. THE SPANIEL FAMILY.--The Spaniel family is without any doubt one
of the most important of the many groups which are included in the
canine race, not only on account of its undoubted antiquity, and,
compared with other families, its well authenticated lineage, but
also because of its many branches and subdivisions, ranging in size
from the majestic and massive Clumbers to the diminutive toys which
we are accustomed to associate with fair ladies' laps and gaily-decked
pens at our big dog shows.

Moreover, the different varieties of Setters undoubtedly derive their
origin from the same parent stock, since we find them described by
the earlier sporting writers as "setting" or "crouching" Spaniels,
in contradistinction to the "finding" or "springing" Spaniel, who
flushed the game he found without setting or pointing it. As time
went on, the setting variety was, no doubt, bred larger and longer
in the leg, with a view to increased pace; but the Spaniel-like head
and coat still remain to prove the near connection between the two

All the different varieties of Spaniels, both sporting and toy, have,
with the exception of the Clumber and the Irish Water Spaniel (who
is not, despite his name, a true Spaniel at all), a common origin,
though at a very early date we find them divided into two
groups--viz., Land and Water Spaniels, and these two were kept
distinct, and bred to develop those points which were most essential
for their different spheres of work. The earliest mention of Spaniels
to be found in English literature is contained in the celebrated
"Master of Game," the work of Edward Plantagenet, second Duke of York,
and Master of Game to his uncle, Henry IV., to whom the work is
dedicated. It was written between the years 1406 and 1413, and
although none of the MSS., of which some sixteen are in existence,
is dated, this date can be fairly accurately fixed, as the author
was appointed Master of Game in the former and killed at Agincourt
in the latter year. His chapter on Spaniels, however, is mainly a
translation from the equally celebrated "Livre de Chasse," of Gaston
Comte de Foix, generally known as Gaston Phoebus, which was written
in 1387, so that we may safely assume that Spaniels were well known,
and habitually used as aids to the chase both in France and England,
as early as the middle of the fourteenth century.

In the eighteenth and early part of the nineteenth century the Spaniel
was described by many writers on sporting subjects; but there is a
great similarity in most of these accounts, each author apparently
having been content to repeat in almost identical language what had
been said upon the subject by his predecessors, without importing
any originality or opinions of his own. Many of these works,
notwithstanding this defect, are very interesting to the student of
Spaniel lore, and the perusal of Blaine's _Rural Sports_, Taplin's
_Sporting Dictionary and Rural Repository_, Scott's _Sportsman's
Repository_, and Needham's _Complete Sportsman_, can be recommended
to all who wish to study the history of the development of the various
modern breeds. The works of the French writers, De Cominck, De
Cherville, Blaze, and Megnin, are well worth reading, while of late
years the subject has been treated very fully by such British writers
as the late J. H. Walsh ("Stonehenge"), Mr. Vero Shaw, Mr. Rawdon
Lee, Colonel Claude Cane, and Mr. C. A. Phillips.

Nearly all of the early writers, both French and English, are agreed
that the breed came originally from Spain, and we may assume that
such early authorities as Gaston Phoebus, Edward Plantagenet, and
Dr. Caius had good reasons for telling us that these dogs were called
Spaniels because they came from Spain.

The following distinct breeds or varieties are recognised by the
Kennel Club: (1) Irish Water Spaniels; (2) Water Spaniels other than
Irish; (3) Clumber Spaniels; (4) Sussex Spaniels; (5) Field Spaniels;
(6) English Springers; (7) Welsh Springers; (8) Cocker Spaniels. Each
of these varieties differs considerably from the others, and each
has its own special advocates and admirers, as well as its own
particular sphere of work for which it is best fitted, though almost
any Spaniel can be made into a general utility dog, which is, perhaps,
one of the main reasons for the popularity of the breed.

II. THE IRISH WATER SPANIEL.--There is only one breed of dog known
in these days by the name of Irish Water Spaniel, but if we are to
trust the writers of no longer ago than half a century there were
at one time two, if not three, breeds of Water Spaniels peculiar to
the Emerald Isle. These were the Tweed Water Spaniel, the Northern
Water Spaniel, and the Southern Water Spaniel, the last of these
being the progenitors of our modern strains.

The history of the Irish Water Spaniel is in many ways a very
extraordinary one. According to the claim of Mr. Justin McCarthy,
it originated entirely in his kennels, and this claim has never been
seriously disputed by the subsequent owners and breeders of these
dogs. It seems improbable that Mr. Justin McCarthy can actually have
originated or manufactured a breed possessing so many extremely marked
differences and divergences of type as the Irish Water Spaniel; but
what he probably did was to rescue an old and moribund breed from
impending extinction, and so improve it by judicious breeding, and
cross-breeding as to give it a new lease of life, and permanently
fix its salient points and characteristics. However that may be,
little seems to have been known of the breed before he took it in
hand, and it is very certain that nearly every Irish Water Spaniel
seen for the last half century owes its descent to his old dog
Boatswain, who was born in 1834 and lived for eighteen years. He must
have been a grand old dog, since Mr. McCarthy gave him to Mr. Joliffe
Tuffnell in 1849, when he was fifteen years old; and his new owner
subsequently bred by him Jack, a dog whose name appears in many

It was not until 1862 that the breed seems to have attracted much
notice in England, but in that year the Birmingham Committee gave
two classes for them, in which, however, several of the prizes were
withheld for want of merit; the next few years saw these dogs making
great strides in popularity and, classes being provided at most of
the important shows, many good specimens were exhibited.

During the last few years, however, the breed seems to have been
progressing the wrong way, and classes at shows have not been nearly
so strong, either in numbers or in quality, as they used to be. Yet
there have been, and are still, quite a large number of good dogs
and bitches to be seen, and it only needs enthusiasm and co-operation
among breeders to bring back the palmiest days of the Irish Water

There is no member of the whole canine family which has a more
distinctive personal appearance than the Irish Water Spaniel. With
him it is a case of once seen never forgotten, and no one who has
ever seen one could possibly mistake him for anything else than what
he is. His best friends probably would not claim beauty, in the
aesthetic sense, for him; but he is attractive in a quaint way
peculiarly his own, and intelligent-looking. In this particular his
looks do not bewray him; he is, in fact, one of the most intelligent
of all the dogs used in aid of the gun, and in his own sphere one
of the most useful. That sphere, there is no doubt, is that indicated
by his name, and it is in a country of bogs and marshes, like the
south and west of Ireland, of which he was originally a native, where
snipe and wildfowl provide the staple sport of the gunner, that he
is in his element and seen at his best, though, no doubt, he can do
excellent work as an ordinary retriever, and is often used as such.

But Nature (or Mr. McCarthy's art) has specially formed and endowed
him for the amphibious sport indicated above, and has provided him
with an excellent nose, an almost waterproof coat, the sporting
instincts of a true son of Erin, and, above all, a disposition full
of good sense; he is high-couraged, and at the same time adaptable
to the highest degree of perfection in training. His detractors often
accuse him of being hard-mouthed, but this charge is not well founded.
Many a dog which is used to hunt or find game as well as to retrieve
it, will often kill a wounded bird or rabbit rather than allow it
to escape, while there are many Irish Water Spaniels who, under normal
circumstances, are just as tender-mouthed as the most fashionable
of black Retrievers. Besides his virtues in the field, the Irish Water
Spaniel has the reputation--a very well-founded one--of being the
best of pals.

Most people are well acquainted with the personal appearance of this
quaint-looking dog. The points regarded as essential are as follows:--

* * * * *

COLOUR--The colour should always be a rich dark liver or puce without
any white at all. Any white except the slightest of "shirt fronts"
should disqualify. The _nose_ of course should conform to the coat
in colour, and be dark brown. HEAD--The head should have a capacious
skull, fairly but not excessively domed, with plenty of brain room.
It should be surmounted with a regular topknot of curly hair, a _most
important_ and distinctive point. This topknot should _never_ be
square cut or like a poodle's wig, but should grow down to a well
defined point between the eyes. EYES--The eyes should be small, dark,
and set obliquely, like a Chinaman's. EARS--The ears should be long,
strong in leather, low set, heavily ringleted, and from 18 to 24
inches long, according to size. MUZZLE AND JAW--The muzzle and jaw
should be long and strong. There should be a decided "stop," but not
so pronounced as to make the brows or forehead prominent. NECK--The
neck should be fairly long and very muscular. SHOULDERS--The shoulders
should be sloping. Most Irish Water Spaniels have bad, straight
shoulders, a defect which should be bred out. CHEST--The chest is
deep, and usually rather narrow, but should not be so narrow as to
constrict the heart and lungs. BACK AND LOINS--The back and loins
strong and arched. FORE-LEGS--The fore-legs straight and well boned.
Heavily feathered or ringleted all over. HIND-LEGS--The hind-legs
with hocks set very low, stifles rather straight, feathered all over,
except inside from the hocks down, which part should be covered with
short hair (a most distinctive point). FEET--The feet large and rather
spreading as is proper for a water dog, well clothed with hair.
STERN--The stern covered with the shortest of hair, except for the
first couple of inches next the buttocks, whiplike or stinglike (a
most important point), and carried low, not like a hound's. COAT--The
coat composed entirely of short crisp curls, not woolly like a
Poodle's, and very dense. If left to itself, this coat mats or cords,
but this is not permissible in show dogs. The hair on the muzzle and
forehead below the topknot is quite short and smooth, as well as that
on the stern. GENERAL APPEARANCE--Is not remarkable for symmetry,
but is quaint and intelligent looking. HEIGHT--The height should be
between 21 and 23 inches.

* * * * *

III. THE ENGLISH WATER SPANIEL.--In the Kennel Club's Register of
Breeds no place is allotted to this variety, all Water Spaniels other
than Irish being classed together. Despite this absence of official
recognition there is abundant evidence that a breed of Spaniels
legitimately entitled to the designation of English Water Spaniels
has been in existence for many years, in all probability a descendant
of the old "Water-Dogge," an animal closely resembling the French
"Barbet," the ancestor of the modern Poodle. They were even trimmed
at times much in the same way as a Poodle is nowadays, as Markham
gives precise directions for "the cutting or shearing him from the
nauill downeward or backeward." The opinion expressed by the writer
of _The Sportsman's Cabinet_, 1803, is that the breed originated from
a cross between the large water dog and the Springing Spaniel, and
this is probably correct, though Youatt, a notable authority, thinks
that the cross was with an English Setter. Possibly some strains may
have been established in this way, and not differ very much in make
and shape from those obtained from the cross with the Spaniel, as
it is well known that Setters and Spaniels have a common origin.

In general appearance the dog resembles somewhat closely the Springer,
except that he may be somewhat higher on the leg, and that his coat
should consist of crisp, tight curls, almost like Astrakhan fur,
everywhere except on his face, where it should be short. There should
be no topknot like that of the Irish Water Spaniel.

IV. THE CLUMBER SPANIEL is in high favour in the Spaniel world, both
with shooting men and exhibitors, and the breed well deserves from
both points of view the position which it occupies in the public
esteem. No other variety is better equipped mentally and physically
for the work it is called upon to do in aid of the gun; and few,
certainly none of the Spaniels, surpass or even equal it in

As a sporting dog, the Clumber is possessed of the very best of noses,
a natural inclination both to hunt his game and retrieve it when
killed, great keenness and perseverance wonderful endurance and
activity considering his massive build, and as a rule is very easy
to train, being highly intelligent and more docile and "biddable."
The man who owns a good dog of this breed, whether he uses it as a
retriever for driven birds, works it in a team, or uses it as his
sole companion when he goes gunning, possesses a treasure. The great
success of these Spaniels in the Field Trials promoted by both the
societies which foster those most useful institutions is enough to
prove this, and more convincing still is the tenacity with which the
fortunate possessors of old strains, mostly residents in the immediate
neighbourhood of the original home of the breed, have held on to them
and continued to breed and use them year after year for many

As a show dog, his massive frame, powerful limbs, pure white coat,
with its pale lemon markings and frecklings, and, above all, his
solemn and majestic aspect, mark him out as a true aristocrat, with
all the beauty of refinement which comes from a long line of cultured

All research so far has failed to carry their history back any further
than the last quarter of the eighteenth century. About that time the
Duc de Noailles presented some Spaniels, probably his whole kennel,
which he brought from France, to the second Duke of Newcastle, from
whose place, Clumber Park, the breed has taken its name. Beyond this
it seems impossible to go: indeed, the Clumber seems to be generally
looked upon as a purely English breed.

From Clumber Park specimens found their way to most of the other great
houses in the neighbourhood, notably to Althorp Park, Welbeck Abbey,
Birdsall House, Thoresby Hall, and Osberton Hall. It is from the
kennels at the last-named place, owned by Mr. Foljambe, that most
of the progenitors of the Clumbers which have earned notoriety derived
their origin. Nearly all the most famous show winners of early days
were descended from Mr. Foljambe's dogs, and his Beau may perhaps
be considered one of the most important "pillars of the stud," as
he was the sire of Nabob, a great prize-winner, and considered one
of the best of his day, who belonged at various times during his
career to such famous showmen as Messrs. Phineas Bullock, Mr.
Fletcher, Mr. Rawdon Lee, and Mr. G. Oliver.

There has been a great deal of lamentation lately among old breeders
and exhibitors about the decadence of the breed and the loss of the
true old type possessed by these dogs. But, despite all they can say
to the contrary, the Clumber is now in a more flourishing state than
it ever has been; and although perhaps we have not now, nor have had
for the last decade, a John o' Gaunt or a Tower, there have been a
large number of dogs shown during that time who possessed considerable
merit and would probably have held their own even in the days of these
bygone heroes. Some of the most notable have been Baillie Friar,
Beechgrove Donally, Goring of Auchentorlie, Hempstead Toby, and
Preston Shot, who all earned the coveted title of Champion.

The Field Trials have, no doubt, had a great deal to do with the
largely augmented popularity of the breed and the great increase in
the number of those who own Clumbers. For the first two or three years
after these were truly established no other breed seemed to have a
chance with them; and even now, though both English and Welsh
Springers have done remarkably well, they more than hold their own.
The most distinguished performer by far was Mr. Winton Smith's
Beechgrove Bee, a bitch whose work was practically faultless, and
the first Field Trial Champion among Spaniels. Other good Clumbers
who earned distinction in the field were Beechgrove Minette,
Beechgrove Maud, the Duke of Portland's Welbeck Sambo, and Mr.
Phillips' Rivington Honey, Rivington Pearl, and Rivington Reel.

The points and general description of the breed as published by both
the Spaniel Club and the Clumber Spaniel Club are identical. They
are as follows:--

* * * * *

HEAD--Large, square and massive, of medium length, broad on top, with
a decided occiput; heavy brows with a deep stop; heavy freckled
muzzle, with well developed flew. EYES--Dark amber; slightly sunk.
A light or prominent eye objectionable. EARS--Large, vine leaf shaped,
and well covered with straight hair and hanging slightly forward,
the feather not to extend below the leather. NECK--Very thick and
powerful, and well feathered underneath. BODY (INCLUDING SIZE AND
SYMMETRY)--Long and heavy, and near the ground. Weight of dogs about
55 lb. to 65 lb.; bitches about 45 lb. to 55 lb. NOSE--Square and
flesh coloured. SHOULDERS AND CHEST--Wide and deep; shoulders strong
and muscular. BACK AND LOIN--Back straight, broad and long; loin
powerful, well let down in flank. HIND-QUARTERS--Very powerful and
well developed. STERN--Set low, well feathered, and carried about
level with the back. FEET AND LEGS--Feet large and round, well covered
with hair; legs short, thick and strong; hocks low. COAT--Long,
abundant, soft and straight. COLOUR--Plain white with lemon markings;
orange permissible but not desirable; slight head markings with white
body preferred. GENERAL APPEARANCE--Should be that of a long, low,
heavy, very massive dog, with a thoughtful expression.

* * * * *

IV. THE SUSSEX SPANIEL.--This is one of the oldest of the distinct
breeds of Land Spaniels now existing in the British Islands, and
probably also the purest in point of descent, since it has for many
years past been confined to a comparatively small number of kennels,
the owners of which have always been at considerable pains to keep
their strains free from any admixture of foreign blood.

The modern race of Sussex Spaniels, as we know it, owes its origin
in the main to the kennel kept by Mr. Fuller at Rosehill Park,
Brightling, near Hastings. This gentleman, who died in 1847, is said
to have kept his strain for fifty years or more, and to have shot
over them almost daily during the season, but at his death they were
dispersed by auction, and none of them can be traced with any accuracy
except a dog and a bitch which were given at the time to Relf, the
head keeper. Relf survived his master for forty years, and kept up
his interest in the breed to the last. He used to say that the golden
tinge peculiar to the Rosehill breed came from a bitch which had been
mated with a dog belonging to Dr. Watts, of Battle, and that every
now and then what he termed a "sandy" pup would turn up in her
litters. Owing to an outbreak of dumb madness in the Rosehill kennels,
a very large number of its occupants either died or had to be
destroyed, and this no doubt accounted for the extreme scarcity of
the breed when several enthusiasts began to revive it about the year
1870. Mr. Saxby and Mr. Marchant are said to have had the same strain
as that at Rosehill, and certainly one of the most famous sires who
is to be found in most Sussex pedigrees was Buckingham, by Marchant's
Rover out of Saxby's Fan.

It was from the union of Buckingham, who was claimed to be pure
Rosehill--with Bebb's daughter Peggie that the great Bachelor
resulted--a dog whose name is to be found in almost every latter-day
pedigree, though Mr. Campbell Newington's strain, to which has
descended the historic prefix "Rosehill," contains less of this blood
than any other.

About 1879 Mr. T. Jacobs, of Newton Abbot, took up this breed with
great success, owning, amongst other good specimens, Russett, Dolly,
Brunette, and Bachelor III., the latter a dog whose services at the
stud cannot be estimated too highly. When this kennel was broken up
in 1891, the best of the Sussex Spaniels were acquired by Mr.
Woolland, and from that date this gentleman's kennel carried all
before it until it in turn was broken up and dispersed in 1905. So
successful was Mr. Woolland that one may almost say that he beat all
other competitors off the field, though one of them, Mr. Campbell
Newington, stuck most gallantly to him all through.

Mr. Campbell Newington has been breeding Sussex Spaniels for over
a quarter of a century with an enthusiasm and tenacity worthy of the
warmest admiration, and his strain is probably the purest, and more
full of the original blood than any other. His kennel has always
maintained a very high standard of excellence, and many famous show
specimens have come from it, notably Rosehill Ruler II. (a splendid
Sussex, scarcely inferior to Bridford Giddie), Romulus, Roein, Rita,
Rush, Rock, Rag, and Ranji, and many others of almost equal merit.

Colonel Claude Cane's kennel of Sussex, started from a "Woolland-bred"
foundation, has been going for some seventeen years, the best he has
shown being Jonathan Swift, Celbridge Eldorado, and Celbridge

The breed has always had a good character for work, and most of the
older writers who mention them speak of Sussex Spaniels in very
eulogistic terms. They are rather slow workers, but thoroughly
conscientious and painstaking, and are not afraid of any amount of
thick covert, through which they will force their way, and seldom
leave anything behind them.

A well-bred Sussex Spaniel is a very handsome dog. Indeed, his
beautiful colour alone is enough to make his appearance an attractive
one, even if he were unsymmetrical and ungainly in his proportions.

This colour, known as golden liver, is peculiar to the breed, and
is the great touchstone and hall-mark of purity of blood. No other
dog has exactly the same shade of coat, which the word "liver" hardly
describes exactly, as it is totally different from the ordinary liver
colour of an Irishman, a Pointer, or even a liver Field Spaniel. It
is rather a golden chestnut with a regular metallic sheen as of
burnished metal, showing more especially on the head and face and
everywhere where the hair is short. This is very apparent when a dog
gets his new coat. In time, of course, it is liable to get somewhat
bleached by sun and weather, when it turns almost yellow. Every expert
knows this colour well, and looks for it at once when judging a class
of Sussex.

The description of the breed given by the Spaniel Club is as

* * * * *

HEAD--The skull should be moderately long, and also wide, with an
indentation in the middle, and a full stop, brows fairly heavy;
occiput full, but not pointed, the whole giving an appearance of
heaviness without dulness. EYES--Hazel colour, fairly large, soft
and languishing, not showing the haw overmuch. NOSE--The muzzle should
be about three inches long, square, and the lips somewhat pendulous.
The nostrils well developed and liver colour. EARS--Thick, fairly
large, and lobe shaped; set moderately low, but relatively not so
low as in the Black Field Spaniel; carried close to the head, and
furnished with soft wavy hair. NECK--Is rather short, strong, and
slightly arched, but not carrying the head much above the level of
the back. There should not be much throatiness in the skin, but well
marked frill in the coat. CHEST AND SHOULDERS--The chest is round,
especially behind the shoulders, deep and wide, giving a good girth.
The shoulders should be oblique. BACK AND BACK RIBS--The back and
loin are long, and should be very muscular, both in width and depth;
for this development the back ribs must be deep. The whole body is
characterised as low, long, level, and strong. LEGS AND FEET--The
arms and thighs must be bony, as well as muscular, knees and hocks
large and strong, pasterns very short and bony, feet large and round,
and with short hair between the toes. The legs should be very short
and strong, with great bone, and may show a slight bend in the
forearm, and be moderately well feathered. The hind-legs should not
be apparently shorter than the fore-legs, or be too much bent at the
hocks, so as to give a Settery appearance which is so objectionable.
The hind-legs should be well feathered above the hocks, but should
not have much hair below that point. The hocks should be short and
wide apart. TAIL--Should be docked from five to seven inches, set
low, and not carried above the level of the back, thickly clothed
with moderately long feather. COAT--Body coat abundant, flat or
slightly waved, with no tendency to curl, moderately well feathered
on legs and stern, but clean below the hocks. COLOUR--Rich golden
liver; this is a certain sign of the purity of the breed, dark liver
or puce denoting unmistakably a recent cross with the black or other
variety of Field Spaniel. GENERAL APPEARANCE--Rather massive and
muscular, but with free movements and nice tail action denoting a
tractable and cheerful disposition. Weight from 35 lb. to 45 lb.

* * * * *

VI. THE FIELD SPANIEL.--The modern Field Spaniel may be divided into
two classes. Indeed, we may almost say at this stage of canine
history, two breeds, as for several years past there has not been
very much intermingling of blood between the Blacks and those known
by the awkward designation of "Any Other Variety," though, of course,
all came originally from the same parent stock.

The black members of the family have always been given the pride of
place, and accounted of most importance, though latterly their
parti-coloured brethren seem to have rather overtaken them.

Among the really old writers there is one mention, and one only, of
Spaniels of a black colour. Arcussia speaks of them, and of their
being used in connection with the sport of hawking, but from his time
up to the middle of the nineteenth century, though many colours are
spoken of as being appropriate to the various breeds of Spaniels,
no author mentions black.

The first strain of blacks of which we know much belonged to Mr. F.
Burdett, and was obtained from a Mr. Footman, of Lutterworth,
Leicestershire, who was supposed to have owned them for some time.
Mr. Burdett's Bob and Frank may be found at the head of very many
of the best pedigrees. At his death most of his Spaniels became the
property of Mr. Jones, of Oscott, and Mr. Phineas Bullock, of Bilston,
the latter of whom was most extraordinarily successful, and owned
a kennel of Field Spaniels which was practically unbeatable between
the dates of the first Birmingham Show in 1861 and the publication
of the first volume of the Kennel Club's Stud Book in 1874, many,
if not most, of the dogs which won for other owners having been bred
by him. His Nellie and Bob, who won the chief prizes year after year
at all the leading shows, were probably the two best specimens of
their day. Another most successful breeder was Mr. W. W. Boulton,
of Beverley, whose kennel produced many celebrated dogs, including
Beverlac, said to be the largest Field Spaniel ever exhibited, and
Rolf, whose union with Belle produced four bitches who were destined,
when mated with Nigger, a dog of Mr. Bullock's breeding, to form the
foundation of the equally if not more famous kennel belonging to Mr.
T. Jacobs, of Newton Abbot.

It was Mr. Jacobs who, by judiciously mating his Sussex sires
Bachelor, Bachelor III., and others with these black-bred bitches,
established the strain which in his hands and in those of his
successors, Captain S. M. Thomas and Mr. Moses Woolland, carried all
before it for many years, and is still easily at the top of the tree,
being the most sought for and highly prized of all on account of its

If Black Spaniels are not quite so popular at present as they were
some years ago, the fault lies with those breeders, exhibitors, and
judges (the latter being most to blame) who encouraged the absurd
craze for excessive length of body and shortness of leg which not
very long ago threatened to transform the whole breed into a race
of cripples, and to bring it into contempt and derision among all
practical men. No breed or variety of dog has suffered more from the
injudicious fads and crazes of those showmen who are not sportsmen
also. At one time among a certain class of judges, length and lowness
was everything, and soundness, activity, and symmetry simply did not
count. As happens to all absurd crazes of this kind when carried to
exaggeration, public opinion has proved too much for it, but not
before a great deal of harm has been done to a breed which is
certainly ornamental, and can be most useful as well. Most of the
prize-winners of the present day are sound, useful dogs capable of
work, and it is to be hoped that judges will combine to keep them

The coloured Field Spaniel has now almost invariably at the principal
shows special classes allotted to him, and does not have to compete
against his black brother, as used to be the case in former years.

The systematic attempt to breed Spaniels of various colours, with a
groundwork of white, does not date back much more than a quarter of
a century, and the greater part of the credit for producing this
variety may be given to three gentlemen, Mr. F. E. Schofield, Dr.
J. H. Spurgin, and Mr. J. W. Robinson. In the early days of breeding
blacks, when the bitches were mated either with Sussex or liver and
white Springers or Norfolk Spaniels, many parti-coloured puppies
necessarily occurred, which most breeders destroyed; but it occurred
to some of these gentlemen that a handsome and distinct variety might
be obtained by careful selection, and they have certainly succeeded
to a very great extent. The most famous names among the early sires
are Dr. Spurgin's Alonzo and his son Fop, and Mr. Robinson's Alva
Dash, from one or other of whom nearly all the modern celebrities
derive their descent.

Those who have been, and are, interested in promoting and breeding
these variety Spaniels deserve a large amount of credit for their
perseverance, which has been attended with the greatest success so
far as producing colour goes. No doubt there is a very great
fascination in breeding for colour, and in doing so there is no royal
road to success, which can only be attained by the exercise of the
greatest skill and the nicest discrimination in the selection of
breeding stock. At the same time colour is not everything, and type
and working qualities should never be sacrificed to it. This has too
often been done in the case of coloured Field Spaniels. There are
plenty of beautiful blue roans, red roans, and tricolours, whether
blue roan and tan or liver roan and tan, but nearly all of them are
either cocktailed, weak in hind-quarters, crooked-fronted, or
houndy-headed, and showing far too much haw. In fact, in head and
front the greater number of the tricolours remind one of the
Basset-hound almost as much as they do in colour. It is to be hoped
that colour-breeders will endeavour to get back the true Spaniel type
before it is too late.

The points of both black and coloured Field Spaniels are identical,
bar colour, and here it must be said that black and tan, liver and
tan, and liver are not considered true variety colours, though of
course they have to compete in those classes, but rather sports
from black. The colours aimed at by variety breeders have all a
ground colour of white, and are black and white, blue roan, liver


Back to Full Books