Almost everyone knows that neighborhood you stroll through, and you hear the same dog barking and whining, day or night. Should dogs be kept outside? Can they become acclimated to outdoor living? Can springer spaniels live outside? Yes. Springer spaniels can live outside. But, before you make that decision, there are many things to consider.
Can Springer Spaniels Live Outside?
Yes. Springer spaniels can live outside. Keep in mind that springer spaniels are people-oriented dogs. They love to be with their family, being the affectionate and loving dogs they are.
Traditionally, springer spaniels were working dogs who did reside outside the house, never indoors. Over the years, dogs became more and more domesticated, and humans began taking them indoors and moving towards today when our dogs are treated like family.
Often, there are reasons why you can’t keep your springer indoors. Sometimes they will have behavioral problems, causing anxiety and stress when cooped up alone in the house.
Other times you bring your spaniel home only to find a family member who is highly allergic to them. No one wants to send the pup back because you are all enamored with him, but living in the house won’t work.
Dogs also often prefer to be outdoors. The pace, they pant, they whine to go out. They love you but can’t deal with the confinement or heat since they are covered with fur. Lastly, you may want a part-time arrangement where your springer behaves better outdoors when you are at work, and you want a safe outside spot for them,
A springer spaniel is a very adaptable dog. If any of the reasons above have caused you to consider having your spaniel live outdoors, there are a few things you need to consider first.
Transitioning to Outdoor House or Kennel
Before transitioning your springer spaniel outside, there are many important decisions to be made.
If your spaniel is to live most or all of the time outdoors, then this will be their main home away from home. They will need a large enough kennel or house to move around and place a bed, blanket, toys, food, and water if the latter two will be inside.
There are so many kennels to choose from. Some look like a tiny human house with porches! You can even build one yourself if you’re handy.
Begin by doing some research on different types of kennels and the material they’re made of. Keep in mind that the material should be breathable, cool in the summer but warm and insulated in the winter.
Sometimes heaters or air conditioners are needed depending on your climate and warmer bedding and insulation added in winter. The house should also be waterproof and raised up on legs to prevent damp from the ground.
There should also be a place for your dog’s bed that is also elevated to keep it up off the floor and your spaniel warm and dry.
Don’t forget a doggy door for your pup with a flap so they can come and go, and it will also keep out cold, wind, rain, and snow.
Include an adult-sized door in the back to allow you access when cleaning is needed.
Consider the location for the kennel, thinking of weather conditions around your home. Don’t place it where it will be in the hot afternoon sun in summer or in areas that tend to be very windy, with no trees or your house to shelter it during winter.
Below are some great examples of pre-built(some assembly may be needed) kennels available on amazon offering you dog plenty of room, warmth, and comfort when outside
Acclimation to a Pen
If you have a springer spaniel puppy or have an adopted adult and decide that outdoors is the proper place for them, you must first acclimate them to living in a pen.
A wire pen is ideal and better than a crate because it’s open at the top. Wire pens are less confining and give your pup more room to move around safely.
At first, place this in the house unless allergies are a problem, then in your basement or garage. Place some comforting items inside: bed, blanket, toys, etc.
These pens allow your spaniel more freedom than a crate, and they can see all around better.
Puppies may cry or howl at night in the beginning, missing their mother and littermates. A hot water bottle wrapped in an old shirt and placed in their bed will help.
Some suggest a clock that resembles their mother’s heartbeat, also wrapped up in their bed. Soft, soothing music is another suggestion. Puppies are like babies and often keep you up at night. Have patience.
Once your puppy is accustomed to being alone in a pen, it’s time for the transition to living in your yard. Please keep in mind that even though your spaniel is living outdoors, you must keep them properly socialized and emotionally close to their family.
Pups should be brought into the house regularly to keep that bond as well as enjoying playtime together. Dogs need attention in many ways. Outdoor dogs should not be ignored and forgotten.
Fencing and Outdoor Runs
When having your dog live in a house, one thing that’s a necessity is either a fence or a run. Your springer can’t just come out of their house with nothing to contain them, or they will be running wild in the neighborhood.
Some kennels do come with a small attached fenced-in area. Spaniels need some space to roam; plus, you don’t want them doing their business right outside their door, and they won’t either.
Fencing and runs come in many sizes. They are usually galvanized with steel mesh and are sturdy, robust, secure, and springer proof. Make sure whatever size you get it’s at least eight feet high. Springer’s can jump! They usually have a door with a latch.
Lastly, the run or fencing should be placed on either stone that is compacted, slabs, or concrete. Blacktop is another possibility but can become very hot in the daytime sun.
These surfaces will make for easier cleaning as well as deterring digging. If you place the fencing on grass, the area can become quite muddy and will make your spaniel’s humble abode very dirty.
Cleaning your spaniel’s kennel and fenced in area is essential, especially for their health. Most dogs do not like to live where they do their business. Their kennel will need cleaning, but usually only an extensive cleaning once a month.
The run area will require daily cleaning and more extensive cleaning every few days. If your springer steps in his business and then enters his kennel, then his kennel will become unnecessarily dirty!
When cleaning the kennel, first remove your springer! Remove everything else often and wipe down with pet safe disinfectant especially for this job or a solution of one part bleach to three parts water.
Wash your dog’s bed, blanket, and toys as often as needed. Water and food dishes should be cleaned daily. Keeping your springers kennel clean is necessary to prevent sickness from bacteria and disease-causing insects.
Check your pup often in summer for fleas and ticks. If fleas are discovered, treat your spaniel and wash all of their bedding and toys and use a safe flea treatment in the kennel. A few fleas can quickly escalate into a full-blown infestation, making both you and your poor spaniel miserable.
Moving to the run area, remove solid waste, and do this as often as your dog eliminates, so they don’t step in it and track it everywhere. Spray the area down with diluted bleach solution or disinfectant for this purpose, allowing it to penetrate.
Then scrub with a stiff brush or broom. Rinse with a hose, thoroughly removing all chemical residue. In winter, this may not be an option. You may have to make do with a bucket of warm water and a scrub brush. Wetting your spaniels run too much in winter may cause a dangerous, slippery skating rink.
For security reasons, your springer spaniel’s kennel should be located close to your home. Purchase a good padlock for both the large kennel door and the gate on the fence or run.
Believe it or not, there are thieves out there who steal dogs and sell them, especially any purebred pooch. Try not to broadcast to strangers that your spaniel resides in your backyard.
Install motion lights or security equipment with an alarm system if you feel it’s necessary. This added security will also help if you live in an area where wildlife roams, such as bears, coyotes, or bobcats.
The hints above are tips to consider if your springer spaniel is going to live outside. Often and much to our dismay, our dogs just can’t live in our houses, sometimes because of allergies, other times because they seem happier outdoors.
So, if your springer must live outside, do your homework so they can live in a safe, clean, comfortable environment. Don’t forget to give them plenty of love, attention, exercise, and play, and they will reward you with years of affection and slobbery dog. Kisses!
Myspringerspaniel.com does not provide veterinary advice. We aim to provide you with information to enable you to make a good decision when making a purchase or to care for your dog.
All content is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned about the health of your pet, you should contact your vet for advice.
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