The Pont-Audemer Spaniel Temperament: Clown of the Marshes

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel temperament is a beautiful thing. She’s a hunter with a passion for her job. But she’s also a happy little comedian who craves human companionship.

With the right environment and plenty of exercise, the Pont-Audemer Spaniel could transition fairly easily to life as a companion dog.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Temperament

1. Intelligent

Like most hunting dogs, the Pont-Audemer Spaniel is smart and learns easily. But unlike most hunting dogs, she doesn’t have an independent streak.

2. Loyal

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel temperament is faithful and devoted. She will love all of her family members, but she will form especially strong bonds with her caretakers.

3. Affectionate

This breed loves to be close to her family, especially the children.

4. Gentle

Her docile nature allows her to fit in right into family life.

5. Happy

This is one of the nicest things about the Pont-Audemer Spaniel temperament. She has a bright and easy disposition, and her tail is usually wagging.

6. Comical

In France, she’s known as “le petit clown des marais” (the clown of the marshes) for her funny antics.

7. Eager to Please

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel temperament is an easy one to work with. She is highly trainable because she loves to please her owner.

8. Adaptable

She will happily adapt to family living—even in an apartment—as long as she gets enough daily exercise.

9. Social

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel temperament is very sociable. She craves human companionship.

10. Playful

She’s a fun-loving breed who’s fun to have around. She loves to play with children and will consider them friends for life.

11. Friendly

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel temperament is never aggressive. She is good with other dogs and will greet strangers happily. She is definitely not a watchdog.

12. Energetic

High energy is one of the hallmarks of the Pont-Audemer Spaniel temperament. If she gets enough exercise, though, she will be happy and relaxed at home.

13. Driven

This is a breed that was born to work. She is a tenacious and enthusiastic hunter with a passion for her job.

14. Hardy

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel is tough. These dogs are able (and more than willing) to work in all weather conditions.

15. Prey Drive

She will instinctively chase small household pets. However, she can be trained to leave them alone.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel History

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel is a rare gundog that originated in Normandy, France, in the 1800s. Their exact heritage is unknown.

The most common theory is that it was created by the cross of an old French spaniel breed with the Irish Water Spaniel. There is probably Poodle and Barbet as well as British and Irish spaniels in this breed’s lineage.

This dog is said to have legendary water hunting skills. She was never popular outside of Normandy because she is a water specialist. Most European hunters were more interested in dogs with more generalized skills.

When English and other foreign hunting dogs began finding their way to France, the Pont-Audemer Spaniel came very close to extinction. World War II nearly finished it off.

In the 1950s, this dog’s French breed club approved crossing them with the Picardy Spaniel. This was done to save the breed and to prevent inbreeding.

In 1980, the Pont-Audemer Spaniel club joined the Picardy Spaniel club. Today, they are still working together to revive the breed.

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel was accepted by the Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI) in 1954. It was recognized by the United Kennel Club (UKC) in 1996. The American Kennel Club (AKC) has not yet accepted the breed.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Training

This breed is highly trainable and eager to please. She responds very well to positive reinforcement.

As a hunting dog, she is unusual because she doesn’t have a stubborn or independent streak. If you are planning to hunt your Pont-Audemer Spaniel, she needs little to no training.

She is good with strangers and with children. The Pont-Audemer Spaniel traits of friendliness and eagerness to please make her a good choice for a first-time dog owner. She may need socializing to small animals and house pets.

Helpful Dog Training Resource:

For help with training your Pont-Audemer Spaniel dog, you should take a look at The Online Dog Trainer by Doggy Dan. Doggy Dan is an expert Dog Trainer based in New Zealand. His online resource contains Hundreds of Excellent Dog Training Videos that will take you step-by-step through the process of developing a healthy, happy well-behaved dog.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Appearance

General Appearance

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel is an elegant-looking but stocky dog with a fairly muscular body. She has a deep chest, a straight back, and sturdy legs.

Her most distinctive feature is her coat. It is curly or wavy with a curly top knot that looks like she is wearing a wig. The coat is medium in length but shorter on her face. It is dense and weatherproof.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel colors are liver, solid brown, or a reddish-chestnut.

Her head is rounded with a long, pointed muzzle. She has long, pendulous ears that seem to blend into her topknot. They’re covered with long, silky hair. She also has a long, curly mane around her neck.

She has deep-set eyes that are hazel or amber with a kind, gentle expression. Her nose is fairly large and can be brown or black.

This breed has historically had a docked tail, but this has changed in recent years. The UKC has announced that dogs will not be penalized for an undocked tail.

The undocked tail is long and covered with silky hair. It is carried straight like a saber.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Size

Average Pont-Audemer Spaniel weight is 44-60 pounds for males and 44-55 for females.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel height averages 20-23 inches for both.

Other Good to Know Pont-Audemer Spaniel Information

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Lifespan

The life expectancy of this breed is 12-14 years.

Other Names

  • Epagneul Pont-Audemer.
  • Pont-Audemer Setter.
  • Setter of Pont-Audemer.

Hunting with a Pont-Audemer Spaniel

Those who have hunted with a Pont-Audemer Spaniel feel that she has legendary skills. She is a versatile duck hunter who is said to be superior to any other spaniel at marsh hunting.

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel is a pointing dog who actually behaves more like a setter. And she also tracks, flushes, and retrieves prey.

In France, this breed isn’t usually kept as a pet. She is a tough and hardy working dog. She is prized for her ability to hunt waterfowl.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Health Issues

There are so few of these dogs in existence that health records are scarce. The health of the breed is very good as far as can be determined.

But all dogs are prone to some health issues. Conditions to watch out for with this breed include:

  • Bloat. This is also called gastric torsion. It is a medical emergency that is not uncommon with deep-chested breeds. You need to know the symptoms and to call your vet if you see them.
  • Alopecia. This breed is prone to hair loss.
  • Ear infections. This is a typical issue for dogs with pendulous ears.

Helpful Dog Health Resource:

Note: if you agree that your health and your dog's health should be a top priority then get a copy of The Ultimate Guide to Dog Health. Your doggy friend will love you for it. This guide will help save you money, time and most of all help you keep your dog healthy.

Caring for the Pont-Audemer Spaniel

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Grooming

Although this dog’s gorgeous coat looks like it needs a lot of care, it is actually quite low-maintenance. She only needs brushing once or twice a week.

Her ears are her biggest grooming concern. As above, they are prone to infection and need to be checked and cleaned regularly.

She needs only a rare bath if she isn’t hunting. If she is, then she should be cleaned as needed.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Diet

This dog will do well on any high-quality dry food. However, if you are hunting your Pont-Audemer Spaniel, you may want to consider a higher-calorie formula for working breeds. If you’re not sure which to feed, ask your vet.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Exercise

This breed is very high energy, not surprisingly for such a driven hunter. The good news is that if she gets enough exercise, she will be calm and relaxed at home.

If she doesn’t get that exercise, though, you’re going to see some destructive Pont-Audemer Spaniel behaviors. She needs a good hour a day of vigorous exercise and a large area to run and play in.

Finding a Pont-Audemer Spaniel

Buying a Pont-Audemer Spaniel from a Breeder

This dog is a rare breed outside of France. Finding a Pont-Audemer Spaniel for sale may take a while. At the time of this writing, we found no Pont-Audemer Spaniel breeders in North America with an Internet search.

The breed is recognized by the UKC, though, so that would be a good place to start. They maintain breeder directories on their web site.

Gundogbreeders.com is another potential source of breeder information. They have classified ads and notices of upcoming litters. It’s possible that you could find a breeder of Pont-Audemer Spaniel puppies here.

You may also want to try a search for Facebook groups for owners and lovers of this breed. There are groups for nearly every breed you can think of. It’s a great way to connect with people who already own these dogs.

YouTube is another great source of information. Owners and breeders of many breeds post videos of their dogs. Many of them post contact information.

If all else fails, consider looking for a European breeder who might export a Pont-Audemer Spaniel puppy to you. You could check with the FCI for breeders or search eurobreeder.com. Either may be able to help you find a breeder.

Our best Pont-Audemer Spaniel price estimate is $500 to $700.

Avoiding Online Scams

Once you find a breeder, do your homework before purchasing a Pont-Audemer Spaniel puppy.

Ordinarily, we would recommend never buying a dog online.

But the Pont-Audemer Spaniel is a rare breed. You may have no choice but to look for your puppy some distance from your home.

But proceed with caution. There are a lot of online scams taking advantage of people looking for dogs. They will take your money and leave you with no dog to show for it.

But there are things you can do to prevent getting cheated.

Check out their online reputation. Look for customer reviews and look them up at the Better Business Bureau. Then ask good questions.

Do they allow site visits? Can you see the parents? Ask these questions even if you can’t visit. “No” answers should be red flags.

What kind of health guarantee are they offering?

Are they too accommodating? For example, do they tell you that they have many breeds for sale? That they’ll deliver right to your door?

Reputable breeders usually deal in just one breed, occasionally two or three similar ones. They are not likely to have the puppy you want available on demand, especially with a rare dog.

They won’t offer to deliver your dog to your home. And the best breeders usually have waiting lists.

And if the price is too good to be true, ask why.

Most of all, never agree to pay upfront with a check or bank account number. You may never hear from these people again. If you pay by credit card, you are protected from fraud by the card issuer.

Pont-Audemer Spaniel Rescue/Adoption

If you would prefer to find a Pont-Audemer Spaniel for adoption, you’re very unlikely to find one at area shelters.

Try some of the online sources mentioned above. You may be able to connect with rescue organizations or an owner needing to rehome their Pont-Audemer Spaniel.

You could also try broadening your search to rescues that work with spaniels or hunting dogs in general.

If you get lucky and find a rescue, you will probably be looking at adult dogs. Rescuing an adult has some great benefits.

You can expect that the dog would already be spayed or neutered. He will probably be housebroken, and may even be microchipped.

Depending on the location, you may also have an opportunity to visit with the dog and judge its temperament. This is not possible with a puppy, whose personality is still essentially unknown.

Best of all, you would experience the joy of changing the life of a dog that needs a loving home.

Is the Pont-Audemer Spaniel Temperament the Right Breed for You?

The Pont-Audemer Spaniel was bred for hunting, and they love their job. But they also make sweet, fun-loving family companions.

If you don’t plan to hunt your Pont-Audemer Spaniel, exercise is the key to a successful transition. You will need the space and the time to commit to plenty of it.

If you’re not able to provide that, you will end up with a bored and destructive dog. But if you can meet that need, the Pont-Audemer Spaniel temperament will provide all the love and laughter a family could ask for.