The Nederlandse Kooikerhondje is a little-known canine breed that originated in the Netherlands where they were mainly employed in the pursuit of duck hunting. It is a handsome example of a spaniel-type breed of sporting dog, which would have made it popular among the older aristocracy. In fact, this dog became extremely popular with at least one royal after reportedly saving William of Orange from being attacked by Spanish intruders in 1572, while he slept. Persistent barking and jumping on his master’s face is what did it, and these guarding qualities are still very much in evidence today.
Standing approximately 15 to 17 inches tall at the shoulder (14 to 16 inches for a female), the Nederlandse Kooikerhondje has a long, decorative coat that has elaborate fringing draping from the legs and chest and a tail that resembles a feather duster. The coat is generally white in colour with large patches of red. The skull and muzzle of the Nederlandse Kooikerhondje are almost equal in length, while the body’s proportions are practically square. Feathered ears are generally black-tipped with what are commonly known as earrings. Soulful, almond-shaped eyes are alert and filled with a pleading expression, which seems to beg for a cuddle or scratch.
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