Known as the "Cao de
Agua" or "dog of water" in his homeland, the PWD
stands up to 22 inches tall at the shoulder. The PWD's coat is thick and
curly or wavy, non-shedding, and comes in black, white, shades of brown,
or black or brown with white.
Noted for his
intelligence and loyalty, the
Portuguese Water Dog is spirited, friendly, and obedient to his owner.
Their retrieving instinct is strong, and many owners report
that their dogs will often bring them a present or toy when
they come home. PWDs are very attached to their owners and
do not stray far from their sides, inside or out. Used to
working closely with their masters, a PWD is not happy if
left alone for long periods of time.
lives to work and is easy to train. However, he is also strong and
self-willed and may not be as obedient with other members of the family,
especially children. As his name suggests, he
loves water, and enjoys swimming regularly. Like many dogs who lost
their original jobs to mechanization, the PWD was replaced
as the fisherman's partner by commercial fishing equipment.
As a result, by the 1970s, there were only 25 left in the
world. Thanks to dedicated attention by breeders to
selective breeding programs, these wonderful companions have
made a comeback, and there are now more than 10,000
registered in the USA alone.
active working breed with exceptional stamina, the PWD needs regular
exercise including walks, swimming, and off-leash running. A home
with a fenced yard is essential. The Portuguese Water Dog enjoys obedience
training and should be placed in training and socialized from an early
age. He makes an excellent watch and guard dog as he can be territorial
and has a loud and distinctive bark.