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Cocker spaniel.—Sally Anne Thompson/EB Inc.
Any of several breeds of dogs used to flush game. Spaniels originated in Spain, but most modern breeds were developed in Britain. Breeds range from 14 to 20 in. (36–51 cm) and from 22 to 55 lbs (10–25 kg). The larger breeds are called springers, the smaller ones cockers. Breeds include the cocker spaniel, a round-headed, floppy-eared dog; the English and Welsh springer spaniels; the American water spaniel, a curly-coated, dark brown dog; the Brittany spaniel, a short-tailed French dog and the only spaniel that points; the Clumber spaniel, a low-slung, long-bodied dog; the Irish water spaniel, a water retriever; the Japanese spaniel; and the English toy spaniel.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on spaniel, visit Britannica.com.