Portuguese Water Dogs are a member of the ‘Working’ breed group. Working breed dogs were bred to become guard and search and rescue dogs. Breeds in this group are specialists in their work.
Portuguese Water Dogs are very friendly, loving dogs that get on well with other pets and make excellent family pets. They are very obedient and respond well to training. Training, along with socialisation, is very important at a young age in order for Portuguese Water Dogs to grow up into confident, sociable dogs. For more information on socialisation and training using reward-based techniques, take a look at our dog behaviour page.
Breed-related health problems:
Owners are, understandably, upset when their dog develops a health problem linked to its breed. Often they wish they’d known what problems the breed was prone to have. The potential health problems that Portuguese Water Dogs are prone to include:
- Hip dysplasia – hip joint laxity as a result of poor development, which will eventually lead to arthritis.
- Progressive retinal atrophy – gradual deterioration of the retina of the eye. Symptoms can start with night blindness and progress to total blindness.
For some conditions, there are screening programmes available through the British Veterinary Association (BVA) and the Kennel Club. The Canine Health Schemes allow breeders to screen for a range of inherited diseases, so it’s a good idea to check the parents of any puppy you’re looking to rehome have been screened under these schemes. We’d also recommend discussing the medical history of your potential puppy’s parents and grandparents, and think very carefully before taking on a dog with any of the health conditions listed above evident in the family line.
You can find out more about the Canine Health Schemes on the BVA's website.
Around an hour of exercise is needed daily. Grooming is a daily requirement along with clipping and shaping by a professional groomer periodically throughout the year.
Estimated lifetime cost:
The likely lifetime costs for a Portuguese Water Dog are based on estimates calculated using current market prices and include:
- Initial costs of the purchase of the pet
- First vaccinations and booster vaccinations
- Pet insurance
- Flea treatments
The list above does not include veterinary costs if your pet becomes sick or injured, so these average lifetime costs could be even higher.
Insure your Portuguese Water Dog with PDSA:
1 in 3 pets need vet treatment each year and vet bills can come to hundreds of pounds. PDSA Pet Insurance can give you peace of mind when your pet is poorly, especially for breeds like Portuguese Water Dogs that are prone to certain conditions. PDSA Pet Insurance offers:
- 5 Star Pet Insurance* - from the vet experts
- 4 levels of cover to suit you
- Monthly payment at no extra cost
*Defaqto 5 Star rating applies to our Plus and Premier policies only. Defaqto’s Star Ratings provide an independent assessment of the quality of financial products.
By insuring your Portuguese Water Dog with PDSA you’ll also be helping to provide vet care to some of the UK’s neediest pets.