Celebrating Seven Years with a Sporting Sussex Spaniel
June 18 is Shine’s 7th Birthday! I can’t believe it’s been 7 years, which means my journey in Sussex Spaniels has spanned a decade. After I met Shine’s handsome and super cool Dad, Spirit, I had to have a little Spirit baby of my own. I waited 3 years for the pups to arrive, and finally got my Sussex!
I’d been told repeatedly about how unusual Sussex Spaniels are, but really, until you’ve lived with one, it’s hard to understand. They just move to the beat of their own little drum, no matter what. It is a contradiction to see such a funny personality in that sad-sack, green-eyed, droopy face.
Why get up and turn around, when it’s so much easier to just scoot around on your bottom? Why stay clean, when you can be wet and dirty? Why listen to your owner when it’s so much more fun to ignore them completely? Why give a high-five when it’s easier to just flop on your back and wave your 3 inch long legs in the air? Why drink politely when you can dunk your whole face in the water bucket? Why look at your owner adoringly, when you can squint your eyes and wrinkle your nose and “smile” while making snorting noises?
See the world famous "Sussex Smile"...okay maybe not world famous, but certainly well-known to Sussex owners!
ALL Sussex make this face, but it is just about impossible to actually get a photo of it. She bobs and weaves and snorts and wags her tail while she is doing it. It may look like she is growling, but NOPE she's being a goof.
Why hang out and chill in the backyard when you can HUNT all day long?!
When Shine is outside, she is hunting constantly. If she is not “trailing” something, she will sit very still, scanning the horizon for “any” moving object – birds being #1, closely followed by falling/blowing leaves. She can get exhausted being outside on a windy day in the Fall! See video evidence! I titled this video – ARE YOU SURE YOU WANT A SPORTING DOG? Because it really shows that these dogs were bred to hunt. It’s in their genes, and nothing you say or do will change that. When Shine is in hunting mode, she is completely deaf and blind to anything else.
Look at that tail wagging!