Spaniels are larger and more active than a Cocker Spaniel. They do require
daily exercise to keep them fit. Without the proper amount of exercise, your
Field Spaniel will quickly become bored and can become destructive or a nuisance.
They love to play games and will make their own fun with whatever they can find
if you do not harness their energy into some type of activity. There are
numerous activities you can do with your Field Spaniel. They are excellent
hunting dogs and would also do well tracking; they will also enjoy just hanging
out with you in the backyard playing games.
The Field Spaniel is a member of the sporting group and is recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC). They are considered to be a flushing dog, this simply means they will use their nose to find birds in the brush and will roust the birds up into the air. The hunter will be nearby ready to fire when the birds are flushed into the air. Once the bird has been shot and drops, the Field Spaniel will retrieve the bird from either land or water. The Field Spaniel is not eligible to participate in field trials; however, they can participate in AKC hunt tests. The Field Spaniel Society of America offers a working dog certificate program.
Rally, also called Rally Obedience, is a newer sport where you will work with your dog to navigate a particular obedience course. The AKC approved Rally as a sport in 2005 and there are now four levels that your dog can earn. Rally Novice is the first title they can earn. The next title is Rally Advanced and your dog can perform off-leash for this title. Next is the Rally Excellence title and then the Rally Advanced Expert title; these two titles are the hardest titles to achieve because your dog must perform all work off-leash. You will guide your dog through a course that will have between 10 and 20 signs. Your dog is judged on how well they execute each skill and how quickly you and your dog can move through the course. Rally is a relatively cheap activity, you will have entry fees for Rally trials but those are usually nominal.
It is actually easy for you to teach your dog to track. You will start small and gradually expand their search area. Tracking can be done in any type of weather; however, warm sunny days are probably best. Rainy weather may throw your dog off the scent and you should not take a novice tracker out into the rain to track. Spend about an hour doing tracking exercises with your dog, be sure to give them breaks between exercises and if you notice your dog getting bored, stop the training for the day. To start teaching tracking, all you need are treats and a grassy area to hide the treats.
Your Field Spaniel does require a significant amount of daily exercise to keep them happy and healthy. There are several different activities that you and your Field Spaniel can participate in; you just have to find the right ones for you and your dog. There are organized dog sports that you might enjoy, or you may just want to spend time going for walks or playing at the park. Research each activity and decide which ones you want to try.