The Boykin Spaniel

The progenitor of the Boykin Spaniel (official State Dog of South Carolina) was stumbled upon quite by accident in early 1900s Spartanburg, South Carolina. A man named Mr. Alexander L. White found the wayward dog and took him home. He later sent the dog hunting with his friend, Mr. L. Whitaker Boykin, the dog excelled at retrieving turkeys and other waterfowl.

The Boykin Spaniel was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 2009.

Sizing up

  • Weight: 25 to 40 lbs.
  • Height: 14 to 18 inches
  • Coat: Double, medium in length, with a slight wave and some feathering
  • Color: Liver, brown, or dark chocolate
  • Life expectancy: 10 to 14 years

What’s the Boykin Spaniel like?
The Boykin Spaniel is a tirelessly active and affectionate dog. He is devoted to his family and loves respectful children, but always supervise the Boykin around toddlers because he will only tolerate so much rough playtime. The Boykin needs a lot of exercise and enjoys boating, hiking, jogging, and a game of fetch -- anything that will allow him to release all his energy!

The Boykin Spaniel is very smart and also highly energetic so train and socialize him early to avoid a high strung adult dog. Some Boykins also have a tendency towards aggression around other dogs; early obedience will help you to combat this behavior. Be consistent and firm with your Boykin and use positive reinforcements.

Looking at a Boykin you may think grooming his long coat would be a challenge but it actually takes little effort. A weekly brushing and occasional bath will satisfy this dog.

The Boykin Spaniel is generally a healthy breed with a few health concerns to watch for:

Takeaway Points

  • The Boykin Spaniel is very energetic and needs a lot of exercise.
  • The Boykin Spaniel would not be a suitable choice for someone who works long hours or isn’t home a lot.
  • The Boykin Spaniel is a great choice breed for a family with older children.
  • The Boykin Spaniel would make a great hunting partner