The Perro de Agua Español, or Spanish Waterdog, is originally used (and
is still used) as fishermen’s dog, shepherd and gundog for especially
waterfowl, like ducks.
When the PDAE is working as fishermen’s dog, this means that the dog
puts the nets in order and dives the nets out of the water. Furthermore, the
Spanish Waterdog dives up everything that falls from the boat, like tools and
fishes. Also the Perro guards the catch on shore.
In Spain the Perro de Agua Español is often used as shepherd for the hurding of mostly goats. Spanish Waterdogs can bite the sheep or goats in the heels when they aren't fast enough or when they run away. Some sheep breeds (short neck breeds) are very sensitive for stress from biting shepherds. This stress can cause a hart failure / attack (Dutch sheep breeds like the Texelaars are examples of short neck breeds) In Spain, the Perro is often used for hurding 'tougher' goats.
The Spanish Waterdog is used for all the work that comes across, a real jack-of-all-trades. Even for the light catching work, work as drugs dog or rescue dog at earthquakes (the Perro is used in Mexico for this purpose); the Perro doesn't care a rap for it.
(pictures from 'El Perro de Agua Español, una raza autóctona a conservar' van Cecilio José Barba Capote en Baldomero Moreno-Arroyo, ISBN 84-922496-3-3)
The Spanish Waterdog is a
friendly dog, that is very keen on his family and all that belongs to this. If
the dogs are raised well with other animals, dogs, cats, horses, cows and many
other animals won't give problems with the Perro.
The Spanish Waterdogs are
social, easy to train (they learn fast) and adapt easy. Spanish Waterdogs are
playful, they play not only with humans or other dogs, but also with cats and
Spanish Waterdogs aren't
dominant dogs. There is hardly difference in dominance of males and bitches. If
one has only one dog, there are almost no dominance problems to be expected for
males or bitches. If one has more than one Spanish Waterdog, it mostly will
occur that the bitch is more dominant than the male.
Spanish Waterdogs enjoy
long walks, but when there is no time for a walk, the Perro doesn't bother at
all. On an apartment in the city or on a farm, the Perro has no problems.