The Kooikerhondje has a life expectancy of 12 to 14 years.
The Kooikerhondje can be traced back to at least the 16th century, as evidenced by Dutch artwork from that period. Pieces by Dutch masters show a small, decoy type dog similar to that of the modern Kooikerhondje.
The Kooikerhondje was developed from the spaniel in the Netherlands to serve a specific hunting need. The Kooikerhondje was responsible for luring and driving ducks into koois, or cages, for the hunter to trap.
The Kooikerhondje weighs 24 to 30 pounds and measures 14 to 17 inches.
The Kooikerhondje has a thick double coat that is either straight or slightly wavy. The Kooikerhondje’s coat sheds moderately year round and heavily with the change of seasons in the fall and spring. The Kooikerhondje should be brushed daily during their heavy shedding seasons, otherwise once a week is sufficient. They also need the occasional bath and should have any excess hair from between the pads of their feet trimmed when too long.
Like all dogs, the Kooikerhondje also needs basic grooming. Brush their teeth, clean their ears and trim their nails on a regular basis.
The Kooikerhondje is busy and loyal.
The Kooikerhondje is smart and spirited, and likes having a job to perform. The Kooikerhondje is an active breed with lots of enthusiasm for life. They especially adore their family and crave attention and affection from them. Kooikerhondjes can make wonderful family companions, but require a certain kind of environment. They are quite sensitive to chaos and tension, and are not well suited to loud or rough homes.
The Kooikerhondje is friendly, but aloof with new people and animals. They make good watchdogs and will protect their family and home if needed. However, once they get to know someone, they greet like them an old friend.
The Kooikerhondje is highly intelligent, but also highly independent. The Kooikerhondje requires a confident and firm leader or they will try to dominant the household. Once they understand their boundaries, they generally respond well to training.
Although they are tough, Kooikerhondjes are sensitive to touch and tone of voice. They should always be treated with kindness and given plenty of positive reinforcement. With the right kind of training, Kooikerhondjes can go on to participate in agility, flyball, obedience, rally and tracking.
As part of their training, the Kooikerhondje also needs early socialization. They tend to be overly suspicious of strangers and other dogs if not well socialized.
The Kooikerhondje has a moderate activity level. The Kooikerhondje loves to run, play games and learn new tricks. This breed thrives on activities that require them to use their mind as well as their body. The Kooikerhondje is well suited for dog sports and competitions.
The Kooikerhondje needs a long daily walk and can be a great jogging and hiking companion. The Kooikerhondje should have one hour of activity every day, including time outside in a secure area to run around and play.