Nederlandse Kooikerhondje

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Nederlandse Kooikerhondje

The Nederlandse Kooikerhondje is small spaniel-type breed of dog of Dutch ancestry that was originally used as a working dog to lure ducks into traps for hunting or tagging. This breed is swift, tough, energetic sporting dog, with sufficient perseverance, they enjoy working.

Other Names Dutch Decoy Dog, Kooiker Hound, Small Dutch Waterfowl Dog
Color White & Red
Height Males: 14-16 inches. Females: 14-16 inches.
Weight Males: 20-25 pounds. Females: 20-25 pounds.
Life Span 12-15 years
Personality Friendly, Alert, Quick
Exercise Regular Exercise
Popularity #157
Groom Needs Weekly
Kids Friendly Yes with supervision
Dog Friendly Yes with supervision
Watch Dog
Family Dog
Litter Size 5-7

Nederlandse Kooikerhondje Pictures

Nederlandse Kooikerhondje Video


The Nederlandse Kooikerhondjes is a dog for all seasons– happy and friendly is its hallmark. The Kooikerhondjes have a natural tendency to want to please their owners, making fine apartment dogs, especially for their average activity level. Although they are cordial with family, they can get wary of strangers or even children who behave too wild and boisterous. The good-natured Kooikerhondjes is a small dog with square features, and walks with a self-confident air, in elegance, plus a head held high in the air. They are highly intelligent dogs and come in orange and white coats.

A standard male stands 15-17 inches from shoulder to paw and weighs around 20-33 pounds, while a similar female runs slightly smaller, measuring 14-16 inches at the shoulder and weighing in the range of 20-30 pounds. They are true members of the Sporting Group, as classified by the American Kennel Club (AKC). Nederlandse Kooikerhondjes have an average life expectancy of 12-15 years.

Living with Nederlandse Kooikerhondje

It is required weekly brushing with a soft-bristle brush, a rubber grooming mitt, or a hound glove to help remove any loose hair and keep the dog looking best. And during the shedding seasons, more frequent brushing is needed. Their coat is naturally waterproof and will stay fairly clean on their own, so a bath is only needed when your dog is gotten something smelly. 

Check and clean your dog’s ears every week with a gentle, dog-friendly cleanser to prevent dirt buildup that may cause infections. Also, brush their teeth at least two or three times a week to keep fresh breath and prevent gum disease. Besides, trim the nails regularly or so to prevent painful cracking.

The Nederlandse Kooikerhondje is an active dog and needs plenty of exercises, although this breed is of the medium-small build. A minimum of one-hour long or longer occasions throughout the day to go outside and exercise is ideal for him. Although Kooikerhondje will enjoy walking and hiking, their keen mind will especially like more spiritually attractive activities. Besides, they are excellent candidates to participate in a variety of canine sports and love games like fetch, playing in the water, dock diving. And agility courses or obedience competitions or any number of both mentally and physically stimulating games are good options for the dog.

The food amount should depend on the dog’s weight, size, age, and activity level. Some dogs are easy to get overweight, so you need to watch their calorie consumption and weight level all the time. Treats may be an important aid in training, but excessive intake can lead to obesity. Also, owners need to distinguish which human food is safe for dogs and which are not. If you have any problems with your dog’s weight or diet, just consult from your veterinarian.

The Nederlandse Kooikerhondjes are prone to the following health conditions: Renal disorders, Polymyositis (PMN), Epilepsy, von Willebrand’s disease, Cataract and other eye diseases, Hereditary Necrotising Myelopathy, Patellar luxation, Polymyositis, Epilepsy, Kidney disorders, etc.

Hip x-rays 

Suggested tests:

Eye examination 

Patella examination 

Blood test for Von Willebrand’s Disease (vWD)

Blood test for Hereditary Necrotizing Myelopathy (ENM)

Total Annual Cost: $2889

Cost is estimated for the first year and may vary depending on many factors, such as dog food, health care, leash, collar, licensing, possible fencing, crates, training and obedience classes, dog-walking, grooming, treats, toys, flea, tick, and heart-worm meds, microchips, etc.

The Kooikerhondje is a cheerful, intelligent and lively but not hyper companion. As the nature of the historic work for this small sporting breed, they have prey drive and energy along with the sensitive character of a spaniel. They can learn basic obedience with ease under the positive reinforcement, such as using praise and food as rewards would be much more successful. With a firm and consistent hand in training and use positive reinforcement-based training methods, the dog can become charming household pets and sporting companions. 


The Nederlandse Kooikerhondjes is not a very popular dog breed. As a matter of fact, it had only begun to gain popularity in parts of the U.S and Canada much recently. The breed was developed before the 16th century in the Netherlands. By the 17th century, it had become a household name in its Dutch homeland, especially used to lure ducks out of a traditional duck cage called eendenkooi. This cage was in the form of a water canal, the hunter (the kooiker) waited with a trap at the other end of the canal. The name for the breed was derived from this activity– with kooiker meaning hunter and hondjes, dogs, Kooikerhondjes literally translates to Hunter’s Dog. 

As guns that were better suited for the hunting of ducks were invented, the era of the eendenkooi began to fade away, and so did the Kooikerhondjes which served the purpose of the hunt. The decline took a more drastic turn after the First World War. Around 1939, Baronesse von Hardenbroek van Ammerstol on discovering that the indigenous Kooikerhondjes were almost totally depleted in population, set out on a mission to rescue the breed. She is credited with developing the foundation of the modern Kooikerhondjes. A Dutch parent club was founded in 1967 and, by 1971, the Dutch Kennel Club (the Raad van Beheer) recognized the breed. Ever since, the breed had been exported to different countries and across continents, although it still struggles to be recognized as a distinct breed in some countries, especially Canada. After a series of promotion and consideration, the Kooikerhondjes gained an AKC recognition in 2018.

Helpful Information


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