Male vs. Female Brittany Spaniel: Which Is Better?

Male and female Britanny Spaniel lying on the grass

Deciding between a male and a female Brittany Spaniel puppy is one of the toughest choices to make. In this guide, you’ll learn a thing or two about each gender that will hopefully make your decision-making easier.

Male Brittany Spaniels are generally playful and full of energy dogs. They love cuddles and are very affectionate. Female Brittany Spaniels, on the other hand, are focused, independent, and self-assured dogs. They also love cuddles but are less of a lapdog compared to a male Brittany. 

That said, you can base your choice between the two Brittany Spaniel genders according to many different criteria. Here, we’ll touch on their differences in terms of appearance, temperament, training, and more. Read along!

Physical Differences

Male and female Britanny Spaniel side profile

Male Brittany Spaniels

Generally, male dogs grow to be larger than females. The same is true with a male Brittany. The average height and weight for a male Brittany Spaniel are 17 to 21 inches and 35 to 40 pounds, respectively. 

Aside from the difference in height and weight, there aren’t any other physical differences between a male and female Brittany that are worth noting, making it hard to identify Brittany Spaniel’s gender without looking at its sex organs. 

Both male and female Brittanys have the same physical features, including a dense, flat, or wavy coat with fine and fairly loose skin. Its coat color can come in orange and white or liver and white.

According to the AKC breed standard of the Brittany Spaniel, there are also Brittanys that have roan patterns and some ticking

Other Brittany Spaniel mixes may also have different colors and patterns depending on what breed is paired with them. 

Female Brittany Spaniels

As with any other dogs, female Brittany Spaniels are slightly smaller than their male counterparts. Full-grown female Brittanys weigh an average of 30 to 40 pounds with a height of about 18 to 20 inches. 

Surprisingly, male and female Brittanys are likely to grow about the same in terms of weight, and there is also not so much difference in terms of height. 

Likewise, a female Brittany will exhibit the same features as that of a male Brittany. 

Female Brittanys will also feature the same coat color of either orange and white or liver and white and the same coat texture that is dense, flat, or wavy with some ticking and roan patterns. 

Temperamental Differences

Male Brittany Spaniels 

Male Brittany Spaniels are more affectionate compared to female Brittany Spaniels. They are also generally less aggressive than females, which is unusual in most dog breeds. 

If you are after a dog that would accompany you as you watch TV on the sofa, the male Brittany is for you. Unlike female Brittanys, they would willingly cuddle with you for hours so they could please you. 

Similarly, male Brittany Spaniels work better with children than female Brittanys since they appear to be more patient with them. 

As far as hunting is concerned, male Brittanys are not every hunter’s choice as they are more erratic and unpredictable compared to female Brittanys. They are way too friendly that they may end up making friends instead of hunting. 

Female Brittany Spaniels 

Female Brittany Spaniels are very independent and would love to do things on their own. They are not as clingy as male Brittanys as they enjoy their alone time and don’t want to be around people all the time. 

It is for the same reason that female Brittanys are said to be moody and unpredictable, making the male Brittany Spaniel a better choice for house companions. 

However, female Brittanys generally do better than males in the field since they are less distracted. They also have a more refined hunting style and are more driven compared to the very friendly male Brittany.

That said, most hunters would prefer to take a female Brittany with them since it is more focused and proven useful when hunting. 

Behavior and Training

Male Britanny Spaniel running on the grass

Male Brittany Spaniels

Training a male Brittany Spaniel should be pretty easy because of its desire to please its owner. Given enough praise, treats, and a lot of pats on the head, you should be able to make them do what you want. 

However, that is not always the case. The hyper and playful nature of these male Brittanys will likely get in the way of training them. 

While a male Brittany’s focus is usually on you, they can easily be distracted, leading to roadblocks in training. 

You may have quite a hard time on some training days, but remember that male Brittany Spaniels thrive better in an environment where they are reinforced positively since they are highly-sensitive dogs. 

That said, shouting or punishing them when they do not get things right when training does not work out for them. 

Additionally, territory marking is a very common behavior among Brittany Spaniels. Though this problem is much more common in unneutered male Brittanys, many neutered males also mark their territory. 

Female Brittany Spaniels

Dog owners believe that female Brittany Spaniels are more intelligent than male Brittanys, making them much easier to train as opposed to the latter.

The downside in training these female Brittanys is that they are less of a people pleaser, unlike male Brittanys, so they may not always be in the mood for a training session. 

However, expect no less from these female Brittanys when they feel ready to train, as they will be focused and be on top of the game. This will make your training sessions a whole lot easier. 

Unlike male Brittany Spaniels, females tend to be more focused when training. They can be very hard to distract when they have set their mind on a specific task given. 

Regardless of how dedicated female Brittanys are, you may still need to give a lot of praise and taps on the head when training them. Like male Brittanys, they learn better when positive reinforcement is used. 

Additionally, female Brittany Spaniels also mark their territory, like their male counterparts, to let other dogs know that they are there. However, studies show that spayed females are less likely to have this behavior. 

Health Differences

Male Brittany Spaniels 

Elbow Dysplasia is among the most common dog health problems seen in male Brittanys. This disorder is caused by irregular and immature development of the elbow joints, resulting in arthritis. 

Male Brittanys experiencing elbow dysplasia will have difficulty standing up after lying down. The symptoms of elbow dysplasia are very similar to hip dysplasia which your Brittany Spaniel may also be at risk of getting. 

Likewise, it is suspected that male Brittanys being at a higher risk for elbow dysplasia has something to do with their hormonal differences and faster growth rate. 

Another health issue that a male Brittany may be at risk of is cerebellar ataxia, a serious neurological condition that affects your dog’s cerebellum, which is responsible for the coordination of motor movement in the body. 

Cryptorchidism or commonly known as retained testicles, is another condition that may be present in male Brittanys. Male dogs with this condition have testicles that fail to descend into the scrotum completely.

Since this problem puts them at a higher risk for cancer, it is highly recommended that male Brittanys with this condition undergo surgery to have the testicles removed. 

Some benefits include a lesser risk of testicular cancer and a decreased incidence of prostate diseases. Aside from these, neutering your dog is also proven to decrease aggressive behavior. 

Female Brittany Spaniels 

Canine glaucoma is an eye disease whereby the pressure within the eye becomes elevated. This disease is more commonly seen in female Brittanys than in male Brittany Spaniels. 

Another gender-related disorder that may affect female Brittany Spaniels is pyometra. This is a very serious infection that affects the womb or the uterus that typically affects older, unspayed female dogs. 

Likewise, you may also want to consider spaying your female Brittany Spaniel. Spaying is a surgical procedure wherein the ovaries and uterus are removed completely to sterilize a female dog. 

Depending on where you live, you may be mandated or required to spay your female dogs, as this also prevents the overpopulation of dogs and reduces the risk of health problems. 

Moreover, you must also be aware of seizure and bloat symptoms as these are also quite common in Brittany Spaniels, regardless of gender. 

With Other Dogs and Pets

Male Britanny Spaniel beside a Chihuahua

Male Brittany Spaniels

Surprisingly, male Brittanys can be very territorial and overprotective. However, these dogs have a knack for making friends way too easily, especially with dogs of the opposite sex. 

While they may show same-sex aggression, their very outgoing and energetic personality tends to show when interacting with other dogs.

They are likely to be involved in minor fights with fellow male dogs but will usually stop before things turn serious. 

If you are worried about your male Brittany’s aggression, you can consider having them neutered. Neutering your dog results in a calmer, less aggressive pet. 

Female Brittany Spaniels 

If you are taking in a new pet, expect that you will have a harder time making them get along with a female Brittany Spaniel. Females are generally more cautious around new dogs, making them harder to play with others. 

That doesn’t mean that they won’t get along with other pets, though. With socialization, female Brittanys can be comfortable meeting new dogs and being around them. 

However, anticipate that they may get along easier with male dogs than with fellow females as they can also exhibit same-sex aggression. 

With Children

Male Brittany Spaniels 

A male Brittany Spaniel gets along really well with children. Compared to female Brittanys, they are usually more patient around kids. They can tolerate the unpredictable behavior of kids when playing. 

The downside, however, is that sometimes they get too comfortable around them, which may result in rough play. This can be dangerous if your kid is very small because they may get injured. 

It is always important to keep your children supervised when playing with your male Brittany.

I can remember my uncle’s late male Brittany Spaniel, named Brit. When my cousins were still kids, Brit was their constant companion, and he was used to traveling with them, even on vacations. He was very protective of the entire family, but more particularly of my cousins.

The relationship was even better since my uncle did a great job of training my cousins on how to handle Brit when he becomes too excited during playtime.

Female Brittany Spaniels

Female Brittanys get along with children well, too. However, because they have a different disposition from their male counterparts, they have a different approach when dealing with kids. 

Like any other female dogs, female Brittanys are typically more protective and careful with kids. Unlike male Brittanys that play rough around children, female Brittanys show a more reserved personality when playing around them. 

That said, it is very unlikely for your female Brittany to run full force when around kids since they try their best not to injure them. 

However, note that female Brittany may be less tolerant of rough-playing, so it’s best to keep an eye on your kids to avoid these female Brittanys from being stepped on.

Also, female Brittany Spaniels are less likely to play with children all day long, unlike their male counterparts.

Pros and Cons of Male and Female 

Male Britanny Spaniel up close

Male Brittany Spaniels

Among the list of advantages of owning a male Brittany is that they get along with other dogs better than the female Brittany, making them a much better choice if you have other pets at home or planning to get more in the future. 

Likewise, male Brittanys work very well with children as they are calmer and tolerate rough-playing better, which means they won’t have problems being accidentally stepped on. 

They can also be very protective. However, male Brittanys are way too friendly to be watchdogs and protectors of your home. The same is true about being hunting companions.

If you are looking for a Brittany Spaniel for the said reason, it is important to reconsider taking in a male one. 

Also, male Brittanys can be a bit hard to train as they get distracted way too easily. That said, you might not be able to control their playfulness and hyperactivity. 

Here is a summarized table of the pros and cons of owning a male Brittany Spaniel:

Gets along with other dogs betterCan be hyperactive
More playful and outgoingToo friendly to be guard dogs
Tolerates rough-playing with kidsNot ideal as hunting companions
Calmer and more cuddlyCan easily be distracted
Very affectionate and a people-pleaserCan be very playful
Protective of his homeCan be very hard to train

Female Brittany Spaniels

Female Brittany Spaniels are very gentle dogs and are very careful around kids, making them ideal for families with very small children that cannot tolerate rough playing. 

Aside from this main advantage, they are also very intelligent and independent. They thrive on their own and would appreciate it if owners would give them some alone time every now and then. 

Due to their intelligence, female Brittanys are easier to train, which makes them better hunting companions. 

On the flip side, female Brittanys have a tendency to be moody and aloof. Though some people would consider being aloof as an advantage, it may be a disadvantage for families with a very outgoing lifestyle. 

They also do not get along with other dogs easily, especially with fellow female dogs. So, you may consider this if you have other dogs around or planning to take more in.

Here is a summarized table of the pros and cons of owning a female Brittany Spaniel:

Very gentle and careful around kidsTends to be moody and aloof
Has a great focus and hunting abilitiesMay not get along with other dogs well
They are very intelligentTends to do things on their own
Easier to trainSlightly less desire to please its owner
Very independent and requires less attentionMay not want to be around people at all times

Should You Get a Male or Female Brittany Spaniel?

The answer to the question of whether you should get a male or a female Brittany Spaniel depends on your purpose for getting these dogs, your lifestyle, and your current home situation. 

If you need a house companion that you can relax with at home, you definitely should for the friendlier Brittany Spaniel, the male Brittany. You should also get a male if you have older kids that can withstand rough play. 

On the other hand, it’s best to get a female Brittany if you need a hunting companion and if you have very young kids that may need a more relaxed dog companion. 

Moreover, it’s best to get a male Brittany if you are the type to be cuddly with dogs and get a female Brittany if you want a dog with a less attention-seeking personality.

Are you still wondering if you should get a Brittany Spaniel? You can watch this video to learn more about this breed.

Brittany - Top 10 Facts

Frequently Asked Questions

Female Britanny Spaniel on a beach

Are Male or Female Brittany Spaniels Calmer?

Male Brittany Spaniels, especially those that are spayed and neutered, tend to be calmer than female Brittanys. They are also more emotionally stable but can also be hyperactive at times. 

However, it is important to note that socialization, training, and upbringing affect a dog’s behavior and temperament. There may be instances when a trained female Brittany will appear to be calmer than the male Brittany. 

Are Male or Female Brittany Spaniels More Affectionate?

While both have an affectionate trait, male Brittany Spaniels tend to be more affectionate compared to female Brittanys. Both may willingly cuddle with you, but male Brittanys will likely want to spend more time with their owners. 

Female Brittanys can be affectionate, too, but they may need some alone time after your cuddling sessions. 

Are Male or Female Brittany Spaniels Easier to Train?

Female Brittany Spaniels are generally easier to train since they are more intelligent, more focused, and more determined in contrast to the very playful and easily distractible male Brittany. 

Though you may still encounter moments when your female Brittany Spaniel may not want to train, so it’s best to always set your expectations and bring with you a lot of patience. 

Final Thoughts

Regardless of gender, the Brittany Spaniel is an amazing dog breed that has great potential to be a wonderful hunting partner and house companion. 

However, it is best to thoroughly understand and compare their differences so you can better contemplate which of the two genders you should get based on your needs and lifestyle. 

While each dog is unique, and not everything written here perfectly describes them, having an overview and setting the right expectation for your dog is very important to avoid problems later on.

Have you decided which gender you’re taking home? Let us know your pick between the male and female Brittany Spaniel in the comments! 

Leave a Comment

You may also like