The Dutch name Kooikerhondje means 'decoy dog' and was used by hunters to lure ducks into a trap. These dogs belong to an ancient Dutch breed that have since featured in many Dutch 17th Century paintings such as The cheerful family by Jan Steen in the Mauritshuis, The Hague.
The popularity of these dogs in Dutch society is attested by the historian Pieter Hooft in his 'Dutch Histories'. It is told that such a dog saved the life of William the Silent in 1572, by scratching the canvas of his tent. William woke up in time and managed to escape the Spanish attackers.
We are grateful to Mr. Simon Fuks for his assistance in cataloguing this lot.