To know how often Cocker Spaniels need to be groomed, you need to learn a little more about the breed and specifically their coat.
Double Coated Dogs Require Regular Grooming
This double coat (common in many Breeds) actually serves an important purpose. The undercoat protects the dog from extreme temperatures, whether this may be heat or cold, while the overcoat reduces the amount of dirt and moisture that settles onto the dog.
While this may be the case, the double coat also means that matting can occur extremely easily, which is why your cocker will need to be brushed everyday, or every couple of days if yours has a shorter coat than average.
A metal pin brush is the best way to go, as this will not only remove any loose hairs from the top coat, but will also reach into the undercoat to brush this out as well.
Pay Close Attention to Your Dog
Make sure that you do not neglect the ears, as the fur here can be quite thick, making this area especially prone to matting.
When it comes to your dog’s paws, the fur between the paw pads should never be removed, as this provides the dog with some cushioning and protection. However, you do need to pay attention to your cocker spaniel’s nails. These should be kept short, which will happen naturally for dogs that are walked on concrete and other hard surfaces. If you walk your dog on softer surfaces, you may need to have their nails regularly clipped.
Your cocker spaniel will also need to be bathed on a regular basis. Every week or two is usually enough, although this does depend on how mucky your cocker spaniel gets when out and about. While some tend to keep themselves quite clean, others seem to be a magnet for mud.
Make sure that you use a dedicated dog shampoo, and try to pick one that makes use of as many natural ingredients as possible, as some shampoos do contain harsh chemicals.
While it may be tempting to bathe your Cocker Spaniel more than once a week, over-bathing them can lead to its own set of problems, so you may be better off purchasing a coat for your spaniel to wear on wet or muddy days.
Every six weeks or so, your cocker spaniel will need to be groomed.
You have two main options here, either clipping or shaving your dog, or if you are a bit more adventurous, having them hand stripped.
Clipping tends to be the easiest way to keep a Cocker Spaniel’s coat at a manageable length, but the hair does grow back faster, and your dog’s coat may end up growing back thicker and curlier than it used to be.
Alternatively, hand stripping is a grooming technique that can only be carried out on certain breeds, with the Cocker Spaniel being one of them (Source).
his is the best way to maintain a healthy coat, but, since this is quite a specialized technique that takes more time than clipping, it can work out more expensive. It is also only possible on spaniels that have a silkier, flatter coat. If your spaniel’s coat is quite thick and curly, hand stripping may not be an option.
Importance of Regular Grooming
Grooming is quite a large part of owning a Cocker Spaniel, meaning that you need to start this off as early as possible, so that your dog becomes accustomed to everything involved.
With the right training, grooming will soon be something that your dog looks forward to, and can also be a great bonding activity for you and your Cocker Spaniel.