No breed was more beloved or popular than the Cocker Spaniel before the Golden Retriever and Labrador set the modern bar for the “excellent with kids” family companion.
Beautiful, sweet-natured, and of intermediate size, the Cocker’s popularity soared high.
The Cocker is a kind, friendly, and healthy dog with soft, dark eyes when he is at his best.
The American Cocker Spaniel is content to go bird hunting or just chill around at home.
He’s easy to train, gentle, and playful, and he enjoys playing in the water.
Whether he’s tracking a scent or looking beneath the couch, his tail is always wagging.
Is a cocker spaniel suitable for a family?
The Cocker Spaniel is a delightful companion and a loyal family member.
The Cocker Spaniel is a pleasant family companion and one of America’s favorite breeds.
With an average lifespan of 13-16 years, the Cocker Spaniel is a fairly healthy breed.
Spaniels Cocker : Overview
The Cocker is a wonderful family pet, weighing less than 30 pounds (albeit with a tendency to acquire more).
He’s a nightmare at his worst.
The Cocker Spaniel’s popularity has been a curse for him.
Springer Spaniel is one of the most popular breeds among puppy mills, Internet retailers, and pet stores, who sell sad-eyed, floppy-eared, adorable puppies that grow up to be unstable, noisy, nervous dogs that are difficult to housetrain and have a tendency to snap and bite.
If you’re lucky enough to discover a puppy from a reputable breeder, set him off on the right foot right away with gentle and regular training.
For some, this manifests as full-fledged separation anxiety, complete with the accompanying barking, weeping, and destructive behavior.
From the time your dog is a puppy, he or she should be accustomed to being left alone on occasion.
However, if you want your dog to be left alone for long periods of time, this is probably not the breed for you.
Cocker Spaniels are often good with other dogs and cats.
They shed somewhat, and their coats need to be brushed many times every week.
They can also be clipped, in which case they’ll need to be groomed every four to six weeks by a professional or at home.
While the Cocker Spaniel is a little breed, keep in mind that he is a Sporting dog.
Although he doesn’t require the same amount of hard-core activity as some other sporting breeds, he still needs to burn off a lot of energy because he could run all day if he wanted to.
A half-hour walk or game of fetching the ball once or twice a day is sufficient, though he would prefer to accompany you on longer walks.
You may also substitute a good 15 minutes of obedience training per day, which will stimulate both his mind and body.
He’s a busy little man that spends the entire day sniffing for a scent.
Within the breed, the various hues are classified as unique variations.
Black Cockers come in a variety of colors, including solid black and black and tan. ASCOB stands for “any solid color other than black,” which can include buff, brown, silver, and other colors; the parti-color Cocker can be black and white, brown and white, red and white, or tri-color.
Cocker Spaniels are first and foremost companion dogs and should not be kept outside.
Instead, they should live with you and your family in your home.
Additional Quick Facts
- A well-bred Cocker is a wonderful family companion that fits into any size home. It is kind, affectionate, and gentle.
- A poorly bred Cocker is sassy and wary of strangers. Working with a reputable, experienced breeder pays off in this breed.
- Field trials, hunt tests, obedience, rally, agility, freestyle, and other canine performance sports are all options for the Cocker. He’d make an excellent therapy dog.
- When puppies are three or four days old, their tails are usually docked or trimmed short. Some individuals are against it since it is a cosmetic treatment, but others in the breed believe it protects the tail from injuries in the field.
- Because even well-bred Cockers are sensitive, positive reinforcement and praise should be used during training.
Cocker Spaniels : History
The term “Spanyells” was first used in the 14th century.
The Cocker gets his name from his proficiency at hunting woodcock, a type of wading bird, which he flushes and retrieves under direction.
He is the Sporting Group’s smallest dog.
Spaniels were once classed based on their size, and multiple sorts of spaniels might be born in the same litter.
The numerous spaniel kinds eventually formed unique breeds, and the Cocker was no exception.
By 1946, the size and appearance of the Cocker and what is now the English Cocker Spaniel had diverged to the point where the two breeds were separated.
After the premiere of Disney’s famous film “Lady and the Tramp” in 1955, the Cocker’s popularity increased.
Because of their tremendous popularity, there has been an increase in improper breeding, which has resulted in some terrible temperaments, but Cocker breeders have worked hard to address the situation.
However, finding a competent breeder who retains the breed’s distinctive cheerful disposition rather than continuing to produce the scared and snappish pups that nearly ruined the breed is still vital today.
The Cocker Spaniel was the most popular breed registered with the American Kennel Club until 1990.
He is currently ranked 25th, but he will always have a place in the hearts of those who like his modest stature, gentle attitude, and intelligence.
Temperament and Personality of the Cocker Spaniel
The Cocker Spaniel is a happy, energetic dog that is also intelligent and trustworthy.
He still has a strong hunting instinct, but he prefers to be a domestic friend.
He is calm and friendly with his family.
With strangers, he can be a little reticent at first, but he quickly develops friends.
Cocker make ideal companions for kids because they aren’t too big to knock them down and not too small to injure them.
They can get along with other pets, even cats, if they’re raised together, but birds may be an attractive temptation – and not in a good way.
The Cocker Spaniel is a highly trainable dog with a sensitive soul.
Even with early socialization, some Cockers will urinate submissively when their owners return home, when they meet new people or dogs, or when they go to unfamiliar places.
Positive reinforcement tactics, such as praise and food prizes, should be used during training.
Although he was once considered “simply” a companion, the Cocker may perform well in field trials and as a gun dog.
A Cocker can do a lot more than simply hang about the house, but he’s perfectly willing to do that as well because he enjoys being with you.
If a dog is bored, untrained, or unsupervised, he might acquire annoying levels of barking, digging, and other unwanted activities.
And living with any dog during adolescence can be a challenge.
The “teen” years begin at six months and last until the dog is roughly a year old in the case of the Cocker.
If you don’t stop him from barking, it can become an issue.
Begin training your dog as soon as you get him home.
He is capable of soaking up everything you can teach him even at the age of eight weeks.
Get him into puppy kindergarten by the time he’s 10 to 12 weeks old if at all possible, and socialize, socialize, socialize.
However, many puppy training classes require specific immunizations (such as kennel cough), and many veterinarians advise limiting exposure to other dogs and public locations until puppy vaccines (such as rabies, distemper, and parvovirus) are finished.
Until puppy immunizations are done, you can begin teaching your puppy at home and socializing him among family and friends in lieu of formal instruction.
If you wait until he is 6 months old to start training him, you will have a more difficult time dealing with him.
Ask the breeder for help in picking a puppy by describing exactly what you’re searching for in a dog.
The ideal Cocker Spaniel does not emerge from the whelping box completely formed. He is the result of his upbringing and breeding.
Cockers have been overbred in the past, resulting in nervous, slightly frightening dogs that are not representative of a well-bred Cocker.
Look for a dog who has been properly socialized since puppyhood and whose parents have pleasant characteristics.
What You Should Know About the Health of Cocker Spaniels
All dogs, like all people, are susceptible to inherited health issues.
A professional breeder will be forthright and honest about the breed’s health issues and the frequency with which they arise in her lines.
Here’s a quick breakdown of everything you need to know about Cocker’s health.
Cocker Spaniels are prone to a variety of health issues, some of which are at least partially inherited.
Many various eye illnesses, such as cataracts and glaucoma, as well as severe hip and knee deformities, are among them.
For the Cocker Spaniel, who is a naturally active dog who enjoys running and playing, disc disease can make mobility difficult.
The Cocker is susceptible to heart disease, liver disease, ear infections, dental disease and epilepsy.
The Cocker Spaniel can suffer from a wide range of visual issues, from the aesthetic – such as “cherry eye,” which can be treated with surgery – to the sight-threatening, such as cataracts and glaucoma.
While many Cockers lose their vision completely as they get older, gradual retinal atrophy can cause them to lose it as early as two years of age.
Cockers are also prone to keratoconjunctivitis sicca, or dry eye, which is caused by a lack of tears and can result in corneal issues.
Hypothyroidism is the underproduction of thyroid hormone in Cocker Spaniels.
Weight gain, tiredness, hair loss, shivering, and skin infections are all possible side effects.
Any time thyroid disease is suspected, Cockers should have their thyroids examined with a simple blood test. Skin disorders, as well as skin lumps, which can be benign or cancerous, can suggest allergies, which are common in the breed.
Some Cocker Spaniels with white hair and blue eyes appear to be predisposed to congenital deafness.
The blood supply to the inner ear in some of these dogs degenerates around the age of three or four weeks.
Remember that once you’ve brought your new puppy home, you have the authority to safeguard him against one of the most common health issues: obesity.
One of the simplest ways to extend the life of a Cocker Spaniel is to keep him at a healthy weight.
Make the most of your preventive skills to help your dog live a longer, healthier life.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
According to canine psychologist Stanley Coren, both the American and English Cocker Spaniels are extremely intelligent dogs.
The English Cocker Spaniel is the 20th brightest dog breed in terms of obedience and working intelligence, whereas the American Cocker Spaniel is the 23rd smartest.
Cocker spaniels are noted for being calm, laid-back, and affectionate while also being energetic.
They’re often thought to be good with kids.
They are generally non-aggressive toward other animals and people, but this does not make them good watchdogs.
Cocker spaniels, although being popular family pets, are routinely ranked among the most violent dogs.
Aggression, on the other hand, is a highly preventable behavior problem in dogs. While it is easier to prevent hostility than it is to treat it, even the most violent canines can typically be taught to behave in a kind manner.