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Cocker Spaniel

Cheerful, playful and sweet

About the Cocker Spaniel

The Cocker Spaniel is the darling of many dog lovers around the world. They’ve been featured in popular films and tv shows such as the Disney classic Lady and the Tramp. And it’s no surprise, as their beautiful coats and sweet disposition make them ideal for lead roles.

Cocker Spaniels have a merry, happy nature that lets them get along easily with everyone that they meet, of both the two and four-legged variety. They’re the model of a pampered house pet, and their love and affection towards people makes them natural charmers.

As a sporting dog, they love to be outdoors with their owners. They fit best with active owners who have a lot of time to spend with their dogs. However, they also love to lounge around and can fit into small homes and apartments.

cocker spaniel against light background

Cocker Spaniel Breed Characteristics

38 to 43 cm at the shoulder

26 to 35 pounds

Life Expectancy
12 to 15 years

Coat Colours
Red, black, liver, blue roan, tan, golden

Here are some of the qualities you can expect from the Cocker Spaniel, rated from one to five stars. However, all dogs are individuals, and your dog may not display exactly the same characteristics.

Family Life
Friendly with Kids
Friendly with Dogs
Ease of Grooming
Exercise Needs
Prey Drive
Tendency to Bark or Howl
Good for Novice Owners
Apartment Living

Cocker Spaniel Breed History

There are currently two types of Cocker Spaniel: the English and American. Both varieties of Cocker Spaniel were bred to work with bird hunters.

While the term ‘spaniel’ refers to dogs that were believed to have originated in Spain, the Cocker Spaniel actually has its origins in England.

The Cocker Spaniel and English Springer Spaniel are closely related, as they were originally one and the same. Springers were just larger pups in the litters, while Cockers were the smaller dogs. The dogs had different duties during the hunt, based on their size.

The Cocker Spaniel was recognised as a distinct breed in England in the late 19th century. Soon after, American breeders decided to create their own variant of the Cocker Spaniel, resulting in the two types we know today.

Now, the Cocker Spaniel is not often used as a hunting dog, and is most often seen as a beloved family pet.

Caring For a Cocker Spaniel

How to Choose a Responsible Cocker Spaniel Breeder

When buying a Cocker Spaniel puppy, your choice of breeder is the biggest decision you’ll have to make, and this choice has a large effect on your puppy’s quality of life. Buying from a responsible breeder will help ensure that your puppy is healthy and has an even temperament.

Knowledgeable, ethical breeders will also have their breeding dogs tested for common health issues and genetic problems that can be passed on to your puppy. Make an effort to ask your breeder about what types of tests they perform on their dogs. Also try to schedule a visit to meet the dam and stud so you can get a sense of their temperament, which may also influence your puppy’s personality.

Cocker Spaniel FAQ

No, They tend to be ‘velcro’ dogs who desire to be with their owners constantly. They thrive on human companionship and do not appreciate being left alone.

No. They may bark to alert their owner when someone comes near, but they are not good guard dogs. They aren’t aggressive, and will not protect your property.

Dog Breeds Similar to the Cocker Spaniel

The information is for general use only. For any specific advice or queries, please consult with your veterinarian.

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