If you are after a small dog that is not only gorgeous but will make itself a true part of the family, the Cocker Spaniel is the dog for you. Here’s what you need to know.
Characteristics of the Cocker Spaniel
The Cocker Spaniel is said to be a small dog that stands about 40cm high at the shoulder and weighs about 13kg as an adult. They are very attractive dogs with their domed head, big brown eyes (often described as doe eyes) and long, floppy ears. One of the best features of the Cocker Spaniel is their gorgeous coat. The coat is somewhat long and is beautifully soft and wavy. Cocker Spaniels come in varying colours include solid red, black, gold, liver, parti-colours such as black and tan, and tricolours such as black, tan and white. There are actually more than 30 different colour combinations.
The Cocker Spaniel Temperament
The Cocker Spaniel is a dog that craves attention and that absolutely loves to be with their family. They are not a dog that you can keep in the backyard and just play with occasionally; they are a companion dog in every sense of the word. The Cocker Spaniel has been known to be somewhat of a “scatty” dog so they do best with at least basic training and a regular, consistent routine.
Caring for a Cocker Spaniel
The Cocker Spaniel is a dog that requires medium amounts of grooming to keep their beautiful coats free of matts and tangles and to keep it in gleaming condition. Regular bathing may be required. As they have floppy ears, you will need to clean the ears regularly and check for any signs of infections, or ticks which love to hide in the ear. You should always buy your puppy from a reputable breeder to ensure that your puppy is free from problems such as behavioural problems (most commonly in golden Cocker Spaniels) and night blindness. Cocker Spaniels love to eat and can put on weight quickly so you need to keep an eye on their diet and make sure that they get the exercise that they need. The Cocker Spaniel will live for 14 years on average but can live for 16 years or more with a controlled diet and plenty of loving care.
Who is the Cocker Spaniel Suited To?
Cocker Spaniels are ideal for both families and older people as they are both robust and adaptable. However, they should be supervised with extremely young children (though this is the same for all dogs). They are happy living either inside or outside but they do need to be a part of the family so they should not be left alone for long periods of time. The Cocker Spaniel does need regular exercise and grooming.