Cocker Spaniel: Your New Pet
Do you happen to remember the movie “The Lady and the Tramp”? If you do not remember it, you have likely seen the adorable scene of two puppies eating spaghetti from the same dish. This charming couple is the protagonist of the aforementioned cartoon, released around 1955 by Disney. “Lady”, the beautiful dog with golden fur, is an outstanding Cocker Spaniel, who, thanks to her incredible beauty, conquers the heart of “Tramp”, and, without a doubt, the heart of everyone who saw the movie.
With a beautiful glance, framed with those long ears of curly hair, the Cocker Spaniel is one of the most exuberant dogs of its kind. Although it has the popularity of being moody, it is very sweet with its family and friends. Only some of this breed have this bad character, which, according to various studies, is associated with the color of their fur.
Friendly, sweet, respectful, and playful, you can certainly fall in love with them.
Its origin dates back to the Spanish lands, although it is possible that the ancestors of the Cocker Spaniel already existed before the founding of this Vascuence land. Dating back to the 500s BC, this ancient breed that was an assistant in the hunt, helped herd hens, and catch the prey of their masters. Their name is probably a reference to the translation of “Spanish dog.”
It is a small to medium dog breed, large, thick, and athletic in appearance, of equal length and height, strong enough, inexhaustible, and sporty, with silky, shiny, and long fur, especially in the ears. It can measure about 39cm to 41cm at the cross, the females being generally a bit smaller with about 38cm to 39cm in height. Due to their shape, it reaches a weight that varies between 12 to 14 kilos (between 26.45 to 30.86 pounds) with a strong tendency to obesity. So, with daily care, correct brushing, and good nutrition, it can live between 12 to 15 years.
Like most dog breeds today, the current Cocker Spaniel is the result of several decades of crossings between different species, dog marriages in the same species, and hybridizations in general. Hence, modern typology slightly differs from their ancestors, obtaining, without a doubt, greater finesse and proportions in their features. However, after their arrival in America, a variation of the breed was developed, so they have been called English Cocker Spaniel and American Cocker Spaniel.
One of the amazing characteristics of this precious animal is its tireless vigor. It can be active for long hours, needing only a few minutes of rest. Although it adapts very well to the calm and passive home life, it is necessary to take it for a walk daily. Sometimes a quiet walk with their master, although it fills them with satisfaction, is not enough. They will feel happy being able to run, sniff, and often take unexpected baths or dip in any place they want, so it is necessary to keep an eye on them when they have the freedom to exercise.
With its rare exceptions, the Cocker Spaniel is very faithful, sweet, and loving with his family. He interacts very well with the children and will try to please everyone in his home, attending even the guests. However, he will create a special attachment with one of its owners, with which many times he can feel their mood as this animal has this highly developed capacity, so there is no need to talk to share your sorrows or joys with him.
The Cocker Spaniel is ideal to release day-to-day stress. As well as being the perfect friend to play and do physical and entertaining activities, it is inexhaustible, friendly, and it is not arrogant. It has as one of its main attractions a silky fur that needs daily brushing, a hair that, without due care, tends to get tangled up, but is soft to the touch, provoking the need to caress it in everyone nearby, which he will surely thank calmly.
For those who wish to include a Cocker Spaniel in their family, they should know that they will have a new member with a strong, quite intelligent character, who needs the constant company of someone since they do not like being alone. They are a little noisy, but with due treatment and training based on positive reinforcement, some patience, and enough signs of respect and affection, they can become obedient and faithful partners.
History and Origin of the Cocker Spaniel
The ancestors of the Cocker Spaniel could trace back in the now known as the Iberian Peninsula. The term Spaniel derives from Span, which, according to several philological studies and theories, can have different meanings. Some point to the translations of the Phoenician, where Sp(a)n means rabbit or land of rabbits, and others have determined that it also indicated that it was the land that was north of Africa. Contrarily, certain linguists record a translation referring to “hidden land”. In any case, the studies associated with the meaning of the word point to the same area: Spain.
The truth is that there is evidence of the extensive antiquity of these animals, showing signs of their appearance around 500 BC when the Carthaginians arrived in Spain. You can also see a sculpture with the figure of a Spaniel, from the Cypriot collection, exhibited in the Metropolitan Museum of New York, which has a date of more than 2000 years. Also, within the Irish legislation of 17 AD, you can read how it demanded people to present these animals to the king.
A somewhat particular historical aspect was in the year 948 AD in Wales, where the ruler was King “Hywell the Good”, who was so fond of the breed that he even increased its cost. For the same amount that he could buy a puppy, he could also acquire women, slaves, or several goats. He even proposed to add to the law a specification regarding the classification of dogs, deriving them in Spaniel, trackers, and greyhounds.
In many other aspects, sources that support its existence exist even in English literature. Chaucer, who lived between 1340 and 1400, includes its name in the work “The Canterbury Tales”, and Gaston of Foix in “The Hunting Book”, in the same century.
Likewise, it was a hunting dog in the time of Henry VIII, where he trained to run around and place prey (birds, partridges, hares, rabbits, among others) under some nets that kept them held until their capture by man. Spaniel allowed the net to capture him as well until his release with his target.
After the creation of firearms, hunting nets were no longer useful, and Spaniel’s role changed. Now, instead of being setters, they lifted prey lying dead or badly injured on the ground while his master captured them. It is here when the term Cocker adds to the name Spaniel, as they were especially used to search for birds and pheasants.
The proliferation and improvement of the breed in Britain is due to the effort of several breeders who, over time, established themselves as an authority on the issue of the pedigree of the Cocker Spaniel. Among them, we can mention Mr. James Farrow, who founded The Cocker Spaniel Club of Great Britain and raised Bob Obo, born in 1879, who was the pioneer of the current breed in England.
As in most cases, the existence of the breed was compromised during WWI and WWII, since the brooders diminished the production and exposure of these dogs. Moreover, during WWII, they needed to sacrifice many of them due to the danger of an invasion. After a few years of restored peace, the Cocker Spaniel begins to be produced again with some stallions that had survived in great shape.
On the other hand, in the United States of America, the Cocker Spaniel arrived in the mid-19th century, with descendants of the aforementioned Bob Obo. Mr. Farrow sent a pregnant dog named Chloe II, which gave birth to several puppies that later became a strong influence on the formation of the species onwards.
However, the bases in the breeding of this species did not receive the same care as in England, generating important changes in the structure of the dog. They became more refined, reaching such small sizes that they entered the miniature category, endangering the quality of the former specimen, being now so delicate that they could no longer be hunting dogs.
For which the “Hunting Spaniel Society” emerged, who worried about the possible extinction and great differentiation of dogs in the area and managed to create litters that saved the original English Cocker Spaniel in America, which generated, in 1910 approximately, a derivation known today as the American Cocker Spaniel.
Based on this diversification of the breed, several categories exist in the Cocker Spaniel breed. The English were the original and founder of the whole species, with important houses and surnames throughout the world. Then we have the American, who collaborated greatly in the refinement of the features, also generating an almost unknown version that is the miniature.
Among the most characteristic features that can describe the specimens of this breed is the great mix of emotions that show in its temperament. They are tender, intelligent, loving, cheerful, and full of energy, although they are also dominant and anxious.
However, when you have a well-trained and socialized Cocker Spaniel from a young age, they can become the perfect partners for being affectionate and insightful. They always have some strategy to play and make their owners happy, which is why they are one of the most wanted as pets in today’s families.
It also has other faces that can develop badly and result in grumpy dogs, irritable, manipulative, and possessive. Some suffer from a syndrome known as the fury that causes them to have aggressive attacks, so, unfortunately, there is a minimum percentage of families dissatisfied with their adoption.
Nevertheless, these few with attitude problems have not overshadowed the entire breed since most are adorable and the best friend you can have. They adapt quickly to their surroundings, and they are passionate, sweet, brave, and full of life.
They are generally harmonious, compact, and well proportioned. They are strong, sporty, and athletic, even though sometimes, due to the exuberance of their fur, they have the mistaken impression of being delicate. They have a highly developed nose and a deep-rooted hunting instinct.
As in almost all breeds or living beings, males have a slightly more robust and tall constitution than females, which are slightly more delicate, also having a slightly lower height. Consequently, males measure between 39cm to 41cm, and females between 38cm and 39cm approximately. It is worth noticing that the measure from pavement to cross tends to be the same as from tail to cross.
This feature generates attention in the care of Cocker Spaniel, who, due to its willingness to eat continuously, tends to suffer from overweight. Adults should weigh between 12kg to 14.5kg or 15kg depending on their height, being able to have a variation never greater than 20%.
Its head is fashioned, with good proportions as it is not very large or very thin or wide. Without prominent cheeks, it gives the sensation of having a light appearance, topped with a wide muzzle of square figure and a large nose as a consequence of its olfactory abilities
His jaw is strong, presenting a scissor-like bite. That is, they completely square the bottom teeth in the open spaces of the top teeth, allowing him to have the strength to carry the prey of his owners.
Their eyes are large, round, and expressive. They denote intelligence and life for being bright, and they are generally hazelnut brown or dark brown, seeing very few with light eyes.
His ears give the touch of beauty that particularizes him. They are located almost at eye level, long and hung, covered with silky hair with long fringes.
His tail is located a little lower than the line of its back, but it curves upwards. It is thick at its base, and it is thinner towards the tip, giving it balance. Just as the ears, it is covered with soft fringed hair. On many occasions, he uses it to demonstrate his mood, so it is normally dynamic and flowing.
His legs are strong, with tough and straight bones. They are a little, just a little, short and muscular, which generates strength in sports, with thin and oblique shoulders.
His hair is also another of the most beautiful features of the Cocker Spaniel. Covering them broadly, it is silky, smooth, and wavy, but not very curly, finishing off with fringes in several areas such as ears, tail, and hind legs.
The colors of the Cocker Spaniel can be varied, some being mono-color, two-color, and even three-color. Among those of a single tone, gold or black stand out, others have a white spot on the chest, but it is very rare to see them completely white. They can also present harmonious combinations such as black with white, black with fire, browns with fire, or oranges with white, others have three tones combined among those mentioned.
There is a particularity that has not yet received scientific support, and it is that those of a single solid color can develop certain problems that affect their temperament. These problems include aggressive disorders very similar to epilepsy attacks, but there is not enough proof that this is the exclusive cause of it.
Behavior of the Cocker Spaniel with other dogs
The vast majority of existing dog breeds today have developed the ability to stay together with other dogs in their day-to-day lives and their activities. They have even come to collaborate when they learn to do so, but not all of it occurs naturally.
In general, they require training and a socialization process from their first days of life. That is an essential factor in the development of the character of the Cocker Spaniel, to whom it is not advisable to remove them from their mother immediately at birth. Their mother will be the one who starts them in social life by sharing with their siblings at the time of their feeding, so it is ideal to wait for weaning to take them to their new adoptive homes.
Therefore, socialization is the initial key to ensuring peaceful coexistence between two puppies of the same or different breeds. The longer they live with other dogs, the more easily they adapt to them.
For its part, you should remember that the vast majority of the actions or behavior that dogs show in front of other dogs shapes thanks to their instincts and defense mechanism. If they feel threatened, maybe because their new visitor is bigger or more active than them, they will have an aggressive behavior to demonstrate to whom they consider their enemy their value or superiority. On the other hand, if they observe that whoever accompanies them will be their friend and playmate, they can live together all their lives.
Likewise, the vast majority of Cocker Spaniels are quite dynamic and dominant specimens, especially if they understand that they can become the leader in the group. Ideally, they must learn to socialize, or else this nature will make their behaviors somewhat aggressive.
Mating of the Cocker Spaniel
Mating between dogs is such a normal process that, in many countries, it is seen on a day-to-day basis since a wide variety of breeds are roaming the streets, and they have no modesty since they respond instinctively to the call of their nature. However, the best is that these specimens are not homeless, and they must have their adoption homes or care and attention centers.
In this sense, Cocker Spaniels are the same as any other species. The males have a response to the female’s heat, which encourages them through the expulsion of pheromones by various routes, especially urine.
However, if you want to preserve the health of your pet and get a good litter, you must consider certain aspects:
One of them would be not to get ahead of the moment, the Cocker Spaniel will have her first heat stage between her first six to ten months, but at this age, she is still a puppy and her physical and mental maturity is not favorable. Her organs are not yet fully prepared to carry out a good gestation.
In this regard, many veterinarians consider that it is best to wait even for the third heat that tends to be between eighteen and twenty-four months of age when the Cocker is fully ready and has received her training stage or a good part of it.
On the other hand, you will now be responsible for a new number of puppies that will require attention from their mother and a new adoptive home, so try to plan and locate the space where they will be temporarily in your home. If you want to stay with one or several puppies, locate their place and their objects.
Generally, when deciding to cross our pet, we tend to evaluate the physical attractiveness of his new companion, which is very good to predict the beauty of the litter. However, it is also important to investigate a bit about the health of the specimen and its predecessors since many of the conditions that Cocker Spaniels suffer from are hereditary.
Another aspect to consider, if you want the next litter to be as planned, is that all dogs, not only Cocker Spaniel, do not understand fidelity. While her heat lasts, she can allow another male to mount her, putting the homogeneity in new puppies at risk, so it is advisable to take extreme care and protection measures during these days.
Anyhow, having puppies at home is something tender and hopeful. Nonetheless, it also brings its responsibilities and care, both for the puppies and for their mother. She will now be in a different and overprotective condition of her little ones, so you have to treat her with the respect that she deserves.
Diet and nutrition of the Cocker Spaniel
The diet of a Cocker Spaniel is mainly associated with its caloric needs or requirements as a result of its weight, size, age, and energy wear. Additionally, possible pathologies or hereditary conditions also influence the diet, which would be evaluated by a veterinarian defining a specific one if necessary.
However, some basic guidelines can be applied for all Cocker Spaniel, varying slightly depending on their age. One of them is the supply of drinking water, calculated according to their weight, type of weather, jobs, or if it is pregnant, the stage in which it is necessary to increase the doses.
On the other hand, there is the mistake of thinking that they get bored with flavor and that it is necessary to vary the food. The Cocker’s need to adopt a routine for life requires that they eat the same food (once accepted and if it is suitable for their development) in the same place, at the same time, and, if possible, in the same bowl.
Another general aspect is the selection of the type of food, in which you can choose to establish a diet based on homemade or industrialized food. In this sense, the homemade food tends to have certain nutritional deficiencies since it is difficult for your pet to consume all the ingredients. Contrary to what happens with the dry feed, which is manufactured homogeneously and calculated according to the ages of your dog, offering the possibility of establishing a complete intake of the necessary elements for its correct development.
Likewise, the type of feeding and amounts that they will receive will base on the three stages of their life, that of a puppy or childhood, adulthood, and old age.
In the puppy stage, your pet will need the mother’s diet, exclusive breastfeeding for the first months and then supplemented with junior class food, with a good dosage of water and supply of vitamins or supplements at the prescript of your specialist.
Later, when their denture is complete and strong, it can be changed to an adult diet, in which you must contemplate their physical activities or nutritional requirements as well as the possibility of preventing complications in the future. This stage is the longest in the life of the Cocker Spaniel, where you can adjust your routine thinking about the longevity and health of your animal.
In this diet, you should consider that the foods they eat have a good amount of proteins, fats, minerals, vitamins, and fatty acids. For example, proteins will be an essential part of the growth and development of the muscle and fur of your Cocker. The latest forms largely by this nutrient and its lack is an obvious cause of the weakness in its layer or even experiencing illnesses such as alopecia. Additionally, its consumption provides energy and favors their nervous system and skeleton, usually resulting from the intake of chicken, fish, or lamb meat, as well as eggs.
As for sugars, they must be in the form of slow-digested ones such as carbohydrates. In the case of being included in an industrialized feed, their presence is low. Contrarily, in the case of supplying them with homemade food, you can do it through carbohydrates in a controlled way, since it is not healthy to eliminate them because they grant a good amount of energy.
On the other hand, lipids provide fatty acids necessary for proper cellular function, taking care of their fur, skin, liver, heart, blood circulation, and even their fertility.
Lastly, it is important to verify that their diet has enough vitamins and minerals that help in the absorption of nutrients and the maintenance of their immune system. Furthermore, avoid the high presence of calories that, even though it is not convenient to eliminate them, contribute to problems with their weight.
Perhaps one of the factors to consider in the breeding and feeding of this breed is its tendency to obesity caused by their love for food, combined with a poor exercise routine, being diagnosed when its Cocker exceeds its ideal weight by approximately 20%. To avoid such a problem, it is essential that you strictly follow the assigned diet and that the supply of sweets is exclusively a reinforcement of some good behavior and not part of their nutrition.
Besides, due to its close coexistence with men, being generally raised as companion pets, we run the risk of overfeeding it or giving it human food leftovers, which can be toxic to his organism. Sometimes, eating at the wrong time causes hormonal, respiratory, muscular, or cardiac problems, demonstrating the importance of maintaining a certain discipline in their schedule and diet.
Health and general care
When deciding to adopt a pet, any type of them, you should know that you acquire several responsibilities that go beyond feeding and giving them a roof. You should know that it is a right for your puppy to be treated with dignity and receive adequate care to have a long and healthy existence.
This care becomes a responsibility of all family members, who must keep in mind that this animal will depend on the love and dedication of all, so they should not take lightly the decision to adopt it.
As for its hygiene and beauty, taking many measures and constantly checking his state is a never-ending task, especially for a Cocker Spaniel whose physical characteristics require a certain degree of maintenance.
These measures are associated with the care of their skin, fur, eyes, teeth, legs, brushing, bathing, vaccines, and medical treatment in general.
One of the most frequent activities that your Cocker Spaniel will need is brushing, which you must perform since puppies to adapt them and consider it as their routine. For their comfort, you can lay them down while brushing them, checking first with your fingers that they do not have knots. If you find any, hold their skin with one hand and with the other try to untangle it gently.
For this, you can use a thick bristle brush and then a metal comb.
Another activity that you can also do frequently is tooth brushing. Remember that the teeth of your Cocker Spaniel are very small and tend to accumulate food debris, causing tartar and bad breath, so it is convenient for their health and well-being to get used to oral hygiene since puppies.
As for his bath, it is important to clear up certain misunderstandings, since dogs are not the same as men. They, and especially the Cocker Spaniel, have a kind of natural oil on their skin that protects them from external agents. Without this oil or fat, they could suffer from irritations, allergies, dandruff, even alopecia, so its protection and maintenance are vital.
Now, the regularity of which your Cocker puppy should bath will depend on the level of activity and contact with the outside that your puppy possesses, which can go from dust and its characteristic smell to oils or sticky elements.
Generally, their baths can wait up to about six weeks between them, but if your puppy is very dirty or the dust can affect it, you might consider shortening that period and avoid that it becomes frequent.
This process should be relatively quick, with warm water and special soaps for dogs that come without odors. Before putting it in the bathtub, it is convenient to brush it to untangle the knots and remove loose hair. Then, you could clean its tearing with a cotton pad moistened with water, never apply soap, and move the cotton from the tear to the cheek. Later, proceed to clean its ears, preferably introducing a piece of cloth moistened with oil, cleaning them gently, and removing the fabric.
Once you bathe it, dry it with a towel to remove the excess water. You can immediately apply a dryer with adequate temperature so that it does not cause any burn, and brush it again once it is very dry to prevent it from having knots, which will calm it a bit.
Among other much more sporadic but really important care is its vaccination process, which a veterinarian should advise. They will indicate the schedule for each vaccine, trying to take care of discomforts such as ticks, parasites, fleas, certain viruses, and other conditions.
For its part, its health is relatively good, with some considerations to take care of. Even though it is a small dog, it is quite strong and resistant, being necessary to monitor some conditions that could be hereditary.
One of the main problems that Cocker Spaniel specimens experience is located in their eyes, suffering from cataracts, glaucoma, or retinal atrophy. It is important to follow up on these conditions with your veterinarian, to avoid suffering from illnesses like blindness when they reach old age.
Other inherited conditions are associated with their bone structure, being able to suffer from arthritis, hip dysplasia, or dislocation of the kneecap. These conditions worsen if you do not monitor their weight since they regularly tend to be overweight due to their preference for food. You can control it with adequate food and daily exercise.
Likewise, there is a syndrome very associated with this breed, known as the fury syndrome. Although most of the specimens do not suffer from it, isolated cases have existed in those that are unicolor (even if it is not an exclusive condition) where the aggressive behaviors occur sporadically.
Finally, another of the problems that affect them is related to their ears or the auditory system. As their ears are long, they can accumulate dirt, causing otitis or other infections, being in some instances very noticeable in the development of deafness.
How to train, educate, or coach a Cocker Spaniel
If you wish to adopt a puppy Cocker Spaniel, we advise you to train it, either in a specialized care center or, if you prefer, do it on your own. However, keep in mind that this breed tends to be a little undisciplined when they are untrained and that educating it requires time, patience, and dedication.
However, it is highly necessary to train them to avoid natural uncomfortable behaviors in their condition, but that can adapt to the lifestyle of humans.
The time to start training it firmly would be from six months of age or more. Any time before could be a waste of time since your Cocker puppy only thinks about playing and fun. Maybe you can introduce some basic terms like a simple “no” when you find him nibbling on an object. Otherwise, do not worry about starting so soon, let him enjoy his childhood, and, when the time is right, he can start with his education.
Once they have reached enough age, it is convenient to consider certain guidelines to ensure the best results. Among them, we can mention those mistakes that we fall into when training our pets at home, such as losing patience, shouting, or attacking them. This type of punishment is cruelty, and it is not effective, as it generates fear instead of appreciation, and the Cocker Spaniel obeys more those they love most.
Another method that is not advisable is to use choking necklaces, sticks, whips of punishment, or attacks in general. It is best to work under positive reinforcement, with discipline and firmness, but with love. Always address it in the same tone and with the same terms, do not use synonyms because it does not understand them, use a determined and energetic tone demonstrating that you are the leader but that you respect it.
It is important to acknowledge that the main key to ensure a good acceptance and fulfillment of the orders and form their conduct is perseverance. You should not give up or lower your guard, and the training can be done between three to four times a week, preferably at the same time and in the same place.
To do this, choose a quiet place where your Cocker Spaniel does not have many distractions, the more privacy you have much better. Moreover, make sure that your pet has spent as much energy as possible before training. Do not leave it too exhausted, but it is advisable to run, play, do their needs, and be less excited, to avoid being deconcentrated. Remember that this is a very active breed with a tendency to make their own decisions and do what attracts their attention.
In addition to this, consider the weather of the day, which should be tolerable, neither too cold nor too hot to avoid suffocation. Once you define the place, let it sniff and make its initial recognition, then choose the order for the day, since it is convenient to only work with one until it has understood it. Always work under the same term as “still”, “sitting”, “search”, remember to rest and try again.
Accordingly, you should know that you can show your pet when he does something well and when he does not. When he complies with an order, congratulate him, pet him, tell him: “Very well! Well done!” to reinforce that behavior. Some use prizes such as treats for dogs or sausages, but you must be very careful with the supply of these foods to prevent your puppy from suffering obesity in the future.
On the other hand, when they do not comply with an order or behave disobediently, say No! With a firm voice and start again. An example of this can be at home when you find it biting some household items, say No! And remove the object, then you can offer some of its toys. If it does it again, repeat the operation. As you will see, the key to success is patience and not aggressiveness.
Generally, these training sessions last about half an hour. If you go over it, try to give it a rest interval in the middle of about fifteen minutes and no more. Nor extend it until you reach an hour, as you could wear it out, stress it, and it will be more difficult for it to find this activity as pleasant, making it disobedient in some cases.
With these measures, you can have a pet quite adapted to their customs and that respects, in some way, the rules of the home. Nonetheless, remember that your Cocker Spaniel has a beautiful personality that should not be destroyed or completely overshadowed. The key to training is to generate dogs that can lead a life in harmony with men, but still have the best of its temper.
Behavior of the Cocker Spaniel with Humans
Popular expressions that refer to the dog being man’s best friend are not exaggerations or advertising slogans. The dog can indeed become the best friend of its owner and the most faithful protector of his human family members.
Although to make this pet adapt to our lives, it is necessary to understand that they cannot understand all our spoken language. However, they can train to recognize some short sounds associated with the facial expressions with which we accompany them.
In this sense, the greatest skill that they have been developing in their coexistence with humans and in their desire to make us happy is to read our body language, in which the Cocker Spaniel is a specialist. He can associate how to respond to some of our expressions to sensitize us. For example, if they discover that we are angry or that we are scolding them, they can use a tender look or a posture that we like to change our mood.
This tenderness, accompanied by how loving they are with their relatives, can become a bit misleading. The Cocker Spaniel, as well as being energetic and playful, has a strong character combined with great intelligence, tending to become a tyrant if it demands the attention that it considers it deserves. So, in addition to giving it affection, you must have a lot of authority and leadership when educating it.
Also, this breed manifests an adoration for always being in the company of its owners, even wanting to be the center of attention whenever they can. Consequently, leaving them alone for a long time can cause problems in their behavior, suffering from anxiety.
When they have not trained, this problem accentuates and causes their temper to deviate from normal, breaking objects, nibbling, scratching, and even barking excessively, despite not being known as the most barking dogs. Certainly, one of the most obvious symptoms of their need for closeness is to chase their owners wherever they move, which will alarm them to take certain actions to make them feel better.
Among these actions, it is to evaluate their exercise routine. In the life of a Cocker Spaniel, it is essential to take it for long walks every day, run, play, practice gymnastics, and activities that provide mental challenges. If you or your family do not have time to give to your pet, it is best to decide to adopt another dog of some less dependent breed.
As for their behavior with children, they can be loving to some extent. It is necessary and responsible to recognize that they are not as tolerant as desired. Children’s constant screams and abrupt games stress it, showing unwanted attitudes, so it is convenient to keep strict vigilance when they are together.
On the other hand, the vast majority of the specimens have proven to be very possessive with their objects or toys, and become aggressive if you try to remove any of them. You can even notice how even when they are playing or doing other activities, they tend to take a look at their stuff constantly.
In this order of ideas, you can include some Cocker Spaniel who have had problems with aggressiveness, which is not characteristic of this breed since they are very loving. Yet, some have developed the fury syndrome, giving spontaneous manifestations of anger. Those who are calm have outbursts of rage against something or someone, lasting these episodes for up to ten minutes, leaving them exhausted and even fainted.
Many specialists and some scholars have studied the possibility that this condition goes along with the colors of their fur. It indicates that more percentage of involvement shows in those who have a solid color, and even more in gold and black, but it is not an exclusive feature and is still under investigation.
Likewise, there is another aspect that could cause a negative perception of this animal. Although adorable, it can have problems with submission, especially when they begin their adulthood stage, demonstrating it with constant expulsions of urine. That is, the Cocker Spaniel without training urinates every time his emotions win, and reprimanding him does not improve things.
To do this, and to avoid many of the inconveniences with this beautiful dog, it is always advisable to train it, either at home or in a specialized center, to strengthen all the great benefits that it possesses and control some features of its temperament that become problematic.
When selecting a location for your new pet, it is necessary to keep in mind certain considerations besides its name, the type of food it will eat, or even which veterinarian to choose. We are talking about the space where it will sleep and space it will eat. Consider that the change in its routine is not highly advisable, so it can become a lifelong selection, or at least for the life of your new partner.
Before locating it, we advise you to consider the historical evolution of the Cocker, his old jobs, his temperament, and physical conditions, especially his capacity for involuntary urination associated with some of his emotions. Therefore, you do not want to find this kind of traces of your pet everywhere in your home, which, although it can decrease with training, is always a latent possibility.
On the other hand, the size of your home is not an inconvenience in any aspect. The size and ability to adapt to the customs of the Cocker’s adoptive family makes it ideal for any home, be it a farm, country house, a spacious apartment, or a small apartment. All are suitable as long as it gives them the necessary exercise time.
Perhaps a somewhat particular aspect that you should keep in mind when defining or designing their environment is that the Cocker Spaniel does not tolerate loud noises or rough work. These make them easily stressed, and it can be very difficult to educate them to adapt and be happy in their new home.
However, there is no specific pattern that defines where to place your new partner, which will depend on the lifestyle you and your family have and the ages of the household members.
In this sense, it would be important to consider the transit at home so as not to make it an obstacle in their regular walks or some hurried exit. For example, in an emergency, it can cause accidents to humans or get hurt with some blow. A corner with good visibility may be appropriate.
Likewise, the Cocker is very overprotective of his things. When he has visitors and accepts them, he will be very vigilant of his surroundings and his objects. Therefore, continuous movement and change in his belongings are not advisable.
It is, therefore, when you can define two places ideally separated from each other to avoid contamination, one to sleep and another to eat.
In their sleeping space, which they will eventually use when they are tired or sick, it can be a blanket or thin mattress, and some specific toys for dogs. Many of these objects are special to help calm the itching and discomfort that originates from the teething process.
On the other hand, it is important to place an absorbent or anti-slip mat in their space to eat, which you must frequently remove for cleaning. Place, as well, a cup to serve the food and another for water, which you must change at least two times a day to ensure its drinkability.
In all cases, you should also consider that the Cocker Spaniel is prone to suffer from skin allergies and has good olfaction, so it is not advisable to wash their objects with soaps or scented softeners. Otherwise, it can cause discomfort in their skin, or they even would not stay in the site selected for him.
There is another possibility that, although it may not seem like it, requires a little more attention, and is to raise them abroad. You should try to control the largest amount of elements to protect their physical and mental health, as well as prevent them from getting lost or stolen.
In this sense, if you have a garden or backyard and do not want your pet to circulate inside the home, you can choose to build a small house of the material of your choice that provides a clean and dry place to spend the night. You can make it with a roof and in a high space to prevent it from getting wet during the rain. Nonetheless, although it indeed adapts to the weather, it is not good to leave it outside in wintertime and should be well hydrated in the summer.
You should also try to clean your garden to eliminate weeds or prune low and thorny bushes to prevent them from damaging their eyes, legs, or skin. Remember that Cocker Spaniels can be very active and determined, and can even eat fruits that cause stomachache.