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The Cocker Spaniel is a lovely dog. I’m not going to say I’ve finally found my dumb dog, but when a breed page says that a dog is of average intelligence, that has to mean something, right? Every other breed I’ve researched so far talks about how intelligent the dogs are. Not the Cocker Spaniel.
Great. Now I’ve probably alienated a whole group of dog owners.
I mean it when I say the Cocker Spaniel is a lovely dog. Meet Barkley, Sadie’s little brother.
Even though this breed isn’t too bright, they compensate by being loving, good family dogs, easy to train and keep. Like most other dogs, the Cocker Spaniel needs regular exercise and an owner who knows to be the pack leader. Cocker Spaniels seem to be easy going, friendly, happy dogs.
Here’s what the Dog Breed Info page has to say about the breed:
[quote align=”center” color=”#999999″] The Cocker Spaniel is a hunting-gun dog able to work in difficult terrain in both wet and dry land. Excellent at flushing and retrieving game with a gentle mouth. They listen to commands well. The name “Cocker” comes from the woodcock, a game bird the dogs were known for flushing. Some of the American Cocker Spaniel’s talents are hunting, tracking, retrieving, watchdog, agility and competitive obedience. The American Cocker Spaniel was first recognized by the AKC in 1873.[/quote]
So they’re hunting dogs. Beautiful, groomed hunting dogs whose fur gets matted when they’re in the mud or brambles. Whose idea was this? This breed is too pretty to take hunting in the cold and wet, surely? Actually, the field line has shorter, more manageable fur.
Let’s look at the pros and cons of owning the breed.
- Sweet, gentle, friendly – the Cocker Spaniel‘s temperament makes it a great family dog, needing to be with people
- Beautiful, with only moderate shedding – hoorah! A breed which doesn’t shed heavily!
- A small to medium sized dog – this breed is the perfect size for kids or an apartment, not being too big or too small, weighing in between 15 and 30 pounds when full grown
- Easy to train – is that not a beautiful thing all by itself?
- Gets along well with other animals and children – perfect for a growing family
- Not always easy to potty train – not sure why this is – maybe an intelligence issue? Small bladder? Don’t know
- Even though the Cocker Spaniel is only an average shedder, they do require quite a bit of grooming, such as daily brushing, wiping teary eyes, bathing the long fur which collects all kinds of wonderful things while outside
- Like most dogs on the smaller end of the spectrum, the Cocker Spaniel needs an owner who will be the boss – a loving, gentle boss – or they develop a Napoleon complex – no one wants that
- If you’re seriously considering owning one of these beautiful dogs, please pop over to the Dog Breed Info page and read up on their health concerns, which are many
- Easily excitable, barking excessively, guarding everything – mental and physical exercise daily will help with this
Barkley is a gorgeous example of the Cocker Spaniel. He came from a family with three kids, then tore his ACL at the same time his owner had cancer and was being hospitalized, so couldn’t get the surgery done to repair the ACL. In return for doing the surgery, the vet asked for Barkley’s pedigree papers. My friend Diana, Sadie’s mom, has had Barkley for about a year. She says that he misses having little kids around. I’m hoping that his original owner has recovered from the cancer and is thriving with his or her family, enjoying their kids. I know that Barkley is thriving in his new home.
So if you haven’t already, pop over to yesterday’s post and leave a comment for a chance to win a hoof or a Jampacked Jawzer. And subscribe to this blog, if you’re so inclined. We cover a different dog breed every week, and I don’t foresee running out of breeds any time in the near future.
Oh! Cute Frodo moment of the day? My boy brought him into the house.
And he took off like a shot, running all over the house.
Until I write again …