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Cocker Spaniel

The Canine Chronicles Directory

Cocker Spaniel

The American Cocker Spaniel has long, suspended ears, a rounded head, and an abundant silky coat. Feathering occurs on the ears, abdomen and legs. The head is defined with an abrupt stop and the muzzle is wide with a square jaw. The upper lip droops downward, covering the lower jaw completely. The teeth should meet in a scissor-like bite. On black dogs, the nose should always be black. The nose may be brown on other dogs. The eyes are circular and the eye rims are somewhat oval. They have a compact body with a short back. Their topline should gently slope downward from front to back. The front legs should have good straight bone structure. The dewclaws on all legs should be removed. The cocker spaniels coat color is divided into black, parti-color, and any solid color other than black. Black can include black-and-tan but the cocker spaniel should be jet black without brown shadings. When showing this breed with tan markings they should only be over the eyes, on the muzzle and cheeks, undersides of ears, on all legs and feet, and under the tail. It is optional if there is tan on the chest. The tail is customarily docked at 2/5 its original length and constantly wags. Cocker Spaniels have an effortless, graceful walk which looks as though they are floating across the ground.

Temperament The American Cocker Spaniel is one of the top breeds chosen by families. If well-bred, they are cheerful, sensitive, trustworthy, and have sweet dispositions. Cocker Spaniel's also respect their master and will not challenge their authority. They love everyone, generally gentle with children and usually get along with other animals. Since this breed is so popular, many are mass bred without concern for temperament or possible genetic ailments. Make sure to purchase your puppy from a reputable breeder. Also make sure that they have completed a puppy temperament test.
Height, Weight Male Height: 15.5" ; Weight: 15-30 lbs.
Female Height: 14.5" ; Weight: 15-30 lbs.
Health Problems Major concerns with this breed include glaucoma, cataracts and patellar luxation. Occasionally seen are elbow dysplasia and gastric torsion.
Living Conditions American Cocker Spaniels fit into almost any household and can adapt to a variety of lifestyles and age groups.
Exercise Cockers have lots of energy and need regular exercise.
Life Expectancy About 12-15 years
Grooming Prospective owners should be aware of the care necessary to keep the American Cocker Spaniel in top form. Regular combing and brushing is important with this breed. The hair should be trimmed level with the pads. The pet's coat should be brushed immediately after outdoor play. Check often for matting. This breed does shed.
Origin It is said that the first Cocker Spaniel arrived in America on the Mayflower with the Pilgrims in 1620. However, during the next few centuries, settlers also brought cocker spaniels with them to help explore the new world's wildernesses. In the 19th century, the English Cocker Spaniel was developed into the smaller American version to flush out and retrieve fowl while hunting. The breed was originally divided from the English Cocker based on size, but after many years of breeding of specific traits the differences were great enough to separate the breeds. By the 1940s, the American Cocker was so different in appearance and stature that it was impossible to judge them in the same category. In 1945, the two breeds were separated and the American Cocker Spaniel was officially recognized with their own standards. They are also one of America's most popular breeds. They are recognized by the AKC and the UKC.
Group AKC Sporting, UKC Gun Dog