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American Cocker Spaniel – Breed Information & Diet Facts

American Cocker Spaniel
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The charming and merry American Cocker Spaniel, with his soft innocent eyes and magnetic personality, is the world’s most loved dog breeds. Before they gained recognition as all-around friendly dogs, American Cocker Spaniels were bred as hunting dogs.

American Cocker Spaniels are excellent companions for children and are very easily trained as athletes and companions. These dogs love short walks and plenty of playtimes.

American Cocker Spaniel Infographic

American Cocker Spaniel Infographic

American Cocker Spaniel History

The spaniel is considered a unique breed, and it is said to have first emerged in Spain. They were used as hunters’ helping dogs. Originally developed as a birder, mainly to catch low-flying woodcocks, American Cocker Spaniels are recognized by AKC.

According to experts, there are, in fact, two different types of Cocker Spaniels. They are American and the English Cocker Spaniels. Not a crossbred, American Cocker Spaniels populated America where it was created from the well-known English Cocker Spaniel.

American Cocker Spaniel Appearance

The American Cocker Spaniel is, in general, one of the cutest breeds of the Sporting Type. This dog has a refined head, cleanly chiselled frame, compact and a sturdy body with the dog in total balance and at the apt size.

Muscular quarters, powerful straight forelegs, and they stand well strong at the shoulder level. American Cocker Spaniels are capable of great strength, and considerable speed.

This dog shows an inclination towards work and for most of the part, he looks sound, merry, and free. Overall, American Cocker Spaniel is a well-balanced dog in all aspects.

American Cocker Spaniel Size And Weight

The suitable height for a fully-grown American Cocker Spaniel is around 38 cm or 15 inches for males. For females, the normal height at the withers is 36 cms or 14 inches on an average.

American Cocker Spaniel Lifespan

The lifespan (average) of an American Cocker Spaniel is somewhere around 10 to 14 years.

American Cocker Spaniel Coat

The silky texture of the American Cocker Spaniel is of medium size, slightly wavy, and flat on the body. American Cocker Spaniels legs, abdomen, chest, and ears are well covered or feathered.

The short and fine hair on the head looks absolutely fine.

The texture of this dog remains the most important aspect. In this breed, abnormally curly textured coat receives a disqualification. Bear in mind, do not use electric clippers on this breed on the back at any cost.

American Cocker Spaniel Color

These dogs appear in three exotic colors – Parti (white with different color markings), ASCOB (any solid color other than black), and black.

The black color should be jet black; liver color or brown color shadings in the coat are disallowed. A very little quantity of white color on the throat and chest is normal. White in other places is not allowed.

In ASCOB variety, all colors ranging from darkest red to lightest cream, including brown with tan and brown are allowed. For Parti-Colour types, broken colors such as white; white and red, white and black are permitted with tan points.



American Cocker Spaniel Grooming

Cocker Spaniels look hale and healthy with thorough and frequent grooming.  Improper and irregular grooming can lead to mats and tangles.

Use best quality dog comb with medium and fine spaced metal teeth to groom this breed. It is advised to remove all loose hairs at the earliest. If you find snarls, comb smoothly and never rush.

Be very careful when combing ears; hard combing can damage their tender skin. Your American Cocker Spaniel needs a regular wash with premium dog shampoo.

To avoid skin rashes or allergies, two times rinsing is necessary. Use a dryer with not too hot a blow-dryer setting. Regularly clean your dog’s ear canals to avoid any skin infection and cauliflower ears. Frequently check your Cocker’s skin for any skin abnormalities.

Learn grooming techniques yourself or hire a professional groomer who has experience in this breed.

American Cocker Spaniel Temperament

  • Merry – American Cocker Spaniels love spending time with their own family members. This breed is also called “Merry Cocker.”
  • Easily trainable – Fun loving and friendly, this breed ranks higher in the areas of trainability, obedience intelligence, and friendliness.
  • A good companion – With an excellent level of American Cocker Spaniel socialization at a very young age, this dog gets along well with other pets, dogs, and children.
  • No more working dog – American Cocker Spaniels are bred more in adherence to the common breed standard, such as a good silky long coat etc., and this means they are a no longer working dog.

American Cocker Spaniel Training And Exercise

About this breed, the American Cocker Spaniel, this is a people-friendly dog breed. They, normally, behave well to please their owner. Cocker Spaniels are more responsive and sensitive to a disapproving tone and correction in their trainer’s voice.

These breeds love the idea of performance tasks and decide the right task based on your Cocker’s liking. Early puppy training and socialization classes are advised. Reward your Cocker with praise, play, and other food treats.

Exercise needs of this dog breed are very moderate because they love to spend time as housepets.

American Cocker Spaniel Health Problems

The American Cocker Spaniel normally enjoys good longevity. Contact a vet and learn proper methods to clean their ear canals in order to prevent unnecessary ear infections.

Kindly check with your breeder for these tests

  • Hip Evaluation
  • Ophthalmologist Evaluation

Some of the ailments faced by this dog breed  include

  • Glaucoma
  • Patellar luxation
  • Cataracts
  • Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)
  • Epilepsy
  • Gastric torsion
  • Elbow dysplasia
  • Hip dysplasia

A DNA evaluation of these dogs can help identify phosphofructokinase deficiency which can cause anaemia. Overall, to recognize these health conditions, your family vet may suggest eye, thyroid, knee, and hip exams.

American Cocker Spaniel Names

Some of the popular names of American Cocker Spaniels include

Gracie Bailey
Daisy Magnet

American Cocker Spaniel Food

Yes, your Spaniel’s feed should include important things such as minerals, vitamins, fiber, fats, carbohydrates, and protein.


Foods rich in protein include:


Vital minerals and vitamins are also included in your Cocker Spaniel’s diet and some dog lovers include extra supplements in their diet.

Before you add extra nutrients, talk to your vet to avoid any risk.

Fiber and Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates rich food include oatmeal, barley, rice, and many vegetables and fruits. Try beetroot or pumpkin, and a little of these things are enough.


Fats help to maintain your Spaniel’s eyes, coat, skin, and internal organs. They also help to maintain it’s joints and bones strong and offer resistance against arthritis.

Cockers are susceptible to overweight or obesity and therefore keep an eye on their daily diet.

Foods rich in fats include

  • Sunflower oil
  • Olive oil
  • Cod-liver oil
  • Meat (beef, chicken, and lamb)

How much can an adult American Cocker Spaniel Eat?

You can try to incorporate Omega 6 and Omega 3 foods in his diet. Feed him with low-calorie diet because older dogs normally follow a sedentary lifestyle.

At present, there are plenty of commercial dog foods available in the market. They may need two meals a day. Serve one in the morning and other in the evening.

Best Food for Cocker Spaniel Puppy

  • Ist month- not more than 210 calories daily
  • Double these amounts until they consume 740 calories.
  • For puppies, provide them with three separate meals on a daily basis.

Which is better? Kibble or Wet food?

Merits of feeding your dog with dry food or kibble

  • Kibble is clean and does not smell.
  • An open bag will remain safe for quite some time compared to wet food.
  • Kibble help your dog to avoid plaque as the texture is crunchy and nice.
  • If your dog does not prefer dry food, soak them in warm clean water for a few minutes. Feed them the soaked kibble after draining excess water.
  • Provide access to clean drinking water 24/7.

Demerits of feeding your dog with wet food

  • Certain tinned/canned food is at times mixed with extra nutrition to make it a balanced meal.
  • Most tinned wet food requires refrigeration before serving.
  • They can be smelly as well as messy.

There are several reasons other than those listed above for people to prefer dry food over wet food.

Best Food for Cocker Spaniel Dogs

Feeding your dog with high-quality balanced dog food can ward off allergies, diseases, illnesses, and improve your dog’s immunity.

  • Fresh fruits and veggies
  • Avoid feeding citrus fruits such as lemon or orange. Always feed your American Cocker Spaniel with best in town dog food and consult your vet for a balanced diet schedule.
  • Taste of the Wild- Appalachian Valley Grain Free Diet
  • Merrick Grain Free Salmon Dry Food Mix
  • Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition Cocker Spaniel Adult Dry Dog Food

Interesting Facts

  • In Cockers, the breed name “cocker” gains more prominence due to its talent on woodcock.
  • In America, these dogs are popular since the late 19th Century.
  • Ruby, the charming Cocker Spaniel, won the prestigious Hunter title awarded by the AKC.
  • Both nice in cool and warm weather conditions, these dogs make for brilliant walking and jogging partner.
  • Former American President Nixon and Truman and media queen Oprah Winfrey at one point of time owned this breed.

American Cocker Spaniel Price And Breeders

The average price of an American Cocker Spaniel is between USD $ 600 to USD $ 800. Purebred spaniels are available for adoption from a rescue or an animal shelter.

American Cocker Spaniel Breeders

Some of the well-known Cocker Spaniel breeders in America include

  • Calowa Kennels
    Lorri (519-423-6049)
    Olive (519-765-1783)
    E-mail: calowakennels@hotmail.com
  • Hill Crest Rockers
    Karen Branch –(229) 424 – 5911
    Georgia, U.S.
  • Second Chance Cocker Rescue, Inc.
    PO Box 1419, Twain Harte, CA 95383
    Main 805 687-4674
    Phone:  902-883-9885
    Email: shadyhill@ns.sympatico.ca

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