close

Privacy guaranteed - Your email is not shared with anyone.

Quick! Educate me on Cocker Spaniels! Wife texted me about one!

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by Bow Commander, Sep 21, 2012.

  1. Bow Commander

    Bow Commander

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,056
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Orygun
    Hello GT brain trust.

    My wife and I have been tossing around the idea of getting a dog. Nothing serious, but we'd like to have a dog while my 4 year son still cares about them.

    A family member breads Cocker Spaniels. She has one left in her litter that she has offered to us for free. Pure bred (apparently)

    Are these dogs fairly mellow? Hyper? Good for kids? Do they shed terribly? Please give me any traits that you can think of. I need this before I text my wife back with an answer. I'll keep doing google searches while I wait for responses.

    Here's a cute pic of her:

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Grabbrass

    Grabbrass

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2001
    Messages:
    4,709
    Likes Received:
    2,929
    Location:
    Almost Heaven
    Female cocker? Yeah, awesome dog. Lots of love, very gentle. We had a couple pure cockers when I was growing up and the female we had was the best dog ever for in the house. She was usually quiet, mildly playful, and never snapped. Not what I'd call smart though. On the other hand, the male was very intelligent, moody, jealous, and super-loyal to my dad (and not real fond of us kids), and aggressive with other dogs on our street. Whenever my dad was out in the garden, he'd stand guard on the perimeter of our yard ... he knew exactly where the lines were. When he was getting old, we got a pug pup that he hated, but more or less tolerated. I took them both with me running one day ... they fell behind about 1/4 mile before my turnaround point, and on the way back I saw the cocker bolting at top speed out of the woods, and the pug was nowhere to be seen. I found him about 60 yds back alone in the woods, crying and lost. I'll never know for sure if that cocker didn't abandon the pup back there on purpose.


    edit: oh and the shedding is not too bad, but they need brushing or the hair can get matted. They can get rather smelly too ... water dogs so there's some oiliness to the coat.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012

  3. PettyOfficer

    PettyOfficer

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2011
    Messages:
    1,009
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Had a cocker spaniel as a child, he attacked our cousin who was petting him while eating: she's scared for life (her face is covered in scars from that event to this day). I know nothing of that breed, just my experience as a young kid. (He was put down that day)
     
  4. GlocknSpiehl

    GlocknSpiehl NRA Life Member Silver Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2002
    Messages:
    2,703
    Likes Received:
    389
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    We have 2 of them, both boys, and they are the most loving dogs. Our oldest is about 16 yrs old and the baby is 5 years old. Great dogs, very loyal and loving.

    That one in your pic looks sweet. We plan on getting another one, when the oldest one crosses the bridge. I don't like thinking about that tho... :crying:
     
  5. Bow Commander

    Bow Commander

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,056
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Orygun
    Great info guys! Thank you

    Keep it coming!

    My main concern is hyperness. Are they pretty docile as puupies? Or hyper as any other dog?
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  6. GlocknSpiehl

    GlocknSpiehl NRA Life Member Silver Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2002
    Messages:
    2,703
    Likes Received:
    389
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    I forgot, our oldest was a rescue dog from the shelter, the younger we got from a breeder. Cockers take a little while to learn, but are worth the little extra time. The puppy we held and handled a lot. We took him to Starbucks and tried to get him to learn to socialize well with other dogs and people. Also, we held and played with his feet and toes a lot, as well as his ears, and gently used the blow dryer on him so he would not be scared/anxious when he got groomed. YMMV
     
  7. Zonny

    Zonny

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2006
    Messages:
    10,670
    Likes Received:
    1,423
    Location:
    Tempe, Arizona
    Grooming obligations. Also, prone to ear infections because of their long floppy ears. Must keep ears clean and hair cleaned out of them. The groomer would take care of this with regular visits.

    Nice family dogs though.
     
  8. Zonny

    Zonny

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2006
    Messages:
    10,670
    Likes Received:
    1,423
    Location:
    Tempe, Arizona
    As a puppy, put your hand in your dog's dish while eating. Do this often. Also, pull kibble from the bowl and let him eat out your hand. With a little training, there should be no food aggression.
     
  9. Huaco Kid

    Huaco Kid

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2007
    Messages:
    13,282
    Likes Received:
    6,015
    Location:
    State
    Spazmo.

    Not for apartment dwellers.

    BIG yard or the country. Take it hunting, it'll be in heaven.
     
  10. Hauptmann6

    Hauptmann6

    Joined:
    May 22, 2002
    Messages:
    4,279
    Likes Received:
    133
    Location:
    Portage, MI
    Seconded. We had one, she was a princess but a really good dog. Didn't care for strangers, but LOVED little kids. She was too smart for her own good when it came to food.

    She had some personality quirks, but we got her when she was 2-3 and a elderly couple had her before and the lady had cancer so the dog got slightly ignored.

    I would definitely get one again. And the pic is REALLY cute.

    BTW they make GREAT bird dogs if trained. Friend had one, she was a natural.
     
  11. Hauptmann6

    Hauptmann6

    Joined:
    May 22, 2002
    Messages:
    4,279
    Likes Received:
    133
    Location:
    Portage, MI
    As puppies, just like any other dog. They are puppies! Ours later on had less energy than Peg Bundy. When she felt like it she would go nuts playing, otherwise it was naptime on the couch.
     
  12. pipedreams

    pipedreams Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Messages:
    9,924
    Likes Received:
    1,396
    Location:
    S. E. Iowa
    Good advice, this applies to all breeds.

    Too many people see the cocker spaniels as cute little dogs and forget they are dogs not toys. More people get bit by cockers than pit bulls and Rotts, maybe not as serious bites but they are bites. Nothing different about this breed than many others but you got to remember with small children they will pull ears, noses and bite and sometimes the dog will bite back. Small children and dogs do not mix well without close supervision.
     
  13. Deanster

    Deanster Cheese? Millennium Member CLM

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 1999
    Messages:
    7,258
    Likes Received:
    1,696
    We had two cockers for many years. I ended up with mixed feelings about the breed as a whole.

    First, the positives. Great personalities. We picked ours VERY carefully, and got great dogs. Warm, loving, great companions, great with our kids (who were babies that came along in the middle of the dogs' lives). I still miss them tremendously. Taken as a whole, some of the best dogs I've ever had. Sporting dog (lab, retriever, setter) personality in a lap-sized package.

    Now, the negatives - Cockers are the single most overbred breed in the US. They were the most popular dog for many decades, and the breeding lines of the purebreds are kind of a disaster. There are a LOT (many many many many) bad cockers out there. Hyper, snappish, brittle personalities that will end up biting kids unpredictably even when handled and trained well. Bad joints, bad ears, bad skin, bad kidneys, prone to dog cancers, some or all of these can exist in a surprising percentage of purebred American Cocker Spaniels.

    Long story short, Cockers can be some of the best dogs out there. The breed was the most popular for a great set of reasons. But modern purebred Cockers are a potential land mine if you don't know the history of their parents and line.

    We chose very carefully, and ended up with great dogs, but neither lived to 10 years old before succumbing to the health problems common to the breed at this point.

    I'd own a Cocker mix in a heartbeat, and I'd take a Cocker that I knew the parents and line to be healthy and well-behaved with only minor reservations.

    You literally couldn't pay me enough to take some random Cocker pup that someone was trying to foist off on me.

    Not sure which situation you're in with your family member, but I'd sure want to meet the pup's mom at a minimum. Overall, I'd say your odds are somewhat better with a female Cocker pup, but that may just be my bias.
     
  14. Bow Commander

    Bow Commander

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,056
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Orygun
    Wow thank you for the info.

    Deanster- A little about the situation: an extended family member breeds these for a living. She said this is the last pup from the litter. She said its about 6 months old now and not "worth" as much as a young puppy (breeder talk obviously) so she is offering her to us free. A nice gesture but I understand the concerns you mention. She mainly wants to see her find a good home, than making money at this point. I know nothing of her mom or dad.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2012
  15. Peace Warrior

    Peace Warrior Am Yisrael Chai CLM

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2007
    Messages:
    30,706
    Likes Received:
    6,827
    Location:
    the narrow way
    << No clue... but good luck. :wavey:
     
  16. Deanster

    Deanster Cheese? Millennium Member CLM

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 1999
    Messages:
    7,258
    Likes Received:
    1,696
    Interestingly, at six months old, your chances of getting a good idea of what she's going to be like as a pet by just meeting the dog are pretty good. One of the problems with young pups is that they're all so darn cute, and it's awfully hard to tell what they're going to be like later.

    Hopefully she's been with people and in a household the whole time... I'd be hesitant about a dog that had been living mostly with other dogs and not socialized humans in a house for six months.

    I guess I'd vote for going to meet the dog, and seeing how she is. She should be active, but not spastic, and people-oriented, not shy or prone to cowering. You'd like her to be engaged, not distant, and tolerant of gentle (but firm, like you were checking her skin for ticks, or trying to get something out of her fur) handling of her ears, face. paws, and belly.

    If she's snappish or resistant in an angry or growly way when you handle her ears/face/paws/belly rather than just pulling away to go somewhere else, then I'd say that's a showstopper for a house with kids.

    Good luck - kids and dogs go so well together, I couldn't imagine trying to raise kids without a dog in the house. I hope this works out well for you!
     
  17. Bow Commander

    Bow Commander

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,056
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Orygun
    Thanks Deanster! I'm thinking we may go meet the puppy and see what we think. Observe her for few hours.
     
  18. LoadToadBoss

    LoadToadBoss IYAAYWOT

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2008
    Messages:
    3,498
    Likes Received:
    96
    Location:
    Northwest Louisiana
    Look up Spaniel Rage.

    Sent from my Kindle Fire using Tapatalk 2
     
  19. Golddog

    Golddog

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2003
    Messages:
    1,325
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Parkton, MD
    Deanster nailed it. They've been overbred and inbred and can be quite nasty. It's a crapshoot, especially around small children. I've had dogs for 65+ years but would never trust a cocker or most other spaniels, for that matter.
     
  20. KingWalleye

    KingWalleye

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2011
    Messages:
    477
    Likes Received:
    95
    True. They are still the #1 biters. I would be hesitant to bring one home with a 4 year old around.