American Cocker Spaniel Dog Breed Caring and Family, Social Life, Physical Traits, Diet Information

American Cocker Spaniel Dog Breed Caring and Family, Social Life, Physical Traits, Diet Information

The American Cocker Spaniel Dog originated from Spain thus the name spaniel. It was known for its excellence in hunting woodcocks. Standing at about 14-15 inches in height and a weight between 20-30 pounds, the cocker spaniel is classified by the American Kennel Club as the smallest sporting dog. With its size, this dog can comfortably fit in a condo, apartment, or small home.

Popularly known as the Cocker spaniel, this dog comes with a compact, sturdy body and a soft facial expression that gives it an enchanting look. It also has a distinctive medium-length coat that’s moderately wavy or flat.

Although from the same ancestor of spaniels, the American Cocker Spaniel is different from the English Cocker Spaniel in that the latter is larger and taller in size. The American Cocker has a longer and more lustrous coat compared to its English counterpart. The coat color of the English Cocker Spaniel is mainly roan compared to the Cocker Spaniel’s bold colors including black, brown, red, black, tan, sable, and blue. However, both dog breeds are classified by the American Kennel Club as sporting dogs.

The American Cocker Spaniel dog breed lives for an average of between 12-14 years.

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What are the Breed Traits of American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel is a moderately sized dog with an athletic and compact body. With males standing at 15 inches in height and weighing about 28 pounds and females at 14 inches with a weight of 25 pounds on average, this dog is ideal for any home size from an apartment to a single-family house. These dogs’ size is just perfect, large enough to be sporty and sufficiently compact to be portable. With their sturdy and solid body, Cocker Spaniels have a strong and balanced gait.

Cocker Spaniels have round, graceful heads and broad square, deep muzzles with black or brown nose and full upper lips with sufficient depth to cover the jaw. They have long, lush, droopy, and feathered ears that you can’t resist petting plus big, black, slightly almond-shaped, unbulging dreamy eyes with a sweet expression. This elegant canine breed has a long muscular neck with a deep chest and a sloping back. Their teeth are very sharp with a scissor bite.

These dogs also come with a distinctive long, silky coat that’s slightly wavy or flat plus a sloppy back giving them a real majestic look. In addition, their tails are usually docked but aligned with the back or a bit higher but never straight. Overall, this dog breed boasts a sophisticated and friendly look, perfect for a house pet or a hunting dog.

The American Cocker Spaniel comes in various colors. Generally, these dogs are split into 3 color varieties including black, parti-color, and any other solid color other than black (ASCOB). The ASCOB varieties range from light cream to dark red and include brown and brown with shades of tan while the parti-color varieties have huge parts covered in the white plus other colors, usually black and white, red and white, or brown and white. The black variety on the other hand consists of black or black with tan.

Cocker Spaniels are gentle, affectionate, easy-going, and make excellent family companions. They are generally unaggressive towards other people or animals which makes them unsuitable as watchdogs. These dogs are a merry breed that is keen on pleasing their owners. They are highly sociable and love being around people and other pets. They are also great with children, elderly people, and other pets.

The American cocker spaniel is a highly intelligent and smart dog breed that’s easy to train. Training these dogs is very enjoyable as they are willing to learn and respond very well to obedience training and positive reinforcement. Cocker Spaniels are also very playful and do well with a fairly active family that can give them enough exercise.

The table below summarizes the breed traits of the American Cocker Spaniel:

American Cocker Spaniel Features

Breed information


20-30 pounds


14-15 inches

Relation with family

Friendly, loyal, and loving

Relation with children

Friendly with children

Relation with other dogs

Friendly with other dogs

Shedding level


Drooling level


Coat type

Silky, slightly wavy or flat coat

Coat length


Coat grooming frequency

Regularly, up to thrice a week

Relation with strangers


Playfulness level

Highly playful 

Adaptability level

Highly adaptable, capable of coping well with change

Openness to strangers

Friendly and very welcoming to strangers


Easy to train

Barking level


Mental stimulation needs level

High, requires lots of mental and physical stimulation


12-16 years

What are the Breed Standards of American Cocker Spaniel?

The breed standards of the American Cocker Spaniel are listed below.

  • Color of Cocker Spaniel: Black, Parti-coloured, or any other solid color other than black (ASCOB, including brown, red, cream, and tan)
  • Size: With their compact but sturdy and solid bodies, Cocker Spaniels are categorized as a medium-sized dog breed. 
  • The eye color: The cocker Spaniels have huge black adorable eyes.
  • Average weight: Female Cocker Spaniels weigh about 20-25 lbs while the males are 25-30 lbs in weight.
  • Average height: A female Cocker Spaniel stands at 14 inches in height and 15 inches for their male counterparts
  • Average lifespan: Cocker Spaniels live for between 12-16 Years on average.

What is the General Information about American Cocker Spaniel?

The Cocker Spaniel, popularly known as the American Cocker Spaniel is a descendant of the English Cocker Spaniel. This dog breed originates from Spain and has been in existence since 1800. These dogs were initially bred as sporting and hunting dogs. It derives its name from its efficiency in hunting down a specific species of birds, the woodcocks. Although they are still considered gun dogs, today’s Cocker spaniels make excellent family companions and can be used for various therapy and service roles.

The American Cocker Spaniel is a compact but sturdy dog. It has a round, poised head and a large square muzzle. The most outstanding feature of cocker spaniels is their medium-length, silky coat that’s either moderately wavy or flat. These dogs have big black eyes and sweet expressions plus long lush ears which make them adorable sights to behold.

Cocker Spaniels are affectionate, loving, and extremely loyal to their families. They are highly social and love spending time with people. They take no time to gel up with people and form strong bonds with family. These dogs make excellent companions for children and elderly people.

The American Cocker Spaniel is a very sensitive dog that does not respond well to harsh treatment. Generally, Cocker Spaniels are people-oriented and don’t do well in isolation, and may bark excessively or turn to destructive behaviors such as chewing or digging when left alone. 

Although they can be found all over the world, Cocker Spaniels are most common in the U.S and U.K.

What are the Living Conditions of an American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel breed is suited to live in yards or gardens rather than apartments. This is because it’s highly playful and requires enough playing area. Besides, a yard or garden will provide the required space for the dogs’ exercises. However, due to their size, Cocker Spaniels can also live comfortably in apartments as long as they are given enough exercises such as brisk walking to keep them active.

American Cocker Spaniel can adapt well to any climate and stand cold or hot temperatures, humidity, or dryness. Their long double coat helps protect them against cold climates. They are also able to regulate their body temperatures and can cope well in temperate environments provided there is a structure to protect them from direct heat. However, it is best to take them for walks in the morning or evening to avoid the risk of getting heatstroke

What is the Type of American Cocker Spaniel?

American Cocker Spaniel is one of the most popular purebred dogs recognized by the American Kennel Club (ACK). This dog breed was bred as a working dog specifically as a hunting or gun dog. They are a descendant of the English Cocker Spaniel. These dogs draw their name from their efficiency in fetching out woodcock birds.

What are the Differences Between the American Cocker Spaniel Sexes?

The most significant difference between the male and female American Cocker Spaniel is the size. A female American Cocker stands at 13.5-14.5 inches in height while the male Cocker Spaniel is at 14.5-15.5 inches.

A male Cocker Spaniel weighs 25-30 pounds compared to the female’s Cocker Spaniel weight of 20-25 pounds. Other than these size differences, no other significant differences between the two sexes have been recorded.

How Does an American Cocker Spaniel Interact with Family?

The American Cocker Spaniel is very loving, affectionate, and extremely loyal to its family. It loves spending time with its family and takes short time to form strong bonds with them. They fancy taking part in family activities and accompanying members on walks.

This dog breed constantly aims to please its family. They are close and friendly to everyone in the family and form strong attachments to all members of the family. Cocker Spaniels are gentle and like to be around their families as much as possible. Additionally, these dogs love cuddling and expect their families to reciprocate the love.

How Does an American Cocker Spaniel Interact with Other Dogs?

American Cocker Spaniel interacts with other dogs by barking and howling as a means of communication. Generally, these dogs are extremely friendly and tolerate other dogs well. They are very playful and get along well with other dogs. They don’t mind sharing their food with other canines.

This friendliness with other dogs makes them suitable for families with more than one dog or those aspiring to have multiple dogs. Although these dogs form very strong bonds, they are not jealous of other dogs being close to their human family or owners. 

Cocker Spaniels relate well with all dogs regardless of their breed. However, dogs of the same size such as the English Spaniels, Springer Spaniels, and French Spaniels make the best playmates for these dogs.

How is an American Cocker Spaniel with Elder People?

The Cocker Spaniels are gentle dogs and make great companions to elderly people. Due to their high intelligence level, playfulness, and generally pleasant personalities, these dogs can relate well with old people.

In addition, they have moderate exercise requirements making them perfect for seniors. Cocker Spaniels are also people-oriented and love spending time with humans. As such, being with the elderly will offer them good company and keep them from becoming bored and destructive.

Although these dogs are not high-energy dogs, they are quite playful which may overwhelm very fragile senior people.  But, as long as the seniors are able to keep up with their daily walks, Cocker Spaniels make awesome companions.

How is an American Cocker Spaniel with Children?

Cocker Spaniels are gentle, extremely loving, and hence great with children. They are fun-loving and playful making them wonderful companions for children.

This dog breed’s pleasantness and friendliness make it an excellent choice for households with children. Interacting with children offers more playtime and companionship which Cocker Spaniels crave for. However, due to their love for boisterous play, very young children should never be left unsupervised with these dogs. Additionally, these dogs are highly sensitive and caution should be exercised while leaving them alone with children. Cocker Spaniels should also be socialized as early as possible.

How is an American Cocker Spaniel with Neighbors or Guests?

The American Cocker Spaniels are extremely friendly and easily form bonds with all people, neighbors and guests included. As such, they interact well with neighbors and guests and can even play with them. If the guests or neighbors are very close to an American Cocker Spaniel’s family, these dogs may even treat them as such and offer them similar affection.

Although their friendliness is what makes excellent family pets, this attribute also means that they are unsuitable as watchdogs. However, if the guest or neighbor is unfamiliar, these dogs may bark loudly but never attack. 

How Does an American Cocker Spaniel Interact with Strangers?

American Cocker Spaniels interact with strangers by barking at them. These dogs will bark to alert their owners of approaching strangers. However, Cocker Spaniels are very friendly, never aggressive, and are unlikely to attack strangers to protect their families. As such, they don’t make good watchdogs. They make use of barking as a defense mechanism and informing their families of potential danger or threats.

How to Feed an American Cocker Spaniel?

Feeding an American Cocker Spaniel is not straightforward. Each dog is unique and what’s best for one Cocker Spaniel may not be the best for another.

Additionally, the quantity of food that a Cocker Spaniel should take is dictated by various factors which include the age, health condition, size, weight, and activity level of the dog. It is, therefore, crucial to fully understand the nutritional and dietary needs of a Cocker Spaniel while feeding it.

Just like any other dog breed, An American Cocker Spaniel requires a high-quality, properly-balanced diet with the right amount of calories and proteins for optimal growth. The food should also contain all the necessary nutrients including fats, vitamins, carbohydrates, minerals, and vegetables.

It’s also important to ensure that a Cocker Spaniel’s diet contains the recommended protein quantity of at least 22%. This is essential in ensuring healthy muscle growth and maintenance. These dogs love eating and thus controlled and proper portioning is necessary to prevent the risk of the dogs becoming overweight. The food should be divided into two or three meals for adult Cocker Spaniels.

Being a medium-sized dog breed, Cocker Spaniels need between 600-1180 calories per day depending on their activity level. The more active an American Cocker Spaniel is, the more food it should be given. Since these dogs are prone to weight gain, it’s essential to ensure that you adjust their daily calorie intake according to their activity level to help them maintain a healthy weight.

What are the Nutritional Needs of an American Cocker Spaniel?

In terms of calories, minerals like calcium, and protein, carbohydrates, and vitamins should be given.

The American Cocker Spaniel is a medium-level energy dog and requires appropriate fully-balanced nutrition to cater to this need. These dogs’ have a daily calorie need of between 600-1180 calories.

It is hence important to ensure that you feed an age-appropriate diet to these dogs for optimal health.

The diet for an American Cocker Spaniel should contain the following nutrients:

  • Proteins: This should make the bulk of a Cocker Spaniels diet. Besides helping these dogs build and maintain strong muscles, proteins are also essential for keeping them healthy and fit. They are rich in essential amino acids that aid in the development and maintenance of muscles, cells, cartilages, and tissues. They are also great sources of energy for these dogs.
  • Carbohydrates and fiber: A good Cocker Spaniel diet should contain sufficient amounts of carbohydrates necessary for supplying boundless energy that these dogs need to remain active. Carbohydrates also encourage the dogs’ bodies to absorb protein, allowing them to create lean muscles. Fiber is necessary for promoting healthy digestion in Cocker Spaniels.
  • Fats: These are important components of a Cocker Spaniel’s diet. Fats are essential for aiding in the protection of the dogs’ internal organs, as well as the maintenance of healthy skin, lustrous coat, and enhanced vision. Fats also maintain strong bones and joints thus preventing arthritis in Cocker Spaniels. However, fats should be included in moderation since Cockers are prone to obesity and excessive intake of carbohydrates may lead to unhealthy weight gain. Essential oils and fats can be obtained from sources such as meat, fish, and vegetables.
  • Minerals: To maintain their health, the diet of an American Cocker Spaniel must contain a variety of vital minerals. Minerals such as potassium and calcium can substantially aid in developing strong bones in Cocker Spaniels. Others like manganese, phosphorus, zinc, and selenium help to improve the health of numerous body organs. Iron is essential for the development of red blood cells which transport oxygen throughout the dogs’ body.
  • DHA: This is an omega-3 fatty acid that plays a crucial role in the body. It’s important for Cocker Spaniel’s eye and brain health, as well as older dogs’ cognitive performance. Omega fatty acids are also powerful anti-inflammatories that help relieve pain and symptoms of arthritis.
  • Micronutrients: Micronutrients such as taurine, chondroitin, and glucosamine can help Cocker Spaniels improve their heart health and aid in joint health which is quite helpful especially for senior dogs.

How Many Cups of Food Should an American Cocker Spaniel Eat Daily?

An adult Cocker Spaniel consumes about 1.5-2.5 cups of dry food daily. This should be spread into two or 3 meals per day to avoid stomach upset. However, how much an American Cocker Spaniel should consume is dependent on various factors such as the age, weight, metabolism, and activity level of your dog. 

Each dog is unique and has unique nutritional needs. As such, all dogs don’t need an equal amount of food. Generally, the more active a dog is, the more food it will need to consume and vice versa.

Highly active Cocker Spaniels have a daily calorie requirement of 1180 calories while moderately- active dogs need up to 740 calories and potato couches need about 600 calories. As such, their food intake increases with an increase in activity level.

The age of a Cocker Spaniel also plays an important role in determining how much food they should consume. Puppies require a lot more food to fuel their growth compared to adult or senior dogs.

The brand and quality of the food also play an important role. The higher the quality of the food, the less the quantity that’s needed to nourish your dog.

What is the Daily Cost of Food Consumption of an American Cocker Spaniel?

The total daily food cost for an American Cocker Spaniel depends on factors such as age, size, activity level, type, and brand of food, health condition, and any need for a specialized diet.

Depending on the quality of food and the ingredients used, food costs vary widely from one brand to another. However, in general, the average daily food consumption cost for this dog breed can be between $10-$15 per day.

This could go higher in case the American Cocker Spaniel is fed on a special diet or has special dietary needs that need to be met in their food. 

How Much Should an American Cocker Spaniel Puppy Eat?

An American Cocker Spaniel puppy requires more food than an adult cocker spaniel. This is because they are highly active and require more calories to keep them moving and help them grow.

The table below shows the amount of food that an American Cocker Spaniel puppy should eat:

American Cocker Spaniel puppy feeding guide

Puppy’s weight

Age (6-12 weeks)

Age (3-4 months)

3-5 lbs

1-1 ⅓ cups

¾ – 1 cup

5-10 lbs

1 ⅓ – 2 ½ cups

1-2 cups

10-20 lbs

2 ½ -4 cups

2- 3 ½ cups

20-30 lbs

4- 5 ¾ cups

3 ⅓ – 4 ½ cups 

What are the Breed-Related Health Problems of American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel is considered a generally healthy breed. However, just like any other dog breed, these dogs are prone to some diseases and health problems.These include:

  • Eye Disorders: Cocker spaniels are prone to several eye problems. These include 

Glaucoma is a condition whereby pressure builds within the eye usually as a result of faulty drainage of flood in the iris. This is commonly seen from four years of age in Cocker Spaniels. 

Progressive Retinal Atrophy: This is the degeneration of adult dogs’ eye nerve cells leading to mild to severe blindness.

Cataracts: A condition in which a cloudy film forms over the eyes.

  • Haemolytic Anemia: The American Cocker Spaniel is prone to this autoimmune condition in which the dog’s immune system targets and attacks its own oxygen-carrying red blood cells. This is symptomized by fatigue, pale gums, swollen abdomen, and at times, jaundice. This condition is prevalent in young female Cocker Spaniels.
  • Allergies: Just like other Spaniels and most other dog breeds, American Cocker Spaniels are prone to allergies. These could be food, contact, or environmental allergies. Allergies in dogs manifest through skin diseases. Recurrent ear infections with irritation spreading to other body parts are usually the first symptom of allergies. A combination of treatments and topical therapies can help manage most allergy cases.
  • Hypothyroidism: This is a malfunction of the thyroid gland that’s linked to conditions such as obesity, lethargy, epilepsy, hair loss, dark skin patches, and other skin ailments. This condition is treatable with proper medication and diet.
  • Idiopathic epilepsy: The American Cocker Spaniel is particularly prone to inherited epilepsy which can result in seizures. However, seizures can also result from other factors such as severe brain injury, metabolic malfunctioning, poison exposure, tumors, brain infections, etc. It’s important to have your cocker Spaniel checked by a vet if it’s experiencing seizures.
  • Otitis Externa: Due to their heavy, pendulous ear flaps that restrict aeration of the ear canals creating a warm, humid environment conducive for germs and yeast to thrive, Cocker Spaniels face the risk of developing Otitis Externa. Regular cleaning of these dogs’ ears can help in the early detection and prevention of this condition.
  • Patellar Luxation: This is a condition in which the knee joints, usually in the back legs, move in and out of place, resulting in debilitating pain. This usually involves the dislocation of knee caps.
  • Hip dysplasia: This is a condition in which the hip sockets of a dog abnormally form causing intense pain and lameness. Dogs suffering from conditions should not be bred.

What are the Health Tests that an American Cocker Spaniel Should Take?

As earlier indicated, the American Cocker Spaniels are prone to some diseases and issues as a result of their genetic disposition or their structure. It’s, therefore, crucial for them to undergo several health tests. This can help in the early detection and prevention of the problems before they escalate to serious levels.

Some of the tests that are necessary for Cocker Spaniels include:

  • Thyroid test: Since American Cocker Spaniels are prone to hypothyroidism, it is important to have regular tests done in order to deal with any thyroid gland disorders in good time.
  • Skin disorders: Cocker Spaniels are prone to various skin conditions such as primary seborrhea and vitamin-A responsive dermatosis,  which makes it essential to undergo skin tests for timely detection and proper handling. Symptoms of skin problems that warrant testing include itchy and dull skin, flaky skin, constant scratching, red patches, and foul odor among others.  Skin tests will also help identify any allergic reactions.
  • Eye test: Eye disorders including cataracts, glaucoma, progressive retinal atrophy, and other eye abnormalities such as redness and itching are prevalent in Cocker Spaniels. It’s, therefore, crucial to take them for ophthalmological examination to avoid blindness.
  • Ear examination: Although their ears add to their beauty, they are also a perfect breeding place for parasites, germs, and bacteria. This makes the American Cocker Spaniel prone to ear infections. Ear examination is critical in the identification of any ear infections.
  • Hip and knee screening: Hip dysplasia and patellar luxation are some of the hip and knee problems that American Cocker Spaniels face. It’s hence necessary to carry out x-rays to identify these issues which may have crippling effects if not well handled.

Is the American Cocker Spaniel Hypoallergenic?

Hypoallergenic dogs are defined as those that don’t shed or those with very little shedding. The American Cocker Spaniel is not among the dog breeds that are considered to be hypoallergenic. This is because they have a double coat with a moderate shedding level. All dogs with double coats tend to shed a lot more than those with a single coat. However, there is no dog breed that’s 100% hypoallergenic.

Some people are allergic to allergens produced by dogs. As such, an allergic person’s immune system may react to allergens found in an American Cocker Spaniel’s fur, mucus, saliva, and other body fluids. So if you are allergic to dogs’ allergens, these cute dogs may not be for you.

What is the Exercise Need of an American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel has medium exercise needs. With their size and medium energy levels, Cocker Spaniels require moderate exercise. Usually, at least 30 minutes of brisk lead walking are enough to keep these dogs active. However, they can cope with more than this and love accompanying their owners for long walks and jogs. 

Vets recommend up to 1-hour of exercise per day for adult American Cocker Spaniels.  Cocker Spaniel puppies should be gently exercised in the first six months after which longer and more exciting walks can be added to their daily routine. These dogs should cover up to 2 miles per day in walks.

What is the Activity Level of the American Cocker Spaniel?

American Cocker Spaniel has a medium activity level. Being a sporty breed, these dogs are highly playful and require enough exercises to keep them fit and trim. Their medium size is advantageous as they do not require vigorous exercise. These dogs’ moderate activity level makes obedience training easier.

What is the Shedding Level of American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniels have a double coat with long silky hair on top and a soft undercoat beneath. These dogs are moderate shedders. However, they are expected to have higher shedding levels during the shedding season in spring and fall. Daily brushing during this period will help keep loose hairs at bay.

Shedding is a natural process and all dogs regardless of their breed have some level of shedding. This helps them dispose of old and damaged hair. Generally, double-coated dogs shed more than those with a single coat. However, excessive shedding may be an indication of an underlying health problem.  

What is the Coat Grooming Frequency of American Cocker Spaniel?

Grooming an American Cocker Spaniel’s coat is a time and labor-intensive affair. These dogs have long, dense, and thick double coats that are either wavy or flat. Although this type of coat helps keep the dog warm especially in winter, it makes grooming very intensive. Being a long-haired breed, regular coat grooming is necessary. As such, daily brushing of the coat is required to prevent matting.

Besides keeping the coat clean and shiny and preventing mats, daily coat brushing will help your dog form positive associations while being groomed. Additionally, the American Cocker Spaniel’s coat needs to be trimmed and bathed every 6-8 weeks.

Employing the services of a professional groomer every 6-8 weeks can make grooming easier although this can be quite pricey. You can also opt for a short coat by going for a cut. It is easier to groom and maintain a shorter coat.

What is the Drooling Level of American Cocker Spaniel?

Drooling is natural and some level is expected in all dogs regardless of their breed. The American Cocker Spaniel has a very low drooling level. Just like other dogs, the smell of food or the sight of their owner handling food can prompt drooling in Cocker Spaniels. It is therefore important to keep a dry cloth or towel in hand to wipe your dog’s saliva when it drools.

Drooling is undesirable to dog owners as it may make a dog smelly and makes the environment unhygienic.

Excessive drooling in American Cocker Spaniels may indicate an underlying health problem such as gum or dental disorders, anxiety, or digestive upset. It is best to seek medical attention in such cases.

The following are the most common reasons for drooling in American Cocker Spaniels:

  • Anxiety: American cocker Spaniels are highly sensitive dogs and any strange noises can prompt drooling in them.
  • Sexual feelings: A male Cocker Spaniel may get excited about seeing a female Cocker Spaniel which may lead to drooling. A female Cocker will also drool when it’s on heat and spots a male one.
  • Excitement: A feeling of excitement resulting from an American Cocker Spaniel sensing they are about to go for a trip can trigger some level of drooling in these dogs.
  • Feeding-related: The mere sight or aroma of food being handled can arouse drooling in American Cocker Spaniels.
  • Sexual: Seeing a female Cocker Spaniel gets a male dog drooling. A female Cocker on heat can in a similar way drool on seeing a male dog.

What is the Coat Type of American Cocker Spaniel?

An American Cocker Spaniel has a thick, dense, double coat that’s well suited for both outdoor and indoor living. The coat comes with long silky hair on top and a soft undercoat beneath. These dogs’ coats come in a variety of colors including brown, black, red, white, and tarn. The dense coat is useful in helping the Cocker Spaniels warm in cold environments. 

Although it prefers to stay indoors, the American Cocker Spaniel’s coat allows it to tolerate temperate outdoors well.

What is the Coat Length of the American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel has a long coat that’s well adapted for changing climates. These dogs are thus capable of adapting to different environments without many problems. However, the length of the coat makes grooming challenging. The longer the coat, the harder it is to maintain. The long coat is also prone to tangling and matting.

To make it easier to groom and maintain, the American Cocker Spaniel’s coat should be trimmed every 6-8 weeks.

What is the Coat Density of an American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel has a medium-dense coat. This helps offer just moderate insulation against cold environments.

What is the Coat Texture of American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel has a straight or slightly wavy coat. The outer coat is long and silky.

What is the Possible Coat Color of American Cocker Spaniel?

American Cocker Spaniels can be found in a variety of colors. These dogs are classified into 3 classes depending on the coat color. These include black, parti-color which has large areas with white, and other solid colors other than black (ASCOB). The possible coat colors for this dog breed include black, brown, red, cream, sable, brindle, silver, white, and blue.

What is the Brushing Frequency of American Cocker Spaniel?

The brushing frequency of the American Cocker Spaniel should be daily. This is due to the dog’s long coat that requires regular grooming. Daily brushing is necessary for preventing tangling and matting. Additionally, the medium density of the coat makes frequent brushing a must. American Cocker Spaniels have a flat or slightly wavy coat that needs frequent brushing to keep it in proper shape.

Does an American Cocker Spaniel Have One of the Most Beautiful Coat?

American Cocker Spaniels have one of the most beautiful coats in existence. In fact, its coat is the most distinctive feature that makes this dog breed a favorite for many dog owners. The American Cocker Spaniel has a long silky topcoat that sometimes reaches the floor and flows as it moves. The thick and slightly wavy coat is short on the head and back and long and long on the chest, ears, belly, and legs.

What are the Social Traits of the American Cocker Spaniel Breed?

The American Cocker Spaniel is a loving, passionate, and affectionate dog breed. These cuddly dogs are extremely trustworthy and quickly establish very strong bonds with their family and the people they come across.

These dogs are highly social and love spending time with their families. They like staying close to their family. They are also very playful and friendly which makes them a good family pet especially for families with children. These dogs prefer staying indoors around people and don’t do well alone.

Their smartness, intelligence, and extreme loyalty make these dogs make perfect family dogs

The following are the other social traits of American Cocker Spaniels:

  • Family-friendly: Cocker spaniels are loving, passionate, loyal, and very trustworthy of their families which makes them ideal family dogs.
  • Children-friendly: American Cocker Spaniels are highly playful and loving making them excellent companions for children. They are also gentle hence children are safe with them.
  • Stranger-friendly: Cocker Spaniels tend to trust easily. They are also very friendly and interact well with strangers. These dogs build relationships with people very fast. However,  they are keen on complete strangers and may bark loudly to alert their owners to the presence of strangers.
  • Senior-friendly: Due to their gentle and pleasant nature, American Cocker Spaniels make terrific companions for the elderly. Additionally, spending time with the senior folks can help alleviate boredom as they offer the human interaction that these dogs require.
  • Other dogs friendly: American Cocker Spaniels are friendly to other dogs and pets making them suitable for homes with more than a single dog or numerous pets

Is an American Cocker Spaniel Playful?

Yes, American Cocker Spaniels are highly playful. These dogs have moderate energy levels and playtime offers them a way to expend that extra energy. Additionally, these dogs tend to easily get bored resulting in destructive behavior such as chewing, barking, or digging. Playing can help keep these dogs occupied and prevent boredom from setting in.

The playful nature of the American Cocker Spaniel makes it an excellent companion for children.

Is American Cocker Spaniel Protective?

The American Cocker Spaniel is generally a gentle dog breed that is not known for being overprotective. However, it is capable of protecting its environment and barks loudly on spotting the intrusion of strangers and other dogs. These dogs only react by barking to alert their owners of intruders.

Due to this character trait and they’re easy to trust, these dogs don’t make good watchdogs or guard dogs.

What is the Adaptability Level of the American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniels have high adaptability levels. Due to their size, these dogs can suit comfortably in a condo with a yard or even in an apartment. The nature of their coat enables them to cope well in outdoor and indoor environments. An American Cocker Spaniel can adapt well to changes in the environment without much trouble.

They are capable of coping with changes including shifting to new areas or moving from the urban to a rural setting as long as they can feel the love and affection of their family.

What are the Personality Traits of American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel is affectionate, gentle, easy-going, and lively with a sweet temperament. This dog breed is affectionate and cuddly and loves being involved in family activities. They are extremely intelligent, loyal, adaptable, and can live happily in all types of households.

These dogs are known to be friendly to children and unaggressive to strangers and other dogs. They are alert, energetic, playful, and active plus they are able to enjoy various forms of exercise such as brisk walking and jogging. They are a highly sociable breed that builds strong bonds and love being around people and other dogs. They are also eager to please hence easily trainable.

However, this dog breed is extremely sensitive with a soft personality and does not respond well to harsh treatment and training methods.

Can American Cocker Spaniels be Aggressive?

Generally, American Cocker Spaniels are known to be non-aggressive to people and other dogs. They are rather playful, affectionate, and very friendly even to strangers. However, certain factors and conditions may prompt these dogs to behave aggressively. Things like fear, boredom, anxiety and lack of proper socialization may make the dogs a bit aggressive.

Usually, these dogs react by barking or howling loudly when they sense any threat. It’s due to their lack of aggressiveness that the American Cocker Spaniels don’t make good watchdogs.

Can American Cocker Spaniels be Dangerous?

No, the American Cocker Spaniels are not dangerous and are highly unlikely to attack. However, just like any other dog, they may turn dangerous and hurt a person when rattled or mishandled. 

Do American Cocker Spaniels Ever Attack?

No, American Cocker Spaniels are a gentle breed that rarely attacks. Well-bred, properly trained and early socialized Cocker Spaniels are unlikely to attack. These dogs are generally very friendly and affectionate and react to potential threats by barking loudly.

However, it’s not safe to assume that all dogs of the American Cocker Spaniel breed will behave in the same gentle way. On the contrary, their behavior will be dictated by how it was brought up. Unless really provoked, these dogs will hardly show any aggression.

It’s hence important to ensure that an American Cocker Spaniel is properly trained and socialized to avoid posing danger to other people and dogs.

Can American Cocker Spaniels Kill Humans?

No, American Cocker Spaniels cannot kill humans. This is because they are gentle, sociable, and friendly. They hardly show aggression or attack. 

Do American Cocker Spaniels cope with being left alone?

No, American Cocker Spaniels do not do well. These dogs are highly social and love being around and spending time with people. They are passionate dogs who tend to be clingy and constantly need attention.

As such they are prone to separation anxiety and require human companionship to stay happy and content. 

How Long can the American Cocker Spaniels be Home Alone?

American Cocker Spaniels don’t handle being alone well. As such, they can only be left alone for a few hours per time, usually, not more than four hours which may also be too much for them to handle.

When left alone for long hours, these dogs are prone to worry, panic, and separation anxiety. This may cause them to engage in destructive behaviors such as excessive barking or chewing.

It’s therefore advisable to never leave them alone but have someone to keep them company while you are away.

How Frequently does an American Cocker Spaniel Bark?

American Cocker Spaniels bark a lot. Any slight provocation including any new sight or sound will prompt these dogs to bark loudly. Just like other dogs, American Cocker spaniels use barking as a means of communication.

As such, they bark to express their feelings such as hunger, anxiety, fear, excitement, loneliness, or boredom. They also bark when they need their owners’ attention or to alert them of intruders or potential threats. Being smart dogs, they will bark loudly when they sense danger of any sort.

Besides barking, American Cocker Spaniels use different vocalizations to communicate. These include growls, howls, pining, or whining.

It’s therefore important to proactively deal with this behavior to ensure that it doesn’t spiral out of control. This can be done through effective training to discourage the behavior.

You can start by command training them whereby you teach them to bark and cease on command. Start by ignoring your dog’s barking and only attend when it’s no longer barking. Let it bark again and command it to stop. Encourage good behavior by giving treats.

However, to effectively address barking in American Cocker Spaniels, it’s important to find out the reason for the barking. Find out what’s making your dog bark and sort it out.

What is the need for Mental Stimulation of an American Cocker Spaniel?.

American Cocker Spaniels are smart, energetic, and inquisitive dogs. As such, they need high levels of mental stimulation to keep them occupied and away from mischief. This will help prevent them from resorting to undesirable and destructive behavior such as whining, chewing, barking, or digging.

Besides keeping dogs active, mental stimulation is important in supporting the optimal functioning of Cocker Spaniels. It can also help promote the mental health and overall wellness of these dogs.

Mental stimulation can be externally utilizing the environment or internal in the form of thought. This helps enrich Cocker Spaniel’s lives by offering them something useful to do.

Interactive games such as fetch, interactive or puzzle toys, as well as fun walks with plenty of scents to explore are some great ways of providing mental stimulation for American Cocker Spaniels. These dogs also love free-roaming but ensure they are in a fenced or secured yard for their security.

How to Train an American Cocker Spaniel?

Being a working breed and given their sporting orientation, American Cocker Spaniels are super intelligent and eager to please. This makes training these dogs easy. They are quick learners and respond well to positive reinforcement methods. However, these dogs are very active and get easily over-excited and distracted. Hence training sessions should be short and fun.

It’s important to remember that this dog breed is highly sensitive and does not do well with harsh training methods as they make them fearful. Hence you should use gentle, consistent methods to get the best results. Training should also end on a positive note.

Basic training should start early with proper socialization from puppyhood. Obedience and command training should also commence early enough to bring out the best of these dogs. An American Cocker Spaniel can begin training as early as two months of age.

Start with simple gesture-oriented clues before advancing to more complicated word-driven orders. It will take an American Cocker Spaniel up to six months to fully grasp basic commands and an additional 2-4 months to learn and respond to advanced commands.

Training of American Cocker Spaniel dogs is important as it will help prevent undesirable behaviors such as aggressiveness. It also helps the dogs to fit well and coexist comfortably within the human culture and lifestyle. Training also helps ensure the safety of the dog, its owners, other people, and pets.

Where to Buy or Adopt American Cocker Spaniels?

It’s important to exercise caution and select a reputable breeder when trying to buy or adopt an American Cocker Spaniel. This ensures that you get a healthy dog with the desired traits and without future health issues.

Avoid buying from the backyard breeders, pet stores, or puppy mills but rather go for reputable breeders who test their dogs for genetic health issues and desirable temperaments.

Although the cost of owning an American Cocker Spaniel puppy varies from breeder to breeder, the average cost is between $800-$1500.  However, it will cost you significantly a lower amount if you adopt from a rescue organization.

Some of the reliable American Cocker Spaniel breeders that you can purchase from include:

  • Lindy Bennet, Toybox Cockers-Florida
  • Michelle Juliussen, Timeless Cockers-California
  • Heather DiFrancesco, Stand Alone Cockers-Arizona

What are the Rescue Clubs for American Cocker Spaniels?

Rescue clubs are institutions that help needy American Cocker Spaniels find new homes. There are many rescue clubs listed by the American Cocker Spaniel Club for the American Cocker Spaniels. These include:

  • Cast off Cockers -Arizona
  • Camp Cocker Rescue- Northern California
  • DFW Cocker Spaniel Rescue
  • Cocker Spaniel Adoption Center Inc.- Maryland

Which Dog Breed Organizations Recognize American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniel is recognized by two organizations, namely:

  • The American Kennel Club (ACK)- Sporting dog
  • The United Kennel Club ( UCK)- Gun dog
Are American Cocker Spaniels first recognized breeds by the American Kennel Club (AKC)?

The American Cocker Spaniel was among the first breeds to be recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1878. They were registered as a different breed from the English Cocker Spaniels owing to significant differences in their sizes. After the recognition, its popularity especially in the U.S soared through the years.

What is the American Cocker Spaniel History?

The American Cocker Spaniels is a member of the spaniel family that originated from Spain, from which it draws its name. Spaniel means Spanish dog.  Spaniels were divided into two separate groups in the 1800s; companion dogs (toy dogs) and hunting dogs( huge). The Cocker Spaniels are a descendent of the English Cocker Spaniels. The two breeds were considered similar until 1984 when they were registered as different breeds. The American Spaniels were originally bred as a sporting and hunting breed. However, they do best as companion dogs today.

Where Does the Name of American Cocker Spaniel Come From 

The name of the American Cocker Spaniel comes from the dog’s efficiency in hunting down a specific bird species called the woodcocks.

How to name American Cocker Spaniels

Naming a Cocker Spaniel is not as simple as many first-time owners assume. The dogs’ response is determined more by the tone and the manner in which it’s called other than the name itself.

Below is the basis for naming the Cocker Spaniels along with the necessary syllables and the tone:

  • When calling or soothing Cocker Spaniels, high-pitched, energetic, and joyous sounds are preferable whereas quiet sounds are suitable if they are scared or nervous.
  • Cocker Spaniels respond better to two-syllable names because they are less likely to be confused with one-syllable terms like sitting and come. They are also short enough to be perplexing.
  • A cocker Spaniel is likely to respond better to a name that is called in a sing-songy manner
  • One syllable names should be called out in a stretched manner that makes them sound like double-syllable names

Some popular names for female American Cocker Spaniels include:

  • Annie
  • Lexie
  • Phoebe
  • Cassie
  • Bella

The following are popular names for male American Cocker Spaniels:

  • Leo
  • Dexter
  • Archie
  • Murphy
  • Chester

What are the Other Names of American Cocker Spaniel?

The American Cocker Spaniels are also referred to as the Cocker Spaniels or the Cockers. Their scientific name is Canis Lupus.

What is the Average Maintenance for American Cocker Spaniel?

A variety of factors must be considered when evaluating the cost of owning an American Cocker Spaniel. These factors include the purchase cost of the dog, veterinary care costs, insurance, grooming costs, food costs, training, supplies, and other relevant costs. However, there are averages you can work with.

The first year will likely be the most costly with an average of between $1000-$1500. Then the budget will go down to about $500-$1000 in the subsequent years.

The three main costs per month for owning an American Cocker Spaniel are;

Food costs ranging between $ 30-$100

Vet bills of between $15-$30 inclusive of vaccination costs and general vet expenses between $45-$85 inclusive of a once-off neutering or spaying cost of $50-$400

Training costs averaging $240-$600 

Food costs for an American Cocker Spaniel

The food costs for an American Cocker Spaniel are dependent on factors such as the type and breed of food, the age of the dog, the health condition, the size, and special dietary requirements. However, in general, the food costs range between $10-$15 per month on average.

What are the Different Types of American Cocker Spaniels?

There is only a single type of the American Cocker Spaniels.

What are the Similar Dog Breeds for American Cocker Spaniel?

The following dog breeds share some similarities with the Cocker Spaniels:

  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel: It is similar to the American Cocker Spaniel because it’s highly social, affectionate, eager to please, and easy to train. Additionally, the dog is extremely friendly making it a great companion for children and senior people.
  • English Cocker spaniel: Besides being from the Spaniel family, both the English and American Cocker spaniels are similar in that they are both very intelligent and playful gun dogs. They were also both bred as hunting dogs. more about English Cocker Spaniel social life care & diet information.
  • Springer Spaniel: In addition to both dogs being sporting breeds, they are similar in that their coats resemble each other in terms of appearance and colors. The dogs’ lifespans also match. They both also enjoy human company and are prone to separation anxiety.
  • Boykin Spaniel: This dog breed is similar to the Cocker Spaniel in that they are both classified as gun dogs, they originate from the United States, have almost the same weight, and are both considered medium-breed dogs.more about Boykin Spaniel social life care & diet information.
  • Clumber Spaniel: This dog breed is similar to the Cocker Spaniels in terms of their sociability, playfulness, and ease of training. They were also recognized as a sporting breed by the ACK in 1878.
  • French Spaniel: Both the French Spaniel and the American Cocker Spaniel are medium-sized dogs, have moderate shedding levels, and have similar temperaments.

Sarah Brady

Sarah Brady is an animal lover and the proud dog-mom of a Golden Retriever named Brody and an Italian Greyhound named Jessup. Unfortunately, Jessup developed serious allergies to many different types of dog foods and ingredients when she was just a puppy. Meanwhile, Brody could eat seemingly anything and carry on as healthy as could be. Sarah spent hours of time researching and testing different foods and brands before finding something that worked for little Jessup. She wants Dog Food Care to simplify this experience for future dog-parents who face food allergy or tolerance issues of their own.