Are you ready for a Cocker Spaniel?
So you have decided you would like a cocker spaniel? Without letting your heart rule your head have you considered the following:-
1.Apart from the initial purchase cost of the puppy have you considered the ongoing costs of food, grooming,(every 8 weeks approx.) vet fees (yearly boosters & unexpected vet visits) & dog insurance?
2. Are you prepared to house train your puppy and for ‘accidents’ to occur ie pooh & wee where you don’t want and not get cross/upset with the puppy for doing so? Are you ready for items to be chewed – your favourite shoes, that special book or the chair/table leg? (Not all puppies chew what they shouldn’t but many do!)
3. What will happen if you want to take a holiday or weekend away – have you family or friends who are able and happy to look after the dog in your absence or will you have to use a Kennels. Kennels can vary in both cost and facilities and we would strongly recommend that you thoroughly investigate kennels prior to entrusting them with your dog.
4. Are you prepared to make a life long commitment to a dog – the average cocker spaniel life span is 12 to 13 years with many living much longer. Are you prepared to adapt your life style to suit the needs of your dog as it gets older?
5. Will you be prepared to exercise the dog every day whatever the weather?
6. Is your home suitable for a dog – do you have a garden? If you are a keen gardener then you will be pleased to know that some cockers love to garden too! Digging holes is a favourite as well as ‘pruning’ anything that grows in your garden. Cockers will shed hair and will bring muddy wet feet & fur into your home. Window ‘nose art’ and ‘muddy paw art’ is also another cocker speciality. If you are house proud and don’t want hair on your clothes, furnishings or even in your food (!) then a cocker spaniel is not for you.
7. Will somebody be at home during the day for the dog? Cocker Spaniels are very much’people’ dogs and do not cope well with being left for extended periods alone.They want to be with you all the time to the extent that even if you move from the sofa to the kitchen they will follow you to be with you….even popping to the loo is an activity that you will find no longer able to do without your ‘cocker shadow’! If this type of close relationship is not something that you want from your dog then a cocker spaniel is not the dog or breed for you.
8. Do you have the time to train, groom and care for a dog? Due to the type of coat a cocker has it will require regular if not daily grooming to ensure the coat is kept free from debris and matts/tangles. (see section on ‘Grooming your Cocker Spaniel’)
9. Are you or any members of your family allergic to dog hair? If yes, then a cocker spaniel is not for you!
If you can answer ‘yes’ to all these questions 365 days year, then you may be ready for a cocker spaniel!