How To Take Care Of A Cocker Spaniel Puppy!
How to Care for a Cocker Spaniel
Cocker spaniels are great dogs. They are usually very smart and happy. However, they can sometimes cause problems for a new dog owner, even if you are experienced with dogs. If you’ve never owned a cocker spaniel before, it’s important to knowing your cocker spaniel, care for their needs, feed, housebreak, and train them. Having a cocker spaniel can be a great experience, as long as you know how to take care of them.
Knowing Your Cocker Spaniel
Know your cocker spaniel’s personality.Cocker spaniels are generally very loving dogs and are especially good with children.
- Cocker spaniels are very happy and sociable dogs. They get along well with most strangers.
- They are especially good around children, as long as you make sure the children do not frighten or injure the dog while playing.
Socialize your cocker spaniel.This is especially important when introducing them to new pets. Have your cocker and other pets around each other a little at a time first. In general, though, cocker spaniels also get along well with other pets.
Make your cocker feel safe.Let them get used to their new home before bringing them to meet new people. Keep them close to the house, even during walks, before straying too far from home.
Exercise your dog daily.Even short walks or playing outside for a few minutes can be good for them. Try to bring them for a brisk walk for about 30 minutes twice a day. This should be enough exercise for your cocker.
- Cockers also like going to the park to play. You can always bring them to the park on the weekends when you may have more time.
- Bring a leash that gives them plenty of room to roam, but where you can also keep them under control.
- Cocker spaniels are very playful. Try games like hide and seek and fetch to keep your dog active.
Taking Care of Your Cocker Spaniel’s Needs
Groom your cocker spaniel regularly and often.Cockers need a lot of care for their coat, which is beautiful, but can be expensive and time-consuming. If you're not prepared for a lot of grooming, a cocker spaniel may not be the best dog for you.[Image:Care for a Cocker Spaniel Step 3.jpg|center]]
- Cockers are famous for their beautiful, long fur. They are also well known as show dogs. However, their coat requires a fair amount of upkeep.
Brush your cocker’s hair at home on a regular basis.This helps to keep their coat free of matted and tangled fur. A slicker brush is the best type of brush to use.
- Your cocker spaniel will take some time to get used to being brush. Be patient if they are skittish and pretty soon they will love it.
- You can also keep their coat short to avoid having to brush their coat so often. However, you still need to send your cocker to a professional groomer on a regular basis.
- Grooming your cocker yourself is possible, but can be time consuming and difficult. If you don’t want to groom your dog on a regular basis, a cocker spaniel is likely not the right dog for you
Send your cocker spaniel to a professional groomer.Many owners have a professional grooming of their cocker spaniel every six to eight weeks. These grooming sessions can be expensive, since they are rather time consuming.
- Groomers usually perform one of two cuts. The Classic Cocker is where the groomer shaves your cocker’s back, top of head, chest, stomach, and behind, but leaves long fur to grow on the legs and in between the legs. The Puppy Cut is where the groomer gives your cocker a full trim all over and leaves them having short hair.
Introduce your cockers to groomers early in life.Have them groomed in small doses at first, so they become accustomed to it. Being in the room while they are being groomed as puppies also makes them feel more comfortable.
- Cockers are often not cooperative with groomers, so give them plenty of exposure so they are not nervous when they go for a long grooming session.
Take your cocker spaniel for regular checkups.Cocker spaniels are prone to getting sick. They may come down with progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), cataracts, patellar luxation, and glaucoma. Have regular checkups with the vet to ward off any of these diseases.
- These dogs often come down with problems with their eyes. PRA, cataracts, and glaucoma are all serious eye conditions.
- Cockers are also prone to skin conditions. They occasionally come down with itchy skin from allergies and can occasionally produce skin growths.
- Ear infections are also common with cockers. Their ear canals are long and narrow, so wax buildup can be a problem for this breed.
- Loose knees, or patellar luxation, also happens occasionally with cockers. About 1 in 4 Cockers comes down with loose knees at some point in their lifetime.
Feeding Your Cocker Spaniel
Give your cocker spaniel the right food.Cocker spaniels usually eat dog food, though it's best to pay attention to the ingredients list to get the right food for them.
Make sure the ingredient list for a dog food brand starts with a meat.Manufacturers will often try to use other ingredients, such as wheat or grain, to make the dog food heavier. However, this will make it less nutritious for your cocker.
Ignore terms like "natural" or "premium".These do not really mean anything as it applies to your dog food. Viewing the ingredients list is the best way to find high quality dog food.
Avoid foods that are harmful to dogs.In particular, stay away from foods like chocolate, grapes, onions, and candy. Some of these food can cause serious damage to a dog’s organs or maybe even cause death.
- Cockers are especially drawn to eating rich, fatty foods. These foods can cause pancreas problems, so make sure to keep them out of reach of your dog.
Feed your cocker spaniel puppy food.Puppies need to be fed differently than adult dogs. Puppy dog food is usually higher in vitamins, minerals, proteins, and fats than adult dog food.
Look for puppy food when getting food for your young cocker.This will guarantee your puppy gets the necessary vitamins and nutrients to grow up as a healthy adult dog.
- You can also get dog food that's for "all stages of life" that works for puppies as well. Verify to make sure the food is fortified with vitamins and minerals to guarantee the dog's health.
Find dog food specific for your cocker's breed.You may also find dog food that meets the unique dietary needs of a cocker spaniel. For a smaller breed like a cocker, dog food may be smaller in size and focused on meeting your dog's high metabolism. Read the labels carefully when you purchase dog food to get the right brand for you.
Feed your puppy the right amount.Give them puppy food four times a day for the first six months. After that, you should feed them only twice a day.
- Avoid overfeeding your puppy. You should be able to see your puppy's waist, but not their ribs. #*Puppies will eat as much as you give them. Follow the directions on the puppy food and only feed them during schedule times.
Feed your cocker spaniel adult dog food.When they grow up, your cocker needs to have adult food. Consider feeding them different diets, including dry food, canned food, home cooked food, raw food, or vegetarian food. It's also important to maintain a consistent schedule when feeding your cocker.
- Adult cocker spaniels can eat dry food. It's the most convenient and easiest to feed them on a regular basis. Keep in mind that dry food does not manage a dog's teeth, so you'll need to clean them even if they are eating dry dog food.
- Dogs love canned dog food, since it's much more flavorful. However, there is a lot of water in canned dog food, so it does become more expensive to feed your cocker on a regular basis.
- When cooking home cooked meals, you always know what you are feeding your dog. Keeping the nutritional balance for your meal is difficult, so make sure to pay attention to your dog's nutritional needs.
- Raw food is especially expensive. If you are making raw food yourself, it can also be time consuming. Some pet food companies are beginning to make raw food diets you can buy, but it is also very expensive.
- Cockers can also eat vegetarian, though you have to make sure to give them plenty of protein in their food. You can also buy vegetarian meals in many pet stores so you don't have to make it all yourself.
Feed them on a regular schedule.Cockers need consistency to maintain a healthy diet. If they don't eat all their food in twenty minutes, take it away so they will learn to eat at a specific time rather than grazing.
Housebreaking Your Cocker Spaniel
Housebreak your cocker spaniel.Cocker spaniels are occasionally difficult to potty train. Be firm while you're housebreaking your puppy, but patient. Repetition is the best way for your cocker to become housebroken.
Anticipate when your dog may need to go the bathroom.After a nap is a common time to take your cocker outside or even after a long period of time since they have last used the bathroom.
Train your dog to go to the bathroom outside.When they need to go, repeatedly take your dog to the same spot. Eventually, they will learn to go to the bathroom in the same spot outside.
- Having a common spot to use the bathroom is useful for encouraging your cocker to make. The smell of urine in the same spot will encourage your cocker to urinate as well.
Use common phrases to get your dog to go.Things like "Go Potty" or "Do Your Business" can be triggers for dogs to know it's ok to go to the bathroom.
Clean up any accidents quickly.The smell or urine may encourage your cocker to go again. Make sure your cocker can go outside without you to avoid accidents.
- Gently scold your cocker for accidents. Don't be mean or hit the dog, but make sure they know they did a bad thing.
Install a doggy door so your cocker can get outside without you.This way they can find their way to an enclosed yard to use the bathroom whenever they feel the urge. They may not always be able to tell when they need to go, so it’s important for them to be able to get out on their own.
- Occasional accidents are unavoidable with a cocker, since they often urinate when they get excited. Be patient and understand it may take awhile to potty train your cocker.
Training Your Cocker Spaniel
Teach your cocker spaniel obedience.Use both positive and negative consequences to train your cocker what to do and what not to do. Give them praise when they do something good and speak firmly with your voice or their lease if they do something bad.
- When your cocker does something good, reward them. This can be in the form of praise like "good boy" or "good girl," treats, or petting. They will quickly learn to repeat this behavior to get praise from you.
Speak firmly with your cocker when do something bad.You can also use their collar or lease to tell your cocker about bad behavior. A strong word or movement can send a firm message to your cocker if they do anything you don’t like.
Don't ever hit, yell, or choke your dog.Dogs will learn to fear you rather than respect you.
- Sometimes dogs won't listen because they are not getting enough attention. This is especially true with social breeds like the cocker. Make sure to get enough time with the cocker to discourage misbehavior.
Teach them how to greet others.Cockers are excitable dogs, so they may try to jump on others. Be firm and teach them to wait for people to pet them first.
Make sure your dog doesn't hold any prejudices.Some dogs prefer women to men or can even hold prejudices against types of clothing. Introduce your cocker to all kinds of people, so they are used to them.
- Children are often frightening for dogs, even for dogs great with children like cockers, since they are so unpredictable. Socialize your dog with children early so they get used to being around them.
Observe your cocker closely when they are first interacting and limit their initial exposure.Getting along with other dogs and cats is also important for your cocker. Exposure is key for cockers to get used to other animals.
QuestionHow long can you leave your cocker spaniel alone?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerTry to minimize the amount of time you leave cocker spaniels alone, especially when they are puppies. When they are older, cocker spaniels can be left alone over the course of a work day as long as they have access to the outdoors through doggie door.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I clean my Cocker Spaniel's eyes to avoid infection?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerUse special eye wipes and saline solution to clean your dog's eyes. Be careful when you're cleaning to not damage their eyes.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I choose the right bed for my Cocker spaniel?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerMeasure your dog before picking one out to make sure you get one that's big enough. Other than that, it's just trial and error. If you go to a pet store, find out their return policy before buying.Thanks!
QuestionAre female cocker spaniels better than males?Community AnswerThe gender doesn't matter, the personality matters.Thanks!
QuestionHow old should a female Cocker spaniel be before sterilization?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIt can be done as young as six weeks old, but personally, I would recommend waiting a month or two. Having surgery of any kind done before the puppy is a month old is risky.Thanks!
QuestionWhen should I bathe my cocker spaniel? It's only a month old and has many ticks.Community AnswerIf it has ticks, take it to the vet. Bathe it at least once every 4 months.Thanks!
QuestionMy recently adopted Cocker spaniel is 2 years old. She's very listless and never barks - just lays on the couch. What should I dO?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerShe may be getting used to her new home, so give her love and attention, and try to play with her. If after a while, that doesn't seem to be working, call the vet for advice, as she may be sick.Thanks!
QuestionHow frequently do they molt?Community AnswerCocker Spaniels do not molt. To keep their silky coats free of mats, American Cocker Spaniels require weekly brushing and combing along with clipping and trimming every 2-3 months.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I get my Cocker Spaniel to gain weight?Community AnswerSupplement your dog's diet with a little plain, boiled chicken or liver, or the occasional chopped egg mixed with plain boiled rice. Once it has put on the required weight, you can pull back on the extra foods so that you don't end up with an overweight Cocker!Thanks!
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Video: Grooming a cocker spaniel. Home grooming.
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