The youngest member of the American Kennel Club, the Cocker Spaniel, is the sweetheart of many pet owners in the United States and Europe. Do you remember the female role in the cartoon “Lady and the Tramp”? It is no coincidence that a Cocker Spaniel was chosen. From the late 1930s until the 1950s, the Cocker Spaniel was the number one AKC-registered breed. Then, its popularity declined for nearly 30 years, but it returned to the top of the charts in the mid-1980s. Today, the Cocker Spaniel remains in the top 15 races.
How Much Does a Cocker Spaniel Cost?
Be prepared to pay anywhere between $420 and $1,450 for a cocker spaniel puppy. The highest cost can be seen for the puppies that come from champion bloodlines.
The popularity of these dogs has made them a target for those looking to make money from their exploitation. The illegal breeding and selling of this breed usually, occurs among backyard breeders, puppy mills, or even pet stores. You should avoid purchasing a cocker spaniel from a place like this because your new pet may have some problems or diseases in the future.
This is why you should always look for a reputable breeder as the prices charged by these will cover, in most cases, the initial vaccination and deworming treatments, an AKC registration certificate, the early socialization training, basic grooming routine like hair clipping or dew clawing, and the veterinary care.
Cocker Spaniel details
The English Cocker Spaniel is one of the oldest spaniel breeds in the world. It has its origins in the 14th century in Spain. Before the 1600s all types of Spaniel were categorized together; the larger ones were used to chase hunted animals, and the smaller ones to get the squirrels out of hiding. Hence the name Springer and Cocker. In 1892, the Kennel Club of Great Britain recorded the two breeds separately. On the other side of the Atlantic, the Americans used the same mating fund to develop a slightly different Cocker, now known as the American Cocker Spaniel.
The English Cocker Spaniel is a hunting dog with a supple, muscular body and a thick fur, tightly attached to the body, with a silky sheen. It is visibly longer on the ears, chest, legs, and tail. The English Cocker Spaniel dog can be found in various colors of fur, the most well-known being the red-brown or white-black variant.
The American Cynological Association divides them into three categories, in terms of appearance: black, spotted, and ASCOB (meaning any color other than black).
The English Cocker Spaniel is a happy, easy-to-care-for dog that is perfect as a companion for any family. Their personality is much stronger and more obvious than that of their American Cocker relatives. They are polite to strangers, tolerant of children, and easy to train. This makes this breed a great choice for first-time dog owners and families with children. They love the company of people, being tireless in accompanying family members wherever they go.
Compared to the American Cocker Spaniel breed, the English Cocker needs sustained exercise in order to stay healthy and happy. Even though they are small, they generally do not like living in an apartment. He much prefers a house with a yard, but fenced in, so as not to allow him to run after birds or other small animals.
What are the extra costs?
In case you bring your cocker spaniel inside you should invest in a crate for small to medium-sized dogs, which is around 36 inches. Depending on the materials it is made from and on the brand, you will have to pay anywhere between $35 and $100 for a dog crate of this size.
In case you need to have your new pet shipped be prepared for the travel fees that are almost $470 for air travel and around $85 for car travel.
Into the air travel prices the airport delivery fee, the crate, and the rabies vaccination shot should also be included.
You may have to pay for a pet travel service in case the breeder is not offering shipping services. Depending on the traveled distance, expect to pay anywhere between $460 and $3,550 for overseas travel, while the prices for the continental US are anywhere between $310 and $890.
There are breeders that sell the cocker spaniels with a temporary registration certificate included and you will need to pay the cost for a permanent one. Expect to pay around $40 to register your Cocker Spaniel in the American Kennel Club.
Depending on the size of the dog you will spend $15 to more than $110 for a 14 to 30-lb bag of dry dog food which would be enough for a month or even more.
When going outside with your cocker spaniel for a walk you will need a harness. This will cost around $35.
These dogs like to play a lot and you should keep them entertained, so budget $2 to $50 for dog toys.
If you want to take your dog to a professional groomer for a hair clipping you will have to pay almost $60.
Also, you will have to purchase a dog brush that costs around $12 in order to prevent the matting of the fur and the tangles.
Cocker spaniels are shedding a lot and that is why you will need a lint brush that costs almost $13.
Bathing is a must for every cocker spaniel, so expect to pay almost $12 for a bottle of dog shampoo and conditioner.
The dog’s outer ears have to be cleaned at least once per week, so budget around $15 for an ear cleaner.
Vaccination of dogs is absolutely necessary and usually begins at the age of 5-6 weeks with a vaccine against parvovirus and scabies (depending on the type of vaccine used) and continues in the coming weeks with several vaccines against the following contagious diseases: parvovirus, scabies (Carre’s or Distemper’s disease), leptospirosis (Stuttgart’s disease), canine contagious hepatitis (Rubarth’s disease), coronavirus, canine parainfluenza, rabies.
Vet visits are very important and you should budget around $65 for each session.
Important things to consider
These dogs adapt effortlessly to the family lifestyle but remember that they are hunting dogs and, as such, should move a lot – at least an hour a day, preferably more. They like to swim, so you have to be careful when you are near the water to ensure their safety. Give them time to play without a leash to consume their energy.
The Cocker Spaniel generally has a lifespan of 11 to 12 years. Care should be taken to prevent serious health problems, such as patellar dislocation and progressive retinal atrophy. This breed is also prone to some minor problems such as hypothyroidism, canine hip dysplasia, cataracts, and kidney disease. This breed is prone to deafness. The Cocker Spaniel should be tested for knees, ears, hips, eyes, and thyroid issues. Cardiomyopathy can also be seen occasionally in this breed.
Care can be costly for the Cocker Spaniel owner. Most owners choose to go to a dog salon where their dogs are washed, brushed, and sheared. They do this once every 6-8 weeks. Daily brushing at home is also necessary to keep the fur free of tangles.
Also, don’t forget about dental care. It is best to brush his teeth with a toothbrush at least a few times a week to remove any tartar deposits. Nails should also be cared for at least monthly if he does not brush them naturally during walks. You need to be careful when cutting his nails because they contain blood vessels, and if you happen to cut his nails too deep, the next time your dog may not accept this beauty treatment.
How can I save money?
It would be a good idea to adopt a cocker spaniel from a local shelter instead of purchasing it from a pet store if you want to save money. The chances are high to find a cocker spaniel in a rescue center as they are largely overbred. Depending on the age of the dog you would pay anywhere between $220 and $310.