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Living with a spaniel(81 Posts)
We've always had dogs but now have our first cocker spaniel. All other dogs have been wire types.
He is 7 months. A great calm dog in many ways apart from usual puppy 'zoomies'
The mess, the dirt. Constant wet ears. Fur soaked after a 2 min trip outside. Smelly. Needs bathing after every walk. But he is then sooo wet and his fur seems to soak up every drop of water and hold on to it for hours! Muddy hairy paws. Did I mention the wet ears!
Any tips for spaniel ownership would be VERY MUCH appreciated.
Lots of towels. My spaniel loves to be hoovered and that seems to help keep the fur down. A furminator is great for grooming and getting out dead fur. A designated space where he can dry off after muddy walks is a must (utility room, cage etc). A good groomer for trims - trimming the fur between their toes helps to stop their paws acting like little mops that take forever to dry. After 16 years I'm used to it.
Yes the hairy paws!! I'm amazed by how much wet and mud is brought in from a simple 2 min pee in the garden!!
He hates me wiping his feet!
A hotterdog fleece is your friend for the wet coat thing, I could not be without them for my cocker. It dries the coat off quickly with very little effort, and it's washable! The ears...I wish I knew! We tie his back with a scrunchie if he's eating something particularly messy - but its a constant battle to keep them clean and tangle free! Learn to love the wet dog, and you'll have the best companion and the most loving dog - I can't imagine life without it
He is so loving! He's like a little bear cub and gives proper hugs!!
I just need to get used to the wet dog smell
Is it ok to wash him properly after every walk? (he fits in utility Belfast sink)
Rinse after every walk, yes - I usually have to in winter. But I wouldn't shampoo after every walk - it will irritate the skin.
Do they wear that fleece for walks?
Do other dogs not laugh and point?
We live very rurally and other dogs near here are more likely to be found in a wax jacket and wielding a pheasant
I'm a complete cocker spaniel lover. I have a 7 month old cocker too and a 9 year old cocker.
We have not touched our puppies fur yet but my 9 year old is a mix of American cocker and English cocker so has a curly coat. We have to keep on top of him being trimmed as untrimmed, his paws are like Ugg boots!
Regular trims at the dog groomers and I buy ear cleaning drops that contain tea tree oil to help keep his ears smelling fresh. (go easy on this as too many applications cause irritation)
Second the scrunchie to tie the ears back and also lots of towels.
Keep his ears clean. Due to their long ears cockers can be susceptible to ear infections
I need to see a picture of them with their ears tied back with a scrunchie!
Despite the 'it will ruin the coat' advice I go for practicality over aesthetics. Our cocker is groomed shortish with his legs and paws trimmed very short every 5-6 weeks.
They do have a pong about them much more then other breeds which I noticed when we went to discover dogs at crufts but you get used to it .
I just rinse BiteyDog with water after each muddy walk. Invest in micro fibre towels.
For the first 4 years I kept my cocker on a beautiful full show coat. For the next 6 Shes been shaved to within an inch of her life. So much easier and more pleasant to maintain. I also used to use a scrunchie to tie back her ears.
Hotter dog/Equafleece are amazing. You put them on after a walk and they dry off pretty quickly.
I love cockers but they do smell - I think it's a working dog thing though as my beagle pongs too if he doesn't get washed properly on a regular basis!
I hose mine off after muddy walks and he gets a proper bath once a month. Lots of people say that's too much but he gets far too whiffy otherwise!
Mine gets clipped regularly. Make sure you dry his ears thoroughly after bathing and clean them with doggy ear solution.
I have a dog dry shampoo for in between baths, but he gets washed about once a week.
I blow dry him with the hairdryer too. If he's not dried off fully that's what causes his smell.
From experience, cockers don't smell as bad as springers!
You can buy concave dog bowls which means the ears sit outside the bowl and dont dip in the water! But yeh, spaniels are awesome!
I beg to differ crazy. Our cocker stinks to high heaven!
Oh and I bought this spray from the vets which You can spray directly on the dogs and it degrades any smells. You can also get ones for carpets etc but you can't get them mixed up!!
I have spaniel bowls but BiteyDog still manages to get stuff in his ears. I have his ears clipped short as well so they just have a bit of curl.
We live very rurally and our springer has undercarriage showers after nearly every walk. Only shampoo if particularly offensive.
I do get her legs, tail and belly clipped but leave her fur from belly up as fairly short coated.
Drying coat if very wet and all of our old towels.
You will be better used to it by next winter
I shave mine. I know, I know, his coat is ruined... but he's not a show dog, he's a pet who lives in the country, does a bit of beating now and then and dives into the mud regularly. I think he looks very smart clipped out, but in any case practicality wins for us. Also, he has a touch of arthritis in his hips and so I think that being quick drying helps - he also has a hotterdog fleece for post-walk drying.
Lots of towels on standby and a general lowering of domestic standards also help
OP can you post a photo of your pup?
My 7 month old is a Blue Roan and reminds me of Sweep off Sooty and Sweep. Just love cockers!
Also...can you change your house/ garden?
I cut back all the shrubs in mine and put down slate to cover all the exposed flower beds (easy for me because I have a very small garden, but could you block a bit off if yours is bigger?) Then multiple mats in the hall (Turtle or Hug pet rugs), rugs on living room floor, washable sofa covers and Scotchguard spray, and wipable paint on the walls. Makes me feel more in control!
My show cocker had a lovely long show coat for his first 6 years and I’ve just started to have him clipped off this winter, hate how he looks but so much cleaner and practical for him, fleece for drying off, waterproof coverall for muddy walks so I just have to sort his feet out afterwards.
Ears and tail not clipped as short as the rest of his body (my preference) which get rinsed off when he stinks (or I can be bothered) spaniel bowl for food and a non spill water bowl for water. Copious amounts of towels and has been taught to ‘circle’ on them when we get in from wet walks to dry them.
I’ve got a 10 year old cocker and a 4 year old cocker mix. We keep their coats very short and it helps massively.
Lots and lots of towels and acceptance has worked for me!
I wouldn’t be without my cuddly monsters!