Country/Date of origin:
- United States
- 14 to 15 inches
- 24 to 28 pounds
- Generally even-tempered.
- Affectionate and gentle.
- Not particularly intelligent but a willingness to please makes up for it.
- Can be a problem barker.
This breed was bred from the English Cocker Spaniels that were brought to the United States in the 17th century. It was recognized as a separate breed in 1946. Used by hunters to flush out game, it specialized in retrieving quail instead of the woodcock so prevalent in England. Today, it has become more of a pet and show dog, with an exaggerated coat that would not be suitable in the field. It reached a peak in popularity between 1940-1956 when it set an American Kennel Club (AKC) record for the number of dogs registered. It has remained a popular family pet and show dog.
- Smallest of the sporting dogs.
- It is known for its distinctive, domed head and large, round, expressive eyes.
- The docked tail is carried on a line with the topline of the back.
- The long, hanging, low-set ears are never altered.
- The lavish, medium-length coat is silky in texture. It can be flat or slightly wavy.
- There are three acceptable color classifications: black; any other solid color other than black (called ASCOB by show people); and parti-color, which consists of two or more definite colors appearing in clearly defined markings.
- Needs a moderate amount of grooming, with occasional professional trimming.
- Hair tends to mat.
- Seasonal shedding.
Health and Wellness:
- Autoimmune thyroid disease.
- Factor X deficiency.
- Phosphofructokinase deficiency.
- Hereditary nephritis.
- Congenital deafness.
- Platelet dysfunction (storage pool deficiency).
- Urolithiasis (struvite).
- Autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA).
- Immune mediated thrombocytopenia (IMT).
- Intervertebral disc disease (IVDD).
- Food allergy.
- Primary seborrhea.
- Otitis externa.
- Chronic hepatitis.
- Cardiomyopathy (taurine responsive).
- Progressive retinal atrophy.
- Cushing’s syndrome (PDH and AT).
- Skin tumors.
- Keratoconjunctivitis sicca.
- Oral cavity neoplasia.
- Circumanal neoplasia.
- Sebaceous adenomas.
What you should know:
- Easily obtained at reasonable prices.
- Because of past problems with health and temperament, buy only from a reputable breeder.
- Tends to become overweight if not kept active.
- May be difficult to housebreak.