Cocker SpanieIs are one of the most fun, energetic and family-friendly dog breeds. But one of the big questions you will have, both as an experienced dog owner, or a first-time dog owner is, do they shed?
Most dogs shed, but the extent to which they shed will have an influence on your choice of breed, what you need to prepare and how you look after your dog’s coat.
In this guide, we will help you:
- Understand how much a Cocker Spaniel sheds
- What type of coat they have
- What you need to do to manage your dog’s shedding?
- And, much more…
The Big Question: Does A Cocker Spaniel Shed?
Like most dogs Cocker Spaniel’s do shed their fur. They have a double coat which sheds all year round and particularly during the shedding season in spring and autumn. The shedding level is moderate, but it is best to do some ongoing maintenance to their coat as they can suffer from knots and tangles.
What Type Of Coat Do Cocker Spaniels Have
Cocker spaniels have a double coat, which simply means they have two layers of hair. A bottom or undercoat layer and an upper layer.
Whilst there are some physical differences between a show and working Cocker Spaniel, their coats remain much the same in terms of the type of fur. However, it is likely that show Cocker Spaniel‘s will have longer fur with more feathering - longer, often curly hair on their ears, back of their legs, around their hind quarters and under the belly. Working Cocker Spaniel’s have shorter, tighter cropped fur, particularly on the trunks of their body.
The bottom undercoat layer is a dense and thick type of fur which insulate the Cocker Spaniel from the elements and particularly cold weather. The top layer of fur is lighter in texture.
How Much Does A Cocker Spaniel Shed?
Cocker Spaniels are moderate shedders, particularly when compared to other double-coated dogs, such as labradors or retrievers. As an example, on a scale of one to five a spaniel would be three meaning that there will be some fur left around your home, but not too much and certainly not enough to be problematic
The one issue that a cocker spaniels coat does suffer from is knotting, particularly around it’s ears and hind quarters. If not managed and brushed these knots can become problematic and will eventually require cutting out. Therefore, it is recommended that you regularly brush your Cocker Spaniel with both a grooming comb and deshedding brush.
At What Age Should I Start Grooming My Cocker Spaniel?
Coat maintenance should start at an early age as possible. It’s very likely that you will have to anyway as your excitable Spaniel’s fur will invariably start to knot!
If you are planning to take your dog to a professional groomer it recommended that you do so in your Spaniel’s formative months in order to get them used to the experience. As with most other experiences, exposing your dog at an early age will definitely prove beneficial as they get older.
Take a look at our guide to Spaniel grooming for more information.
Are Cocker Spaniels Hypoallergenic?
Cocker spaniel is not hypoallergenic as a result, and if you do suffer from allergies relating to dog, it’s suggested you opt for another breed. Whilst no dog is fully hypoallergenic, if you’re looking for a dog with similar traits to a Cocker Spaniel, and is less likely to affect those with allergies, you could go for a Cockerpoo.
How Often Do Cocker Spaniels Need To Be Groomed?
A cocker spaniel‘s coat needs to be brushed regularly in order to ensure it doesn’t knot and tangle. But, in terms of grooming, it really depends on the individual dog. Our working Cocker Spaniel requires grooming and clipping three to four times per year, but we do also try to make sure that their coat is shorter during the summer months to prevent them from getting too hot.
Home Grooming vs A Professional Groomer
There are a couple of main things to consider when deciding whether to groom your Cocker Spaniel at home or take them to a professional dog groomer:
- Your capability and confidence as a home dog groomer
- The costs involved in taking your Spaniel to a professional groomer
If you are confident that you are capable of grooming your dog to a decent standard, by all means do it at home. It might be that your are comfortable clipping and trimming your dog’s coat rather than a full groom.
For others that are less confident, and we are certainly among them, it’s best to take your Spaniel to a professional grooming service.
Obviously the cost of taking your dog to a professional groomer is not insignificant, particularly if like our working Cocker Spaniel, they require grooming three of four times a year. However, we believe that it’s worth the cost as the groomer does a fantastic job and certainly better than we could ever do. Money well spent for us!
Cocker Spaniels are great all-round family dogs and you shouldn’t be put off by their shedding. Their moderate shedding and relatively easy to manage coat only enhances their suitability as a family pet.
We do hope you enjoyed this guide to whether Cocker Spaniels Shed and please do check back regularly to see what other useful content we have for Cocker Spaniel owners.
All content is written by actual Spaniel owners.