Breeds of dogs: American Cocker Spaniel

Breeds of dogs: American Cocker Spaniel

Origin, classification and history

Origin: USA.
F.C.I classification: Group 8 - retrieving dogs, hunting dogs, water dogs.

The first Spaniel arrived in the United States, coming from the British Isles, landed on the coasts of Massachusetts, together with the pilgrims who arrived with the Maryflower in 1620. the first Cocker Spaniel arrived in the United States in 1882. The breed was recognized in the United States in 1883, before that in England, but it was not an American Cocker but an unspecified Cocker. In 1935 the English Cocker Spaniel Club was born, which developed a Standard for this English breed; a year later, the American Kennel Club decided to consider the English type specimens a separate variety and different from the American ones. This decision initially caused a lot of confusion among both the judges and the breeders. This state of confusion ceased in the year 1941, when the two races were strictly separated in their genealogies, thanks to the careful work of the cynologist Geraldine Rockefeller Dodge. The American Kennel Club, in 1945, recognized the separation of the two breeds. In the United States, the American Cocker Spaniel is simply called the Cocker Spaniel. Today it is the most bred breed in the U.S. The American Cocker Spaniel (American Cocker) is present and well bred in Europe and also in Italy.

General aspect

Small dog. It is the smallest of the group of shotgun dogs. It has a robust and compact body, a head with clean lines, finely chiseled. It must have a perfectly balanced overall appearance and have a height at the ideal withers, when standing still, it is well raised in the shoulder region. The front limbs are plumb and the upper line descends slightly towards the rear train, strong and muscular. It has long, well-covered ears.


It is a dog capable of reaching remarkable speeds and of maintaining them for a long time. He must be free of movement, cheerful, solid, well balanced in all its parts and show a keen interest in the job. He has a constant temperament and is not at all fearful. He is a basically healthy dog. Your diet should be carefully controlled to avoid gaining weight. He needs to take long walks every now and then. The most delicate point of the breed are the tearful and frail eyes, which must be kept clean. It requires periodic hair care.

American Cocker Spaniel

American Cocker Spaniel

American Cocker Spaniel (photo


- ideal males 15 inches (38.10 cm) at the withers
- ideal females 14 inches (35.56 cm) at the withers
(there is a tolerance of ½ inch (1.27 cm) more or less).
Weight: from 11 to 13 kg.

Trunk: short, compact, well welded, it gives an expression of strength. Strong back. Also wide and well rounded and muscular rear train. Chest high and descends at least to the level of the elbows. Ribs well down and well arched. You must not like to give the impression of being long and low on the limbs.
Head and muzzle: well proportioned to the rest of the body. Rounded skull but not too much; it must never have a tendency to be flat. Well-drawn eyebrow arches and pronounced stop. Wide and deep muzzle. Squared jaws. Upper lip rather thick.
Truffle: of proportionate size to the muzzle and nose. It has well-developed nostrils, like all hunting dogs. It is black in subjects with black coat and black and tan coat. In subjects of other color it can be brown, liver-colored or black; dark tones are preferable. It must harmonize with the color of the eyelids.
Teeth: strong and healthy, not too small. Scissor closure.
Neck: long enough to allow the truffle to touch the ground easily. Muscular and without dewlap. The attachment with the trunk is strong.
Ears: fine, long, lobe-shaped pavilion, well fringed. Attachment not higher than the lower corner of the eye.
Eyes: the eyeball is round and fills the orbit well. The eyes look straight ahead. They are lightly cut into almonds. The iris is brown in color, as dark as possible. The expression is intelligent, lively, sweet, pleading and captivating together.
Limbs: front parallel, straight and solid. They are muscular and close to the body. Short and strong pasterns. Solid and muscular hindquarters, well angled at the fat. Powerful and well-designed thighs. The articulation of the grassella is solid, without sagging. Strong and well-descended hocks. Compact, large, round and solid feet. They have hard plantar pads. They are not deviated neither in nor out. The spurs are removed.
Shoulder: oblique, they form an angle of about 90 degrees with the arm. Well designed, not protruding.
Pace: has the typical pace of the hunting dog. Coordinated, regular and loose movements. During the action, the dog must above all lead the way and false movements must not be confused with the correct pace.
Tail: it is attached and carried high on the extension of the back line or slightly higher. It is never erect like that of the Terrier or low enough to give the impression that the dog is afraid. During the action the dog must wiggle its tail.
Hair: on the head the hair is short and fine; on the body it is of medium length, with undercoat sufficient to ensure protection. The ears, chest, abdomen and limbs are well fringed, but without excess, so as not to hide the lines and the movement and not to harm its appearance or its function as a hunting dog. The consistency of the hair is very important. It is smooth or slightly wavy, easy to take care of.
Allowed colors: solid black, solid colors other than black. A little white is allowed on the chest and / or throat; in any other part of the body white results in disqualification.
Most common defects: white spots on the trunk, prognathism, enognatism, lack of premolars, deviated jaw, too abundant hair, curly hair, fluffy hair, incorrect movement, defective rear, disproportionate head, narrow muzzle, slightly rounded skull, monorchidism, cryptorchidism, depigmentation of the truffle, light eye, multi-colored coat, tan spots that cover more than 10% of the coat in black subjects with tan markings, non-standard sizes.

curated by Vinattieri Federico -

Video: Cocker spaniel breeding (October 2021).