More popular than ever, the working cocker is a breed with a lot of plus points. Tempted?
Once upon a time everybody had a black Labrador. Then chocolate Labradors arrived on the scene. Now fox red Labs are de rigeur it would seem.
Mind you, the dog that you’re likely to see in the field just about everywhere now is a working cocker spaniel.
Not so long ago it was the springer spaniel that you’d regularly see in the beating line but now the springer seems to have been usurped by the working cocker. So what’s made the change?
The film director and fieldsports enthusiast Guy Ritchie has a working cocker. The Beckhams have a working cocker. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge helped to raise the profile of working cockers when they obtained their dog Lupo from the Duchess’s mother a few years ago.
But a working cocker is a grafter
A clue might be in the breed’s name. Working. These dogs are grafters. They are super energetic and don’t flag. Which makes them a real asset in the beating line when they are correctly trained.
They’re useful retrievers. They also have a lot of charm. Which is why one will be on your lap in a nanosecond. People like to cuddle them. And they like to be cuddled.
Small and portable
Another reason for the popularity of the working cocker spaniel is almost certainly its size. People live in small houses these days. Labradors are big dogs. A Labrador with a bed, a bowl and a basket takes up a deal of room. Yes, it looks good in a country house kitchen with a six-oven AGA and all the trimmings but it takes over most of the flat in town and needs its own car to transport it to the country. A working cocker, however, can curl itself into a washing-up bowl and be happy in the footwell of a two-seater when driving out of town. And it doesn’t eat much either, so your food bills will be lower than those of a Labrador owner.
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Both springer and cocker spaniels are capable of doing a useful day’s work out in the field. Both are biddable.…
To sum up – a working cocker is small, pretty, affectionate, hard-working, trainable and good value. What’s stopping you?