Pet dogs of different breeds are characteristically distinct from each other. Some are high on energy, whereas some are just couch potatoes. Some have a low temper, and some dogs are aggressive. Similarly, maintenance is another factor that also needs attention while thinking about adopting a new pet dog or adding another one in the family. For instance, the Cocker Spaniels, known for their expertise in hunting woodcocks in America, are high maintenance, especially for their fur all over the body.
Does the Cocker Spaniel shed a lot of body hair? The Cocker Spaniels require a lot of attention and grooming almost every day. The excess body hair needs trimming at very short intervals. The shedding of hair varies as per their age. They suffer from a lot of health issues as well. Once the pattern of their shedding is understood, it becomes a lot easier to maintain it.
The distinctive coat of a Cocker Spaniel
This breed of dogs has two layers of body hair. The first layer is softer and lies beneath the upper layer. The coat occurs in a different mixture of colors such as black, red, golden in solids, black and tan, to name a few. This coat can grow till floor-length and thus require regular trimming.
The length of the outer layer of the fur varies from medium to long in different dogs. When it comes to shedding, Cocker Spaniels do shed their body hair. However, it varies from one another. But almost all of them do shed averagely.
Reasons for excessive shedding
Before moving further, it is essential to know the reasons behind shedding on the dog. Some dogs shed a lot than the others while others do not shed at all. There can be various underlying causes for the same, like:
Stress: Like humans, dogs, too, may undergo some stress-related issues. Stress can make them unhappy and depressed, and this may lead to more shedding than usual.
Poor nutrition: One of the common reasons for hair loss is not providing pets with a healthy and nutritious meal. As most Cocker Spaniels suffer from many health issues, the inability to eat or unavailability of the required diet tends to shed more.
Parasites: Organisms that live on another creature for food and nutrition like lice and mites are parasites. The growth of pests can also lead to hair fall.
Infections: Skin infections can cause shedding in some dogs. Most of which are due to fungal and bacterial growth on the shin. Diseases make the skin tender, and the hair follicles tend to shed grown hair.
Health issues: Cocker Spaniels suffer from a lot of health issues. Ear and eye infections are quite common. Disease-causing pathogens when growing in the body, it causes shedding of body hair.
Cancer: This is a commonly occurring condition in most of them and one of the main reasons for their death. Cocker spaniels live for long years, and cancer in them generally occurs in old age. Shedding of a fur coat is a side-effect associated with it.
Pregnancy: The hormonal level fluctuates more than usual, especially during pregnancy and lactation period. It is another reason for shedding in dogs.
As a parent to your pet, one must be aware of these reasons for noticing the sudden changes in hair loss. Any of them can be the reason behind shedding or maybe a combination of few. It is essential to keep a check on their daily activities and upkeep the continuous care that this breed requires.
Dealing with surplus hair in a Cocker Spaniel
As a parent to your Cocker Spaniel, you have to be responsible for his health and maintenance. In terms of shedding, the fact is it cannot stop at once. But shedding can be made manageable and minimized.
Cocker Spaniels are those breeds that are high maintenance and need a lot of grooming almost regularly. One can deal with grooming all by himself or else visit a dog grooming parlor whenever required.
Safety is the utmost priority while trimming those prolonged stresses of your furry friend. Since the degree of shedding differs in each of them, regular brushing and combing is a must.
Trimming tips for Cockers
Grooming your pet can seem a bit difficult in the first instance. But with time and practice, it will get better. Both the pet and the parent will know the importance of grooming in due course of time. As a new parent to a Cocker Spaniel, one must follow the technique of maintenance of body hair very minutely. Below are the phases that one can consider:
Phase 1: Grooming products
Keeping the grooming products handy is the primary step while grooming your pet dog. You will need the following:
Combs and blades:
A variety of combs, brushes and shears must be available with every pet owner who has dogs with a heavy coat of fur. Ensure the quality of the products to minimize any injury and yield the desired results. A consultation with your dog groomer can be a good idea before investing. The essential products that you will need in terms of combs and blades are:
- A hairbrush with large pins
- A matting comb or a comb with widely separated teeth
- Clippers and blades for shaving of different sizes as per the length and abundance of fur.
- A pair of grooming scissors.
- Trimming s
- Hears for the uneven layers of hair in the shoulder and chest.
Along with the tools, also invest in mild shampoo and conditioner, so that the fur retains its original texture and maintains hygiene. Also, consider the type of skin sensitivity and allergy, if any.
Phase 2: Trimming
Grooming the fur coat of a Cocker Spaniel depends on the look wanted by the parent or the comfort ability of the pet himself.
- Before bathing, brush the coat thoroughly all over the body. It will minimize shedding. Since the coating is double-layer in Cockers, brushing and combing is necessary through both to untangle, if any.
- The movement of brushing and combing should align with the direction of hair growth.
- Cockers enjoy their bathing time, so ensure washing and bathing at a specified time interval as per doctor’s advice. Thorough bathing will keep the skin healthy and reduce skin infection, resulting in the minimization of shedding.
- Use a trimmer to shave the hair in the face, head, neck and ears too.
Phase 3: Post-trimming
After completing the trimming process, brush the body to get rid of small hairs all over that are left behind. Or it may irritate. However, if trimming is preferred before bathing, wash the pet thoroughly after that.
The entire process of grooming requires a lot of time as well as patience. So, it is better to take an adequate amount of time to ensure safety. Most Cocker Spaniels do shed a lot. Since they have thick body hair, so the shedding of hair is natural to them.
Unless there are some underlying factors, it is essential to keep an eye on the faithful and enthusiastic canines’ health and hygiene. Although shedding cannot eliminate from their nature but with proper maintenance and regular trimming, it can surely be feasible for both the partners.