Spindrift Champion English Cocker Spaniels For Sale

Grooming Your English Cocker Spaniel

The English Cocker Spaniel The English Cocker does require a little attention to her appearance every day. Grooming a English Cocker Spaniel can be divided into two categories: Show grooming and pet grooming. Of course, grooming for show is extensive and takes a considerable amount of practice. If you plan to show your dog you will need help from the breeder or someone well versed in the show trimming of an English Cocker Spaniels. Pet grooming can be learned, but most owners prefer to use the services of a professional groomer. You can keep your English Cocker Spaniel looking great between groomings with a few minutes of daily care.
AM JP CH Spindrift Grand Mariner

Professional grooming: We recommend that you have your dog groomed on a regular basis, usually every 6 weeks to keep your English Cocker Spaniel looking its best. Many of our pet owners learn to do some of the basics so they do not have to see the groomer quite so often.

Note that the English Cocker requires a different cut than the American Cocker, though most groomers will attempt to cut your English Cocker Spaniel in this manner. Consult Sharon's English Cocker Spaniels reading recommendations page for books with specific instructions for properly grooming your English Cocker Spaniel.

Grooming at home is easy and it will keep your English Cocker looking terrific in between visits to the professional groomer. Regular grooming is also an important element in keeping your English Cocker Spaniel healthy and presents a great chance for you to bond with your new puppy.

A few grooming basics:

  • Brush out your English Cocker Spaniel daily
  • Clip her nails weekly
  • Bathe your English Cocker Spaniels biweekly or whenever needed. Use a good conditioning
    shampoo if you bathe more often than once a week.
  • Important: Ask your veterinarian how to care for your English Cocker Spaniel's eyes and ears

The Right Stuff. Sharon has put together the items you'll need to groom your English Cocker at home on her Puppy Kit page. These items should assist you in obtaining the right tool for the job.

Brushing:
Brushing your English Cocker Spaniel daily will make grooming a snap and only takes a few minutes. By brushing your puppy lightly in the beginning, you can prepare her for more extensive grooming in the
months to come. Start by letting your puppy smell the brush. Then slowly brush your puppy, always in the direction of her hair growth. Don't try to brush her entire coat the first time. Brush a little more each day until your puppy remains relaxed for you.

Clipping your puppy's nails:
Many pet owners resist clipping their puppy's nails. This is understandable, as puppies generally wiggle uncontrollably at first. We recommend that you introduce your puppy to a nail clipper by desensitizing your puppy's paws. This can be done by gently handling their pads and nails with your fingers. After a few sessions, allow your puppy to smell the nail clipper. The next step is to lightly stroke her paws with the clipper, finally allowing the clipper to touch her nails.

After slowly introducing your puppy to the nail clipper, it's time to clip 1/8th of an inch off of each nail. This doesn't seem like much, but this can maintain your puppy's nails at a healthy length if you clip them each week. In the beginning, you might consider clipping one nail every several hours, until your puppy stops resisting. If your puppy doesn't resist, you might want to clip the nails on one paw every several hours. Eventually, you'll be able to clip all four paws in a couple of minutes.

Many professional groomers stand behind the dog and bring each paw up-and-back, in the direction the leg bends naturally at the knee and ankle. Hold the entire paw in one hand and the nail clipper in the other. Single out one nail at a time and clip 1/8th of an inch off the end of the nail. Avoid clipping off too much nail, you could cut into the quick and this can be extremely painful for your puppy. For more on nail clipping, consider buying a book recommended by Sharon.

Bath time can be fun for everyone if you follow a few simple guidelines:

  • Use lukewarm water
  • Fill a quart-sized container with lukewarm water and shampoo
  • Be very careful not to get shampoo into your puppies eyes or down the
    ear canals
  • Rinse thoroughly
  • Dry completely

Start by bathing your puppy in an empty sink. Placing the puppy in a sink full of water may startle your puppy and make him try to jump out. The enclosed area will help keep your puppy in one spot and the spray hose will come in handy. With your container of warm water and shampoo work your way around the puppy. First dip each ear into the shampoo and gently work it in. Then dip each leg doing the same. Finally, pour the remaining shampoo over the top of your puppy's back and along his neck and chest and underbelly. By using this technique, you will put shampoo right where it's needed with minimal fumbling. Of course, you'll move to the tub as your puppy grows out of the sink.

After you've worked the shampoo gently into the puppy's coat, it's time to rinse. With lukewarm water, rinse out all of the shampoo. Avoid getting shampoo in the eyes or ears. Rinse thoroughly, as leaving shampoo in the coat will actually attract dirt and debris. Have a few towels ready for quick drying. If you're working in a cold room, try putting your towels in the dryer for a few minutes to warm the towels. Puppies get a chill much more readily than an adult dog, so make sure you dry her completely.

Using a blow dryer on the lowest setting is acceptable: but you must take time to introduce your puppy to the dryer. This might mean that you won't actually use the dryer the first few times you bathe your puppy. Rather, you should introduce your puppy to the dryer in the same manner she was introduced to her brush and nail clipper: gradually.

Tip: Try using a brush speeds up the drying time. Always introduce your puppy to new grooming tools gradually. Start by letting her sniff the grooming tool.

Eyes and ears: Spindrift ECS strongly recommends speaking to your veterinarian about keeping your English Cocker Spaniel's eyes and ears clean and free of debris. Because of your English Cocker's long ears, paying particular attention to this sensitive area during regular grooming is well advised.

A word or encouragement. Grooming your English Cocker Spaniel might sound like a real chore, but once your English Cocker grows comfortable with grooming activities, daily grooming will only take a few minutes. Understanding that grooming is key to raising a healthy English Cocker Spaniel should be all it takes to make the decision to incorporate these activities in your daily schedule.

For Internet resources on grooming, visit our Internet English Cocker Spaniel Resources page.

For books containing grooming information, view our English Cocker Spaniel reading recommendations.

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