The incessant tail wagging of the “merry cocker” is actual proof that the original English Cocker Temperament is that of being friendly, playful and fun loving. It is a moderate dog, a bit larger and less coated than its American cousin. Its classic Spaniel tail which is level with the back and constantly wagging in a happy state!
Though the English cocker spaniel temperament is one described by affection and intelligence, it is often not uncommon that they can tend to be a bit stubborn which requires firm training. They are great pets and are good with children and their enthusiasm to learn and play makes the training process both smooth and interesting.
They are extremely energetic dogs, which makes regular walks, exercises and games very essential for them as they tend to become bored and lonely very easily. It has to be understood that the English cocker spaniel temperament is such that they don’t like being alone as they depend on human companionship and even get attached with a strong bond to an individual person in the family.
They can suffer from bouts of separation anxiety if left for long as it is an inherent mental state in them. This is also a typical English cocker spaniel temperament issue and needs to be rectified by the right training including crate and obedience training.
Though English cocker spaniels rank high in the list of desirable and popular dogs, the very same famous English cocker spaniel temperament for which they are so loved, also tends to cause a bit of a concern when it comes to something known as the “rage syndrome”.
The rage syndrome refers to a problem which the dog has, in which it suddenly attacks or shows intense aggression without any apparent reason and this attack could be vicious or even savage. The dog seems to be unaware of its surroundings and even tends to have a glazed look in its eyes during such behavior. Research has shown that there is a link between the color of the dog’s coats and temperaments, in which the coat pigment melanin shares a common biochemical pathway with certain brain chemicals involved in the control of aggressive behavior. Some studies show that solid coloured cockers and dark coloured cockers are more prone to this than particolors and even male and golden coloured cocker spaniels tend to show more hostility. Male orange coloured spaniels are in fact not recommended as pets to be kept in a family environment and children should never be left alone with them. Often the problem is that this behavior is not just directed towards strange people but it also happens often against the owner and other family members. Genetic tests, at the most are considered to be non-conclusive and it is essential to find out more about the dog’s genetic history through its breeder.
Though the English cocker spaniel temperament has won hearts all over the world, the abovementioned problems are not a huge impediment and with the right kind of breeding, training and care, they actually make wonderful pets.