Do Cocker Spaniels Shed? Everything You Need To Know!

The Cocker Spaniel ranks as one of the most loved and most preferred pets. However, you may want to know how much hair ends up on the floor of the house before committing. Even if you don’t mind having a heavy shedder as a buddy, you probably still want to know what to expect and how to deal with it.

Do Cocker Spaniels Shed Everything You Need To Know! Full Guide

Do Cocker Spaniels Shed? If Yes, How Much?

Cocker spaniels shed moderately. Precisely how much depends on several factors. These include how frequently owners groom the dogs, biological factors like age, and the state of their health. You can minimize their shedding rate and how much hair they shed by implementing some simple routines.

Before you decide whether a cocker spaniel will be the pet to share a part of your life, there are a host of factors to take into consideration.

About Cocker Spaniels 

Over the years, cocker spaniels have evolved from their traditional black colors. Thanks to breeding, there is a good range of colors to choose from. You are far less likely to get a black cocker spaniel than those of other colors.

Cocker spaniels have a single coat (although many dog lovers think otherwise) that still manages to accommodate a lot of hair like on double-coated canines. This coat can be medium or long.

Why Do Cocker Spaniels shed?

Many dog lovers seem to have a hard time coping with how much their dogs shed. While this is understandable, the realization that dogs do not control or have any power over their shedding rate can go a long way in improving our tolerance level and reducing frustration. Shedding is the natural process of replacing worn-out or damaged body hair. For cocker spaniels, shedding helps them maintain the health of their skin, so it needs to happen as frequently as possible.

When Do Cocker Spaniels Shed? 

Shedding is often a concern to dog owners who are worried about keeping their homes clean. Knowing when your dog is most likely to shed will help you plan ahead and ensure that your house stays clean.

Cocker spaniels are known to do a lot of their shedding in the spring and fall seasons. Avoid being taken by surprise and prepare for the most shedding during these periods.

Factors That Influence Shedding

Factors that determine how much a cocker spaniel sheds:

  • Age: The rate of shedding for cocker spaniels reduces as they grow older. Younger dogs tend to shed far more than older dogs.
  • Breed: cocker spaniels can be divided into English and American types. Between these two, the American cocker spaniel is likely to shed more hair than the English. This means if you decide to go for the American breed, it will require more attention from you.
  • Hormonal activity: this factor is closely related to age. Young dogs are more active hormonally than older dogs, and so they shed more hair.

How To Minimize Shedding

Shedding can be a severe problem if you are a neat freak and always want to see your house sparkling clean. If you are a neat freak with a cocker spaniel that sheds, even small amounts of hair on the floor of your home can be a disturbing sight.

Cleaning dog hair off your floor can be pretty tedious. You probably have more important things to do with your time. And even if you don’t, you still don’t want to spend your free time having to scour the house for dog hair.

The good news is that you don’t have to. There are proven ways to reduce how much hair you get on your floor and around the house.

Most effective ways to reduce and control shedding:

  • Get them off yourself: Can you stop a cocker spaniel from shedding? Unfortunately, no! However, taking the dog outside and removing the about-to-drop hair yourself will take care of most of your worries. Taking the dog’s fur off doesn’t mean plucking them off before it’s time. Shedding isn’t an instant process. At every particular point in time, there will most likely be hair undergoing the shedding process. Get them off and dispose of them before they are littered all over the place.
  • Shedding Tools: Shedding tools can be of great help. Metallic brushes come in handy for this purpose. These combs are usually made of stainless steel and make shedding as seamless and tidy as possible. In no time, all of your dog’s dead hair can be in the bin where it belongs, allowing your home floors to sparkle and remain clean.
  • Bathing: better for hair to come off on the bathroom floor than all over your house. Bathing your cocker spaniel will do just that – get the hair off on your bathroom floor where it’s easier to gather and dispose of. 
  • Regular feeding and hydration: more shedding will occur in a dog that lacks essential nutrients. This also holds for dehydrated dogs. This is because proper feeding and hydration will positively affect the quality of their hair follicles. The healthier the hair follicles of a dog, the less frequently shedding will take place.

cocker spaniel shedding

Does Shedding Have Health Implications?

It is very important to concern yourself with your dog’s shedding activity. This is because there could be a direct link between your dog’s hair drop rate and its health. If you are aware of how much hair your dog sheds normally, you can easily tell when shedding becomes too much. It will most likely be a sign that your dog’s health requires attention.

Excessive shedding can be a warning signal for allergies, liver malfunction, kidney disease, cancer, fungal and bacterial infections, and stress. Once it is noticed, seeking the help of a vet is the best option. 

Are Cocker Spaniels Hypoallergenic?

Hypoallergenic dogs are dogs that don’t shed. Based on this definition, the cocker spaniel is deemed non-hypoallergenic.

Breeds like the Maltese, poodle and bichon frise are deemed hypoallergenic. However, no breed is actually completely hypoallergenic; it is just that some breeds shed very little.

Apart from shedding little to no hair, a major theory about hypoallergenic dogs is not triggering allergies. This, however, has been faulted by experts, who have stated that fur plays a minor role in triggering allergies.

Cocker Spaniels and Allergies

Dogs deemed hypoallergenic based on their low shedding rates have been reported to cause allergies. Dog saliva and urine are also the major causes of allergies. These two, along with dander, contain proteins that trigger allergies.

Dander is dead skin cells. The higher the shedding rate of a dog, the more dander is produced. It can lead to parasitic and bacterial infections and is the reason why shedding connects to allergies.

However, it is worthy of note that dander is not as big a threat as dog saliva and urine. Dogs considered hypoallergenic could be responsible for more allergic attacks than non-hypoallergenic ones like the cocker spaniel. If you are worried about avoiding allergic reactions, your cocker spaniel’s fur should be the least of your worries, compared to saliva and urine.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Which dog breeds don’t shed?

Hypoallergenic dogs are dog breeds that do not shed, although there are no dogs that are 100% hypoallergenic. Some people prefer or go for hypoallergenic dogs to reduce allergies.

Poodles, Afghan Hounds, American Hairless Terriers, Bedlington Terriers, Bichon Frise, Brussels Griffon, Cairn Terrier, Chinese crested, Coton de Tulear, the Irish Water Spaniel, Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier, are all hypoallergenic dogs (they do not shed much).

Do Cocker spaniels smell?

Yes, Cocker spaniels do smell. Every dog has a scent peculiar to its breed. It could be attributed to many factors; it could be because of heavy secretion from the sebaceous gland, result of a skin infection, an allergy, bad breath, sweat, flatulence, ear infection, and smelly anal sacs.

You can take care of this smell by visiting your vet, brushing your dog’s coat frequently, bathing your dog with a natural shampoo for dogs, and using puppy perfume. Clean your dog’s teeth and change its beddings regularly too.

Do English Cocker Spaniels shed?

Yes. English Cocker Spaniels shed, but they do so moderately. They are not heavy shedders. Ultimately, the amount of shedding varies for each dog. Grooming your Cocker Spaniel helps keep your dog’s coat clean and comfortable. Bath and brush your dog severally every week to keep your dog from shedding around the house.

When will my Cocker Spaniel lose its puppy coat?

Cocker Spaniel puppies generally lose their puppy coats between 4-6 months of age. This time frame may vary; yours might start losing its puppy coat at 12 weeks, while another might wait till it’s one year old.

When this change happens, it rarely goes unnoticed because they tend to shed more fur and more often than usual.

How often do I brush the hair of my Cocker spaniel?

Generally, it would be best to brush your Cocker Spaniel at least every three days to keep them looking neat. You can start brushing your dog every three days if you are not quite certain of a routine yet. You should brush your Cocker spaniel more often than every three days if you live in the countryside and enjoy long walks with your dog.

Do Cockapoos shed?

Yes. Cockapoos shed, although not as much as other breeds. There is a chance that your dog might shed more than other cockapoos, the reason being that it may take more genes from either parent as it’s a crossbreed. Your Cockapoo should be groomed regularly, according to its coat type.

At what age do Cocker Spaniels get their full coat?

Just like human growth, you can’t know for sure when your Cocker will get its full coat. A Cocker’s full coat begins to grow somewhere between 4-6 months. Usually, at this period, you will notice lots of hair in your dog’s brush when you groom him.

While you wait for its coat to grow in, groom your dog regularly. Also, you can include Omega 3 and 6 supplements in your Cocker’s diet for healthy and shiny skin.

Are Cocker Spaniels low shedders?

All Cocker Spaniels are moderate shedders, they are not the heaviest, but they shed to some degree. The amount of shedding varies from dog to dog, depending on age, fur color, and other factors. For this reason, they require regular grooming and brushing, so that their coat remains clean and un-matted. This will keep your dog comfortable, healthy, and happy.

Can I use metal Combs to brush Cocker Spaniels?

Yes, metal combs are ideal for brushing Cocker Spaniels. They can penetrate deep into the coats to remove dead or loose hair. When doing this, be very careful not to exert pressure, so you don’t scratch your dog’s delicate skin. You could also opt for slicker brushes or metal pin brushes to get the work done.

How big do Cocker Spaniels get?

It depends. Generally, Cocker Spaniels are relatively small (and beautiful). An average Cocker Spaniel grows to about 14-15 inches and weighs about 26-35 pounds (12-16 kg).

Do not overfeed your dog so it won’t become overweight. Your cocker spaniel should not weigh more than 30 pounds.

Do all Cocker Spaniels lose hair the same way?

No. All Cocker Spaniels do not lose hair the same way, and they shed at different rates. One might seem to shed more than the other. Age, breed, and fur color are some factors that determine how much shedding your dog will do. Proper grooming and care also play a significant role in how much hair your dog sheds. Regular grooming and brushing leave your dog feeling relaxed. It also reduces shedding, leaving you with a clean, happy, and comfortable dog.


Cocker spaniels were originally used as hunting dogs for a long time until their potential as worthy companions began to come to the fore. Over the years, they’ve become one of the cutest and friendliest pet choices for homes.

But cuteness isn’t all that matters. How much a dog shed has become a topic of great concern for dog keepers. This is because heavy shedders can pose both hygiene and allergy problems, diminishing their likeability in the eyes of their owners.

For cocker spaniels, their moderate (sometimes low) shedding rate is easy to cope with, especially as there are steps that can effectively reduce how much of a mess their hairs can pose to your home.

When it comes to their contribution to allergic reactions, their shedding rate isn’t a major concern. Just like any other dog, their saliva and urine are the major agents of possible allergies rather than their fur.