FAQ’s & FURTHER READING   
 

Frequently Asked Questions, guideline answers below.


How long is the gestation period for Cockers?


HIP score, what is it, & what do the numbers mean ?


Eye Certificate, what is this about?

DNA Testing, what is that for?

Micro Chipping?

Are there recognised training courses?

Bitch in season?

How big should a cocker be?

What is the breed standard?

What is dog showing all about?

What is a Kennel Name?

How long do cockers live?

What is the difference between a working & show cocker spaniel?

How long is the gestation period for Cockers?

From conception to birth is normally 9 weeks.

HIP score, what is it, & what do the numbers mean ?

Click the link to find out all about this rear leg hip test and what it means, from the people who do it.

Hip Dysplasia Scheme - British Veterinary Association  (click on link)

.

Eye Certificate, what is this about?

Click the link to find in depth knowledge on eye testing in dogs.

Eye Scheme - British Veterinary Association (click on link)


DNA Testing, what is that for?

DNA testing is the latest weapon for breeders to use against hereditary health threatening diseases. We can now test for PRCD a form of eye disease, and FN a fatal kidney disease. The links below are the companies that perform these tests.

Optigen (click on link)

Antagene (click on link)


Micro Chipping?

If you take your dog abroad it is essential and if you loose your dog it is an invaluable tool for tracking your dog down. A one off injection of a small transponder can then be scanned by anyone with a scanner e.g. vet, RSPCA etc. The micro chips are logged in a database run by the Kennel Club .

The Kennel Club UK - PETLOG (click on link)


Are there recognised training courses?

Training your dog is a rewarding activity. You bond with your dog and make your partnership a safer and more pleasant experience. There are courses which are accredited by the Kennel Club which are available in your area. This course is called the 'Good Citizen Dog Scheme (GCDS)'. They tend not to cost the earth and an hour a week is time well spent.

The Kennel Club UK - Training (click on link)


Bitch in season?

The bitch will normally come in season twice a year every six months. However this can be widely different especially on first seasons also like humans there are always differences. The season lasts approximately 21 days and is usually a build and down process where the bitch is most fertile at days 9 to 12 but this can be different that why vets do premate tests. Quite often the bitch will start with some appearance of blood which stops about day 9, this is the point where they will attract most attention from males. Then they slowly come out of season up to day 21.

How big should a cocker be?

Height approximately: (measured to the top of the shoulders)

Males: 15.5" to 16" (39 to 41 cms).

Females: 15" to  15.5" (38 to 39 cms).

What is the 'breed standard'?

The breed standard is a physical description which the ideal dog or bitch would match perfectly. This standard is produced by the Kennel Club see link below. This is what all breeders strive to produce.

The Kennel Club Cocker Spaniel Breed Standard


What is dog showing all about?

For pedigree dogs there are 2 types of shows 'open' & 'Championship'. All shows are based on your dog being assessed against the breed standard. No dog is a perfect match so the judge uses their discretion to decide which dog best matches the standard. There are various classes based on age and the amount of success a dog has achieved. Open shows are low cost to enter and are numerous all over the country. Championship shows are less frequent more costly but more prestigious. At championship shows the best male and female in breed are awarded a 'Challenge Certificate' (CC). If your dog gets 3 of these you have a show champion and the letters ShCh before its kennel name. Crufts is the only special case where it is a requirement to have a 1st, 2nd or 3rd place in a qualifying class at a championship show before you can enter.

What is a Kennel Name?

A kennel name is the officially logged name of a pedigree dog with the Kennel Club. It is usually made up of a few words which can tell you some information. The first word is the Breeder's affix, which is a certified name given to the breeder by the  kennel club. The next words are an individual name again ratified by the Kennel Club. Sometimes words at the end of the name maybe after the words 'at', 'for' could be the affix of a kennel who own the dog.

How long do cockers live?

The average age is about 13 years which would be expected as long as there are no serious illness/problems which occur. We have know some cockers live to 15 & 16 years old and still be reasonably healthy to the end both solids & particolours. But unfortunately some people are not as lucky and serious heath problems take their toll. We have various genetical heath screening tests conducted when we breed to eliminate as many potential problems as we can. Such as FN which kills dogs at about 18 months and PRA which can make dogs go blind at about 4 for particolours and about 9 for solids. Also knowing your pedigree lines and finding complimentary stud partners helps.

What is the difference between a working & show cocker spaniel?

Working cocker spaniels are bred from different lines to show cockers. They are bred for working to the gun in hedgerows etc.  This is not exclusive, but mainly show cockers are not worked with some exceptions. As the working & showing cockers have separated the type of dog has changed thus working cockers tend to be very high spirited, longer in body, higher set ears and thinner snouts. i.e. different from the show cocker breed standard but great at their job on shoots. Likewise the show cocker looks fantastic but has not been used in working environment with some exceptions.  This is why cockers in the show ring if exceptional can become ShCh (show champion) they have to win in completely separate working dog trials to gain Ch (champion) status. This has not been achieved for many years. This is not to say it can't happen but it requires a lot of time and experience in totally different fields.


 
Here is a list of good reading titles which we have found very useful on
. Click on the picture for the link.
 

FURTHER READING

Cocker Spaniel (Derek Shapland)
 
Cocker Spaniel (English) (George Caddy)
 
Cocker Spaniel (Haja Van Wessem)
 
Book of the Bitch (J. M. Evans & Kay White)
 
Cocker Spaniels - An Owners Companion  (Jennifer Lloyd Carey)
 
Cocker Spaniels Today (Joyce Caddy)
 
Pet Owner's Guide to the Cocker Spaniel (Frank Kane)
 
Collins Cocker Spaniel - An Owner's Guide (Lesley Scott-Ordish, John & Caroline Bower)