Cocker Spaniel Adoption - Go For It!

Cocker spaniel adoption is becoming more and more popular, and it’s hardly surprising is it? Just take a look at them; they’re beautiful and with such a loving temperament, who could resist?  Why not let me try to persuade you to adopt a Cocker Spaniel before you decide to buy a puppy?

5 Excellent Reasons To Adopt A Cocker Spaniel!

Dog adoption is becoming increasingly popular, and it's just as well because there are literally thousands of dogs abandoned by their owners each year, and the reasons for re-homing are not all bad.

Reasons why a dog may need to be rehomed are explained below).

American Cocker Spaniel, buff coloured, with sign around his neck asking to be adopted, so cute!

Whilst Cocker Spaniel puppies sometimes find their way into rescue shelters, it's not often, but when they do, they don't hang around for very long. It's usually adult Cockers that are left waiting for forever homes.

Most vets refuse to euthanize an otherwise healthy animal which means that many pets end up in Cocker Spaniel rescue centres, animal shelters, and adoption centres across the country.

And there they sit, confused and sometimes frightened, and simply wait for someone to choose them and take them to their 'forever home'.

I'm sure there are many more than five reasons to adopt a Cocker Spaniel, but here are the five I promised!

1 Cocker Spaniel Adoption: You're Saving A Dog's Life!

Unfortunately, not all rescue centres are able to house their dogs indefinitely because of limited funds and resources. Unfortunately, this often (but not always) means they're forced to put the poor animal to sleep if it's not re-homed quickly.

If you adopt a pet, you could well be saving his life - literally - and in my book, that's one very good reason to adopt a dog!

2 Cocker Spaniel Adoption: You're Saving Money!

If you adopt a cocker spaniel, you'll be saving yourself a whole heap of cash!

Because adopting is cheaper than buying a dog from a breeder, it makes it much more affordable.

You'll also save in vet's fees because a rescue dog will have already been checked over by a vet, (so you can be certain he's fit and healthy) and he'll be up to date with his vaccinations too.

The dog is more than likely to have been wormed and treated for parasites and may have been spayed or neutered, and I know from experience that this can save you hundreds!

Your new pet may even be micro-chipped too!

3 Cocker Spaniel Adoption: He's The Finished Article!

When you rescue an adult dog, you'll know exactly what you're getting; he'll be the 'finished article'.

He'll be fully house-trained, probably crate trained too, have learned how to walk to heel or on a leash, and will probably have passed his obedience training, hopefully with flying colours!

Your adopted Cocker will have already been socialized and will be comfortable around most types of people and in most circumstances - very little flusters a dog that's been properly socialized.

He'll have grown through the puppy phase (so no chewing or nipping) and because he's older, he may be slowing down and less energetic and not so phased by kids, especially if his previous home involved children.

He's been there, done that, and is now ready to be your new 'best buddy'.

4 Cocker Spaniel Adoption: Side-lining Puppy Mills!

By adopting a Cocker Spaniel (or any dog for that matter) you won't be supporting puppy mills.

These mills (also known as puppy farms) are breeding factories where the puppies are churned out at a frightening rate. The owners don't care about the welfare of either dogs or puppies (who are very often kept in terrible conditions) and these people are in business simply for the profit!

You can usually spot a puppy farmer a mile off, however, sometimes it's not that obvious unless you know what to look for.

5 Cocker Spaniel Adoption: Developed Temperament

A puppy's temperament has yet to develop, making it difficult to appreciate how they are going to behave around children or other household pets.

Whereas, an adult Cocker's characteristics and temperament will be fully developed, allowing the staff at the dog adoption centre to assess personalities and recommend a Spaniel with a temperament and disposition that will suit you and your family circumstances perfectly.

If you've never owned a dog before, this is ideal.

Why Do Owners Abandon Their Pets?

You may well ask how anyone could ever abandon their own pet, but there are often many circumstances which can lead to a dog ending up in a pound.

Some of these reasons are understandable, some not so understandable, but they're always tragic and unfortunate.

For example:

  • The owner may no longer be fit enough, either because of old age or ill health, to continue looking after their pet, making cocker spaniel adoption their only option;

  • Redundancy or a sudden change in financial circumstances may mean they can no longer afford to keep their pet;

  • A change in job may result in the need for extensive travel or to stay away from home for long periods of time. If they're unable to take their pets with them, what then?

  • Sometimes a couple will take on a puppy as a baby substitute, without giving too much thought about its needs, only to later realize that it's not as easy as they first thought. They then decide that they no longer want to keep the puppy and give it away to a cocker spaniel adoption centre;

  • The same scenario may apply if a couple decides to split up. When families break apart it's not only the children that suffer, pets do too!
Black American cocker spaniel endorsing dog adoption! The photo is taken against a white background.Am I adopted, Mum?
  • Sadly, sometimes the owner dies, and the immediate family don't want, or can't take the dog and it ends up in a rescue centre. That's one very good reason for making arrangements for someone to take care of your pet in unforeseen circumstances;

  • Pets can and do get lost. If they're not chipped or without a collar and tag, it will be impossible to return them to their owners;

  • In today's sterile world, people seem to be developing allergies to all sorts of things, including their pets. Sometimes the allergies are so bad it makes living with their pet impossible. If they can't be re-homed within the family, sometimes they have no option but to give the dog up;

  • Cocker Spaniel adoption centres are often very busy after Christmas. Puppies are very often given as birthday or Christmas presents without any real thought about the person who'll be taking on the responsibility of caring for it. Often, in these circumstances, the puppy is returned or abandoned;

  • If the owner fails to train the dog properly it can lead to behavioural problems which the owner is unable or unwilling to manage. The same could apply to a dog that suffers separation anxiety and who becomes destructive in the owners absence;

The bottom line is that 99% of all Cocker Spaniels in adoption centres are there as a result of their owner's circumstances, NOT because there is a problem with the dog.

  • The family pet has puppies (which they can't afford to keep) and so the puppies are either given to unsuitable homes (and later end up in a dog adoption centre) or taken straight to the animal pound;

  • The family may move abroad and don't want the bother of arranging a pet passport and/or transportation for the family pet;

  • Moving to an apartment or rented accommodation that isn't pet friendly.

Very often, people think that dogs in adoption centres are there because they're unmanageable or have behavioural problems. We've seen from the above that this is not always the case and that there are many different reasons why Spaniels are abandoned by their owners.

Cocker Spaniel Adoption Sources

A good source of pets for adoption can be offered online. These sites can often list thousands of dogs in their database, with accurate, up-to-date information on dog rescue centres, by breed.

There are many adoption centres both in the USA and the UK and they can easily be found by doing a web search for terms such as: cocker spaniel adoption, dog adoption centre, adopt a cocker spaniel, adopt a dog, pet adoption, etc.

A few examples of ideal Cocker Spaniel adoption opportunities are: 

The RSPCA (The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) is one of the oldest welfare charities in the UK. They strive to ensure that animals are treated kindly and lovingly, and without pain and suffering. They often initiate campaigns to educate owners and potential owners about animal care.

The Dogs Trust mission statement is 'to bring about the day when all dogs can enjoy a happy life, free from the threat of unnecessary destruction'.

Spaniel Assist is run by Dawn Clough and her team of volunteers, who are passionate about cocker spaniels and their well-being.

Google Search Box

I've added a Google search box below so that you can try for yourself. Good luck!

Additional Sources of Cocker Spaniel Adoption

Your vet may know of a Cocker that's in need of re-homing, so why not check with them first?

Keep an eye out for adverts in the local newspapers too. Occasionally, a caring owner will place an advert in a local paper or supermarket in a bid to find a new home for their beloved Cocker Spaniel, rather than place him in a rescue home.

This is likely to be a great source as this owner very obviously loves their pet and will have taken good care of him. It's also likely that this dog will be healthy, well-mannered, and without behavioural problems.

I can't endorse any particular rescue centre, but I do recommend that you 'vet' them carefully.

Not All Adopted Dogs Have Problems

I'd just like to emphasize that not all Cockers are re-homed because they are problem dogs. As you've seen above, many are placed into shelters because their owners are no longer able to care for them.

There may be one or two dogs that have been removed from an environment where they have been ill-treated or weren't socialized or trained properly. In these circumstances, the dog may well have some behavioural problems, and it's entirely possible (with lots of love and affection) to retrain these dogs.

The staff at dog adoption centres will normally have a history or at least a little background on the dog to be re-homed, and will let you know if there are any issues to be worked through.

The volunteers will do their utmost to match you with a Cocker Spaniel that will be perfect for you and your family circumstances.

Cocker Spaniel adoption is definitely the way forward, so go on, what are you waiting for?

Visitors' Stories About Cocker Spaniel Adoption

Our visitors often drop me a line to let me know about their Cocker Spaniel adoption or rescue stories, some are very sad, but mostly they have happy endings!

Here are a few of those stories for you to enjoy and if you'd like to submit your own (and a photo of your dog) just click on the link in the green box below.

Pretty In Pink

Cute cocker spaniel named Squirrel rescued by Tristin from Palmdale

Title: Squirrel
By: Tristin
From: Palmdale, CA

I rescued a partially blind Cocker Spaniel pup.  Unfortunately, she's blind in her right eye, therefore she runs in circles.  She leads with her left eye and normally walks in a counter clock-wise circle, although when she's chasing the cat she manages to run after her in a straight line!

It's been amazing to watch Squirrel grow and adapt to life and her surroundings. 

I think I'm very lucky to have been given the gift of such a sweet loving pup :)

This Is Nitro, My Cocker Spaniel Adoption Dog

Nitro, a gorgeous black cocker spaniel rescued by Lauren from New York

Title: My Life
By: Lauren Sudat
From: New York

Hi! I'm Nitro. I'm a 4 year old black Cocker Spaniel and I was rescued (from an abusive owner) from the pound.

I was very lonely at the pound but then my luck got better when I was adopted. Now I'm living the life I always wanted - thanks to my new, caring owner!

The Love That A Cocker Can Bring To A Home

Title: The Love That A Cocker Can Bring To A Home
By: Cindi O'Brien
From: Syracuse, New York

I recently rescued a five year old miniature female cocker spaniel. She is so adorable but unfortunately she's so unhealthy. 

Vet expenses are never in anyone's budget, but I don't see an end. I had to spend $1,600.00 for a blood transfusion and medications and we still have a long way to go.

Because she was neglected, I am faced with a very severe case of Cocker Ears, to the point where surgery is the only option besides putting her to sleep. It breaks my heart to have to make a decision like this, it's so unfair.  I rescued her and now I don't know what to do.  She is so sweet, (she only weighs 16 lbs) and loves to play and she never barks, what more would you want in a dog?

I have a week to decide what to do, but I have to get the bacterial infection under control first.

Wish someone could give me guidance on how to make the right decision, let alone how to pay for it, any help would be appreciated, my tears have almost dried up from the crying.

Cocker Spaniel Adoption - Princess Zoi

Cocker Spaniel rescue dog, Princess Zoi

Title: Princess Zoi
By: Lenae
From: Abington, PA USA

This Thanksgiving was a very special one - we welcomed Zoi, our 9 year old English Cocker Spaniel to our home. Whilst she is a gorgeous dog, she does have some underlying issues.

Overall, I would say she is a great dog, but she tends to do some "bad" things. These things include peeing inside when excited, wanting to eat table food and nearly rejecting dog food (mostly dry) at all costs, and not heeling during walks. While I know these things can be modified, I really want her to start listening.

She knows how to sweeten me up that's for sure.

If you'd like to read some of our visitor's Cocker Spaniel rescue stories, or you'd like to add your own, simply follow this link.

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Photo Credits for Cocker Spaniel Adoption:
1. DebbieSmirnoff at
2. WilleeCole at