As the name implies, it is believed that Spaniels are originally from Spain. However, French and English breeders are credited for the further development of this breed. In the 1600s, Spaniels were categorized based on their weight, size and function. These dogs were then again divided into more specific categories defining whether they were water or land Spaniels. The short-legged land Spaniel is known today as the Cocker Spaniel. 
Cocker Spaniels make excellent household pets, but can also be trained for field work, agility and obedience competitions, and conformation show rings. These dogs are bred to have sturdy and compact bodies with wavy coats. In addition to their impressive level of endurance, these dogs are also known to be fast runners.
Cocker Spaniels have enjoyed popularity for decades because of their merry and kind temperament. These loving and gentle dogs want nothing more than to please their owners and make them happy. Also, they are considered to be trustworthy even in the presence of children.
Furthermore, they are intelligent dogs that thrive on being a part of the family. These small dogs are often happy and active. They are known to adapt easily to their environment and are very affectionate by nature.
For potential Cocker Spaniel owners, it is worth noting that this breed can be a bit nervous. Even if your dog has been trained to socialize, he or she may exhibit accidental urination due to excitement. Furthermore, because this dog was trained to hunt, owners should not be surprised at their dog’s enthusiasm for chasing anything that moves.
This dog can thrive in an apartment or a house without a backyard. Unlike other dog breeds, the Cocker Spaniel is noted for its soft personality. However, they may become fearful if their owners are not gentle and kind. Cocker Spaniels are known for their physical and mental sensitivity. It is for this reason that they do not respond well to harsh treatment. They have a tendency for barking or snapping at those who cause them fear. The Cocker Spaniel requires training and strong leadership in order to be the ideal pet. 
Potential owners of the Cocker Spaniel should also be aware that this breed requires substantial grooming. Indeed, these dogs are recommended to be fully groomed every 6 to 8 weeks. 
A Cocker Spaniel can live for more than ten years.
 Nikki Riggsbee, Training Your Cocker Spaniel (Barron’s Educational Series, 2008).
 Joan Hustace Walker, Cocker Spaniels (Barron’s Educational Series, 2010).
 Liz Palika, Cocker Spaniel: Your Happy Healthy Pet (John Wiley & Sons, 2009).