The English Cocker Spaniel is a breed of gun dog. The English Cocker Spaniel is an active, good-natured, sporting dog standing well up at the withers and compactly built. There are 'field' or 'working' cockers and 'show' cockers. It is one of several varieties of spaniel and somewhat resembles its American cousin, the American Cocker Spaniel, although it is closer to the working-dog form of the Field Spaniel and the English Springer Spaniel.
Outside the US, the breed is usually known simply as the Cocker Spaniel, as is the American Cocker Spaniel within the US. The word cocker is commonly held to stem from their use to hunt woodcock.
The English Cocker Spaniel is a sturdy, compact, well-balanced dog. It has a characteristic expression showing intelligence and alertness. Its eyes should be dark and its lobular ears should reach 'a bit past' the tip of the nose when pulled forward. Today, a significant difference in appearance exists between field-bred and conformation show-bred dogs. The Cocker's tail is customarily docked in North America. In countries where docking is legal, the tail is generally docked at about 4–5 inches (10–13 cm) in field-bred dogs while show dogs generally are docked closer to the body. Docking is now illegal in Australia, South Africa and Scotland. In England and Wales, docking can only be carried out on dogs where the owners have proved that the dogs will be used as working or shooting dogs.
The breed standard indicates that the males of the breed are on average between 15.5–16 inches (39–41 cm) at the withers with the females a little smaller, growing to between 15–15.5 inches (38–39 cm). Both males and females of the breed weigh approximately 13–14.5 kilograms (29–32.0 lb). American Cocker Spaniels are smaller, with the males being on average between 14.25–15.5 inches (36.2–39 cm), and females again being smaller on average at between 13.5–14.5 inches (34–37 cm), both weighing approximately 11–13 kilograms (24–29 lb). The closely related English Springer Spaniels are larger than either types of cockers, growing to between 19–19.75 inches (48–50.2 cm) for the females, and 19.25–20 inches (48.9–51 cm) for the males, and weighing between 23–25 kilograms (51–55 lb).
The English Cocker Spaniel is similar to the English Springer Spaniel and at first glance the only major difference is the larger size of the Springer. However English Cockers also tend to have longer, and lower-set ears than English Springers. In addition Springers also tend to have a longer muzzle, their eyes are not as prominent and the coat is less abundant.
Source of information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_Cocker_Spaniel
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