Are Cocker Spaniels Good Guard Dogs? |True Or False?

  • By: Justin
  • Date: April 26, 2022
  • Time to read: 7 min.

Have you ever seen the movie, The Lady and The Tramp? well if you did, then you have to know, that the gorgeous female dog in this movie, is nonetheless a Cocker Spaniel breed.

There is so much that describes this breed. But, what stands out the most is their Charming, agile, and sporty character.

Furthermore, they are also known for their hunting instincts. But, with that being said. Are Cocker Spaniels Good Guard Dogs?

Below, I have found many answers to many questions. Doing extensive research, to help you in your journey to discover more about the cocker spaniel guarding skills, if any.

So, continue reading below.

Are Cocker Spaniels Good Guard Dogs?

Are Cocker Spaniels Good Guard Dogs?

Unfortunately, Cocker Spaniel does not make a good guard dog. Because, guarding requires a dog with a high level of intelligence, body, bite power, size, and high level of aggression. All which Cocker Spaniel does not possess.

This breed has a high-level instinct for hunting. which also makes them great for retrieving.

And with that being said, is not unlikely for you to see a cocker spaniel, on your favorite hunting trips.

They absolutely love, going after any rodents, birds, ducks, or anything small they can catch.

Cocker spaniels are somewhat protective, and some of them suffer from mood swings, which make them somewhat aggressive. And, guarding does require a high level of aggression and power.

Cocker Spaniels Temperament

If I could describe with one word Cockers Spaniel’s temperament, it would definitely be, Easy-going! According to the AKC (American Kennel Club), This breed is just a bundle of joy.

But, there is so much more to this breed than meets the eye.

If not trained properly they are somewhat aggressive, and they absolutely love barking at strangers from the comfort of their home.

Which makes them great for alerting.

They are also affectionate, and friendly. They are loving with both people and other dogs, even big ones.

On the other hand, this breed can tend to be possessive of their food, or favorite toys.

Are Female Or Male Cocker Spaniels More Protective?

Male Cocker Spaniels are naturally more dominant than females. They are, therefore, more protective than females.

They are more territorial, have more energy, and are more alert than females.

Are Cocker Spaniels Protective Of Owners?

When it comes to their home, they can be very alert.

They would bark at any little noise coming from outside, to let their owner know someone is coming or something is roaming around.

But, when it comes to protecting their owner, not so much. They are not likely to be trained for guarding.

Are Cocker Spaniels Police Dogs?

It is known that The English Cocker Spaniel, is commonly used in law enforcement as a good sniffer.

They are also a popular choice for search and rescue. Because of their naturally enhanced smell ability.

Not to mention the high level of energy they possess.

How Aggressive Are Cocker Spaniels?

While they make a good family dog, they can tend to show aggressive and passive behaviors.

Especially if not trained correctly.

It is important to train them while young because once the Cocker Spaniel reaches adulthood, it will become very stubborn and difficult to handle.

However, if trained properly they make just a beautiful sweet companion and playful buddy.

Are Cocker Spaniels Easy To Train?

Yes. As I pointed out earlier, Cocker Spaniels rank among the world’s top 20 most intelligent dogs. They are very easy to train.

They are eager learners, enjoy pleasing their owners, and respond well to positive reinforcement.

However, it is easier to train a puppy than an adult. Adult dogs are very difficult to train, especially when they have developed some bad habits that will be hard for you to change.

So while this breed is easy to train, you want to start when they are still young.

Do Cocker Spaniels Need A Lot Of Exercise?

Yes. Cocker Spaniels are very energetic dogs that require a lot of exercise. They have strong hunting instincts, so they will need to use that energy somewhere if not given enough opportunity to do so.

If you want an active dog, this breed is for you.

They will need at least one hour of exercise daily. It is advisable to spread the exercise time across the day. Have a few walks with the dog and a few training sessions.

Let them sniff around and allow them some minutes of off-lead exercises to spend their extra energy.

Cockers enjoy anything that involves physical activity, so you can take them for jogs or bike rides as well.

They love to be around their owner, and it is very easy to make exercise fun with these dogs because they are eager learners.

Are Cocker Spaniels Good Jumpers?

Yes. They are very good jumpers. Their energy levels make them easier to jump almost on everything, even over fences or walls when they feel the urge to run around outside their yard.

This may be a problem if you do not have high enough gates in your home, but it is also an advantage because these dogs can reach places that other breeds cannot get to.

They also jump to show affection, especially when they want to get on your lap. And, cuddle.

Do Cocker Spaniels Bark A Lot?

This breed of dog is quite a notorious one when it comes to barking. They easily respond to situations and stimuli, so they are quick to bark when there are changes in their environment.

They will also start barking if they feel threatened or challenged by someone, especially strangers.

Although, they are very trusting and friendly to people right away. They may bark to familiar people who come out of the blue, and surprise them.

Because these dogs have a naturally suspicious nature.

This can be a good trait, especially when used for alerting. However, it can also become a nuisance if the dog starts barking randomly and at the slightest provocation.

Proper training, however, will allow you to teach your dog when barking is an acceptable response and when it isn’t.

Are Cocker Spaniels High Maintenance?

When it comes to grooming, cocker spaniels are very high maintenance. They have long, silky coats that will need regular daily brushing to keep them tangle-free and beautiful.

The amount of hair this breed produces is huge, so they will also require frequent bathing sessions with shampoo for smooth coat dogs (and not waterless shampoos).

You may want to give your Cocker a quick brush after a walk to ensure there is nothing stuck in their fur.

This breed also tends to develop ear infections because of the long, floppy ears that do not allow for good air circulation inside them.

If you notice your dog tilting its head more than usual or shaking it frequently, it may be experiencing some discomfort, and infection is likely present so take it to the vet immediately.

Cockers also have very deep eyes that require proper cleaning and care, especially when they get older and develop problems with their vision (this breed is known to be prone to glaucoma).

They may need daily face wiping or cotton swabs if you notice tears accumulating in the corner of their eyes.

Is A Cocker Spaniel A Good Family Dog?

Yes. This dog is happy, likes to be involved in every family activity, and is very good with kids and other pets.

They are also very playful and affectionate. They are intelligent, easy to train, and will do whatever it takes to please their owners so they can get lots of treats or praise.

This breed is also very energetic, making them the perfect partner for active families who like exercising with their dog by jogging in parks or taking long walks regularly.

What Is Bad About Cocker Spaniels?

Cockers, especially the American breed, can have very unstable temperaments, so they may be unpredictable and aggressive at times.

Socialization from a young age is important to ensure that the dog learns how to interact with strangers in a proper, calm manner.

Cocker Spaniels can easily become bored if they are left alone for too long without human interaction.

Because of their high energy level and tendency to suffer from separation anxiety.

These dogs are also prone to obesity. They need a proper diet and lots of exercise so they can stay fit, healthy, and beautiful for as long as possible.

Cockers have very sensitive skin, which may become irritated if exposed for too long to the sun or cold weather without protection (such as clothing).

This breed is not suitable for outdoor living when the weather is extreme.

Do Cocker Spaniels Love Their Owners?

Yes, cocker spaniels can be very loving and affectionate to their owners.

They will wag their tails when they see their owners and express happiness. They are also very playful dogs that love to play fetch or chase a ball with the owner. This makes the cocker spaniel a great family dog.

They also enjoy spending time with the children in the family.

Final Thoughts

Cocker Spaniels can’t make very good guard dogs. However, they can become your perfect companion or family dog if well-trained from an early age, If you have the time for this breed.

Proper training is required to teach them when barking is a reasonable response and when it isn’t.

Hopefully, this article has been helpful to you. Feel free to leave a comment below.

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If you’re looking for more guard dogs resources, consider checking out our other post on guard dogs.

Justin- Writer & Chief Editor of


Justin is a protection dog enthusiast. He has years of experience teaching and training dogs. He enjoys sharing what he’s learned. Read More

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