are cocker spaniels better in pairs

Are Cocker spaniels better in pairs?

Many people that have a Cocker spaniel will, at some point think about getting another dog and, most likely another Cocker spaniel.

If you are one of these people then we have few pointers for you and things that you’ll need to consider.


Cocker spaniels do like the company of other dogs and they definitely enjoy having another Cocker around. Two Cocker spaniels living together will play, sleep and enjoy each other’s company but, there is also a risk of fighting and bad habits forming if you are not careful. If you are struggling to look after one Cocker then getting a second Cocker (or any other dog ) is not a good idea.

are cocker spaniels better in pairs

Before you make a final decision take some time to consider a few things:

  • It is often best to get a puppy when you look for your second Cocker. Adult dogs tend to adjust better to puppies as opposed to older dogs and this will make things easier for your first spaniel and you.
  • You’ll need to think about the sex of the second dog. If your first spaniel is male and you don’t intend to have puppies then a good choice would be to get a second male dog.
  • Cocker spaniels of the same sex get along well with each other although males can sometimes have disagreements which can result in fighting – so be prepared.
  • Do you have the room? Can you accommodate a second spaniel?
  • Can you afford it? Not just the initial cost of buying the dog. You will need to consider ongoing costs which include feeding, vaccinations, vets bills, insurance and maybe other costs too.
  • Do you have the time? If you have one Cocker already then you will have an understanding of the needs of the breed in terms of exercise, training, stimulation etc.

Benefits of having two Cocker spaniels

Getting a second Cocker can be great fun provided that you are prepared and are up for the responsibility.

There is a lot to be said for having two spaniels or for that matter two of any dog.

Two Cockers will;

  • Play together and will often watch out for each other too
  • Cockers can be vocal and therefore make good alarm type dogs warning you of visitors to the house
  • If your spaniels are working dogs then you will be more effective with your hunting and will be able to cover much more ground, more efficiently than you could with a single dog.
  • You will have more options for playtime and, if you have children then another spaniel will become part of the gang quite easily
  • Your spaniel training will take on an extra dimension and you will be able to be more creative and challenging with your training exercises

Disadvantages of having two Cockers

There are very few things to worry about, however you will need to:

  • Make sure that you introduce the new dog into the household carefully and ensure that the ‘first’ dog is not pushed out
  • Cost – two dogs cost twice as much as one
  • Training – if you get a second dog then you’ll need to go back to basic training with him/her – for many this can be arduous but, for most, spaniel training is fun and this won’t be too problematic
  • Illness – aside from the obvious vet fees for treatment, if one dog gets ill then you’ll need to be careful to ensure that the second dog does not catch the illness
  • Your house – if your spaniels live inside then you may find that you have less bed or furniture space as they ‘relax. You may also experience more dog hairs as they moult.
  • They will teach each other bad habits. Just like children, the older spaniel will ‘teach’ the youngster bad habits. Often these are not bad, just a bit mischievous.


Whatever your final decision always take the time to consider how you will find the time and energy to look after a second Cocker spaniel and don’t make a hasty decision.

Think about the costs, the time and the long term commitment that you make when you get a dog.

Having two spaniels is great fun and you’ll have another active and lively character living with you that you’ll need to look after for many years if you decide to go ahead.