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5 Things To Know Before You Adopt a Cocker Spaniel

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Overall, Cocker Spaniels are physically sound pets. You can expect your Cocker Spaniel to live 12 to 15 years, but health problems may occur in later years. With advanced age, your Cocker Spaniel will be prone to heart, liver or kidney failure, as well as cancer. Although rare, younger dogs are sometimes affected by inherited conditions, such as progressive retinal atrophy. This genetic disease can crop up when Cockers hit the five-year mark and causes them to become blind. Other troubling genetic maladies include cataracts (which require expensive surgical correction), fatal kidney failure and hip dysplasia.

Cocker Spaniels are susceptible to food allergies. So if your new friend has itchy ears and feet, diet may be to blame. To get to the root of the problem, feed simple meals of one starch and one protein (ask your veterinarian where to find specialized foods). Then slowly add one new food every two months until the culprit is revealed. Some of the most common offenders are beef, chicken, corn, wheat, soy, milk and eggs.

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