A cocker spaniel dog is certainly a very popular dog breed owing to its friendly nature and its playful and loving behavior.
However at times, this very loving nature and tendency to get overtly attached to humans can pose a few problems. Cocker spaniel temperament problems are few and they can be handled with relative ease if done correctly and with a consistent attitude.
Cocker spaniels, like most of the dogs instinctively follow pack rules and unless the owner establishes that he or she is the alpha leader in the family, the cocker will presume that the position is open and will invariably try to show its dominance. This is turn can lead to a few of cocker spaniel temperament problems including rude behavior, aggression and stubbornness.
One of the major issues with cocker spaniels that have to be kept in mind is that because of their incessant need for human companionship, they can have prolonged bouts of separation anxiety but there are specific modes of training including early crate training to help them overcome this. If not taken into hands, the dogs can actually suffer from depression, have mood swings, ignore playing and food and it creates an environment which is not at all conducive for either the cocker or for the owner.
Cocker spaniel temperament problems include what is particularly known as the cocker’s tendency towards the ‘rage syndrome’ in which the cocker can sometimes show angry and aggressive behavior for no reason. They usually display this behavior when they want to establish dominance, or when they are being possessive over people, toys or food. The cocker has to be taught that it is in a safe place. Respect has to be given to its eating and sleeping time as well as to its toys. It also has to be taught respect and obedience through training and the concept of sharing. This is achieved, as mentioned earlier, by the owner, being the leader and showing the cocker that he or she is the main provider to food, care and shelter, the cocker needs to know that.
Cocker spaniels also tend to have a timid behavior and one of the major problems that they develop is anxiety around strange people and strange surroundings. This is because they mainly feel unsure and unsafe and even develop the problem of submissive urination and withdraw into a shell. This can occur due to lack of proper socialization and it is very important that cocker spaniels, right from an early age are made familiar with people around them as well as dogs so that they can overcome this trait of getting intimidated and submissive at times. This is also a genuine cocker spaniel temperament problem but it can be over come easily.
It also has to be remembered that cocker spaniels, genetically, were bred as hunting dogs, and they can have possible urges of digging incessantly or chasing other animals. Therefore if one is travelling to a place, especially to farms with their cocker spaniel dos, this particular cocker spaniel temperament problem must be kept in mind, lest the cocker spaniel gets tempted to chase around other animals in a barnyard, putting the owner into a spot!
In conclusion, cocker spaniels are actually lovely, energetic and happy dogs which love to be around people and all their temperament problems are actually linked to each other. If the root cause of their behavioral issue is understood, a solution can be arrived at quite easily.