Cocker Spaniels have a dense coat that can grow quite long and requires frequent grooming and trimming. You will need to do this at least once per month if you don’t want your dog to turn in a great ball of fur. It would be best if you start grooming your dog while he is still a puppy, as he will get used to it more easily, and you really don’t want to have to groom a dog that struggles and fights you on every step of the way.
First you’ll want to brush his coat. Do this softly, as the hairs of his coat can get entangled, and pulling on them too hard or too abruptly might hurt your dog. When you do come across entangled hair (and you definitely will) try to gently pull it apart with the brush. If it refuses to budge, as it often might, untangle it with your fingers. You should use the brushing stage to check your dog’s skin for small wounds, irritations or parasites. If you find some damages to its skin remember where they are, and apply antibiotic cream to them after the bath.
You should bathe your dog with the mildest shampoo that you can find, and take good care to completely rinse it out after the dog is bathed. If there is any shampoo left it will cause skin irritation. You should then dry your dog with a towel and either let him dry out naturally, if you are in a relatively warm room, where he won’t risk catching cold, or use a blow dryer. Just make sure that the air coming out of it is not too hot. Check the dog’s ears for filth or parasites. It is generally a good idea to use antibiotic ear wash, as it will prevent otherwise common ear infections.
After the bath you will need to trim your dog’s fur. You decide to trim the rest of his fur to a medium length, or to give him a short puppy cut. Either way you’ll want to clipper his ears. You should hold the ear flat and clipper the top third of the ears overall length. Once you have finished with the rest of the ear, make sure to give the ends of the ears a rounded shape.
Regular grooming is imperative with this breed, if you don’t have the time, or you feel that you lack the skills to do it properly, hire a professional, either way don’t neglect this part of dog care as you will soon come to regret it if you do.