Cockapoo – The Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix

Adequate exercise is the key to a happy Cocker Spaniel Poodle mix. A small, fenced yard with a comfortable home is an ideal living environment for your Cockapoo. An apartment is sufficient when a daily 15-30 minutes is spent walking, leaping and running. Locate the nearest dog park in your area where the two of you can play fetch.

Things to Know about the Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix

The Cocker Spaniel Poodle mix, commonly known as a Cockapoo, holds the ‘first designer dog’ title. Introduced in the 1950s, this loving pet displays the Cocker intelligence and loving spirit mixed with Poodle loyalty and dedication. Cockapoos like people and enjoy learning and showing off all manners of tricks. Training is simpler to achieve than with some dogs and if you do something to upset him, he’ll forgive you in no time at all.

Height is measured from the shoulder and starts at 15 inches. Average weight begins at 19 pounds. This makes him just the right size to cuddle or safely play with bigger dogs. A new occupation for the Cocker Spaniel Poodle mix is therapy dog, since he enjoys being petted and made the center of attention. It’s easy to fill his need for exercise by providing an agility course and watching him show off his antics.

The average life span is between 12 – 15 years and the dog makes the most of every minute. His cheerful zest for life makes the day better for all who come into his presence, regardless of age or species. Cockapoos celebrate even the smallest things and bring joy to your life. They require less grooming than a poodle and have the stable temperament of a Cocker.

The Cockapoo isn’t recognized by official breeding clubs like the American Kennel Club. Three United States-based clubs are focused on standardizing Cockatoo breeding:

  • American Cockapoo Club (founded 2004)
  • Cockatoo Club of America (founded 1999)
  • North American Cockapoo Registry (founded 1999)

Breeding philosophies differ, but each club believes the Cockapoo will be recognized as an official breed sometime in the future.

Origin: Mixed Heritage of the Cocker Spaniel Poodle

What’s the primary goal in designing a poodle and cocker spaniel mix? Surprisingly, it isn’t appearance, although most Cockapoos look adorable. It’s creating a good-natured healthy dog with hypoallergenic tendencies.

Cocker Spaniel: Spaniels are one of the oldest dog breeds, believed to have arrived in England during Caesar’s invasion from 54-55 BC. Their region of origin is attributed to Spain. Used to flush game like rabbits and pheasant from thick brush, the breed’s success led to training as land and water breeds. Litters usually included cocker, springer, and Sussex spaniels. The intelligent, loyal, and hard-working qualities of the dog eventually led to organized breeding criteria. In 1879, the son of a Sussex spaniel sire and field spaniel dam, Obo, became the model for modern English cocker spaniels, who are bred for the rigid work of hunting. Obo II became recognized as the father of American cocker spaniels, a smaller dog designed more for show and beauty.

Poodle: Used for hunting in France, it is thought the poodle was first used to hunt waterfowl in Germany. The classic good looks, intelligence and eagerness to please resulted in breeding smaller sizes that were carried by noble ladies. Poodles are available as Toy, Miniature and Standard. They’re easy to train, playful, and a good pet for almost everyone.

Cockapoos are a hybrid mix of the American Cocker Spaniel and a poodle. Another variety is the Spoodle, a mix of English Cocker Spaniel and poodle. Both are cute, loyal and excellent companions.


Coats of the Cocker Spaniel Poodle mix range from scruffy to fluffy and can be solid or mixed colors. It depends on inherited genes. Siblings may resemble one another or be uniquely different. Sometimes the curly poodle coat mixes in with the longer hair of the Cocker.

Colors include red, black, silver and tan.

The dog usually produces a low amount of dander and hair, with little to no shedding and a discreet doggy odor.

Cockapoos tolerate hot and cold weather.


The dog seldom barks, although he may bark a warning when someone nears the house or if left alone for a long time. Minimal barking adds to his choice as an excellent companion for humans, other dogs, and pets. His energetic, playful, affectionate attitude with children and the elderly makes the Cockapoo a good fit for first time pet or dog owners. Use positive reinforcement to get a point across. The intelligent, anxious to please cockapoo understands and responds to training goals.

Grooming the Cockapoo

Low to moderate maintenance is the norm for the Cocker Spaniel Poodle mix. Expect to provide daily brushing with an occasional bath, haircut and nail trim. Cockapoos are wrongly considered hypoallergenic because of their poodle heritage. It isn’t the coat that causes allergies, however, it is the dead skin cells regularly shed by dogs as well as humans. It is a natural occurrence and affects people in different ways. Review the history of the sire and dam to get an idea of how much likelihood there is of allergies caused by the offspring.

Health Problems Common to the Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix

Hybrid dogs inherit genetic problems from the sire and the dam. Typical health problems for cockapoos include:

  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy, a genetic order causing blindness. There is no cure.
  • Glaucoma
  • Hip dysplasia, a deformity in the hip’s joint.
  • Von Willebrand disease Type 1, a bleeding disorder that prevents clotting.

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