Wanting to Add Dog

Updated on March 03, 2008
S.M. asks from Gilbert, AZ
35 answers

Hi,
We are thinking about adding onto our family with a new puppy or young small dog.
We are thinking about either a cocker spaniel or Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.
We have a 3 yr old boy and a senior gentle lab. Anyone have any advice? Good or bad experiances with either breed? Advice on where we could rescue either of these breeds?
Adding a doh is huge so we are really trying to get all the info we can.
Thanks,
S.

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So What Happened?

Thanks everyone,
We did take the advice of the majority, did more research and decided against a cocker,
We are now looking into a rescue Cavalier King Charles or fostering one . We are hoping to find a young one, maybe 1 or 2yrs old.
We are also looking into small breed mutts at the pound.
So if anyone knows of one of those type dogs that needs a home, let me know.
Thanks

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G.H.

answers from Phoenix on

Growing up I had a Cocker Spanial, we had other dogs also, but he was the best. When we get settled I'm getting one for my kids.

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C.B.

answers from Phoenix on

I have always had 'if-fy' experiences with spaniels and children. I would like to throw up another idea - Golden Doodle. A golden retriever and poodle. They do not shed and are good watch dogs but super gentle with children. My toddler rolls and lays all over him and he is very patient and gentle.

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R.W.

answers from Phoenix on

I have heard that spaniels are more likely to bite. I would recommend something more like a beagle. Spaniels are snappy dogs and don't liked to be bothered a whole lot.

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J.N.

answers from Eugene on

Hi S.. I don't know about the breeds, I have heard good things about Cockers. I am emailing to answer your question about rescue. www.petfinder.com you put in what kind of pet you want and your zip code and you will find thousands of dogs in this area that need a forever home. You can read about the dogs personality, see pictures, and talk to the foster family about him.
J.

Keep your home safe for your kids,be good to the planet...
GO GREEN Get Clean
www.shaklee.net/greenplanet

1 mom found this helpful

T.C.

answers from Albuquerque on

AKC has a great website. I was curious about French Bulldogs, and they referred me to a Fr.Bldg. site that had a, "Is this dog right for you?" quiz on it.

We have friends who love cockers, but for some reason, all their dogs have submissive-urination problems -- I have no idea why.

Some other friends had an older cocker before they had kids (4) so she was a bit calmer than a puppy would have been.

I love cockers and CKC's, but have never owned either one myself. I think dogs and kids are a great match, but lots of extra work, especially if you want a well-behaved dog.

Have fun! T

1 mom found this helpful
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S.B.

answers from Phoenix on

Forget the cocker. Having had various breeds since I was six years old (now 45) I can honestly say they are by far the dumbest breed I have ever had. They can not be left alone for more than a couple of hours without making a mess. I don't know anything about the spaniel breed. I would recommend a golden retriever and there is a rescue here in AZ
http://www.golden-retriever.org/
and here is a rescue where you can ask for any breed.
http://adopt-a-golden-retriever.1-800-save-a-pet.com/
HTH

1 mom found this helpful
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T.C.

answers from Phoenix on

WE love our two labs although at the puppy stage they can be a handful. If you are wanting a different breed I would carefully research the temprament of that breed and how much exercise they need.

You might also consider adopting from a breed rescue group. We adopted our first lab when he was 6 months old from www.dlrrphoenix.org. They do labs and you can get a good idea of the dogs personality BEFORE you choose. They carefully evaluate the pets and the owners before adoption.

I know other breeds have rescue sites too. Just Google.

T. C.
Spa Girlfriend Parties
www.spaescapescottsdale.com

1 mom found this helpful
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C.F.

answers from Phoenix on

S.,

I do not know much about spaniels, but I have two labrador retrievers and know that as a breed they are one of the best to have around children, as long as they are trained accordingly. Labs are loveable and they are extremely gentle. I would suggest a female as they are more nurturing and less territorial so-to-speak. I have had labradors for over 10 years, one male and the two females... females are easier, and gentler. good choice to go with one that is a bit older and hopefully house trained etc. Another piece of advice if I may; with whatever dog you choose, be sure your child can tug on its ears, tail, etc. and the dogs disposition can handle it and is playful not easily angered.

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A.L.

answers from Phoenix on

Hi S.,
My family loves labs, we've had two, both a male and a female and while the puppy stage can be long it is so worth it! In my opinion they are the best family dog. We've also had a female cocker spaniel, she was probably the prettiest dog I had ever seen but was very difficult to train and would urinate whenever the door bell rang. With two kids in diapers I couldn't have a dog that was having 5+ "accidents" a day for me to clean up. Our vet helped us place her for adoption with a loving family who had raised cockers in the past. So, unless you are a very patient woman who doesn't mind cleaning up animal urine indefinaelty steer clear of the cocker. Good luck and congrats on your new addition!

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J.M.

answers from Flagstaff on

I had a cocker spaniel when I was a kid back in the dark ages, but a friend who is a vet tech told me that they can have something called "spaniel rage" and just go crazy so you need to check this out.

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D.P.

answers from Phoenix on

i don't know about specific breeds, but i do know you probably want to go with a puppy with having your three year old. When i was looking for cats, I thought maybe an older cat was ok, but when I took my daughter with me, I found it was best to get a kitten. Take your son and make sure the dog doesn't mind him or actually even likes him, it'll be worth it! :o)

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K.K.

answers from Albuquerque on

Just by working with alot of breeds. Spanials are pretty snappy especially with children. I'm a big fan of labs and beagles for children, even rotties are really good with kids. good luck on your decision.

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J.R.

answers from Tucson on

I had a cocker spaniel as a kid and I loved her. One challenge with that breed though is they tend to pee a little when excited. I am actually looking at getting a king Charles spaniel the next time we get a dog. I would find a breeder and take your son there to see how he does with the breed-- is he the type of kid that would do well with a gentle smaller dog- or would a gentle lab be a better fit.. ask your self those types of questions. Good Luck!!

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A.M.

answers from Phoenix on

Make sure to do your research. I also bought a puppy when our daughter was 2 and the best breed recomendation was a Shitzu. We purchased a black and white Shitzu and he has been wonderful. Very quiet, dosen't bark much, didn't bite or chew things up and easy to train. I'm not sure adding another dog to your family when the lab has been the dominate one in the house. My experience with both breeds of cocker spaniels are they can be hyper, bite small children and moody. Many times they are over bred so check out the breeder as with any pure bred dog.

Good Luck!

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M.M.

answers from Phoenix on

I don't know much about the King Charles Spaniel but I do know that cocker spaniels can be hyper dogs. Good luck

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A.K.

answers from Phoenix on

S. -

Growing up we raised Cocker Spaniels and had no problems with them but later in life I worked as a vet tech and found out first hand that Cocker Spaniels can be prone to biting and are not always good family dogs. I know nothing about the King Charles. We also had Pomeranians growing up and my family still has them...they are fantastic little dogs. Very playful and gentle.

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N.H.

answers from Phoenix on

I can't give you advice on those breeds, but I saw an adorable cocker spaniel at the Maricopa Animal Control Center in downtown Phoenix. You can try the Mesa location, too. It's so sad, and I highly recommend you rescue one. We just got our puppy from there and he's such a good boy. They provide you with a list of vets who waive the visit fee if you rescue from there.

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P.H.

answers from Phoenix on

I have always had bad experience with cocker spaniels and kids. They are very nippy and they bark alot. The other I dont know about.

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M.S.

answers from Albuquerque on

We raised, showed and trained dogs(American Cockder Spaniels) for years. They usually make a good pet, are loving and loyal Truthfully most dogs are loving and loyal if treated with loving care. I have a Border Collie which I got from a rescue society. She is loyal, loving, protective and extremely intelligent. I suggest you visit a rescue society and check out the residents. Ask the keepers what the dog's history is and spend as much time as possible with the dog. One of the benefits of adopting an older dog is someone else did the house breaking (hopefully. Ask if the dog is trained and if so, what else he knows.) Regardless what breed you get, love him and teach him as you would a child. Incidentally, my BC was going to be euthanized because she was nasty. I've trained quite a few "untrainable" dogs and wasn't worred about this one. Shw bonded to me (I live alone) and would probably fight a grizzly bear to protect me. She is truly my best friend. I hope you adopt your family's new best friend. Good luck!

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T.M.

answers from Phoenix on

Hey S.,

We just added a Cavalier to our family a week ago today and could not be any happier!!! I too have a 3.5yr old son and a 16wk old son and 2 day care babies and the puppy is amazing with all of them! Bentley will be 13wks on Sunday and already sleeps thru the night and has limited accidents and has the best disposition I have even seen in a dog. He is very playful but also just likes to curl up in a ball and snuggle! They are soooo smart it blows my mind! I tell him one time to do something like stay or outside and he does it...better than the kids LOL.
I looked into rescuing one and I was told not to if I have small children because more than likely that have some issues that need to be worked out. And we wanted a puppy and they usually dont have them. I would try going to www.nextdaypets.com...that is where we found Bentley and you can search any breed and they will even match you up with breeders matching what you are looking for. We ended up purchasing one from the Butterfly Kennel (Butterflykennel.com-they have 2 Blenheims left...ours is a tri) in Wyoming. We had an overall great experience but the puppy did come with a parasite (Girardia-from being in a kennel) that we had to give him antibiotics for. Also take into consideration that they are known for heart problems so make sure if you are going to spend the money you can get a health guarentee. If you have any questions feel free to email me! They are truely terriffic pups!!! And I am in Gilbert and I have found the most amazing vet! Her name is Karin Burns with the Priority Pet Hospital....just in case you needed one LOL

T.
[email protected]____.com

ps these dogs need lots of attention so if you work full time and are gonna leave him alone all day...probably not the greatest fit cause they will get depressed and have more behavior problems down the line. And I would also suggest crate training...works great at night and when we need to leave the pup at home...other than that he comes with us, almost every where!

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D.K.

answers from Tucson on

Hi S.. I was told by a groomer that the kind of dog she is most attacked/bitten by are cocker spaniels. We have a seven year old daughter and a four year old daughter. We recently adopted a slightly older rescue dog who was already house broken, friendly with other pets, and already good with children. The dog is only a year and a half old with lots of love and life in her. Perhaps you should consider something like that.

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S.J.

answers from Albuquerque on

I would research cocker spaniels really well--our next door neighbors had one when I was little and it freaked out, attacked a four-year old, and bit her so badly she had to go the hospital. Apparently this is a genetic defect that shows up once in awhile in spaniels.

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D.C.

answers from Phoenix on

Every cocker spaniel that I have ever known were nippers and barkers. Might not be the best choice for kids. Golden Retrievers and Labs in my experience are the best and most gentle dogs for kids. I think most spaniel are high strung which will probably be alot of extra work....with exercise etc. good luck

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S.L.

answers from Albuquerque on

Hi S.,
I read all the responses about Spaniels and I and my husband used to breed English Springer Spaniels. They are wonderful family pets. We had 8 when my son was 1 year old and had no problems with them ever. They are very loyal dogs and never snapped at our son. We recently lost the last of our Springers last May. They live to be about 13 to 15 years old. I really think you would have great luck with a Springer Spaniel. They are beautiful dogs and well we just love them. Good luck
S.

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T.H.

answers from Tucson on

Hi S....

I've had really good experiences with cocker spaniels, but I have found them to be a bit more hyper/aggressive when they're puppies (just like any dog). If you have a little one and an older dog, I would suggest looking into one who is 2 years old or a little older, if you're not opposed to it. They're usually a lot calmer by then, making them safer around a toddler.

T.

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J.P.

answers from Albuquerque on

I dont know anything about the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, but the cocker spaniels are usually not that good with children. In fact the vet I used to work for said they bite more children then any other breeds. I guess you would have to get the dog as a baby and bring it up around the kids if you wanted to make sure the dog would be good but dont buy one thats all ready trained or that is any older then baby baby. I hope this helps

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M.D.

answers from Santa Fe on

The best thing is to know your breed. Spaniels are wonderful family dogs, but with a young child adding a puppy that is all energy might be difficult. You might actually want to check into finding a dog that is a little more settled, not old or retired, but maybe one that will accept your son's need to explore and learn better than a puppy doing the same thing. small children pull on ears and tails, and young dogs have sharp teeth and go through teething. Getting the right match can be difficult. But by all means, children and doggies are terrific for each other. Just try a few things out first to be sure.

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A.G.

answers from Tucson on

If you are here in the Tucson area the humane society of southern arizona, at 3450 N Kelvin Blvd, is a great place to adopt. You can speak with an adoptions representative and they will be able to suggest a great type of dog for you. If you have your heart set on a specific breed you can even fill out a "wishlist"... if they get that breed in you will get a call before the dog even goes to the adoptions area. For more information on the humane society you can go to www.hssaz.org

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S.

answers from Phoenix on

The King Charles Spaniels are in general wonderful dogs. They are very gently and friendly and are in many ways quite different than american Cocker Spaniels. I even hope to one day have a cavalier. They are very prone to serious heart disease, however, which can greatly impact their lifespan and their quality of life long term. As long as you can afford to take proper care of one, that is not, in my opinion, a reason not to get one. Do your research, do NOT buy from a pet store, and get good veterinary advice from day one. Be advised that some pet insurance companies will not insure these dogs against heart failure and "dry eye" since these conditions are so common in the breed. They are also not immune to the ear problems that afflict the american cockers.

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B.W.

answers from Phoenix on

I have been working with dogs in Veterinary offices and as a pet groomer for over 17 years. Definitely go with the king charles cavalier spaniel. THey are calm and gentle, and require much less grooming. Cocker spaniels pee and poop every, require monthly grooming, are always fighting ear and skin infectious, are crazy and high strung, and get gross warts and very smelly when they get older. Expect a lot of vet bills and extra grooming costs with a cocker. All the cavaliers I have known are very well mannered (even on the shy side), but very calm and loving. They may cost more up front, buy worth it!

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L.R.

answers from Phoenix on

Labs are the best dogs for children, very loving, gentle and very smart, easy to train. We had a cocker spaniel and weren't happy with the one, we've had two labs and they grew up with our kids. We also love weimerieners, we've had two also. They are very protective of their family, smart easy to train.
Again I would suggest a lab before anything else.

Good Luck!

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V.B.

answers from Phoenix on

I know, I'm really late, but if you get this, go to www.dogbreedinfo.com. It is a wonderful web site full of tons of info about dogs. It has a section on it that you can take a quiz/survey about what kind of dog would be best for your situation. (it asks questions about children, living condition, hours willing to spend with the dog...) I hope it helps and good luck with your decision!

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M.B.

answers from Albuquerque on

Hi S.!

Spanials are a hrad breed to judge. They are either the best dog or they can be the worst. We had one as kids and ended up having to getrid of it because it was mean. I havee had really bad experiences with spainals. My mil is a dog groomer and she even says they are bad to have around kids. Labs are great dogs around kids though.

Good Luck!

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C.T.

answers from Albuquerque on

My parents always had Cocker Spaniels when I was growing up. They were great dogs. They were gentle. Of course, we had to train them just like with all dogs but they were very good. You have to be careful with their ears though because they are sensitive. If you have those sticker weeds in your yard you probably want to try to get rid of them because they get in their ears and will hurt them. I would love to get another Cocker Spaniel one day. They are great with kids.

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A.N.

answers from Phoenix on

I have worked at an animal shelter for 3 years. Although it's really great to rescue a dog you can run into problems. Lot's of people don't tell about an adult dog's problems because they want to see them adopted. We have adopted out cocker's to families and had them brought back for various reason's. I would suggest a cocker puppy so it can grow up with your son. If you still want to rescue one I would recomend a young dog. Get all the information you can get on the dog, and ask if you can spend time with the dog away from the other dog's. Dog's in shelter's act differently, they are scared. If possible take the dog into a room. That will get the dog to calm down and pay attention to you not the other dogs. Make sure you can return the dog if it doesn't work out, and that the dog can be checked by a vet. Airborne sickness's are allways a problem at shelter's. Thanks for considering a shelter animal, shelter's on an average get about 50,000 dogs a year.There are breed rescue's that only for that breed. Check with the shelter or local breeder's.

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