cocker spaniel dog food

5 Best Dry Dog Foods for a Cocker Spaniel

(Last Updated On: 4th November 2021)

Cocker Spaniels are one of the most popular breeds in the UK with even the royal family owning one. In the US, they are becoming an increasingly popular breed by the year due to their family-friendly and intelligent traits.

Of course, you want to provide your dog with the best food you can buy, and that includes finding the best dog food for Cocker Spaniels.

In short, the best dog food for Cocker Spaniels is the Royal Canin Cocker Spaniel Adult Dog food, which includes crescent-shaped kibble for dental hygiene and the formula has been developed to promote healthy skin and ears.

See also  5 Best Chihuahua Dog Foods 2021

Best Dog Food For Cocker Spaniels

Cocker Spaniel Dog FoodDesigned ForGrain Free
Royal CaninHealthy DietNo
MerrickHigh ProteinYes
Solid GoldSensitive StomachYes
BLUE WildernessHigh ProteinYes
Nature's Variety Instinct OriginalHealthy DietYes

In terms of the calorie intake for Cocker Spaniels, they require approximately 750 calories but more active dogs will require over 1,000 calories. Ensure you are careful with portion sizes because they will overeat quite happily.

In terms of their health problems, ear infections are quite common with some vets stating high carbohydrates diets are the cause of this problem. Other issues include food allergies, hip dysplasia, and hypothyroidism.

Good quality food that contains all the protein, carbohydrates, and nutrients is vital. Below is a list of the best dog food for Cocker Spaniels that are easy to digest and ensure they have a balanced diet.

Royal Canin Cocker Spaniel Dry Dog Food

If you’re in the market for a dog food that is exclusively designed for pure breed Cocker Spaniels, then this one by Royal Canin is a great choice. It contains a complex of nutrients that are designed to help them maintain their coats and skin health.

The ideal amount of protein allows them to maintain their weight while supporting cardiac muscle health. Royal Canin has designed kibble that makes it easier for Cocker Spaniels to grasp onto so that chewing is encouraged. Pros and cons of this Royal Canin food include:


  • Easy chewing
  • Easy to hold
  • Good for maintaining weight
  • Helps in upholding the skin and also taking care of their coat’s health
  • Helps to keep their cardiac muscles healthy


  • Some do not like the scent of the food

The formula is designed specifically for Cocker Spaniels that are over twelve months old. Cocker Spaniels have deep and broad muzzles and even, square jaws, so the kibble has been adapted to make it easier for them to grasp onto.

As Cocker Spaniels are prone to cardiac sensitivity, Royal Canin has designed their kibble with ingredients that make it easier to maintain a healthy cardiac muscle. Overall, it is the best dog food for Cocker Spaniels, and being breed-specific, they are getting everything that they require for a balanced and healthy diet.

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Merrick Grain Free Dog Food

For those looking to buy allergy-friendly nutrition, this formula by Merrick is a great choice. It features real, deboned salmon, blueberries, apples, pears, sweet potatoes, and more. At the same time, it has minerals and vitamins to offer your dog with a complete and balanced nutrition.

It contains high doses of chondroitin and glucosamine that increase mobility and Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, which are great for shiny coats and healthy skin. Other benefits of the Merrick grain-free dog food include:


  • Grain-Free
  • Poultry-free ingredients
  • Helps in keeping the skin healthy and also taking care of their coat’s health
  • Uses all local best ingredients
  • Contains no artificial coloring


  • Some report that their dogs got diarrhea

The first ingredient should always be a protein, which is deboned salmon in this case. The recipe is grain-free and does not include any gluten ingredients, artificial preservatives, flavors, or coloring but does include real vegetables and fruits.

It is poultry-free, which is great for dogs with sensitive stomachs or food allergies. The product is also manufactured in Texas, with the best locally sourced ingredients, so you know you’ll be getting a quality product.

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Solid Gold Sensitive Stomach Dog Food

This recipe by Solid Gold is one of the best options for dogs with sensitive stomachs. It is a formula that is gluten-free, grain-free, and nutrient-rich and formulated with simple ingredients, including cold water lean salmon, tapioca, chickpeas, as well as a blend of twenty nutritious superfoods.

Solid Gold is a reputable brand in the holistic dog food market. The chickpeas and peas provide important phytonutrients, protein, and fiber. The formula does not contain any soy, wheat, or corn, which means that this is suitable for dogs that have sensitive stomachs or food allergies, as those are the most common allergens for dogs.

A brief overview of the pros and cons of Solid Gold Sensitive Stomach Adult Dry Dog Food include:


  • Good for sensitive stomach
  • Ideal for adult and senior dogs
  • No soy, corn, and wheat ingredients used
  • Ingredients used that help in keeping the skin healthy and also taking care of their coat’s health
  • Helps maintain overall digestive health


  • Some reports of diarrhea

The twenty superfoods include ingredients, such as lentils, kelp, almond oil, broccoli, carrots, blueberries, cranberries, and pumpkin. The pumpkin is a great source of fiber to help with proper digestion as it has zinc, magnesium, potassium, iron, vitamin A, and beta-carotene.

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Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein

Blue Buffalo’s Wilderness adult dry dog food is formulated to mimic the diet of ancestral wolves with a lot of protein and the perfect amount of carbohydrates. The formula includes exclusive BLUE LifeSource Bits, which are a blend of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants that help to support their immune system.

The recipe also contains essential vitamins, phosphorus, and calcium, which help to promote stronger teeth and bones. The glucosamine helps to support overall mobility and joint function and it also contains Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids, which are great for promoting healthy skin and a shiny coat. The Pros and cons of the Blue Buffalo food include:


  • Contains ingredient that helps and maintains strong muscles
  • No artificial preservatives used
  • The ingredient helps keep their coat shiny and their skin healthy
  • Helps with their immune system
  • For all breeds


  • Some reports sickness and diarrhea

This recipe contains potatoes, peas, and sweet potatoes, which are great for providing complex carbohydrates. It also contains carrots, cranberries, and blueberries which supports antioxidant enrichment. The essential carbohydrates and proteins meet the requirements of a healthy lifestyle.

Antioxidants, chelated minerals, and essential vitamins support the immune system. One of the most important things is that this recipe is made without any grains, and it does not contain any artificial preservatives, flavoring, or coloring.

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Nature’s Variety Instinct Original Grain-Free

If you’re looking for a healthier alternative to a raw diet, this one formula by Nature’s Variety Grain-Free Original recipe is sure to fit the bill. It is formulated with wholesome foods, such as vegetables and real chicken.

On top of that, it also contains guaranteed levels of antioxidants, natural omegas, and probiotics. The final result is a high-protein diet, which promotes their immune system, healthy skin and coat, and maximum digestibility.

The recipe’s first ingredient is cage-free chicken, which gives your dog strong and lean muscles. It’s a natural formula that has 70% nutritious oils and real animal ingredients, along with 30% vegetables, fruit, and other wholesome ingredients.


  • Made in the USA with ingredients from all around the world
  • It does not contain artificial colors and preservatives
  • Cage-free chicken to provide high protein to maintain strong muscles
  • For all breeds
  • It’s grain and gluten-free


  • Some report gas, an upset stomach, and diarrhea

This recipe does not contain any artificial preservatives, artificial colors, by-products meal, soy, wheat, corn, potato, or grain. It’s made with the highest quality ingredients with nutrition in every kibble. It’s also manufactured in the USA, which means that you’re sure to get a quality product.

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Cocker Spaniel Dog Food Buying Guide

This adorable little breed has been a popular choice in the U.S. and U.K. for decades, though in the U.K., they have English Cockers, which are just slightly different from their American counterparts. These curly and cute Cocker Spaniels are incredibly endearing dogs whose affectionate and gentle personalities make them the popular choice for families.

Cocker Spaniels, just like any other breed, require some special nutrients to allow them to be at their healthiest and function the most efficiently. Below are some of the factors you should consider before purchasing any dog food for Cocker Spaniels.

How Much Food To Feed A Cocker Spaniel?

The suggested amount of food that your Cocker Spaniel should consume per day can depend on their activity level, individual metabolism, and age. We have included a rough guideline showing a general idea of how much you would need to feed a Cocker Spaniel depending on their weight and activity level. Please note that this is just a suggestion. The actual amount that you feed your Cocker Spaniel should be based on their activity level and metabolism, among other factors. A medium-sized Cocker Spaniel will need around 740 calories per day, while a highly active Cocker Spaniel will need as much as 1,180 calories per day.

The best way to know exactly how much to feed your Cocker Spaniel is to experiment with the food quantities and see which one works the best. If they seem to be gaining weight, cut down the daily calorie intake. If they seem to be losing weight, increase the daily calorie intake.

All brands have different suggested feeding guidelines, so it might be best to follow the one that is written on the packaging and customizing that to suit your dog.

Suggested Amount for A Cocker Spaniel

The Weight of Dog Medium Activity Feeding

(Cups per day)

High Activity Feeding

(Cups per day)

22 lbs. 1 ⅞ cups 2 ⅛ cups
24.3 lbs. 2 cups 2 ⅜ cups
26.5 lbs. 2 ¼ cups 2 ½ cups
28.7 lbs. 2 ⅜ cups 2 ⅝ cups
30.9 lbs. 2 ½ cups 2 ¾ cups
35.3 lbs. 2 ¾ cups 3 ⅛ cups

How Much Food To Feed Cocker Spaniel Puppy?

As was said for the adult, the amount that a puppy Cocker Spaniel should be fed depends on a variety of different factors. However, one thing that should be noted is that you should not free feed Cocker Spaniels, as they will just continue to eat everything, which will lead to obesity and various health issues.

The feeding guideline table below gives you a rough outline of how much food Cocker Spaniel puppies are generally likely to need. Again, you’ll need to customize that based on their own individual factors. You might want to refer to the dog food packaging of the brand you pick in order to find one that is most suitable for that kibble.

Feeding Guideline for Cocker Spaniel Puppy

The Weight of Dog Low Activity Feeding*

(Grams per day)

Medium Activity Feeding**

(Grams per day)

High Activity Feeding***

(Grams per day)

2 lbs. to 7 lbs. 27 grams


61 grams

31 grams


71 grams

35 grams


80 grams

8 lbs. to 13 lbs. 76 grams


103 grams

88 grams


119 grams

100 grams


135 grams

How Frequent Should You Feed A Cocker Spaniel?

Generally, adult dogs should be fed twice a day, with one in the morning and one in the evening. Cocker Spaniel puppies, on the other hand, should be fed about three meals a day. However, that does not mean that Cocker Spaniel puppies eat a lot. In fact, they actually eat relatively little amounts. In their first few months of being born, they generally eat around 210 calories a day. This doubles each month until they reach adult levels, which are 740 calories per day. For highly active Cocker Spaniels, you might need to feed them around 1,180 calories worth of food every day.

What Is The Ideal Weight Of Cocker Spaniels?

The average lifespan of a Cocker Spaniel is around eleven to twelve years, depending, of course, on the quality of food and care that they receive. The height of male Cocker Spaniels ranges from about 15 inches to 16 inches, while female Cocker Spaniels are about 14 inches tall. In terms of their weight, male and female Cocker Spaniels range at around 28 lbs. to 32 lbs.

Factors To Consider For Cocker Spaniel Food

When you’re trying to find dog food for Cocker Spaniels, it can be quite challenging, especially if you don’t know what you’re looking for. So, below we’ve added a basic list of features that high-quality dog foods for Cocker Spaniels should have.

  1. First Ingredient Is A Whole Meal – Dogs typically thrive on meat-based foods, so it’s important to look at the ingredient list to ensure that the first product is some sort of protein. The most common sources of protein come from duck, salmon, pork, beef, and chicken. However, there are also some others, such as kangaroo, venison, or bison that are often used.
  2. Fortified In Probiotics – Probiotics are good bacteria, which help your dog digest their food. It helps to prevent any intestinal upsets.
  3. Made With Antioxidant-Rich Vegetables And Fruits – Antioxidant-rich vegetables and fruits help to keep your Cocker Spaniel’s immune system running smoothly and efficiently. These sorts of ingredients include pumpkin, parsley, kale, cranberries, blueberries, spinach, and carrots.
  4. Made Without Any Improperly Identified Meats – Meat by-products and meat meals are acceptable as palatable and nutritious items, but it’s important that those products derive from a safe source. You should look out in the ingredients list for any vague descriptions, such as ‘poultry by-product’ or ‘meat meal’. Instead, go for ingredients that state chicken by-products or pork meal.
  5. Manufactured In A Country With Quality Control And High Safety Standards – It’s important to feed your dog with dog food that is of high-quality. Countries that have better and higher quality control and high safety standards will reduce the risk of dangerous or toxic contaminants being included. Those countries include New Zealand, Australia, Western Europe, Canada, and the USA.

Health Issues

Cocker Spaniels are prone to develop and suffer from certain congenital and hereditary health issues. The main health issues include:

  • Acral Mutilation Syndrome (AMS) – This is a condition in which self-mutilation causes lesions due to a loss of sensitivity in specific regions of the body. It’s caused by an autosomal recessive gene.
  • Adult Onset Neuropathy (AON) – This is an autosomal recessive disorder that is more commonly seen in older Cocker Spaniels, roughly between the ages of 7 years old to 9 years old.
  • Autoimmune Diseases – This includes a number of immune-mediated disorders, including Hemolytic Anemia, Hypothyroidism, and Addison’s disease.
  • Benign Tumors
  • Bite Problems
  • Cancer
  • Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy
  • Cataracts
  • Chronic Pancreatitis
  • Deafness
  • Distichiasis (Too Many Eyelashes)
  • Ectropion (Eyelids Rolling Outwards)
  • Entropion (Eyelids Folding Inwards)
  • Familial Nephropathy – This is a fatal hereditary condition, which affects your Cocker Spaniels kidney. It is often seen in younger dogs and is caused by a recessive gene.
  • Heart Murmurs
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Mammary Tumors
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Persistent Pupillary Membrane
  • Primary Glaucoma – This is quite a painful eye disorder where there is a buildup of fluid behind your dog’s eye due to an inherited abnormality. This causes them to lose their sight and generally that eye would have to be removed.
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) – This is an inherited eye disorder that is commonly seen in dogs as young as eighteen months old. It is caused by an autosomal recessive gene, which means that both parents must have had it in order for it to pass on to their offspring.
  • Rage Syndrome – This is quite a rare disorder in Cocker Spaniels, where dogs will attack other dogs without any apparent reason nor are there generally any warning prior. Solid colored Cocker Spaniels are the more likely to experience this, however, it is still quite rare.
  • Retinal Pigment Epithelial Dystrophy (RPED) – Formally known as Central Progressive Retinal Atrophy (CPRA), and is linked to the metabolic inability for dogs to circulate Vitamin E. This disorder negatively impacts their overall vision.
  • Skin Allergies

Ingredients To Look Out For

As with most breeds, Cocker Spaniels require food that has good sources of fat and protein. Ideally, you should look at dog foods that contain two or three meat proteins within the first few ingredients in the ingredient list. Meat meals and whole meats are good protein sources. Whole meats refer to items, such as lamb, fish, beef, and chicken.

An increasing number of brands are also using plant-based proteins, such as peas and lentil. It’s important that you check where the protein is coming from within that dog food for Cocker Spaniels. Meat protein is easier for your dog to digest in comparison to plant protein, as it’s the more natural source.

Your Cocker Spaniel also needs a good, high-quality source of fat. Within the ingredients list, you should keep an eye out for sources such as chicken fat. Fish oil can also provide your dog with Omega 3 fatty acids, which are great for keeping their coat and skin healthy. You should try to avoid wheat, soy, and corn if your Cocker Spaniels have food sensitives or allergies. An alternative to those would be grains, such as oats or barley.

Cocker Spaniel Common Health Issues

Below are four of the dietary factors that are great for helping with common health issues for Cocker Spaniels, including:

  1. Contain Joint Supporting Supplements – Cocker Spaniels are quite susceptible to joint problems, so they especially benefit from diets that include chondroitin and glucosamine.
  2. Contain Omega 3 Fatty Acids – Dogs need Omega 6 and Omega 3 fatty acids in their diets in order for them to be complete and balanced. Omega 6 fatty acids are common in the ingredients commonly included. So, it’s important to ensure that Omega 3’s are included as well. Plant oils, flaxseed, salmon, and other fatty fishes are great sources of omega 3.
  3. Having An Appropriate Amount Of Calories – Cocker Spaniels are susceptible to weight gain, so it’s important to ensure that you’re giving them the right amount of food for their activity level and body size.
  4. Made Without Common Allergens – Cocker Spaniels do suffer from a fair few food allergies, so they require food that does not contain those allergens. In the market today, there are a number of hypoallergenic foods. For example, if your Cocker Spaniel is allergic to chicken, try to find pork or beef-based recipe products instead.

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