Does your cocker spaniel love you as much as you love them?
It’s a great question and many spaniel owners are wondering the same thing. This article outlines 11 real signs of canine affection that all indicate your spaniel loves you.
11 Signs That Show Your Cocker Spaniel Loves You
In the quest to understand our dogs better, researchers have long been studying canine emotions and the signals they demonstrate when they feel certain ways.
Experts have revealed that dogs can feel a wide range of emotions from happiness, love, empathy, jealousy, anger, depression, and showcase these emotions through predictable body language and deliberate actions. Let’s run through them below.
1. Easy eye contact
Eye contact is one of the most powerful forms of non-verbal communication there is. Love or pure anger can be expressed just through the way in which we look and hold gazes. The same goes true for canines.
The reason I say “easy” eye contact is because if your cocker spaniel can comfortably gaze at you and hold casual eye contact when you look or speak to them, this signifies they have a lot of trust and confidence in you, and most importantly, that they aren’t scared or fearful. Having easy eye contact means you have a very strong bond with your spaniel.
2. Bringing toys to you
If your cocker spaniel frequently brings her toys to you, you know she thinks highly of you. It’s easy to brush this off as just an act of play, but it’s more than that. It’s your spaniel saying to you that she chooses you to engage and focus on.
A dog that doesn’t love its owner would almost certainly never do this. So the next time he comes waddling over with a toy in his mouth, take a moment to appreciate that and be sure to respond positively.
3. Morning excitement
When you wake up in the morning, how are you greeted by your spaniel? If you walk in the room and he bursts up, wagging his tail and excited to see you, that’s a clear sign of affection.
If on the other hand, he barely moves a muscle then you may have some work to do! Of course, if your spaniel is senior and lacks mobility this could be the reason. But for puppies and adults, it’s a good sign to see some morning excitement.
4. Eyebrow and ear movements
Japanese researchers revealed that when a dog looks at someone they love and admire, their ears go back, and their eyebrows raise up (specifically their left one). I know, sounds kinda weird, but it’s true!
Although it can be quite difficult to see you spaniels eyebrows, it’s still worth checking out. So the next time you glance over at your furry friend, remember to check the ears and eyebrows!
5. Physical contact (leaning on you)
Physical contact is another age-old sign of affection that can’t be argued with. If your cocker spaniel feels comfortable to come over and sit or lay by you making physical contact with you, you can rest assured she loves you to the moon and back.
Whether it’s coming to sit right next to you on the couch, leaning up against your side, or resting her head or paws on you, it all counts, and it’s a strong declaration of love.
6. Relaxed body language around you
Apart from actually making contact with you, her overall body language and demeanour around you speaks volumes too. Laying on her back, belly and legs up, is an extremely vulnerable position for a dog to assume, and so she must feel absolutely secure and safe to do this.
Dogs that don’t particularly have a good bond with their owners will never assume relaxed positions like this around them. They will always position themselves carefully in case they need to get up or dart away quickly.
7. Synchronized yawning!
Yep, another quirky one but it’s true. We all know by now that if we see someone yawn it usually makes us yawn too (this is closely linked to having a strong feeling of empathy) 7 Reasons Why dogs Yawn When You Pet Them.
While they haven’t confirmed this to be the reason with dogs, it has been recognized by professionals that dogs who have exceptionally close bonds with their owners will also mimic a yawn should you do one.
8. Face licking
Whether you hate it or love it, it’s no doubt a very strong sign of affection. If your cocker spaniel bounds up to you in the morning and tries licking you with excitement this is a clear sign they love you.
Don’t worry if yours doesn’t do this, most of us would rather skip on the dog kisses anyway! Oh, and if you’re wondering, experts can’t yet confirm whether dogs consider face licking to be an actual dog “kiss” or not.
9. Follows you around
When you move, she moves… This is another sign of an exceptionally close bond. I would say with this one, however, it could also be the beginning of a larger issue like separation anxiety.
This ultimately depends on your situation and how your spaniel handles being left alone. If she doesn’t mind being alone for a few hours, and still follows you around whenever you are there… It’s all to do with love!
10. Always listening to you
When you’re the most important person in your dog’s life, the sound of your voice is everything. Dog behaviorists realized that even when dogs are in a light sleep, they will still be listening to their owner’s voice.
You can test this by speaking while she’s napping, the moment you start speaking you may see her ears tweak or move. If you have an exceptionally close bond, she’ll always be listening to you.
11. Good recall
Recall can either be trained, or it can come naturally. While we don’t suggest leaving this down to chance, it has been shown that dogs who have great bonds with their owners, have a naturally good recall, even if no training has been given.
If that sounds like your spaniel, that’s a good sign your bond is perfect. If she responds to you and comes back to you the moment you say her name, nice one!
Cocker Spaniel Puppies & Affection
When it comes to puppies, forget everything we said above! Puppies simply don’t follow the rules of normal affection.
You might be lucky and witness them come over specifically for a belly rub (which is a great sign). But most of the time, puppies are too energetic and crazy to engage in acts of affection.
If you try to cuddle them or smooch, they’ll only see this as an act of play and won’t understand you’re just showing them some love. So if your puppy doesn’t seem that into you yet, don’t worry, it will definitely come with time.
What If Your Cocker Spaniel Doesn’t Seem Very Affectionate?
If you’ve read the above and realize your cocker spaniel does none of those things, it doesn’t always mean you have a bad bond.
Ultimately, all dogs are different, and personal temperaments and characters can vary drastically. So sometimes, some spaniels may just not be that affectionate.
You can work to improve this though. By sufficiently meeting your cocker spaniel’s daily needs and giving them plenty of your focus and time, they will no doubt love you (even if they don’t show it much).
The truth is that dogs are far more simple than us humans! Give your cocker spaniel a premium diet, proper exercise, mental stimulation, and your time, and you’ll be their favorite person in no time.