Best Dog Food For Cocker Spaniel: 2019 Guide & Reviews

two american cocker spaniel dogs isolated on white background

Cocker Spaniels are playful, affectionate, and gentle. Providing your pup with the best dog food for Cocker Spaniel that is rich in specific nutrients is the best way to help ensure a long, happy life.

Investing in a proper diet today means spending more quality years with your precious Cocker Spaniel. Show them, love, where it counts most—their health!

So read on to learn more about their unique health issues and nutritional needs.

Also, check out our top 3 choices for best dog food for Cocker Spaniels. This can hopefully help simplify your shopping experience.

Quick Comparison: Best Food for Cocker Spaniel

* click on the product to be taken to Amazon where you can check the current price and read customer reviews.

Below you’ll find in-depth reviews of each of the above products.

Basic Nutritional Needs of Cocker Spaniels


As a medium-sized dog, your Cocker Spaniel needs roughly 740 calories per day. If they are highly active, they might need as much as 1,180 calories per day. Though, the specific amount of food for your dog will depend on activity level.

The best way to get a more precise calorie estimate is to take the time to experiment. Start with the recommended average for your dog’s activity level. Assuming they are a healthy weight, if they appear to be gaining weight, cut back on the calories. If they appear to be losing weight, increase the calories.

Nutritional Needs

Cocker Spaniel has a hearty appetite, and he will eat too much if given the opportunity. They are highly prone to obesity so you will want to minimize carbs and opt for high protein instead. They thrive best on the following diet:

High in protein. The first ingredient on the label should be meat such as chicken, lamb, or beef.  Your dog’s food should contain at least 25% protein.

Moderate in fat.  A beneficial food contains healthy fats such as fish or flaxseed to keep your Cocker Spaniels’ skin and long coat healthy and shiny.

Low in carbohydrates.  If your dog is already overweight, avoid carbohydrates such as corn. Many quality dog foods use alternative grains such as oats and barley which active Cocker Spaniels need for energy. Some pet owners choose grain free dog food because their dogs have digestive problems or allergies. These dog foods generally are low in carbohydrates.

Adult Cocker Spaniel Eating

Common Health Problems

A nutritious diet helps prevent health issues from occurring. However, even the healthiest of dogs will still probably experience some type of health problem in their life. For Cocker Spaniels, the most likely conditions that you should be on the lookout for include:

Eye Disorders

Cocker Spaniels are prone to various eye problems which include cataracts, eyelid abnormalities, cherry eye, dry eye, retinal dysplasia, and more. Make sure to have your Cocker Spaniel’s eyes examined once a year and seek veterinary care at any signs of vision loss, cloudiness, redness, irritation of the eyes.

Skin problems

Cocker Spaniels often suffer from itchy skin. This can be caused by a food allergy. Common sources of canine food allergies include chicken, eggs, wheat, and soy. Ask your vet about a proper diet that may be allergy free.

Primary seborrhea is another skin problem caused by overproduction of skin cells. The skin has a foul odor and becomes greasy and scaly. Treatments include medication from your veterinarian.

Ear Disorder

The combination of floppy ears and long hair put the Cocker Spaniel at risk for ear problems. Check ears often to make sure it is healthy, a vibrant pink and doesn’t have a foul odor. Additionally, clean ears weekly to prevent parasites and fungus from residing in their ear canal.

Many ear problems can be prevented by grooming your Cocker Spaniel often and keeping the hair on the ears short.

Bone Disorders

This breed is at risk for a condition called Patellar Luxation, otherwise known as loose knees. This condition causes the kneecap to slip in and out of place as a dog walks. Close to 25% of Cocker Spaniels have this disorder. Symptoms include difficulty walking, limping, and discomfort while moving.

It can’t be cured but it can be managed so early detection is important to avoid unnecessary pain and damage. Providing a diet that includes chondroitin and glucosamine can assist in alleviating the symptoms of joint damage.


Ears Problems are Common in Cocker Spaniels

Preventing Common Health Problems with Care and Nutrition

Follow these tips to help prevent or manage these health conditions:

  • Take your dog for annual eye exams since Cocker Spaniels are prone to a variety of eye disorders.
  • Examine your dog’s coat and skin for signs of rash, infection, and growths (they are not always cancerous but they can be so it’s good to keep an eye out for them).
  • Clean ears once a week and check for signs of infection.

Basic Feeding Guidelines

Adult Dogs

Divide your mature dog’s caloric needs into 2 separate meals. Preferably serve one meal in the morning and one in the evening.


Contrary to what you might expect, Cocker Spaniel puppies should eat relatively little. In the first month, they should only get about 210 calories per day. That should continue to double each month until they reach the adult levels of about 740 calories per day—assuming a normal activity level. Increase this for highly active dogs.

It’s best to give puppies three separate feeding throughout the day.

Graphic of three dog bowls


Editor’s Choice – Best Dog Food Brand For Cocker Spaniel

Here are our top 3 choices of Cocker Spaniel food that is well suited for this breed:

1. Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition Cocker Spaniel Adult

Royal Canine Cocker Spaniel Food


Royal Canin Cocker Spaniel food for your dog is specifically formulated for this breed.

The recipe and even the shape of the kibble are uniquely crafted to meet the needs of your adult Cocker Spaniel (above 12 months). The kibble shape encourages chewing which both slows down eating and helps remove more tartar buildup from your dog’s teeth.

ROYAL CANIN BREED HEALTH NUTRITION Cocker Spaniel Adult dry dog food, 25-Pound

Key Benefits:

  • Formulated specifically for Cocker Spaniels over 12 months of age
  • Since Cocker Spaniels have a tendency to gain weight, this formula helps maintain an ideal body weight
  • Cocker Spaniels have a broad muzzle and square, even jaws. This kibble has been designed to make grasping it easier


  • The recipe does include some empty carb filler ingredients that we don’t like but the core ingredients are good.



2. Solid Gold Holistic Dry Dog Food

Dry Dog Food for Cocker Spaniel From Solid Gold

Solid Gold brand offers 9 different recipes that you can choose from based on your dog’s needs and tastes.

Since this recipe does not contain wheat, corn or soy which are common allergens, this is one of the best dog foods for cocker spaniels with allergies.

Rich in healthy unsaturated fats like olive oil and salmon oil, this formula will promote healthy skin and coat which is important for a cocker spaniels curly hair.

Overall, the ingredients of this natural dog food are top notch and great.

Key Benefits:

  • Contains 20 nutrient-dense superfoods such as pumpkin, apples, carrots, and blueberries which contain vital antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, fiber and more.
  • Formulated with olive oil, canola oil, and salmon oil for overall skin and coat health
  • Does NOT contain wheat, grains, soy, or corn which are common food allergens


  • This quality dog food may not meet everyone’s budget


3. Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein

Grain Free High Protein Dog Food


Blue Buffalo is one of our favorite brands of dry dog food because they are committed to using natural, real ingredients and avoid empty calorie fillers like corn and soy which can cause obesity.

This high protein recipe is great for very active dogs or dogs struggling with obesity because it provides nutrient-packed ingredients that are low in carbs.

Loaded with antioxidants from blueberries, cranberries, and carrots to support the immune system and urinary tract health.

Key Benefits:

  • Formulas feature a precise blend of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants selected by holistic veterinarians
  • Contains only high-quality protein from real chicken, duck or salmon which helps promote strong muscles
  • No grains, corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives


  • Even though the Salmon formula contains Omega 3 &6, some dogs do not like the taste of this recipe.  If so, this company makes other flavors.


Taste of the Wild High Prarie Canine Recipe

Taste of the Wild High Prairie Grain Free High Protein Real Meat Recipe Natural Dry Dog Food with Real Roasted Bison & Venison 30lb

The primary ingredients in Taste of the Wild dog food are buffalo as the first ingredient followed by other real protein-rich ingredients including bison, roasted venison, and beef for lean nutrition. It’s made with real roasted meats and is supplemented with vegetables such as sweet potatoes and egg product.  The formula does not contain grain casings or fillers.

Essential minerals are chelated with amino acids to optimize their absorption and ensure maximum benefit, for complete and balanced nutrition.

Key Benefits:

  • Contains omega fatty acids from salmon oil, smoked salmon or ocean fish meal to help maintain your Cocker Spaniel ‘s skin and coat health and to support his overall wellness.
  • Made with ingredients from sustainable sources with no grain, corn, wheat, filler, artificial flavors, colors or preservatives which makes this recipe perfect for sensitive dogs or even those pups trying to stay lean.
  • Taste of the Wild includes prebiotics and probiotics with bacteria that are naturally found in a dog’s GI tract. These active cultures support healthy digestion.

Bottom Line: 

Most pet owners highly recommend Taste of the Wild recipes because their dogs love the taste of this food. The small kibble size is great for a Cocker Spaniels petite mouth and the food is made of high-quality ingredients.  One of the main complaints is the food’s price increased this past year making it less affordable for some.