Are Cocker Spaniels Hypoallergenic?

Written by Katelynn Sobus
Updated: June 7, 2023
© Aneta Jungerova/
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Cocker Spaniels are popular family dogs with gentle, outgoing personalities. If you’re thinking of adopting one yourself, you might wonder, are Cocker Spaniels hypoallergenic?

Cocker Spaniels aren’t hypoallergenic and do shed moderately. However, the label “hypoallergenic” isn’t super accurate in the first place, as hypoallergenic breeds can still trigger allergy symptoms.

In this article, we’ll talk more about whether Cocker Spaniels are hypoallergenic, if you can own one while having dog allergies, and more.

A Note About Hypoallergenic Dogs

A golden cocker spaniel with curly ears cocks its head
Cocker Spaniels are not hypoallergenic.


Many people refer to dogs with human-like hair, such as Poodles or Shih Tzus, as hypoallergenic. However, no dog is truly allergen-free.

If you’re allergic to dogs, you may be triggered by their fur, dander, saliva, or urine. In addition, different people are allergic to different proteins found in dogs–there are six of them in total.

Because most people aren’t only allergic to dog fur, breeds that shed less can still trigger allergies. And sometimes dogs that shed more will trigger your specific allergies less than “hypoallergenic” dogs.

The best thing you can do as someone with allergies is to visit with the specific dog you’d like to adopt. I suggest to try triggering your allergies: rustle their fur, touch your face, and let the dog lick you. This way, you can get to know how you will respond to living with them.

Are Cocker Spaniels Hypoallergenic?

Cocker Spaniels aren’t hypoallergenic. While their long coats may make them look similar to other hypoallergenic dog breeds, they do shed moderately.

These dogs have double coats and shed more profusely when they blow their undercoats in the spring and fall. 

Is It Possible to Own a Cocker Spaniel with Dog Allergies?

cocker spaniel laying on pavers
Some people with dog allergies choose to tolerate their symptoms in order to own a Cocker Spaniel.

© Blanco

It’s possible to live with a Cocker Spaniel despite your dog allergies–but it will likely mean putting up with unpleasant allergy symptoms to some extent.

If your allergies are severe, adopting any dog may be too big a risk to take. If they’re mild and you’re willing to live with your symptoms, owning a Cocker Spaniel is more possible.

Let’s dive into some ways to decrease your dog allergy symptoms while living with a Cocker Spaniel, starting with what to do before adoption.

Before Adopting a Cocker Spaniel

  • See your doctor. Your doctor may be able to suggest helpful treatments or refer you to an allergist who can provide more specialized care.
  • Try over-the-counter medications. Non-prescription allergy medications such as oral antihistamines and nasal sprays work wonders for some people!
  • Visit with your dog before adoption. No one wants to have to rehome a beloved pet due to allergies. Before adopting, spend time around your Cocker Spaniel to see how they trigger your allergies and if you can live with these symptoms long-term.

Tips for Living with a Cocker Spaniel and Allergies

  • Brush your Cocker Spaniel regularly. They should be brushed every couple of days to prevent matting, but more frequent sessions will remove more of that loose fur. 
  • Bathe your Cocker Spaniel around once a month. Regular bathing will remove fur and dander, as well as any debris from outside that you may also be allergic to. Be sure not to over-bathe your Cocker Spaniel, as this can dry out their skin, and they may produce even more dander as a result.
  • Cover your furniture. Blankets and sofa covers are easier to wash than the whole couch! Let your dog lie on these covers, then remove them before sitting down yourself. Wash them regularly.
  • Keep your pillows covered. Keeping your pillows covered with the comforter during the day will stop your Cocker Spaniel from getting them furry, and you from laying your face on fur and dander all night. 
  • Give your Cocker Spaniel their own place to sleep. This might be on the bottom of your bed, the comforter, or their dog bed or crate.
  • Vacuum often. Vacuuming your floors and furniture will help pick up both fur and dander, reducing your allergy symptoms.
  • Run an air purifier. Air purifiers with HEPA air filters will remove allergens from the air. Use a small one in the place you spend the most time, or buy one that will clean the air in your entire home.
  • Wash your hands before touching your face. You should also wash your hands after grooming your pup or any other activities that you find trigger your symptoms.

In conclusion, it is possible to own a Cocker Spaniel if you have mild dog allergies. However, Cocker Spaniels are not hypoallergenic and will still likely trigger your symptoms.

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© Aneta Jungerova/

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About the Author

I'm an animal writer of four years with a primary focus on educational pet content. I want our furry, feathery, and scaley friends to receive the best care possible! In my free time, I'm usually outdoors gardening or spending time with my nine rescue pets.

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