Meet The Golden Cocker Retriever: The Forever Puppy

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Golden Cocker Retriever is a cross of the Golden Retriever and the Cocker Spaniel, also known as Dakota Sport Retriever. It’s a medium-sized dog breed at about 20 to 24 inches tall, weighing between 30 to 45 pounds. The lifespan of this crossbreed is around 10 t0 13 years.

A full-grown Golden Retriever Cocker Spaniel Mix still looks like its a baby with its sweet demeanor and fluffy coat.

I put this article together to explore the pros and cons of the forever puppy. Obviously, it looks cute, but is it the right dog for you?

The first step in making this important decision is to meet the parent breeds. So, here we go!

Say Hello To The Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever enjoying the sunshine outside

Golden Retriever

This breed is the third-most popular household choice in the world.

Originally bred in the United Kingdom as a gun dog, the Golden Retriever has since become a classic family pet — and movie superstar.

It’s best recognized for its golden coat, kind expression, and long hair.

This dog’s temperament can best be described as friendly, intelligent, and devoted, making it an all-around good choice for owners with children.

Tapping into its gun dog instinct, the Golden Retriever is a highly active breed that loves to chase after tennis balls and frisbees.

It requires a lot of stimulation like most Sporting Group dogs.

A full-grown Golden Retriever reaches a height of 21 – 24 inches (53 – 61 cm) and a weight of 55 – 65 pounds (25 – 29 kg). These measurements count for males and females.

This golden dog is generally considered a healthy breed with just a few minor health concerns to watch out for.

The most common ones are hypothyroidism, elbow and hip dysplasia, and seizures. These are frequent illnesses in the dog world.

The only major concern that requires immediate attention is mast cell tumors, which are related to cancer.

A healthy Golden Retriever can live between 10 – 13 years.

Remember this information when we start talking about its mixed breed. Every detail listed here could reveal itself in the Golden Retriever’s offspring.

Get To Know The Cocker Spaniel

Cocker Spaniel out for a walk in the grass

Cocker Spaniel

Next up is the Cocker Spaniel.

Like the Golden Retriever, this dog belongs to the Sporting Group, which makes it naturally alert, active, and intelligent.

It has a gentle and happy personality and is not afraid to get a little mischevious.

Combine that with its big dreamy eyes and the Cocker Spaniel can get away with pretty much anything if you let it.

This breed is loved with for its floppy ears and a long coat that flows in the wind as it runs.

The Cocker Spaniel is a very whimsical dog, which gives it that forever puppy feeling that you’ll see in the upcoming mixed breed.

When full-grown, a Cocker Spaniel reaches a height of 13.5 – 15.5 inches (34 – 39 cm) and a weight of 20 – 30 pounds (9 – 13.5 kg).

This picturesque breed almost sounds too good to be true, except for the fact that it may suffer from a variety of serious health concerns:

  • Cataracs (could lead to blindness)
  • Glaucoma
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Liver disease
  • Seborrhea (a skin disease)

The Cocker Spaniel may also experience hip and elbow dysplasia like the Golden Retriever.

This breed has a life expectancy of 12 – 15 years.

What Does The Forever Puppy Look Like?

Golden Cocker Retriever wearing a bandana outside

Golden Cocker Retriever – Image Source

OK, now we can finally talk about the Golden Cocker Retriever. Keep in mind that the following information is based on its parent breeds.

These are all predictions that vary from case to case depending on genetic makeup.

In terms of physical appearance, the Cocker Spaniel comes in a variety of coat colors, so the forever puppy may not always be golden.

It could be a mix of blue, black, brown, and white.

The ideal attributes a Golden Cocker Retriever should have is a medium-length coat, floppy ears, and a smaller build than the Golden Retriever.

The size of a full-grown crossbreed will be a median of its parents’ numbers.

We can predict the height of the Golden Retriever Cocker Spaniel mix will range from 20 to 24 inches (51 – 61 cm).

As we mentioned above its weight will range from 30 to 45 pounds (13 – 20 kg).

The health concerns of a Golden Cocker Retriever are also based on its parents.

Both the Golden Retriever and Cocker Spaniel are capable of experiencing seizures associated with epilepsy and hip and elbow dysplasia.

On the Cocker Spaniel side, however, you have more serious illnesses to worry about like glaucoma and cancerous tumors.

On the bright side, both parent breeds have a good life expectancy, so your Golden Cocker Retriever will live a long and happy life of at least 10 years!

Want to see how this mix grows up?

Meet Sadie — her owner claims she’s mostly Golden Retriever with a little Cocker Spaniel mixed in.

There’s A Toy Version, Too… But There’s A Catch

Here’s a quick reality check: the term “forever puppy” is relative and subjective.

What if your mix is 75% Golden Retriever and 25% Cocker Spaniel?

For owners who really want a teacup-sized Golden Cocker Retriever, there are some toy ones on the market.

This happens when a Cocker Spaniel is mixed with a mini Golden Retriever, which is a mix of the Golden Retriever, Cocker Spaniel, and Poodle.

So you kinda make a Golden Retriever smaller by mixing it with Cocker Spaniel and Poodle. And then you mix it once again with Cocker Spaniel to get an even smaller dog.

According to breeders, the end result should have 50% – 75% Golden Retriever genes, just in a smaller package.

Sadly, there’s a second way to “create” a mini Golden Retriever that might make you want to think twice about buying one.

There’s a chance these lab-made dogs will suffer from dwarfism, which is a skeletal defect.

A dog with dwarfism may look cute and small but it causes them a lot of pain throughout their entire lives.

So, before you go shopping for a toy Golden Cocker Retriever, keep in mind that it may have this genetic/medical defect.

Do you really want to keep a dog knowing that it’s in agony? Come on, that’s just cruel.

Don’t Mistake It For A Goldendoodle

Furry goldenddodle dog in the yard


During my research, I noticed a lot of people were curious about the Golden Cocker Retriever’s relationship to the Goldendoodle.

In case you didn’t notice, these are not the same breeds, although they do have the Golden Retriever genes in common.

Like the mini Golden Cocker Retriever, there’s also a mini Goldendoodle.

The height of a standard Goldendoodle reaches 20 inches (50 cm).

The weight ranges from 50 – 90 pounds (22 – 40 kg).

If more Cocker Spaniel genes are mixed in, the Golden Cocker Retriever will be smaller than the Goldendoodle.

Additionally, the coat of a Goldendoodle will be much curlier than the Golden Cocker Retriever thanks to its Poodle parent breed.

That’s how you can easily tell them apart.

Thanks to the Poodle genes, a mini and standard Goldendoodle have a good chance to be “hypoallergenic.”

It’s a great option for owners with allergies or who want a clean house with minimal shedding.

Living With A Golden Cocker Retriever

Golden Cocker Retriever resting on the couch after a long day

Golden Cocker Retriever – Image Source

If you’re still reading, you must be highly interested in this mix for a number of reasons.

Before buying one, consider if a Golden Cocker Retriever is your best match in the long run.

How will this dog fit into your daily schedule and hobbies? Let’s find out!

Does This Mix Shed?

Both parent breeds have long-haired coats that invite moderate to heavy shedding throughout the year.

The Golden Cocker Retriever is not considered “hypoallergenic.”

With such a long and luscious coat, the Golden Retriever Cocker Spaniel Mix needs to be brushed several times a week.

In the world of grooming, it’s pretty high-maintenance.

Clip its toenails and give it baths as needed — but not too many or you’ll dry out its coat.

Do I Need A Backyard?

Yes, yes, yes, yes, YES.

Since both parent breeds belong to the Sporting Group, chances are you’ll need to give your Golden Cocker Retriever a lot of physical exercises.

45 – 60 minutes a day (at the very minimum) is recommended. Purebred Golden Retrievers sometimes need two sessions.

A fenced backyard or a playpen is also essential to keep your Golden Cocker Retriever from wandering off.

Both parent breeds have a long history of being hunting dogs with a strong prey-drive.

If your Golden Cocker Retriever sees or smells a small animal in the distance, it will run as quickly as it can to track it down.

That’s why owners of this mix shouldn’t live with rodents, birds, or small cats.

Dogs are just fine.

Golden Cocker Retriever playing outside in a pink harness

Is Training Easy?

Training levels and abilities are based on the temperaments of this mix’s parent breeds.

For example, any sign of stubbornness or independence can lead to harder training.

Thankfully, we don’t see much (if any) of that in the Golden Retriever or Cocker Spaniel, so it should be easy to train your mix.

Start training as early as possible as puppies are easier to handle than adults.

The Cocker Spaniel-Golden Retriever Mix Personality

Since both the Golden Retriever and Cocker Spaniel belong to the Sporting Group, we can make more accurate predictions about this mix’s personality.

The temperament of a Golden Cocker Retriever should be:

  • Happy
  • Intelligent
  • Sweet
  • Active
  • Playful

All of these traits make for a great family dog that’s responsible around children.

Is This Mix Aggressive?

The Golden Cocker Retriever is not known to be aggressive since both its parents have friendly personalities around adults, strangers, and children.

However, all dogs of different shapes and sizes are capable of biting or nipping, especially in nervous or unfamiliar situations.

Help your dog overcome these fears by bringing it in public.

If needed, you could always buy a muzzle for your mix.

Taking Home A Golden Cocker Retriever

The price range of the Golden Retriever Cocker Spaniel Mix varies from $500 – $1500.

For adoption and rescue places, check out Puppy Find, Golden Retriever Rescue in Maryland, and Puppy Finder.

If you’re willing to spend a little extra on Golden Cocker Retrievers from breeders, visit Taylormade Mini Goldens in Utah, Dakota Winds in South Dakota, and Dakota Sport Retrievers.

I can’t promise they’ll have any Cocker Spaniel Mixes right now, but these websites are a great place to start looking.

Final Thoughts On This Breed

OK, we’ve approached the end! Now it’s time to decide if this mix is right for you!

In my humble opinion, the right owner for this dog is someone who loves exercise, has a fenced backyard, and doesn’t live with small animals.

The Golden Cocker Retriever is a great fit for families, too!

The wrong owner for this dog is someone who lives a relaxed lifestyle inside of an apartment.

Owners with allergies or sensitive noses should pick a different breed as it comes with a long coat and frequent shedding.

Do you think this mix is your perfect match? Comment below and let us know!

7 replies on “Meet The Golden Cocker Retriever: The Forever Puppy”


    My Golden Retrieve/Cocker Spaniel mix was rescued in Guatemala. The lady who had him was older and lived in a small 2nd floor apartment. He was gifted to her so it wasn’t her choice, but she had just lost her dog. It was too much for her. I recently lost my Golden Lab and the little guy looked a lot like me old girl so I melted. It’s been a crazy ride every since! 🙂 He’s my bud.

  • Angie says:

    I have a rescued Golden Cocker. She was about a year old when we adopted her. She is sweet with us but demands constant attention. She is not good with small children or strangers. She is friendly but when she goes on her back like she wants to be petted she will snap. There is only one groomer she allows to cut her. She is not good with other dogs, but is great with our small cat. She has the perfect family, because we are retired with no small children. We love her even with her quirks.

  • Diane says:

    Looking for a golden cocker retriever in California – great dog lover and nice home and yard.

  • Preston Porter says:

    Recently lost my dog I rescued him we were together for six years can’t get over it I was told he was half beagle half cocker spaniel he loved everybody person’s, cats I been looking for a similar pet but can’t seem to find any i have lots of photos of him if anybody can tell if that’s the right breed please let me know and where can I find one somewhat similar to him thanks.

  • Amanda says:

    I have a golden cocker whose 14th birthday was yesterday. He is a sweet boy. We have had him since he was a year. He was wild and rambunctious then. Really energetic and lively. We were able to train him out of jumping on people and used a halti to help him on the leash. We had two cats when we got him and he was curious at first but learned to give them their space. Later, we welcomed a baby to the family and there were no issues. Never any aggressiveness or possessiveness. He outlived both of our initial cats and we added another one to the family this year. He was interested in her when we got her, but as a senior dog, he has become neutral to her. She likes to try to play with him. He likes to lay on the floor and ignore her.

    Health wise, there haven’t been any major issues. He had a bad time with his hips a few years ago, but daily glucosamine tablets helped with that. Now he is on food with glucosamine in it, and he’s not in as much pain. But he hasn’t been able to jump on a bed or into an suv in years. Within the last year, he has quit stairs other than the couple deck stairs needed to get to our yard. Fortunately, there is no need for him to go to other floors of our house so it is fine at home.

    Overall, he was a high energy excited young dog. In his old age, he has relaxed and is much much calmer. At his age, we know every day we have with him is a blessing, and we are hoping to have a good couple months, hopefully years, left.

  • Lana Mann says:

    Yes I am looking for a golden cocker pup I had one 13 years ago my dog was a rescue but very loyal to my and my family. I would love to have another at this time but having a hard time finding one close to my location which is KC MO

  • LissLux&Moon+6 says:

    My golden cocker mix is the absoute LOVE OF MY LIFE! He is so smart and funny and silly….he does NOT like strangers or other dogs at first but warms up pretty quickly. He has a litter of pups now that he sweetly keeps a watchful eye on from outside the whelping box we built for Mama and their 6 cuties. We don’t allow too much interaction yet but I am anxious to see how he is with them in a few weeks!

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