Challenges of Owning a Cockapoo
Cockapoos - a cross between a Cocker Spaniel and a Poodle are a popular breed of dog for many reasons. Cockapoos are known for their friendly and playful nature, With their curly coats and expressive faces, it's hard not to fall in love with them. Something many owners love about cockapoos, is they are hypoallergenic, which means they produce less dander and are less likely to cause an allergic reaction in people who are sensitive to pet hair.
Like most dogs, Cockapoos can be prone to a number of health concerns that owners or potential buyers should familiarise themselves with.
Health Concerns With Cockapoos
Luxating Patella is a condition where the kneecap dislocates, this can cause pain, lameness and may lead to damage of the structures surrounding the kneecap. Luxating patella can be caused by a variety of factors, including genetics, trauma, and developmental abnormalities. Mild cases may resolve on their own, but severe cases may require surgery to reposition the kneecap and prevent further damage.
Hip Dysplasia is another common condition affecting cockapoos. Hip dysplasia is a genetic condition that affects the hip joint in dogs. It occurs when the hip joint doesn't develop properly, causing the ball and socket of the joint to fit together poorly. This can result in inflammation, pain, and arthritis over time. Symptoms of hip dysplasia can be managed through pain relief, use of joint supplements, physiotherapy, controlled exercise and weight loss if necessary, however in severe cases surgery on the affected joint may be required.
Separation Anxiety: Cockapoos are very affectionate and love company. They may become anxious if left alone for long periods of time. This can result in destructive behaviour such as chewing, barking, scratching and aggression.
Despite being a highly intelligent breed, Cockapoos can be stubborn, which can make training a challenge. Consistency and patience are key to training a Cockapoo successfully. If having difficulties with your dog’s behaviour we always recommend consulting with an IMDT recognised dog trainer. They will be able to assess your dog’s individual requirement and devise a training programme that meets both your and your dog’s need. We only recommend using IMDT trainers as their positive reinforcement provides mental stimulation and avoids unnecessary stress by making training a rewarding process.
Cockapoos are predisposed to a number of conditions affecting the eyes and eyesight, including progressive retinol atrophy and glaucoma. The vast majority of these cases will result in total blindness. Although sight loss can be alarming, most dogs will adapt to this pretty quickly and can still live relatively normal lives.
Cockapoos are also prone to developing cataracts. Cataracts are more common in older dogs and can be surgically removed, however it is important to consider the increased risks of anaesthesia in older dogs.
Like most breeds with long, floppy ears, Cockapoos are more susceptible to developing ear infections. This is due to the fact that their ears create the perfect warm and moist environment for bacterias and yeasts to thrive. Ear infections can be extremely uncomfortable and often require veterinary treatment. You can minimise your dog’s risk of developing an ear infection by ensuring their ears are kept clean and dry at all times. Dogs who are prone to regular yeast infections can also benefit from a dietary supplement that supports the hind gut microbiome, as disturbances in the microbiome can exacerbate this.
Owning a Cockapoo can be a rewarding experience, but it also requires effort and dedication. Being aware of these conditions and taking steps to manage and prevent them, will help ensure a happy and healthy life for you and your Cockapoo. Always carry out breed research before welcoming a Cockapoo into your family and only ever shop from reputable breeders.