Posted : 6/13/2006 3:24:49 PM
Congrats on your new adoption!
I have a cocker spaniel too - mine's only a year old. Cockers are typically big chow hounds and can easily get overweight, but with your dog's special dietary needs that may not relevant for you. With their long furry ears they are prone to ear infections. When you bathe him it's a good idea to put cotton balls in his ears to keep the water out, and flush them with an ear cleaner every couple of weeks or so (just pour it in, massage it, and wipe the outside with cotton balls - it's less uncomfortable for him if you warm the bottle in your hand or a bowl of warm water first). You'll probably have to do a lot of brushing and either shave him down if you prefer, or get him groomed every 6 wks or so. I love cockers... when not badly bred they are so happy, friendly, and sweet, just lovely dogs.
Sorry about his food issues - there is no "spaniel thing" about a rash that I've ever heard of. More likely he has an allergy, some kind of food allergy seems likely. The Benadryl provides good short-term relief but it's not a cure. I'd suggest that if you have it in you you could try doing an elimination diet. Or you could try feeding him a allergy-friendly food like California Natural, which has very few ingredients (made by Natura). Which organic food have you been trying?