Grooming your cocker spaniel to have the traditional American Kennel Society show-dog cut can be both expensive and time consuming. This cut is not always practical for a cocker spaniel, which is a companion pet and not a show dog. However, with a little bit of patience with a less-than-cooperative animal and human hair clippers, you can keep your cocker spaniel looking spiffy between grooming appointments.
Securely fasten the dog so that he cannot run away while you're cutting his hair. You can put his leash on and tie it to a fence post in order to keep him from running away during his haircut.
Clip around your dog's feet until the hair is about 1/8 of an inch. This makes it easier to keep his feet clean and to spot fleas. Some dogs may not like having their paws touched, so do this portion quickly if your dog is skittish about having his paws messed with. You may leave the hair on his feet longer if he really dislikes having his feet touched, or if you prefer it that way. If it becomes too much of a battle, leave the this task to a professional groomer.
Use the scissors to cut the hair on your dog's ear to a manageable length. Make short, brisk cuts to the outside of the ear itself to keep it tangle free.
Clip your cocker spaniel's belly hair to a length of about 1/8 of an inch. This is recommended in order to keep him clean and fleas noticeable.
Use your scissors to clip a bit of hair on his body, if necessary. However, cutting the body with clippers can be time consuming and tedious for both you and the dog, so either use an electric shaver or take your dog to the groomer for this portion.
Brush your cocker spaniel out once or twice per week to keep his hair tangle-free and looking its best.