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ONE of the first clearly recognisable references to Cockers in local newspapers is an article in the Sydney Morning Herald dated 30th of June 1845 where a correspondent muses on dogs in his position as a night watchman[1]. Of course the term “cocker” referred to any number of small flushing spaniel types including Lord Marlborough’s Blenheim Spaniels. Spaniels in general appear in earlier reports though. The “Bee” writes, in 1804, “The pointer and spaniel, though both possessing the sense of smelling in high perfection as well as the hound, are endowed with instinct, very different, and each employs the sense of smelling in a way peculiar to its kind.” [2]

In April 1864 the Argus reported on the first Victorian Dog Show where “SPANIELS. SPRINGERS AND COCKERS” were judged together[3]. Two years later the Ballarat Star also reported on the Ballarat Dog Show Class 6, Spaniels or Cockers.[4]

1887 saw the import of the first of the Obo clan, Jack Obo (K.C.S.B. 19,235), by Farrow’s Ch. Obo out of Farrow's Rose. It was reported, by the Leader, as the first import into the colony of the popular black strain and a dog of weight under 25lbs [~11.3kg]. Jack Obo was quarantined for 6 months before being released to his new owners (S. H. & E. A. Whittaker).[5]

1.^ ORIGINAL CORRESPONDENCE. DOGS. (1845, June 30). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 2. Retrieved August 8, 2017, from

2.^ CONTINUATION FROM THE BEE. (1804, April 29). The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (NSW : 1803 - 1842), p. 3. Retrieved August 8, 2017, from

3.^ THE DOG SHOW. (1864, April 9). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957), p. 6. Retrieved August 8, 2017, from

4.^ BALLARAT DOG SHOW. (1866, May 3). The Ballarat Star (Vic. : 1865 - 1924), p. 3. Retrieved August 8, 2017, from

5.^ CANINE. (1887, June 25). Leader (Melbourne, Vic. : 1862 - 1918), p. 20. Retrieved August 8, 2017, from

BY 1888 the main discussion on differentiation of types, generally between cocker and field spaniels, was as much based on weight as form with letters populating the likes of the Melbourne based Australasian. It was in 1890 that S. H. Whittaker wrote—
“In regard to spaniels I am glad to say that the committee of the V. P. and D. Society [Victorian Poultry and Dog] have already altered the schedules for the better since 1888, up to which time everything was a "cocker," and "field spaniel" seemed to be regarded as a term of reproach, but it will only be by the adoption of the English schedules as a whole, which is practically what "The Kennelman" proposes, that the breed will be put upon the right basis.” [6]

By 1900 weight was still a prevalent issue with correspondence in the West Australian reading “Last year dogs which ought to have been in the field spaniel class, according to weight, were exhibited in the cocker spaniel class, and gained prizes, thereby causing much dissatisfaction.” [7]

Even as late 1929 “Standard” of the Weekly Times lamented the fact that he was forced to penalise some Cocker Spaniels for being overweight and being heavier than the specified 25 to 28lb range. He wrote—“My suggestion to all societies which have only one class for this breed is to make it read, 'Spaniel, any colour or weight.' ” [8]

6.^ THE SPANIEL CLASSES. (1890, May 10). The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic. : 1864 - 1946), p. 12. Retrieved August 8, 2017, from

7.^ THE KENNEL. (1900, June 14). The West Australian (Perth, WA : 1879 - 1954), p. 7. Retrieved August 8, 2017, from

8.^ COCKER SPANIELS (1929, January 12). Weekly Times (Melbourne, Vic. : 1869 - 1954), p. 31. Retrieved August 8, 2017, from


A SMALL yellow and white Spaniel Bitch of the Cocker breed.

1849, September 1

Advertising (1849, September 1). Hobarton Guardian, or, True Friend of Tasmania (Hobart, Tas.), p. 2. Retrieved from

WANTED, a pure-bred small COCKER, or Spaniel, DOG. State price and where to be seen. No. 9, office of this paper.

1861, June 11

Advertising (1861, June 11). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 1. Retrieved from



First prize, F. W. Powlett, Kyneton — Judge; second prize, — Lawrence, Queenstreet-Tweed ; A. Kirwood, Hotham-street-Ponto ; honourable) mention, H.G. Cameron, Richmond — Lola Montes ; and D. S. Camphell, Richmond—Carlo.

1864, April 9

THE DOG SHOW. (1864, April 9). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 6. Retrieved from


Class 6. Spaniels or Cockers, £2. Entries—Messrs W. Anderson (Smeaton), J. Burrill, W. Moss, J. A. Wilson, Dr Stewart, Olden (Shaw, Carter and Co.), A. Bannister, Mitchelson, J. Nicholls, J. R. Paul, W. H. Phillips, and Purdue (Kilmister and Purdue). First prize to Mr Burrill, and a certificate of merit for Mr J. R. Paul's Fan.

1866, May 3

BALLARAT DOG SHOW. (1866, May 3). The Ballarat Star (Vic.), p. 3. Retrieved from


The weight of cocker spaniels has recently been raised from 25lb. to 30lb. by the Victorian Poultry and Dog Society. The mover of this amendment (Mr. S. H. Whittaker) urged that the English maximum of 25lb. was condemned by English experts and that it would shortly be raised In deference to the well-established contention that bone, endurance, and usefulness have to be sacrificed in order to get a cocker down to the artificial weight of 25lb.

1888, July 7

THE WEIGHT OF COCKER SPANIELS. (1888, July 7). The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 24. Retrieved from



Sir,—As an old breeder of spaniels, and one who takes a keen interest in this excellent sporting dog, I am very pleased that under the counsel of "The Kennelman" the confused arrangement of the spaniel classes in the schedule of the Victorian Poultry and Dog Society is likely to be reformed.

1890, May 10

THE SPANIEL CLASSES. (1890, May 10). The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 12. Retrieved from



To Sportsmen.


At Tattersall's Bazaar,
Immediately After the Sale of Mr. S. Chirnside's


JOHN MUNDAY will sell by PUBLIC AUCTION, on May 27, the following highly-bred Field and Cocker Spaniels, the property of F. H. Samson, Esq.:—

1890, May 24

Advertising (1890, May 24). The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 12. Retrieved from


The Lysterfield Kennels contain some for the best Cockers ever imported from England which have been selected by the best judges, regardless of expense. The following are some of the leading dogs:—

1892, August 13

Advertising (1892, August 13). Leader (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 16. Retrieved August 31, 2019, from

W A I H O P A I        K E N N E L.


Ch. Gainsborough Comet
(imp.), K.C.S.B 31,484.

1898, June 23

Advertisements Column 1 (1898, June 23). Otago Witness (N.Z.), p. 35. Retrieved September 8, 2019, from­newspapers/OW18980623.2.139.1


To the Sporting Editor

Sir, —Respecting the judging of spaniels in the forthcoming show, I would like to suggest that the practice of weighing dogs before entering the ring, as recognised in the other colonies and elsewhere, be adopted here, and only those under the standard weight be allowed to compete.

1900, June 14

THE KENNEL. (1900, June 14). The West Australian (Perth, WA), p. 7. Retrieved from




Mr. H. Barnett, of the Dudley Kennels, who has been a successful breeder of cocker spaniels in Western Australia for the past few years, has just imported Kotupua Bobs, winner of the championship of New South Wales at the last Kennel Club Show.

1902, February 13

THE KENNEL. (1902, February 13). The West Australian (Perth, WA), p. 6. Retrieved from



A high-class cocker spaniel bitch, Noonesville Gipsy, passed through Brisbane last week on its way to the kennels of Mr. H. J. King-Church, of Gracemere, an enthusiastic breeder of this class of dogs.

1902, November 29

THE KENNEL. (1902, November 29). The Brisbane Courier (Qld.), p. 15. Retrieved from


Mr. H. K. Bennett's (of W.A.) Ch Connoisseur of Ware won first open, champion, and blue ribbon at the recent Adelaide Kennel Club show held July 3 and 4. In the Open Bitches the same owner's Ch Dudley Melba came third.

1914, July 12

CH. CONNOISSEUR OF WARE (1914, July 12). Sunday Times (Perth, WA), p. 25. Retrieved from


Mrs J. T. Tyley, of North Hill, Forbes, was an exhibitor at the Ladies' Canine Society's Grand Parade at the Royal Agricultural Society's ground, Sydney, on Saturday last.

1918, November 15

A PRIZE COCKER SPANIEL. (1918, November 15). The Forbes Advocate (NSW), p. 4. Retrieved from


The third grand championship show of the Spaniel Club of New South Wales was held in the dog pavilion at the Agricultural Society's Grounds on Saturday last. The entries were limited, but the quality was good, especially in the open classes. Awards:—

1921, August 15

SPANIEL CLUB SHOW. (1921, August 15). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW), p. 11. Retrieved from


By Brindle.

Of all breeds of sporting dogs, the Cocker Spaniel seems to be the most popular, and English fanciers have paid great attention to them during the last decade. The reason of their coming into so much favour is not bard, to seek; because a smallish, highly intelligent, active dog, with a kind disposition, is just the sort that is desirable, not only to the sportsman, but also to the individual requiring a faithful little pal, and all these attributes (and many more) are to be found in the perky Cocker.

1926, February 13

A COCKER KENNEL. (1926, February 13). The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 19 (METROPOLITAN EDITION). Retrieved from


With the exception, perhaps, of the Alsatian, no breed of dog in Great Britain has made such a bid for popularity as the perky little cocker spaniel, and the reason is not hard to understand, because they possess so many qualities that are suitable to present day conditions, not the least being their moderate size. and, consequently, cheap upkeep (says "Brindle" in "The Australasian").

1930, October 3

COCKER SPANIELS. (1930, October 3). The Week (Brisbane, Qld.), p. 5. Retrieved from



Melfort Marksman, a Cocker, Wins Well


By L. A. Latchford

FOR the remaining divisions of the dog section of the Royal Show judged by Mr Stanley Hunt, the English judge, last week, there was an increased entry in most of the breeds, particularly in Cockers, the display of 73 of these being a record. This was a compliment to the Englishman, who is a well-known Cocker enthusiast in the old country

1930, October 3

TASMANIAN DOG BEST IN SHOW (1933, October 4). Sporting Globe (Melbourne, Vic. : 1922 - 1954), p. 11 (Edition1). Retrieved October 8, 2019, from

Cocker Spaniel Trials.

Although field trials are occasionally held for pointers and setters, the popular cocker spaniel has not been catered for as regards competitions for the work for which they were originally bred.

1934, March 12

Cocker Spaniel Trials. (1934, March 12). The Age (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 12. Retrieved from


Brings Help To Mistress In Distress

The sagacity of a thoroughbred female Cocker Spaniel when a car crashed into a tree near Mundaring in the Darling Range (WA) quickly brought help to two seriously injured women.

1934, June 7

COCKER SPANIEL'S SAGACITY (1934, June 7). Chronicle (Adelaide), p. 16. Retrieved from

Herdmaster's Cocker Spaniel

BREEDERS of Cocker Spaniels will be interested to know that during his overseas tour Mr. G. G. P. Grant, Govt Herdmaster, purchased a bitch, Totlemerrie Carefree, from Mr. Peter Hills, a successful breeder, of Preston Duns, Berwickshire (Scotland).

1936, July 9

Herdmaster's Cocker Spaniel (1936, July 9). The Farmer and Settler (Sydney, NSW), p. 17. Retrieved from



JUDGING of the largest entries of dogs at a Melbourne Royal Show concluded on Saturday, when the winners of the four divisions met to contest the principal award of the show, that of best exhibit. This important award ultimately went to the latest imported Cocker, Mrs J. Esler's Whipper Up of Ware, who opened his winning account in Australia by defeating more than 800 dogs at his first outing.

1936, September 30

ENGLISH COCKER GETS HIGHEST AWARD AT MELB. ROYAL SHOW (1936, September 30). Sporting Globe (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 12 (Edition1). Retrieved from


Attracted by the friendly atmosphere of the Canberra Tourist Bureau, a fine cocker spaniel dog presented itself at the counter recently.

1938, February 9

TRAVEL MINDED DOG (1938, February 9). The Evening News (Rockhampton, Qld. : 1924 - 1941), p. 8. Retrieved September 20, 2017, from


The winners of "The Argus" spoons at the field trial of the Cocker Spaniel Club of Victoria held at Sunbury on Saturday were:-

1938, April 25

COCKER SPANIELS IN FIELD TRIAL (1938, April 25). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 15. Retrieved from


The annual championship field trial for spaniels, conducted by the Kennel Control Council, was held at Wallan on Saturday afternoon.

1939, May 6

SPANIEL TRIAL (1939, May 6). The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic. : 1864 - 1946), p. 38. Retrieved June 10, 2019, from


The winning of a challenge certificate in some of the most popular breeds is the fruition of a life-time ambition to many English dog fanciers. But to Mr H. S. Lloyd, of "Ware" fame, it is practically an everyday occurrence.

1939, August 19

LLOYD "OF WARE" (1939, August 19). Weekly Times (Melbourne, Vic.), p. 64 (FIRST EDITION). Retrieved from



HERE is Michael, a three-year-old Cocker Spaniel, owned by Squadron-Leader H. Budden, D.F.C., D.S.O., who accompanied his master on bombing raids over Berlin and other targets in Germany.

1941, October 19

FLEW OVER BERLIN ­(1941, October 19). Sunday Mail (Brisbane, Qld.), p. 1. Retrieved from
See also­history/ww2peopleswar/­stories/60/a7260860.shtml
See also­history/ww2peopleswar/­stories/53/a7259853.shtml

Spaniel's 16 Pups A World's Record

Sydney.—One of the proudest mothers in the world is Nola of Alloma, a 12-month-old blue roan cocker spaniel.

1943, October 7

Spaniel's 16 Pups A World's Record (1943, October 7). Coolgardie Miner (WA), p. 4. Retrieved from

Pets Being Sacrificed


They Need Not Starve

I met him at a dog vet's — such an appealing little black and white bloke, with long, silky ears, and those enormous brown eyes that cocker spaniels have.

1944, February 6

Pets Being Sacrificed (1944, February 6). Sunday Mail (Brisbane Qld.), p. 4. Retrieved from



I have found a home for my friend the black and white cocker spaniel. I have adopted him myself.

1944, February 13

HOME FOUND FOR SPANIEL (1944, February 13). Sunday Mail (Brisbane, Qld. : 1926 - 1954), p. 4. Retrieved October 17, 2017, from



Countless stories have come from the beaches and fields of Normandy, testifying to the heroism of Allied troops who established our bridge heads in Western Europe. Most have dealt with the military events of this colossal undertaking. But here is a touching story of the death of a faithful mascot killed in action.

1944, July 7

THE AMBULANCE (1944, July 7). The Don Dorrigo Gazette and Guy Fawkes Advocate (NSW : 1910 - 1954), p. 4. Retrieved August 10, 2017, from

'Gold Star'
for war loss

BRITANNIA of Alloma, a cocker spaniel bred by Miss I. MacCulloch, of Kogarah, is probably the only "Gold-Star" mother among Australian dogs.

1945, May 20

'Gold Star' for war loss (1945, May 20). The Sun (Sydney, NSW : 1910 - 1954), p. 2. Retrieved May 5, 2018, from

New Book By Cocker Expert

EVERY puppy is an individual; study it and deal with it accordingly. Look for gameness and boldness. Trail a piece of meat along the ground, then bring the pups along; watch for those which use their noses and trail the scent. Encourage them to retrieve. Sit down near the kennel, watch and study them; quite a lot will be learned in this way."

1949, April 30

MOSTLY ABOUT DOGS New Book By Cocker Expert (1949, April 30). The Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957), p. 12. Retrieved September 20, 2017, from

Popular Cocker Spaniel

THE COCKER SPANIEL, by V. A. H. Mathews, (Oxford University Press, 12/6).

IT is fairly safe to say that the Cocker Spaniel is the most popular dog in the world and has a host of admirers as a docile and intelligent pet, gun dog and watch dog.

1949, May 11

Popular Cocker Spaniel (1949, May 11). Weekly Times (Melbourne, Vic. : 1869 - 1954), p. 25. Retrieved August 10, 2017, from

Spaniel's £140 swallow

When Mrs. J. A. Lawson. of Ascot Vale (Melbourne), Spaniel's £140 swallowwas dressing one day this week, she dropped a diamond ring and bent to pick it up. But Bluey, her six-month-old cocker spaniel, got there first.

Spaniel's £140 swallow (1950, January 27). The Sun (Sydney, NSW : 1910 - 1954), p. 4 (LATE FINAL EXTRA). Retrieved August 10, 2017, from


Cocker Spaniels from the Lambrigg Kennels, Sutton Forest Road, were returned from the Melbourne Royal Show with a proud record of performances.

1950, October 10

COCKER SPANIELS AT MELBOURNE SHOW (1950, October 10). Goulburn Evening Post (NSW : 1940 - 1954), p. 3 (Daily and Evening). Retrieved August 10, 2017, from

Champion Cocker Wins Field Trial

The Cocker Spaniel Champion Dalray [Dalry Ed.] Dominic (a son of Ch Monowai Messenger) won the novice trial for retrieving on land and water at the Gundog Society's field trials last week.

1953, August 14

Champion Cocker Wins Field Trial (1953, August 14). The Land (Sydney, NSW : 1911 - 1954), p. 30. Retrieved August 9, 2017, from


The imported blue roan Cocker Spaniel, Sedora Syntax of Ware, owned by Mrs. N. Thompson (Vic.), won best exhibit in show at the Melbourne Royal last week.

1954, October 22

COCKER BEST AT MELBOURNE SHOW (1954, October 22). The Land (Sydney, NSW : 1911 - 1954), p. 43. Retrieved October 17, 2017, from

Good Advertisement For Cricket

That was a match! Judged by runs scored per hour it should have been one of the dullest Tests on record, but in fact few matches in the last 20 years have produced so much genuine excitement.

[...] The second Test has also contributed a couple of welcome items to the "curiosities" with which cricket abounds. One is that "Typhoon" Tyson bowls best after he has been hit on the head by an "express"; another is that for the first recorded time in a Test match a cocker spaniel has fielded on the boundary!

1954, December 23

Good Advertisement For Cricket (1954, December 23). The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 - 1954), p. 2. Retrieved August 9, 2017, from