The Merry Cocker (and others)

With a cheerful demeanor and a tail that wags with the constancy of a metronome, it comes as no surprise that the Cocker Spaniel would earn the nickname of “Merry Cocker.” That tail action, however, also has earned its own term: “Merry tail action.” It refers to the wagging tail carried on a line with or a little above the dog’s topline.

The Cocker Spaniel, however, does not corner the market on “merry tail action.” The Golden Retriever AKC standard describes the tail as “carried with merry action.” The English Springer Spaniel standard includes the line, “The tail is carried horizontally or slightly elevated and displays a characteristic lively, merry action, particularly when the dog is on game.”

Image: “Toby” by Barbara Hymer is available as a print here.

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