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SPECIAL NOTICE - Updated 6/12/20

Ohio has opened back up and adoptions have begun. We are working through the many applications that were in a holding pattern during the Governor's executive order as well as working through the new applications arriving daily. As the threat of this virus still exists, we are implementing the following procedures:

We will limit the number of physical home inspections and may request virtual inspections via pictures, FaceTime or videos.

There may be no public adoption events for the remainder of 2020. These have been the only opportunity to meet our dogs without submitting an application and becoming approved. If they do resume again, there will be safety measures in place that must be followed.

We will conduct private meet & greets only with approved applications and at the place of our choosing. We request that all people at the meet and greet wear a mask for the protection of our volunteers.

Thank you for your continued support and understanding of the 'new normal'.

1540 Cockers have been placed to date in Loving Permanent Homes through Columbus Cocker Rescue!
Adoption F.A.Q

If you are ready to accept a homeless cocker as a potential new & permanent family member.

  • If you are ready financially
  • If EVERYONE in the home are all in agreement with adoption of a cocker spaniel
  • If your home life is stable
  • If you will be keeping the cocker, even if your living situation, job or relationship status changes
  • If your schedule will not be taking you away from the cocker during the acclimation time (but work is ok)
  • If you can commit to the process of adoption (reference checks, home inspection, adoption fee, acclimation & legal contractual agreements that follow with a successful adoption)
  • If you understand the cocker may have some setbacks when acclimating to your home, & you are willing to work through these with your adoption counselor
  • If you want to add a cocker to your family, and keep the cocker healthy & happy, warm and indoors 100% of the time


If you want to adopt, but are experiencing these types of difficulties or significant life changes, or expect these changes in the near future, you should rethink applying at this time.

  • Applying to adopt to use the cocker as a “gift”
  • If you think adopting a dog will help teach a child responsibility
  • If you are getting a cocker because a child "wants it"
  • Impending move or change in living situation, or any type of unstable living conditions
  • Relationship difficulties, personal strife between you and your significant other
  • If you are dependent upon another for your financial care
  • If you are currently surviving on child &/or spousal support as your major source of income
  • If you are a full time student, or will be a full time student
  • If you are surviving with the help of student loans
  • Any violence in the home situation (either physical and/or mental)
  • Impending change in employment, schedules or vacations
  • When other adults in the home are NOT in agreement with adoption
  • If you travel frequently where you cannot take your pet
  • If having a child in the future would affect your keeping a cocker in any way
  • If you are not ready to devote significant time, effort and finances into the care and upkeep of your cocker
  • If you are adopting a dog help you “feel better” due to any of life’s stressors mentioned above
  • If you are adopting a cocker because “they are cute”
  • If you would have any difficulties, at any time, paying for heartworm & flea prevention, vaccinations, wellness checkups and sick vet visits (minor or catastrophic), license fees & frequent grooming needs of a cocker (as these will be contractually required for you to perform after adoption)
  • If you believe in home vaccinations for your dogs
  • If you believe in physical punishment in any form
  • If you are unwilling to keep the cocker on heartworm prevention year round
  • If you have ANY doubts about adoption after a recent loss of a pet
  • If you want to apply to adopt a dog because they “look like” a deceased pet
  • If you plan on leaving the cocker outside for any length of time (dog house, attached or detached garage, shed, kennel, or tied out in the yard, or leave outside in fenced yard


(Probably the biggest question that gets asked) Typical adoption donation fees go by age. General adoption fees are as follows:

0 – 6 months = $350

6 months - 2 years old = $250

2 - 7 years old =$200

8 years & above = $150

(* These fees are typical and subject to change. *)


Adoption fees (or adoption donations) help offset the expenses that are incurred in pulling, vetting/medical care and rehabilitating the cockers & also makes it possible to save the next cocker in need. All excess funds from a single adoption fee (if any) go to the future vet care of other cockers in our rescue.

Absolutely NOT! Adopting and caring for an animal is a commitment, and should not be entered into without the resources to do so. If you need to make payments on a $200 adoption donation, which covers all the necessary vetting, how would you handle an emergency vet bill of $500? Or a sick visit with a vet bill of $250 - $300. Adoption donations are nonnegotiable.

Here is a rundown of upfront costs & services we give to a typical uncomplicated rescue cocker….


Shelter Fee

Spay / Neuter


Initial Grooming (clipper cut/shave, combing/brushing, nails trimmed, ears cleaned & bath)

Vaccinations (including rabies)

Fecal Exam & Deworming (if necessary)

Heart Worm Testing

Heart Worm Prevention

Flea Prevention

Physical Vet Exam

Teeth cleaning

General medications for minor ear, or other type of acute infections


As you can see, the above list is what is done to every cocker that comes into our rescue.  Doing the same standard of care above, at your regular vet, can run anywhere from $450 - $550, or more.  Our adoption fees do not cover the full cost of rescuing a cocker. 


In addition to the above typical costs, we also get special cases that result in expensive & ongoing medical care.  A few examples of medical conditions we treat or care for are vision impairment, cataracts, cancer, endocrine problems (diabetes, thyroid, cushings, etc), seizure disorders, heart problems, heart worm treatment, chronic skin & ear conditions, allergies, and orthopedic issues.  These conditions usually result in extra exams, specialist’s consultations, medications, blood & urine testing, x-rays, ultrasound & surgeries, etc..


Other expenses we incur are transport related, daily boarding costs for the cocker (if a foster home is not immediately available), collars, leashes, ongoing grooming and other general care.


No matter how much of our funds we have invested into one of our cockers, the adoption fee scale is still the same.

?  Columbus Cocker Rescue is a 501(c)(3) fully non~profit charitable organization that relies solely on volunteers & donations.  We are NOT a shelter, and we do NOT get any federal funds. 


We have fundraisers throughout the year; we get donations from individuals, take donations at events we attend, and apply for some small grants when they are available.  Donations are fully tax deductable.  Without donations, we can not do the life saving work to save these cockers in need.

If you are approved to adopt and select a cocker, you will sign a legally binding contract and pay the adoption donation when you take possession of the cocker & begin the home trial period. 


Columbus Cocker Rescue will not cash any adoption donation, until we know that the cocker is not coming back to rescue, because you tell us if/when they have found their forever home.  The standard home trial is 1 – 2 weeks where we keep in close contact with the adopter to monitor the progress of the placement.   At some point during the home trial, and at least by the end the two weeks, if the adopter relays to us that the cocker is a good fit and has a permanent home, the donation can be cashed/deposited, and will no longer be refundable.  If the cocker does not work out during the home trial period, & the adopter does not wish to pursue adoption, the donation is refunded, or the check is returned or destroyed. 


Communication between the adopter and the CCR representative is important, and if it is not conveyed by the adopter, to Columbus Cocker Rescue's representative &/or director that there are any problems by the end of the 2 week home trial period, the adoption donation can be deposited and nonrefundable.  Any special circumstances are only approved by the Director if there has been prior notification of any problems, and deemed warranted by the director.  So, with good communication, there is no risk on losing the adoption donation, as a cocker finding a loving home is the main goal, not cashing a check.

Nothing, nada, zip, zilch.  Columbus Cocker Rescue is run solely by volunteers who donate their valuable time to help our cockers find their forever homes.  Most of our volunteers, including our director & coordinator, work full time+ at regular jobs.  All of our volunteers donate various amounts of their precious time from their busy lives, families & work commitments, to help our mission.  Without volunteers, 

we can not exist.

Unfortunately, we are not a shelter, and do not have a central location for housing the cockers.  Our cockers are either in temporary emergency boarding, or housed in individual private foster homes in and around the Columbus Ohio area.  Our CCR volunteers do most of their work from their own homes, communicating via phone & email with each other, to potential adopters & arranging events.

After you submit an application, the approval process takes as long as it takes.  Some times we can pull it off in 24 hours if everything is working to our benefit, other times it can take a few weeks.  On average, a typical timeframe for application approval can range from 2 – 3 days, to about 7 – 10 days. This depends highly upon the accuracy of the information provided by the applicant.  If any information is missing, omitted, false, not forthcoming, directions not followed or not completed, this will delay the process.

Our volunteers & adoption advisors first review the application, send out an email that we have received the application usually within 24 hours.  Then we check historical vet histories on any/all current & past pets of the applicant, either living or deceased. 

*** Until the vet check is completed,, we will not progress to the next step. ***


Then we also check two, nonfamily, personal references, followed by a home visit before we place a cocker in the approved applicant’s care.

We put a lot of time, money & loving effort in saving these cocker spaniels, to get them ready for their new permanent homes, and we want to make sure that their care beyond adoption continues in the same manner.  We also go by a good fit of cocker to family, so an application is essential to matching a potentially compatible cocker with an approved applicant’s home situation.  We know our cockers, and you know your family.  Working together, this process helps ensure a good placement that has a high potential to become a good, permanent match for everyone involved.

Our cocker’s are looking for a family of their own, to become a full member of a loving household.  We’ve put a lot of time, effort, energy and monies into saving these cockers who would not be alive today because if it weren’t for our help.  These cockers are our charges, our responsibility, our furkids, and we’ve made a commitment and a promise to them, that we will do our best to match them with a loving family and a home of their very own, where they will continue to receive wonderful care.  We stand by our process that helps us fulfill our promise to these cockers.

First, it would be best to fill out an application.  We not only go by your input on adoption choices, but also how we think a particular cocker will fit into our personal living situation and family dynamics.  We can’t get them all to a single location, but there are several ways to meet our cockers in person, either at scheduled adoption events, personal appointments at a public location, etc.

Yes, HOWEVER… there are some stipulations that you need to understand & agree to prior to beginning the application process. 


  1. You will HAVE to travel to our area to meet the cocker(s).  This may involve more than one trip, depending on the situation, so this needs to be taken into consideration!!!!
  2. You may be required to bring your current dog to see if they are compatible.
  3. We will need to do a home visit prior to placing a cocker into your care (we do have an extensive network throughout the country that can usually assist).
  4. We do NOT provide any transport.
  5. We do NOT ship our cockers.
  6. If the cocker does not work out for any reason, either during the home trial period or after adoption, you will be required to deliver the cocker back into our care, to our area, in the same condition & supplies as when you received the cocker (groomed, vaccinated, return of supplies if any & paperwork, etc).

Yes, HOWEVER… we WILL check the property to verify the owner, and we WILL personally get in touch with the landlord to inquire about any lease, rental addendum for a pet, fee’s, restrictions and limitations in regards to pets.  We will also confirm any existing agreement that may be in place. 


We would recommend that if you rent, you contact your landlord or Rental Company before you apply for adoption, to become aware of any weight or breed restrictions, if you can have a dog at all, any extra deposit that would be required as well as any additional rent that will be charged, and any contractual agreements that would need to be in place in order for you to have a cocker in the rental property.  Failure to do this prior to applying could result in a delay in the application process.  We have even got applications in on people that did not realize they could not have a dog until they asked, or they found that the deposit and extra rent would be too much of a financial strain on them, & they had to withdraw the application. 


**Do NOT take it for granted that if other renters in your area or complex have pets, that you can have one too.**


Becoming informed as to what would be required by a landlord will save a lot of time and effort, and help make the decision to adopt a more informative one, prior to applying.

Yes, but it can be a very complicated process to find a good fit.  It is not impossible, but we do not have a lot of foster homes with children, especially younger children, that very few of our cockers have been in contact with.  It would be difficult to gauge how a cocker will react to a youngster if we haven’t seen any interaction first hand.  You will need to work with us, as we work with you, to find the better fit for your situation with the ages of children you have in your home, which means you should be open to suggestions of a good match.


About children and adoption, when applying to adopt a specific cocker, DO NOT INVOLVE CHILDREN IN THE SELECTION PROCESS!  The adults in the home handle this alone.  It is good to plant the seed of adoption in their minds & prepare them for a possible new family pet, however, the specific cocker you have in mind may already be slated to go to another home, have several pending applications, may not be a good fit, or if approval to adopt is declined, then the child is usually heartbroken when the news is delivered.  Do NOT get a child excited about a specific cocker until you have been told the cocker is going on a home trial with your family.

First, you can email our adoption address, at and your email will go to our CCR staff simultaneously. This is the easiest and best way to inquire about something.  Secondly, you can call our main number, at 614-554-1300.  This is the main number, and one person has this line.  It may take a while to get back to you, but you can leave a message.  This phone gets a lot of calls, and the director has minimal time to return them, so when possible, please use the email system.

The answer is NO.  If there is a potential home for a cocker, we will not wait, or hold, a cocker to see if you are going to follow through.  If you are not in a position to adopt just yet, you need to wait to review/choose a cocker until you can be fully committed to the process of adoption.   A chance at a forever home for our cockers is the most important goal for them.  We will not place a hold on our cockers.

Unfortunately NO, we do not have the manpower or the time to keep persons updated individually on our cockers.  The best way to keep track of a particular cocker is to monitor any changes in his/her BIO located on our website or on their petfinder page.  Before you ask a question, make sure you read the bio fully and completely, most times, the answer is in the cocker’s page.  If something is listed as “unknown”, then we do not know at that current time about that subject.

That is fine, however REMEMBER, we do NOT hold any cocker. There are many adopters who will want a cocker, even if it has not yet been in a foster environment.  Sometimes when cockers come in, there are no foster homes available, and they need to go into emergency temporary boarding until one opens up.  Until then, some adopters are willing to trial the cocker even if some of his/her habits or behavior hasn’t been fully evaluated in a home setting.  “Waiting” until a cocker is in a foster home, or until it is housetrained, could mean missing out on the dog you want to adopt, if another person applies and is willing to accept the cocker with some unknowns, into their home.  We do not hold cockers.  Don’t be surprised if the cocker you’ve been watching on the website, is one day slated to go to an adoptive home.  Many folks miss out on cockers this way.

PLEASE, PLEASE Please….our volunteers spend countless hours checking references, arranging and scheduling home visits, and other duties.  We will not be angry at you for getting another dog or changing your mind.  All we would like is some communication to us to let us know to withdraw your application, and we can stop the application process, and save a lot of wasted time.  Our volunteers usually take time away from their busy lives to help, please respect our efforts enough to communicate your status or needs so we can focus our efforts elsewhere.

To a point, yes.  There are other breeds of dogs that are super easy to maintain, and some that consume a considerable amount of money, time and care.  Cockers can fall mainly in between.  They are a more expensive breed to keep in good shape. 


It takes some extra effort in time, grooming, finances, possible more frequent vet visits (most commonly due to ear, skin or eye issues), etc.  For example, not only is there the expense of adoption, consider you are REQUIRED to keep the cocker on “YEAR ROUND” heart worm prevention ($$), flea prevention ($$), grooming that will need do be done every 6 – 8 weeks ($$), vaccinations and blood work ($$) any extra vet appointments for common illnesses ($$), brushing of the coat to keep free of mats (time) a few times per week, cleaning of the ears 1 – 2 times per week (time), etc.


Cockers will cost more in the long run in time, money and upkeep.  So before you decide to adopt one, make sure you research the breed from several resources to see if a cocker will really fit into your ability to provide for their care.  RESEARCH BEFORE you apply for adoption.  If adopting a cocker will stretch your budgeted funds and time, then a cocker may not be the right breed of dog for you.

All and none!  How’s that for an answer?  Cockers behavior is individual, just like people.  Their traits and behaviors vary from one cocker to another.  Some things they do have in common: 


1) They NEVER do well as an outdoor dog, NEVER, they require & crave to be part of a family, in a home with human contact too much.  Their skin & coat deteriorate outdoors, and they strive to get attention and get lonely.

2) They usually always want their loving human around them.  Cockers are usually people oriented dogs, and they do well with people, or at least the people they have grown to love and trust. 

3) All cockers are different, one may have issues with resource guarding, while another you can do anything to and they won’t get upset.


Good rule of thumb, if you are looking for a cocker, keep your mind open, and stock up on consistency in training and gentle guidance.  If your heart, home & finances are willing, your mind is open, your situation stable and your adoption plans consistent & strong, then there is most likely a good match we can make for you with a rescued American Cocker Spaniel.


Please remember, our FIRST priority is our cocker kids we’ve saved.  We’ve made a promise to them, a commitment, and we will uphold that promise by all means at our disposal.

Unless the cocker is very new to rescue, the online biography of the cocker should be up to date & complete as we know it.  Most of the inquiries we receive about cockers already have the information within the bio (weight, age, if they are good around kids/cats/other dogs/house trained, etc.)  Read the bio's completely, on petfinder and also the Columbus Cocker Rescue's website, before inquiring.  If something is listed as "UNKNOWN", then we typically do not know that area of assessment, especially if the cocker is in a foster home that may not have exposure to certain situations.


We receive a lot of email & phone inquiries about cockers, but unfortunately most folks do not provide us with any information on themselves. So it is difficult to answer some of the simple, or even complex questions, without knowing more from a potential adopter.  Most don't even give us a name to respond to, or even where they are located.  The more information we have about you, the better the information we can provide. 


We do not have the resources to answer a lot of repetitive questions via email or phone, if we also do not have information about your home and family situation.  Because you think a cocker may also be a "good fit" for your family, we would also need an application from you to ensure on our end that the cocker may indeed be a potential good fit.  You know your family, and we know our cockers, so working together, we can assist each other to find the best cocker for your situation.  The more we understand about the potential home, the better we can provide you with any further information about the cocker(s) as they would relate to your family/living situation.  So we would need an application on file for you, to give you the most up to date information on a particular cocker


*Remember that submitting an application does not obligate you to adopt, it helps us understand where a cocker could be potentially going, and assists us and your family, in finding the best match, and helps us give you the best information on a particular cocker.*


Our adoption application is here:

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