Popularity of the Cocker Spaniel Salesman

12.15.2017


Pard advertises dog food with cocker spaniels in this storyboard ad.
Image Courtesy of Pard

Those of us who admire the cocker spaniel, know it’s a breed that has a long history as being a family favorite. In fact, the cocker spaniel leads all other dog breeds as having the most number one showings at the top of the AKC ranking charts. Their historical run began in the late 1930s, and extended into the 1950s. Cocker spaniels show up again as a family favorite in the mid 1980s. This acute popularity catapulted the breed into being a top salesman for all sorts of advertising gigs, ranging from dog food, to automobile parts, to cameras, and even to liquor. Their claim to fame in selling products by appearing in print ads, especially during the 1940s and 50s, apparently knew no bounds. 

Take for instance, the magazine ad (below), where two spaniels make "a perfect pair," peddling Bell & Howell's perfect pairing of a movie camera and a projector.

Cocker spaniels make the perfect pair.
Image courtesy of Bell & Howell

Champion, manufacturer of quality auto parts, shows how cocker spaniels prepare for winter when they put on ear muffs. That equates to a car, that's prepped for winter's cold by having new Champion spark plugs installed.

Cocker spaniels prepare for winter by wearing ear muffs.
Image courtesy of Champion

Here’s an interesting advertisement from Fleishmann’s Gin. Apparently, the company discovered that "a cocker, and a cocktail, have a lot in common." I’m not sure what, but as a teetotaler, I keep Chloe away from the hard liquor!

A cocker and a cocktail have a lot in common.
Image courtesy of Fleischmann

Of course, dog food manufacturers, were always using the cocker spaniel to demonstrate their particular brand of food was at the top of any dog’s list for taste and nutrition.

Cocker spaniels wear baseball gloves, according to Friskies.
Image courtesy of Friskies

Here’s a print advertisement from Stewart-Warner. It shows cocker spaniels really enjoy watching themselves on television. I know Chloe likes TV, she even barks at the television when animals appear on the screen. I think, dogs, horses, and elephants, ...yes elephants, sets off the loudest barks from Chloe. 

A cocker spaniel watching a cocker spaniel on TV.
Image courtesy of Stewart - Warner

So, besides their extreme popularity, why was the cocker spaniel selected to represent such a vast assortment of products? 

The answer, according to advertisers of that time, was this sporting breed of dogs represented two words in the minds of the consumers, those were, …loyalty and trust. Honestly, I can’t agree more, especially for one who hangs out with one little cocker spaniel, named Chloe. 

But in reality, I would venture to say, that loyalty and trust, are probably the two greatest attributes that "all dogs," truly bring to their owners. 

4 comments :

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