Working Cocker Spaniels puppies
Oh, I love English Cockers, if you are looking for a performance dog, there are defintely U.S. breeders breeding performance dogs. Here is a great website from a breeder in New England who breeds dual-purpose English cockers; her dogs have both conformation and working dog titles! Great info on breedng dual purpose dogs, her philosophy and breeding program. Its an interesting read.
I am on the same page as you...I currently have a bench bred English Setter, I love the "soft" temperament, the lack of shedding, the beautiful, silky coat, the affectionate nature. But I anticipate wanting to downsize with my next dog...a bit more portable, easy to travel with, slightly more biddable dog, yet with the same friendly nature, silky, non-shedding coat. I would like to try some beginner performance trainnig, maybe rally, or agility. Will have to wait a few years until the kids are out of the house, because weekends are too busy now.
The English Cocker is still considered a rare breed in the U.S., so it may be harder to find the type of breeder you are looking for. Try looking at the breed club websites.find your regional breed club, mine is in New England. Then get the breeder lists and go to their websites, and find one with a breeding program you agree with.