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The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog breed is under the Toy Dog Group. He is a Toy Spaniel originating from the United Kingdom and was originally bred for companionship.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniels’ intelligence, affectionate, and loyal nature make them a perfect company for new pet owners or the elderly. They are of small size and suitable to dwell in small apartments in the city.
Cavaliers are often placed in a handbag due to their almost miniature size, and some owners even consider them as a handbag accessory.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed is also easy to train and groom. He has an average lifespan of 9–15 years.
Getting a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy? Here is a brief background of the tail-wagging toy dog that loves human interaction.
The history of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a bit complicated, as breed enthusiasts have varying claims. Some say that this small dog descended from the Toy Spaniels in Holland, Italy, and France around the 16th–18th centuries.
Others argue that the Cavalier King Charles Spaniels have already been around as early as the 13th century. One thing is for sure, this Toy Spaniel breed was a favourite of royal and noble European families.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel was named after King Charles I of England because he was his favourite dog breed in the 1600s. Some say that the Monarch was even accompanied by his small dog when he was executed.
King Charles II of England shared the same admiration for Toy Spaniels. He even created a decree to allow these dogs to go inside any public building in Britain. Cavaliers were often included in paintings of noble men and women.
The long-nosed King Charles Spaniel or the English Toy Spaniel almost became extinct when the short-faced one became fashionable during the reign of Queen Victoria.
Some people speculate that King Charles Spaniels were crossed with Pugs to achieve his flat face and larger, prominent eyes. He was revived in 1926 through the efforts of Roswell Eldridge.
The word Cavalier was added in 1928 to distinguish the long-nosed from the short-nosed King Charles Spaniel.
It was only in 1945 that the Kennel Club in the UK recognised the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog breed as a separate breed.
In 1994, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club in the United States was created to aid in the recognition of the breed by American Kennel Club. It finally succeeded its aim as the AKC acknowledged this toy breed in 1995.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is one of the largest toy breeds. Both female and male Cavalier King Charles Spaniels weigh around 5.4–8.2 kilos (12–18 pounds) and stands 30–33 centimetres (12–13 inches) at the withers.
The average litter size of female Cavaliers is 5 puppies. However, female Cavaliers who are giving birth for the first time usually have a smaller litter size. It only consists of around 2–3 Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppies.
The gentle and charming expression of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniels along with their constantly wagging tail easily wins hearts. These toy dogs have a slightly flat skull, well-tapered muzzle, slightly arched neck, and short-coupled body.
Some people could not distinguish the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed from the King Charles Spaniel breed. Whilst the 2 look similar, obvious differences are the former’s large but non-prominent eyes and longer nose.
According to the Kennel Club breed standards for the Cavalier, the accepted coat colors are black and tan, ruby, Blenheim (red and white variety inspired by the Blenheim Palace), and tricolor black and white with tan markings. Other colors and combinations are considered faults.
The elegant-looking Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog breed has a long, straight, silky coat with lots of feathering on the ears, chest, legs, tail, and feet. Although there may be a slight wave, the coat should never be curly.
Cavaliers may have long, lovely hair, but they are not really fussy dogs grooming-wise. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel shedding is moderate. Thus, daily brushing is recommended, especially if they stay indoors most of the time.
Take time to brush the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel’s fur under the tail and back of the legs since these areas are more prone to matting. Avoid damaging his coat by using a boar bristle brush or a pin brush.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel’s coat does not require any clipping or trimming, and you should never do so if you plan to let him participate in dog shows. But overgrown fur on his feet should be trimmed to prevent it from knotting, which can make walking difficult for him.
Bathing Cavalier King Charles Spaniels can be done as needed to prevent stripping off their skin’s natural oils. These Toy Spaniels have a water-resistant coat, so shampoo them twice to really get rid of the dirt and residue.
For good overall health, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel’s grooming regimen must not only include the coat. Be sure to check for ticks or fleas daily. Trim his fast-growing nails weekly, as overgrown nails can cause pain whilst walking.
This Cavalier King Charles Spaniel toy dog breed has drop ears that tend to quickly accumulate bacteria and dust. Thus, cleaning his ears thoroughly once a week is necessary to prevent ear infections.
Teeth and gum disease is a common problem in all dog breeds. Brushing the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel’s teeth daily will lower the risk of periodontal diseases.
The sweet, gentle nature and small size of Cavalier King Charles Spaniels make them suitable for apartment living.
The Cavalier Charles Spaniels are very friendly companion dogs, so they are not fit for watchdog duties. They may bark at strangers, but they easily warm up to them. They are actually more fit to be therapy dogs due to their endearing nature.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel generally does really well with children and other pets. However, he is a delicate dog due to his small size, so he can easily sustain injuries whilst playing with children.
Thus, make sure that the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel’s interactions with younger kids are always supervised to avoid accidental injuries.
Training Cavaliers is an easy task because these toy dogs are smart and eager to please. They basically do whatever they are commanded, especially when it is accompanied by plenty of praises and treats.
Playing, training, and being with their owners give Cavalier King Charles Spaniels much joy. As pooches with a soft personality, Cavaliers are very sensitive to stern voices and actions. Rewards for good behaviour and performance should be the way to do it.
These small Cavalier Charles Spaniel dogs may develop destructive behaviours due to lack of human interaction. They are not suitable pets for people who are away from home most of the time.
Yes, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are good pets for they are endearing, affectionate, intelligent, and loyal family dogs. They love being with their family and would follow them anywhere they go.
These Toy Spaniels are indoor pooches that love constant human interaction. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels know how to use their charm to sway people into petting them and giving them treats.
Adult Cavalier King Charles Spaniels need 1–1 ½ cup of excellent-quality dry dog food per day. A Cavalier puppy, which has a small stomach, should only consume around ½–1 cup per day.
Like in any breed, the amount of meals and snacks depend on his age, size, build, activity level, and metabolism. A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel owner needs to understand the basic nutritional needs of their dog as a breed as well as his individual characteristics.
It is worth noting that this Toy Spaniel can easily become fat, so owners should go easy on the treats. Cavaliers are also good at using their charm to ask for more food. Quality time will be a better alternative, as this also makes them happy.
Typical calorie needs of adult Cavalier King Charles Spaniels per day:
The diet of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed should be rich in nutrients that strengthen the heart, liver, kidney, and overall circulatory health. Recommended diet includes real meat protein, vegetables, and a grain-free food to keep carbohydrates at a minimum.
Research and create a list, so you don’t accidentally feed your Cavalier puppy food that is toxic and dangerous to his health.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed also needs supplements for the bone to lessen the chances of hip dysplasia and for the coat to keep it shiny. But always consult your vet before buying any supplements for your dog.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed can live up to 9–15 years so long as he is properly cared for. Although he is a generally healthy dog, he is still predisposed to certain health conditions. The most common health issues in this toy dog breed are:
Also called keratoconjunctivitis sicca, it is an eye disorder that is caused by the insufficient production of tears. This leads the eyes to become inflamed and irritated, resulting in frequent blinking and squinting of affected Cavaliers.
Some Cavaliers may scratch their eyes, which can create another set of eye problems including conjunctivitis and eye injuries.
Managing dry eye requires lifelong treatment using medications such as eye drops and topical eye ointment. Surgery is also an option, but it is not applicable to all dogs.
It is a bone and joint disorder that occurs when there is a laxity or looseness in the hip joint. Cavaliers with this condition will suffer from pain and difficulty in moving. The rubbing of the joints may also lead to onset arthritis.
To treat hip dysplasia, medications combined with physical therapy and weight management may be needed for minor cases. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels with severe hip dysplasia may be recommended for surgery as treatment.
Mitral Valve Disease
This is a prevalent heart disease in dogs, especially small breeds like the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. When a leakage in the mitral valve, which is located in the heart, occurs, it results in mitral valve disease. Heart murmurs are the earliest signs that a dog has mitral valve disease.
Treatment for this cardiovascular problem often involves medications that will enhance heart health. This heart disease should not be ignored as it can lead to congestive heart failure in severe cases.
It is a defect in a dog’s spinal cord, which is caused by the formation of fluid-filled cavities in it. This causes a discomforting sensation and pain. To manage this condition, the vet may prescribe medications that will alleviate pain in the nerves.
Severely affected Cavalier King Charles Spaniels might need to undergo surgery. But note that this has a notably high failure rate.
Since the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed is moderately active indoors, at least 30 minutes of light exercise in a fenced back garden is usually enough. During walks, make sure that he is on a lead as he could run after small animals and get hit by a car.
Like other short-nosed breeds, Cavaliers easily overheat, so avoid walking these toy dogs during hot temperatures, and ensure that they always have access to drinking water.
Other physical activities that Cavalier King Charles Spaniels would enjoy are playing fetch and doing dog sports.
Yes, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels do love to swim, but mind that some might not have an affinity for water. Since these Toy Spaniels are not bred for swimming, utmost supervision should be observed to avoid the dangers of drowning.
A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel should have a well-fitting doggy life jacket to keep him afloat whilst wading in water.
Toy dog breeds like the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel have low food expenses, as they only need small amounts of food every day. The total monthly cost for your Cavalier puppy’s dog food is around £30–£40.
In preparation for adding a new dog to your home, you will need to purchase dog equipment and accessories including toys, bowls, collar, lead, and bed. Expect to shell out approximately £100–£400 for these items.
Raising a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy involves regular trips to the vet. The cost for each check-up session is about £30–£60.
Do not forget vaccinations that will keep your Cavalier puppy safe from deadly diseases. You may need to spend around £100–150 for initial vaccine shots and £50–£60 for annual boosters.
Veterinary care can be extremely heavy on the pocket. By getting a pet insurance for your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy, you will significantly reduce your vet expenses.
The monthly payment for a time-limited package is around £15–£20. Choosing a lifetime package will cost you more, which is around £13–£80.
The prices may vary depending on your Cavalier dog’s age and health. The area you’re living in will also affect the pricing of your pet insurance.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel health problems are one of the biggest factors that make the breed expensive.
Reputable Cavalier breeders spend large amounts of money to keep the breeding dogs and the puppies healthy and free from diseases. This drives up the price tag of Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppies from hundreds to thousands.
A pedigree Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy normally costs from £2,500 to well over £4,000. The breed is predisposed to a number of health problems. Thus, acquire your puppy from a reputable breeder to avoid owning a poorly bred dog.
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