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Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, A Noble And Dynamic Little Dog

The Cavalier king has become famous as a star dog. This little dog is ideal for company and as an indoor dog. A small dog that is very easy to fall in love with.

Cavalier King: Character, characteristics and history!

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a dog with ancient origins and a cheerful and affectionate character. However, its hunting origins are often forgotten, making it indispensable to provide for outdoor activity. It is a dog that enjoys being with its humans and does not like solitude.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a pet dog of English origin from the Spaniel family. A sweetness bomb in a mignon format that still turns the heads of VIPs and influential personalities with its moist, dark eyes.

General description of cavalier King

History of the Cavalier King.
Ronald Reagan, the President of the United States in the 1980s, had one named Rex. Kristin Davis, the unforgettable Charlotte from Sex in the City, had a sweet Cavalier King named Elizabeth Taylor.

The four names that make up its breed imply an aura of elegance and royalty. Although the breed standard was made official in 1928, as early as the 18th century, the Cavalier King was widespread in England.

In the 11th century, hunting was illegal except with a dog that could fit into a hole 11 inches in diameter. Hence, the early experiments that gave birth to the Toy Spaniel. Initially studied as a hunting dog, it nevertheless enraptured the heart of Charles I.

The sovereign was so obsessed with these dogs that he issued a proclamation allowing this breed to enter any place, including Parliament. The name was also changed from Toy Spaniel to Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

Over the following centuries, no trace of the Cavalier King was lost. In fact, in the paintings of those years, one can see the mutation that led to the breed as we know it today, i.e. crossed with the Pug, which gave it that flattened muzzle and large bulging eyes.

Appearance and Attributes of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

The Cavalier King is a small, well-proportioned dog with a graceful appearance. The body is agile, with a medium-sized head flat on the skull region with a well-defined dark-coloured truffle, the eyes are round and large with a typical sweet and intelligent expression, and the ears are long and drooping and fall on the cheeks. The limbs are straight, and the tail is long, fringed, elegant and fluffy.

The Cavalier King’s coat is smooth, silky and long, particularly on the ears and tail; it comes in a variety of colours: fiery black, solid red, tricolour or Blenheim (white with brown spots), the latter being the most typical and sought-after, particularly if the dog has the usual spot in the middle of the head called the “Blenheim spot”.

Physical characteristics

  • Height: 25 to 40 cm
  • Weight: 7 to 9 kg
  • Longevity: 9 to 14 years
  • Colours: fiery black, solid red, tricolour or Blenheim
  • Fur: silky and fringed
  • Coat: long

Price


The average price of a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy in the UK is £3,331 in December 2023. However, prices can vary depending on the breeder, the puppy’s lineage, and the dog’s colour. For example, puppies with rare colours, such as Blenheim, can cost upwards of £4,000.

Here is a breakdown of the average price range for Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppies in the UK:

  • £2,000 – £3,000: This is the most common price range for puppies from reputable breeders.
  • £3,000 – £4,000: Puppies from show-quality bloodlines or with rare colours will typically cost more.
  • £4,000+: Top-quality puppies from champion bloodlines can cost upwards of £4,000.

It is essential to do your research before buying a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy. Choose a reputable breeder who health tests their dogs and provides a guarantee. It would be best if you also were prepared to pay for the puppy’s initial vet care, food, and supplies.

Here are some tips for finding a reputable breeder:

  • Ask your veterinarian for recommendations.
  • Do an online search for Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breeders in your area.
  • Visit the breeder’s website and read their reviews.
  • Visit the breeder’s home to meet the puppies and their parents.
  • Ask the breeder about their health testing practices and their guarantee.

Owning a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel can be a rewarding experience. However, it is vital to be prepared for the financial commitment. The average cost of owning a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel over its lifetime is £12,000. This includes food, vet care, toys, and other expenses.

If you are considering buying a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, be sure to factor in the cost of ownership before deciding.

Pros and cons of the Cavalier King

Top 5 characteristics:

  • Very emotionally tolerant
  • Very friendly with children
  • Is friendly with strangers
  • Very affectionate towards the family
  • Quite suitable as a first dog

Most problematic characteristics:

  • Saliva loss is negligible.
  • Little hair loss
  • Little tolerance to hot temperatures
  • Unaccustomed to solitude

Temperament

The Cavalier King needs to be the centre of attention constantly. It enjoys being in the company of its owner and family members. Therefore, it will be no surprise that this animal will accompany you anywhere in the house. It can only stay for short periods, when essential, for work or extraordinary emergencies.

The Breed Standard defines it as “Sporty, affectionate, absolutely fearless. Cheerful, friendly, non-aggressive; does not tend to nervousness. It is a lively breed that relates well with anyone. It is very affectionate with all family members and interacts well with children. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has a sunny disposition by nature. However, it is necessary for the breeder to tenderly nurture this innate predisposition so that, once sold, this sunny disposition can be fully expressed in all its nuances.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is very affectionate with his family and even more so with the person he will have elected as his leader. The morphology of the CKCS is very appealing. He can express infinite affection with those big eyes that strike the heart. He willingly follows all his owner’s activities and would like to be with him all the time and share every moment of the day. It is a lovely breed with tender attitudes towards the people it loves.

If you are looking for an animal to cuddle on the couch, this breed will satisfy you: the Cavalier king loves physical contact and the closeness of its owner.
This puppy does not like to sit still for too long. It becomes practically obligatory to stock up on toys that can entertain him and make him often play with other dogs or people.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a companion breed with an excellent character that interacts well with everyone. The Cavalier is a superb spotter who will call the owner back when there is a breach of his territory. It is still a reliable dog, although it cannot be counted as a guard dog due to its size.

A well-socialised Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is very friendly with other dogs. Sharing with other dogs results from an excellent primary education, which proves to be very comfortable, as owning a dog that interacts well with everyone, people and animals alike, is delightful.

The CKCS integrates perfectly into the family environment and has an excellent relationship with everyone. Escapes are not his priority, but he must be kept on a leash during walks (as the law prescribes). His loyalty is unquestionable, and he prefers to stay close to his owner instead of walking away voluntarily.

The Cavalier is a cheerful but placid dog.

The Cavalier is a joyful but calm and responsible dog and would never go so far as to bite unless he is disproportionately upset. He has excellent self-control that he puts into action whenever he finds himself in difficulty. Obviously, and like all dogs, biting is the only act that can be practised by a dog, whether in self-defence or to defend property. It does not, however, tend to bite and is also very respectful of children who will, in any case, be kept under control.

More than a tendency, the Cavalier King’s tendency to hunt prey is a type of behaviour. He is not strictly a hunting dog as his ancestors were, but interaction with smaller animals stimulates him, which may lead him to develop an instinct for chasing or hunting small prey. It will, therefore, be up to the owner to intervene with a good education.

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Barking is a way of drawing the owner’s attention to an ‘invasion’ of his territory. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an excellent notifier who makes his voice heard only when necessary.

The breed standard also describes him as ‘active’. He is full of energy and needs exercise throughout the day. Every day, time should be set aside for him to walk, let off steam and play, keep fit and always be calm and happy.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a very gentle and joyful dog. It does not need to be educated much as it is already an elegantly calm dog. It has good manners and a playful and lively relationship with life. He is polite and gentle.

This dog loves to play and has a cheerful nature. Bound to his family by an affectionate and sunny love, he will always want to play with his owner and family. Play also serves him to let off some of his very considerable energy. In short, this is a dog full of life and a desire to have fun. In addition, exercise will help him not to put on excess weight.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and training

Cavaliers are intelligent and eager to please their owners, making training straightforward for owners and dogs.

These dogs can be trained in agility, hunting, and basic commands. Specifically, early socialisation and obedience training should be started between 8 and 12 weeks of age to ensure that they become well-behaved family members.

Children, Relationship and Context

The relationship between dogs and children is always extraordinary, especially when a child has a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel as a four-legged friend. With the Cavalier King, this kind of relationship is strengthened daily and is favoured by this dog’s extraordinary aptitude for interacting with small children.

Children are particularly fond of the expression that characterises the Cavalier King, framed in a gaze that cannot but inspire tenderness. The CKCS is not only suitable for children but also for older people. Although the Cavalier’s relationship with children is idyllic, the presence of an adult to supervise the interaction is always recommended.

Here are some of the reasons why Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are good with children:

  • They are gentle and patient. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are not known for being aggressive dogs. They are typically very gentle and patient with children, even if they are roughhousing.
  • They are small and easy to handle. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are relatively small dogs, which makes them easy for children to pick up and carry. This can be important for young children who may not be strong enough to handle larger dogs.
  • They are loving and affectionate. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are known for being very loving and affectionate dogs. They enjoy being around people and will often seek attention from children.
  • They are good with other pets. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are typically good with other pets, including dogs and cats. This can be important for families who already have other pets.

Of course, no dog is perfect, and even Cavalier King Charles Spaniels can be prone to biting or other aggressive behaviour if they are not adequately trained or socialised. Supervising all interactions between dogs and children, regardless of the breed, is essential.

If you are considering getting a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel for your family, be sure to do your research and find a reputable breeder. It would help if you also started socialising with your puppy from a young age so that they can get used to being around children. A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel can be an excellent addition to any family with proper training and socialisation.

The Cavalier King is an amiable dog used to being in a family, even in the presence of other animals.
Its character has meant that, over the years, it has become one of the dog breeds used for pet therapy.

The Cavalier King is a dog that adapts well to many situations. As it was selected to live in close contact with humans, its ideal context is a family, but it will also be fine if you are single; the important thing is to consider that it does not like loneliness, so it is not made for people who have little time to devote to it. This breed is rather delicate and must necessarily live indoors, so be aware that a Cavalier King will be with you every moment of the day.

It may be suitable for city life, provided you periodically allow it to run free in the open air, perhaps in the green; the Cavalier needs exercise, which will undoubtedly benefit your relationship. It is also a suitable dog for children; it is very gentle and playful but must never be left at the mercy of tiny humans: it tends not to bite, but interactions between dogs and children must always be controlled so neither party suffers negative and stressful experiences.

Care and health

Like all purebred dogs, the Cavalier King Charles spaniel may have a predisposition to certain genetic disorders, sometimes severe ones. This breed, in particular, can suffer from Mitral Valve Prolapse (MVD). This congenital heart malformation leads to heart failure even in young specimens and is the Cavalier’s primary cause of death.

The Cavalier King Charles spaniel is also a victim of genetic abuse. Chiari-like Syndrome or Caudal Occipital Malformation syndrome is a proven high prevalence. In short, in many Cavaliers, the brain volume is greater than the capacity of the cranial box, and this causes herniation of part of the cerebellum towards the vertebral canal.

This causes, in turn, a pathology called syringomyelia, i.e., the development of a fluid-filled cyst (syrinx) within your spinal cord. It is a complex pathology, therefore, but a very serious one: the constant symptom is pain, which also translates into continuous ‘scratching’ behaviour in the neck area, which can lead to immobility, difficulty in walking, and even severe convulsive seizures.

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The Cavalier King can also be affected by episodic fall syndrome, which causes stiffening of the muscles and more or less frequent falls without the dog being able to control them; there is also elbow dysplasia, a joint malformation requiring drug therapy or surgery for the most disabling cases, and keratoconjunctivitis, also known as dry eye syndrome, which affects the eyes and, if neglected, can lead to lesions of the cornea and conjunctiva. As far as hair care is concerned, the Cavalier needs to be brushed frequently, as well as sufficient exercise and an adequate diet.

As always, if you are determined to adopt a purebred dog, do not rely on the first person you come across, a pet shop or internet searches: the best way to find a healthy puppy is to contact an experienced and responsible breeder.

Cavalier King grooming

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel does not have significant hair loss, given its size and coat conformation. Like many other breeds, it undergoes two moults per year at the end of winter and summer. Little is needed to keep the coat in excellent condition, and 2-3 times weekly brushing will prevent hair from lying around.

Cavalier king: care required.
Brushing their coat 3-4 times a week and often during shedding season would be best.

The reduced morphology of this breed is not a problem for grooming. The Standard prescribes: “Long, silky coat, without curls. Slight waviness is permitted—lots of fringing. Not to be groomed“. This last sentence must be understood that it must not be cut, shaved, brushed, or washed. The eyes, ears and interdigital spaces should be checked weekly to ensure they are well-cleaned.

Monthly bathing is sufficient to keep the hair soft, clean and healthy. Common diseases include dental problems, which are expected for the breed, so brushing the dog’s teeth weekly is essential to prevent plaque build-up and its evolution into tartar.

Physical activity and the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels need daily exercise. These pooches love to play and especially love fetch games, as they are usually trained to retrieve objects.

Spaniels also love to swim, which proves to be an excellent way of exercise for this breed. Cavalier kings also like to accompany their owners on daily walks. Approximately one hour of daily activity is sufficient for this breed to stay healthy.

Final thoughts

The Cavalier King is a breed that experiences the home as its natural environment. The flat is this dog’s favourite place, especially when spending time with one’s family. He is a perfect householder who can quickly move around the house without ever being ‘rude’ in his behaviour. He must walk daily to interact with the outside world and relate to other people and animals.

Buying a Cavalier King as your first dog is a happy choice for several reasons. First of all, it is essential to note how the beauty of this breed and its mild expression can be almost ‘therapeutic’ for people. Furthermore, there are no particular difficulties in raising a dog that tends to adapt to certain rhythms of life without being challenging to educate, even for an inexperienced owner.

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The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

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Written by Frenchie Breed

The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

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