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Cavalier-King Charles Spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Other names: cavalier

Cavalier-King Charles spaniel is a cheerful shaggy fidget with an expressive, flirtatious appearance and a good-natured character. It will enliven any home with its own presence and will perfectly cope with the role of a reliable companion.

Brief information

  • Breed name: Cavalier-King Charles Spaniel
  • Country of Origin: UK
  • The time of the birth of the breed: XVII century
  • Weight: from 5.5 to 8 kg
  • Height (height at the withers): up to 32 cm
  • Life expectancy: 11-12 years


  • Cavalier-King Charles spaniels are practically not subject to mood swings. Affectionate and groovy, they stay on the wave of positivity 24 hours a day.
  • Both adult dogs and puppies are extremely dependent on humans. Individuals who lack the owner's attention and stay alone for a long time can mess up and make a mess. Buying a second "cavalier" partially solves the problem – it's easier for animals to cope with boredom together.
  • Leadership and the desire to dominate are qualities that cavalier kings have never heard of, so they never fight with other dogs for "spheres of influence".
  • Representatives of this breed are typical extroverts who see in everyone they meet a future friend who they are happy to entrust with any secrets.
  • Pets love tactile contact. Stroking, patting, scratching a cavalier King Charles spaniel is not only permissible, but also very desirable. For this reason, dogs are close to children. They are not annoyed by the overly strong hugs of the kids, moreover, the animals are sincerely glad to them.
  • Cavalier King Charles spaniels easily get along with cats. That's just the representatives of the purring brotherhood are not always ready to put up with the presence of these annoying sympathizers on their territory.
  • Most cavalier kings have retained hunting instincts inherited from their ancestors, so do not be outraged if the dog starts actively chasing a lizard or kitten on a walk.
  • A few years ago, the popularity of the breed in Britain began to gradually decline. But in Russia, things are exactly the opposite: the interest of domestic breeders in Cavalier King Charles spaniels has increased dramatically over the past couple of years.

Cavalier-King Charles Spaniel is a friendly smart girl with a soulful look and a long satin coat, ready to "drown" in the sea of her own charm anyone who happens to be in sight. These energetic, sociable sympathizers make exceptional friends. To cheer up, make you laugh, relieve tension – all this dogs are ready to do for the owner every day in exchange only for a kind word and affection. It is not for nothing that in the homeland of the breed, in England, the cavalier kings have long established a reputation as professional comforters.

Breed characteristics

Aggressiveness ?
Not aggressive ( Rating 1/5)
Activity ?
High ( Rating 4/5)
Training ?
Easy ( Rating 4/5)
Molt ?
Moderate ( Rating 3/5)
Need for care ?
Average ( Rating 3/5)
Friendliness ?
Very friendly ( Rating 5/5)
Health ?
Average ( Rating 3/5)
Cost of maintenance ?
Average ( Rating 3/5)
Attitude to Loneliness ?
Moderate time ( Rating 3/5)
Intelligence ?
Smart ( Rating 4/5)
Noise ?
Low ( Rating 2/5)
Security qualities ?
Can lick a thief :) ( Rating 1/5)
*The characteristics of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed are based on expert assessment and reviews of dog owners.

History of the Cavalier-King Charles Spaniel breed

Cavalier-King Charles Spaniel

Because of the similarity of the names of the Cavalier-King Charles spaniel, it is often identified with the King Charles spaniel. And yet, despite the common Asian ancestor, these are two independent breeds with significant differences in phenotype. If you do not go into the subtleties of breeding, then the Cavalier king is a thoroughly "reshaped" King Charles, who was born as a tribute to the British canine traditions. At the same time, Tibetan spaniels are considered the progenitors of both breeds.

From about the middle of the IX century, the ancestors of today's "kings" and "cavaliers" became interested in the European nobility. Toy spaniels sat in the boudoirs of baronesses and duchesses, Titian and Van Dyck raced to paint their portraits, and the bloodthirsty tyrant Henry VIII even recognized the animals' right to be at court. With the ascension of Charles II to the British throne, the breed added the prefixes King and Charles to its name and began to enjoy an almost unlimited list of privileges. Why, spaniels were even allowed into the holy of holies – the British Parliament!

The King Charles family began to inevitably fade away with the coming to power of William III of Orange. The new monarch established his own rules at court, settling in his chambers a "party" of pugs, whom he sincerely adored. The rest of the London beau monde immediately rushed to imitate the preferences of the crowned person, as a result of which short-faced, bug-eyed dogs became fashionable. The breeders of toy spaniels also did not stay away: in order to please the picky aristocrats, they began to cross their own pets with pugs and Japanese hinami. In the end, by the XX century, the exterior of the animals had changed so much that only the most sophisticated specialist could see the former King Charles dogs in the snub-nosed, big-eyed dogs.

In the mid-20s, European breeders decided to revive the old type of English Toy spaniels. Around the same time, the British Kennel Club approved a cash prize for a breeder who will be able to breed a classic King Charles variety within the next five years. As expected, the promise of the award fueled the interest of breeding specialists, and already in 1928 the first "copy" of the King Charles spaniel of traditional European appearance was presented to the court of the cynological commission. The animal had an elongated muzzle and normally set eyes, which brought it closer to the dogs from the paintings of Edwin Landseer.

To avoid confusion in the future, the revived breed was given a new name. Thus, the Cavalier-King Charles Spaniel clan spun off from the King Charles tribe. By the way, the prefix cavalier- was not chosen by chance. During the English Revolution, supporters of King Charles I were so called, under which the breed really flourished. In 1945, cavalier kings were entered into the registers of the COP, after which they began to gain popularity in other European countries. The favorites of the British monarchs made their way to Russia even before the revolution, although they began to be fully bred only since 1986.

Note: Over the years, fans of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed have been Ronald Reagan, Johnny Depp, Frank Sinatra, Teri Hatcher, Natalie Wood and Hugh Hefner.

Video: Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Appearance of cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Both King Charles and Cavalier kings belong to the section of English toy spaniels, but, as mentioned earlier, they have significant differences in the exterior. Cavalier King Charles spaniels are larger (from 5.5 to 8 kg) and tall (up to 32 cm at the withers). The muzzles of dogs are moderately elongated, and the eyes are devoid of the bulge that their relatives inherited from pugs and other Asian breeds.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Puppy

If the "kings" attract with their pronounced orientality, then the "cavaliers" - with their unique grace and truly European charm. Silky, straight or slightly wavy fur, sparkling look and elegant movements make them ideal pets for all lovers of glamorous breeds. In addition, cavalier-kings are natural models. They can be filmed sleeping, dissecting on a dandelion lawn or sitting on the hands of their own owner and not worry about the fact that the frame will be unsuccessful. These "British aristocrats" are photogenic anywhere, anytime and in any mood.


A small, flat skull between the ears with a shallow foot. The muzzle is in the shape of a cone. The distance from the tip of the muzzle to the foot is not more than 3.8 cm.


The Cavalier King Charles spaniel has long, high-set ears. The outer side of the ear cloth is covered with abundant silky-type toilet wool.


Round, but without noticeable bulge. Big and very dark.


The lobe is large, uniform black color.

Jaws and teeth

Cavalier King Charles spaniels have powerful jaws with a scissor bite (the lower teeth are completely blocked by the upper ones).


Normal length, with a slight bend.

The muzzle of the cavalier King Charles Spaniel


Compact torso with a short lumbar area, an even back and a normal chest width.


The front and hind legs are moderately bony and even. The paws of the cavalier king are miniature, very soft, with the fingers almost completely hidden by a long toilet hair.


Is held at the level of the back or slightly higher. Previously, it was docked on ⅓, which is almost not practiced these days.


Silky to the touch and very long. A straight hair is considered a reference, but a slight wavy hair is also quite acceptable.

Cavalier-king Charles-ruby-colored spaniel
Cavalier-king Charles-tricolor spaniel


The following types of cavalier-king-Charles spaniel colors are officially approved:

  • blenheim (expressive chestnut spots on a white background);
  • black with tan;
  • ruby (rich red shade);
  • tricolor (black with white and red markings on the eyebrows, cheekbones, back of the legs, ears and under the tail).
Cavalier-king Charles spaniel black and tan color
Cavalier-king Charles spaniel color Blenheim

Disadvantages and possible vices

All individuals who have deviations from the breed standard are allowed to be considered defective. Of course, most of the external disadvantages do not block the animal's access to exhibition events, but it reduces the chances of getting an excellent mark to almost zero.

Developmental defects are another matter. The dog in which they are found will not be accepted at any exhibition. If we talk specifically about cavalier kings, then they are disqualified for being underweight /overweight, non-standard colors and a depigmented nose lobe. Animals with a harelip, an atypical bite and an irregular gait (hackney, amble) will also have to forget about an exhibition career.

Photo of cavalier King Charles spaniel

The character of the cavalier King Charles spaniel

Oh, yes! Scratching

Cavalier-King Charles spaniels are the best healers of melancholy and bad mood. They are literally "turned" on communicating with a person and are absolutely not ready to play the role of an outside observer in the family in which they live. Despite the generally not the most outstanding dimensions, there are always a lot of "cavaliers" in the house, as they are extremely curious and try to delve into everything that happens not only before their eyes, but also behind their backs.

The breed's need for human attention may slightly annoy the owner, who does not have the opportunity to constantly contact the pet or tired of an overabundance of communication with him. That is why breeders recommend Cavalier King Charles spaniels for large families with several generations of relatives. So it will be easier for the dog to find a company without overloading someone with his sociability.

Cavalier-king Charles spaniel with children

Due to natural curiosity and benevolence, the "cavalier" treats anyone well, even an unfamiliar person, so trusting him to protect his own home is obviously an unsuccessful idea. It's easy to bribe this frisky "Englishman": it's enough to chat with him affectionately or play a little. Such a feature of the breed as a ringing bark also does little to help the animal in security activities. Cavalier kings often demonstrate their vocal talents in games than in case of real danger, so forget about raising a decent watchman from this glamorous major.

In relation to other pets, Cavalier King Charles spaniels are unparalleled charmers. They are completely devoid of leadership habits and the desire to dominate everything that moves, so they will gladly hand over the "reins of government" to any four-legged creature who wishes it. A purebred "cavalier" will get along with another dog, cat or some exotic creature without any problems, provided that they will not try to take away from him the status of a universal pet.

Cavalier-King Charles spaniel with a cat

Education and training

Cavalier King Charles spaniels are very intelligent and easily comprehend all the subtleties of the educational process, which does not prevent them from turning on the "misunderstanding" mode from time to time. Often owners are led to this dog trick and bombard specialized forums with questions in the style of: "Why doesn't the Cavalier king follow the commands?". The reason for this behavior lies not in obstinacy of character, but in banal boredom. Perhaps you just went overboard with the seriousness and duration of training, tiring the dog. Or they simply did not take into account the peculiarities of her temperament.

Cavalier-King Charles spaniel on a leash

Dog handlers assure: it is necessary to train a cavalier King Charles spaniel in the game and, if possible, affectionately. Most of these British "aristocrats" are characterized by innate timidity, so if you raise your voice during pet training, he may permanently refuse to participate in classes. It is also not forbidden to warm up interest in training. To do this, a stock of the dog's favorite treats is enough.

"Cavaliers", despite their rather mild and peaceful nature, are not alien to some robber habits at heart. For example, if you meet a cat or a rodent on a walk, the dog will definitely try to chase him. Moreover, not every such "hunt" ends with the happy return of a pet. Caught up in the excitement of pursuit, the cavalier king can easily get lost, so the commands "Fu!" and "Next!" with the pet should be learned in advance and as firmly as possible.

From 4-5 months, cavalier King Charles spaniels of the show class begin to be accustomed to the exhibition stand. At first, the success of the animal is encouraged with a treat. And only after the puppy has formed a stable association: stand = treat, you can use the command "Stand!".

Note: experienced handlers do not recommend learning the command "Sit!" with the cavalier King Charles spaniel until the animal participates in exhibition events. Having faded away in an unfamiliar environment, the pet can confuse the meaning of commands and instead of the required stand from him, issue the opposite action.

Lover to lie on the couch

Maintenance and care

The first thing the owners of the future champions should pay attention to is the materials of the flooring in the house. On a slippery parquet or laminate, the puppy's paws will move apart, which will become a prerequisite for the formation of an incorrect gait and the position of the limbs. It is best if the floor in the room is covered with a thick carpet or rugs, since Cavalier King Charles spaniels are exclusively apartment dwellers. On the street they only walk and go to the toilet.

If you sometimes have to leave your pet alone, buy him an aviary and teach him to sit in it. So the animal will be deprived of the temptation to gnaw shoes in your absence or bite computer wires. Dogs of this breed are transported in cages, to which the pet will also have to be accustomed.

Important: Do not use a cage and an aviary as punishment in cases when the cavalier King Charles spaniel has "got" you too much with excessive sociability. The dog will quickly figure out what the true purpose of this accessory is, and will earn himself an additional phobia.


Cavalier-King Charles spaniels are not accepted to cut. It is also not worth combing them too often: the wool of representatives of this breed has a silky structure and is almost not confused. Just brush over the baby's "fur coat" and enjoy the freedom from this duty for 5-7 days. Another thing is the molting period. At this time, the hair of the "cavaliers" needs daily combing.

Washing the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

You can smooth the animal's fur with a mitten: so dirt, dust and dandruff are removed from it. It is also not difficult to cope with the fluffy "traces" left by Cavalier King Charles spaniels on sofas and carpets. The hair of these dogs is easily absorbed by even the most powerful vacuum cleaner. In addition, the wool of the "cavaliers" practically does not smell like a dog.

The frequency of bathing a dog is determined by its class. Show individuals are washed once a week using a whole arsenal of means for smoothing and nourishing the hair, as well as giving it a noble shine. It is enough for pets to arrange a bath once a month with shampoo and conditioner to facilitate combing the wool. And don't forget: the maximum allowable water temperature for a Cavalier King Charles spaniel is 39 °C. The washed animal is wiped with a towel and dried with a hairdryer. It is absolutely not recommended to wrap the dog in a diaper and leave it to dry in it. Such experiments lead to hair loss and its subsequent loss.

The most problematic organ of Cavalier King Charles spaniels is the ears. Due to their hanging position, they are poorly ventilated, but they actively accumulate sulfur and pollution, so it is better to inspect and clean them more often. The pet's eyes should be checked every day, removing the garbage and mucus accumulating in their corners with a cotton sponge. In case of inflammation of the eyes, you can wipe with chamomile decoction. If the inflammation is pronounced, it is not forbidden to drip a couple of drops of albumin on the mucous membrane. But it is better to completely abandon the tea infusion and boric acid solution, which are recommended to be used by "homegrown ophthalmologists" on cynological forums.

The teeth of representatives of this breed are cleaned twice a week, the claws are trimmed once every two weeks. After a walk, the paws of the cavalier King Charles spaniel are necessarily washed, and in winter they are lubricated with vegetable oil or cream to protect them from the poisonous effects of reagents.


I found some acorns for you here

Up to 4 months, cavalier King Charles spaniels are taken for a walk as often as possible to teach them to go to the toilet on the street. Starting from the 4th month of life, the number of walks is reduced, but their duration is increased. It is important to remember that cavalier kings do not need intense physical exertion and too long promenades, but just standing with a pet under a tree will not work either.

It is better to walk the dog in areas where there is no asphalt. There the animal can run properly without the risk of overwork and injury to the paws. If you really want to walk with a "cavalier" on the sidewalks, do not exceed the optimal limit of 40 minutes for such walks.

On a walk


"straight", "drying" or both – all these types of feeding are considered acceptable for cavalier kings. And yet most experts prefer a natural diet as more useful. When working on making a menu for your own pet, take into account the fact that the Cavalier King Charles spaniel is a breed prone to obesity. With an excessive amount of high-calorie food, the dog will instantly gain weight, but it will not always be able to lose it.

We are waiting for a delicious treat!

Necessary, from the point of view of benefits, products for "cavaliers" are lean meats, cereals, as well as low–fat sour milk. By the way, this breed is very partial to "vegan" dishes, so in the summer season, more often introduce vegetable stew, fruit slicing and salads into the pet's diet. In addition, many cavalier kings willingly eat berries, ground cucumbers and zucchini. From time to time, it is useful for dogs to give a yolk or a quail egg.

Prohibited foods:

  • sweets;
  • sausage products;
  • salty and spicy dishes;
  • tubular bones;
  • pork and any fatty meats;
  • sour cream and cream;
  • mushrooms;
  • onion and garlic;
  • legumes;
  • pastries and white bread;
  • river fish;
  • pearl barley.

Owners who decide to treat an animal with industrial food should not forget about the predisposition of the breed to food allergies. In this case, you can only protect your pet by carefully studying the composition of the feed, so immediately dismiss the varieties in which "traces of the presence" of chicken or cereals were found.

Probably it's for me


Cavalier-king Charles spaniels are difficult to get used to the tray, so representatives of this breed have two options for sending "needs": street or diaper. To instill in the pet the habit of going to the toilet during a walk, he is taken outside immediately after eating or sleeping. If the method turns out to be ineffective, you can add a newspaper or a piece of cloth to it, on which the dog went "little by little" at home. An animal interested in a familiar smell usually remembers its own needs and sits down next to a wet diaper. Never scold the cavalier king for puddles in the apartment, while exaggeratedly praising the dog for doing her "business" outside the house is very useful.

Health and diseases of Cavalier King Charles Spaniels

All hereditary diseases of Cavalier-King-Charles spaniels are the end result of so-called linear breeding and too limited genetic base. The first in the list of ailments suffered by about half of the "cavaliers" at the age of 5 years is myxomatous valve degeneration or prolapse. The second scourge of the breed is syringomyelia (Chiari syndrome). An animal that has inherited this disease experiences discomfort and severe pain in the cervical spine, in the absence of timely treatment, leading to "neck twisting".

Episodic fall syndrome is more difficult to diagnose than the two previous ailments, which does not prevent it from affecting a huge number of animals at all. The behavior of cavalier kings suffering from this disease is somewhat similar to the habits of dogs who have suffered a back injury. They freeze in place for a long time, arch their backs when running and tighten their limbs in a lying position on their side. Another weak point of the breed is the joints. With age, patellar instability progresses in many "cavaliers", and most often it occurs in females. Pretty much spoil the life of pets with dry eye and curly hair syndromes, which are very difficult to treat.

How to choose a puppy

When choosing a Cavalier King Charles spaniel puppy, you can follow the same principles as when buying any other purebred dog.

  • Do not take babies from nurseries where unsanitary conditions and disorder reign.
  • To insure yourself against buying a sick animal, ask the breeder for the results of tests aimed at detecting genetic diseases in the puppy (dry eye syndromes, curly hair, episodic fall).
  • The temperament of cavalier King Charles spaniels does not depend on gender. Both bitches and males of this breed are equally affectionate and attached to the owner, so choose an animal according to your own preferences.
  • Get to know the puppy's parents and their pedigree in order to avoid buying an animal from inbreeding mating (from closely related individuals).
  • Choose a frisky, inquisitive kid who shows a keen interest in toys. Lethargy and indecision in Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppies indicate their physical and psychological exhaustion.

Photos of Cavalier King Charles spaniel puppies

How much does a cavalier King Charles spaniel cost

The cost of Cavalier King Charles spaniel puppies directly depends on their pedigree and external parameters (class). Domestic breeders have an average price tag for a baby with a vet passport and a RKF metric – $300 - $350 Prices for individuals with a reference appearance, promising to collect all imaginable and unimaginable championship titles in the future, start from $500. The most expensive, according to tradition, are puppies from the dressing (male and female – from different countries). Such pets can cost $650 and above.

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