Breed: Gun dog, Toy dog
Height: 12-13 inches
Weight: 10-18 pounds
Coat Type: Long, soft and silky
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog is a perfect combination of royal appearance, true elegance and happy temperament. The breed, though gentle and affectionate, is fearless and sporting in character. Nicknamed as Cav, Cavalier and Cavie, the dog is one of the most popular breeds in the United Kingdom. It is easy to train, highly intelligent and extremely clean. Much like a baby, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel demands the same consistent and loving discipline. Friendly, happy and loving, this breed is devoted to its loved ones and is suspicious towards strangers. The life span of Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is 9 to 14 years. Read through the following lines to know more about the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog breed.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an offshoot of the King Charles Spaniel, named after King Charles II. The King Charles Spaniel was created by cross breeding with a short snouted breed like the Pug or Japanese Chin. The dog was then brought to Scotland, where it gained immense popularity and became a fashionable lap dog and companion for the noble class. While some King Charles Spaniels such as the red and white Blenheims served as hunting dogs, most dogs were bred for their appearance rather than work capacity. Eventually, the breed became smaller with a short nose over the years. In the 1920s, a wealthy American named Roswell Eldrige came to England and offered 25 pounds for an old style or pointed nose version of the King Charles Spaniel. Thereafter, dogs were bred to come up with a breed in 1940 - what we know as the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel today. The breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1996.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a small well-balanced dog. The dog has a slightly rounded head with a full, large muzzle that tapers to a shallow stop. It has a black nose and large dark brown eyes that are round and well set apart. The ears are long and highly set with abundant feathering. The long feathered tail is carried high and moves when the dog runs. The coat is long, soft and silky with a slight wave. There are typically four color types found in this breed. The colors include Prince Charles (tricolor), ruby (rich mahogany red), King Charles (black and tan) and Blenheim (red and white). Blenheim dogs, with a chestnut-red spot on the head top between the ears, are usually the most preferred variety.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an active, graceful, friendly, playful and extremely patient breed. Eager and willing to please, this breed seems to be wagging its tail always. The dog is easy to train and thus, responds well to gentle obedient training. Usually well behaved, this breed gets along well with other pets and dogs. The dog makes a good pet for apartments. It is moderately active indoors and does well with a small yard. The breed requires a lot of exercise and makes a great companion on daily walks.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog is subject to some serious health problems such as syringomyelia (SM), hereditary eye issues like cataracts and retinal dysplasia, dislocating kneecaps (patella), back troubles, ear infections and early onset of deafness or hearing trouble. The dog can sometimes develop hip dysplasia and mitral valve disease (a serious genetic heart problem that can lead to early death).
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog should be brushed several times in a week, with a firm bristle brush. The dog should be bathed or dry shampooed only when necessary. After bathing the dog, ensure that it is thoroughly dried and warmed. Since the breed is prone to tangling and matting on the ears, hence the hair on the ears must be brushed quite often. Also the insides of the ears require regular cleaning. The eyes should be regularly checked for any signs of infection. The dog is an average shedder.