What to Know About The King Charles Spaniel, Quick Facts

mayla my cavalier king charles chewing on a stuffed animal

Are you looking for a good guard dog? Keep looking. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is undoubtedly not a guard dog. Are you looking for a men’s best friend? Then you should look no further. I own a Cavalier King Charles. They are the friendliest dogs I know of. Before you take one into your home, here are some things to consider.

The King Charles spaniel, more commonly known as King Charles Cavalier, is a small breed of dog that can be found worldwide. They are a very popular breed of dog, and for a good reason. They are sweet and affectionate, making them a great addition to any family. The King Charles Cavalier is a small breed of dog, which means they don’t require much food. Be on the lookout for heart problems, though unfortunately, they are very common.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniels Quick Facts

The behavior of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a very friendly breed of dog. They are known to be very affectionate and will often seek human contact. They are happy to meet new people and are always excited to make new friends. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel enjoys the company of other dogs and animals.

It is not easy to generalize this dog breed. Each individual dog is different and unique. Some of them are very laid back and chill, while others are very energetic and a little naughty. The only characteristic they share that I could find is that they love being overwhelmed with love and attention. They are incredibly affectionate and love to play or do some agility sports.

Have Fun Training a Cavalier King Charles

They are very intelligent dogs. I noticed they respond very well to positive reinforcement training. I did this with my dog, and she loved it. Training here like this was a breeze and joy for both of us.

My dog did not respond well if a training session was suddenly interrupted. She could get very disappointed not getting the final treats. I would consider them a sensitive breed. So go easy on them and be sure not to hurt his feelings.

It is easy to house-train them. I had no problems in this area when I was first teaching her. But they are very clever and sometimes try to break house rules to get what they want.

How Much Do Cavalier King Charles Eat?

Cav’s requires quite a bit of exercise to stay healthy and fit. However, don’t be fooled by their small size because they are known to be relatively high-energy dogs.

Do you know how much your Cavalier King Charles spaniel eats during a regular day? It is best for your dog if you are on top of his food intake. These dogs have never eaten enough. Before you know it, you have an oversized Cav. They require a small amount of food to maintain their small size.

Amount of Food: The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has a small frame and a big appetite. It is always a good idea to monitor their weight. They don’t need much food to keep their body going. I would say about 1 cup of dry food a day for an adult and 1 cup of wet food.

Do you like positive reinforcement training like me? I have always been a fan of it. I like to reward my dog when he does something good or finishes an exercise. This way, they know what is expected of them and learn quicker. It also shows that I value their feelings and their well-being.

But there is one thing to keep in mind regarding this training method and the Cavalier’s eating behaviors. Monitor his weight carefully, and maybe it is a good idea to limit his morning and evening meals to a smaller amount. So his calorie intake levels out again.

These dogs quickly get overweight. Do you want to find out more? I have written an article about Big Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. You can find it here.

Grooming a King Charles Cavalier

I groom my Cavalier at least three times a week. They are not known to be high shedders, but grooming often keeps a lot of hair off the floor. Usually, this breed is not overly fond of dirty things, but somehow mine is.

When I take her for a walk, all is fine, but as soon as I let her off-leash, she will find a dirty spot to roll in. I often need to wash him when we come home.

Other than that, their coat easily picks up tiny leaves, wigs, and other little dirt from the street. Combing her coat keeps it clean and keeps it clean, shiny, and tangle-free. Their coat tangles easily, so keep an eye on that and remove mats.

By the way, grooming is like a massage for them. Mine loves it and thanks me every time. I always comb my dog on the same spot in the living room. Every time I take her comb into my hands, she immediately walks over there and waits for me to arrive.

I have written an entire article about the Cavalier and shedding. You can read more about it here. I have also written an article about why you should not shave your Cavalier King Charles.

Why get Insurance for your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel?

I never really understood why people get insurance for their pets. Still, after a couple of years, I realized that it was a good investment. I was able to take my dog to the vet when she was sick. Recently my dog got ill. I had to take her to a vet, and she needed to make a film of her heart. It is costly. And now my dog is on daily medication. I am glad I got her insured. I could never afford all the vet bills if I didn’t have insurance.

Getting insurance for your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an important decision. It will give you peace of mind knowing that if your dog ever gets sick or hurt, you will be able to take them to the veterinarian. It also gives you the option to take them to the best veterinarian in town, depending on the situation. If you don’t have insurance for your dog, you could end up spending a lot of money on vet visits.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is generally a healthy dog breed. Still, like all other canine breeds, they can get sick. Cav’s are prone to develop conditions that can be costly to treat.

Top health problems to watch out for:

Top health problems of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel include heart disease, hip dysplasia, cancer, eye conditions, and allergies. Some Cavaliers are prone to specific genetic health problems such as heart murmur, eye problems, and cancer. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has a lifespan of 10-12 years. The breed is prone to developing a heart murmur, especially as they age.

  • Heart diseases like heart murmur are common
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Cancer
  • Eye conditions like dry eyes are common in Cavaliers

This is why, like in the previous heading, I advise you to get health insurance with your dog. I 

you need to take him to a vet to make a heart film; this can get quite expensive.

What color cavalier should I get?

The Cavaliers originally come in four color patterns: Blenheim, Tri-Color, Ruby, and Black&Tan.

The most common Cavaliers are the Blenheim’s (White and Ruby or chestnut) and the Tricolors (Black, white, and ruby). My dog is a Blenheim, and although I love these the most, I must say all of them are beautiful. The Blenheim is often called the ‘American Beauty’ dog.

You should get the color that matches your personality and style the most. However, I can give you one small piece of advice.

The King Charles Cavalier loves to get himself dirty. Mine loves to roll in the dirt all the time when he is running off-leash. When we come home from a long walk, she has often turned into Black&Tan, and I have to clean her up. This is probably also true for the other colors, but this is more noticeable with the Blenheim.

I know there are also options for other colors than the previously mentioned four. Still, I do know these were crossbreed and not original.

The Black and Tan color is probably the rarest of the four original colors. It is also more costly than all of the others. It is up to you to choose which color you like the most. The crossbreed colors are rarer than others and probably also more expensive.

Be aware The Cav is known for some severe health problems. Going for a crossbreed might give you a bigger chance of picking up on these health problems earlier. Although I’m not saying, all is bad. Just be aware of it.

Are Cavalier King Charles Spaniels Sporting Dogs or Companion Dogs?

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel (CKCS) is a popular dog breed. They are classified as both a Sporting Dog and a Companion dog. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is originally bred to track, hunt, and retrieve. Later it became a familiar face in dog shows. The modern Cavalier is bred as a lapdog but has not forgotten his roots and loves to have some quality outdoor time with you.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a work-oriented dog. It is an intelligent and independent dog that needs regular exercise.

So is the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel a companion dog or a sporting dog? I would say he is both a dog who loves to cuddle and relax with you and a high-energy dog that needs a lot of activities. If activities are not met daily, your Cav can quickly become a lazy dog.

My dog Mayla playing in the sand
My dog Mayla playing in the sand with a ball

Suppose you’re looking for ways to exercise your dog. As you should, because the CKCS is a high-energy dog. Hunt and retrieve games are top for them. It’s their core, what they are bred to do. You will see for yourself it’s what they will love to do the most.

They are known for their gentle and affectionate personalities. They are known as dogs that love to play and cuddle but are also very affectionate with their families. The modern Cav is a dog more owned as a food warmer, and there is nothing they love more than rolling over on their back to get a good belly rub from one of his family members.

A sport that every Cavalier loves to do. Outdoor activities are in their roots as he is a descendant of sporting dogs. But just so that you know, it is also a breed you will often find at agility training.

You should have no problems taking him outside for a nice long hike, playing some fetch with him, or any other outdoor activities.

There is one thing, though. Your Cav has hunting instincts, and he loves to follow them. Sniffing the trail of prey when he is off-leash, he might not come when you call him. I have trained with my cavalier a lot on this behavior. Even still, sometimes she can smell something and totally forget I’m there waiting for her.

Luckily. I have never had any problems with her running off after a prey, though. So I can advise you to train your dog well, and you also should probably not have any problems.

Do Cavaliers Make Great Therapy Dogs?

It is said that Cavaliers have a lot of warmth and love to give to their owners, making great therapy dogs. But what does it take to be a good Therapy dog?

Any breed and size of dog can be a therapy dog, but a certified therapy dog must be easy-going; they need to be friendly and enjoy human contact (Also unfamiliar people), patient, gentle and confident. They need to be in a calm state of mind in all situations.

Therapeutic therapy dogs are dogs whose purpose is to provide comfort and physical contact to people recovering from surgery or confined to a hospital or nursing home. They are also referred to as “patient dogs.”

How does The King Charles Cav fit into this picture? Cavaliers make excellent therapy dogs. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a very loving and affectionate dog. They are also very devoted to their owners and enjoy being close to them, making them a great companion for those who need an attentive and loving friend.

You can get your dog certified as a therapy dog. In some places, therapy dogs are described as service dogs. Do know that a therapy dog is officially not a service dog and might not always be allowed in areas where only service dogs are.

Another characteristic of the Cav is their high energy. I certainly had a tough time teaching my Cavalier to be relaxed. Especially with friends of family visiting, my dog gets over-excited. I advise you to train this from puppy period and spend a lot of time training him.

Are Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Go Great Along With Other Dogs?

When I go outdoors with my Cavalier, I immediately notice the spaniel breed influences kick in. The first blades of grass she will start sniffing.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is usually a very gentle dog. They are not aggressive by nature but can be protective of their family if the situation calls for it. Because of their calm and peaceful nature, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is usually good with other dogs and should not have any problems getting along with other animals, including cats.

I certainly never have had issues with my dog being around other dogs. She can get a little over-excited and bark if she doesn’t get a chance to say hello to her doggy friends in the neighborhood.

Most Cavaliers I know are the most social dogs I have ever seen.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a dog known to be good with children and other pets. Because of his high energy and affectionate personality, he will do well with other dogs, especially when they are of the same energy level. I have never had any problems with my Cavalier around other dogs. Still, I also don’t require her to be around other dogs that much. Because of her high energy levels, I think she would get along fine without the other dog.

Are Cavalier King Charles Spaniels Good With Cats?

When it comes to the issue of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and cats, most Cav owners will tell you that their dogs get along fine with their felines. The Cav is a very affectionate breed and enjoys being close to his human family.

A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is the best dog breed to have when you’re considering getting a cat. He will not hesitate to show affection to his feline friends and will likely enjoy spending time with them. Especially the case when they have grown up with cats since puppy-hood.

However, like with other animals, some Cav owners have found that their dogs have a bit of a chase instinct and attempt to chase their kitties. This is usually only the case with smaller animals like birds and mice. So when your cat grows bigger, it shouldn’t be a big problem anymore. Your Cav will probably also have accepted your kitten being around him by that time.

My dog was very playful and interested in cats when she was a puppy. But one time, she was a little too enthusiastic with a cat. She wanted to get acquainted with the cat and play, but the cat thought otherwise.

My dog got a whack on the nose from this cat. Ever since that time, she has been afraid of cats.

Are Cavalier King Charles Spaniels Good Family Dogs?

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a good match for a first-time dog owner in most cases. They are easy to train and usually very obedient, making them a good candidate for a first-time dog owner.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a great family pet. They are known for making excellent companion dogs and will make great companions for people of all ages. You need to socialize your Cav from a young age, but that is still important to all dogs. Socialization is an even bigger consideration when he will be around your children.


Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are very tolerant dogs and don’t mind being ‘manhandled’ by little ones. It is a dog that makes for a great family pet. If you give your puppy plenty of socialization from a young age, you will have a dog that enjoys the company of people of all ages.

Your dog must have some time away from the family as well so that he can learn to enjoy his own company and also so that he can get some much-needed exercise. It’s also a good idea to try to train your dog to tolerate being left alone, even if you don’t intend to leave him alone for long periods.

One side note, this breed is prone to separation anxiety. This means that they don’t like to be left home alone. You can read more about this in the subheading below about separation anxiety. Also I have a full article on the topic. You can read here how well the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel can be left alone.

Are Cavalier King Charles Spaniels Good With children?

I have three little kids running around, of which Mayla, my dog, is the oldest and one of the three. She was there when my oldest was born, and she was there when my little girl was born. She has been so good with both of them from the first day.

One of the best things about the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is that they are very good with children. They are not typically aggressive dogs and are very gentle with kids. As long as your children are socialized with dogs from a young age, your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel should be OK with them.

Be aware that Spaniel, however good he is, is an animal. Not only is it essential to get your dog socialized with children, but it is equally essential to socialize your kids with dogs. That can even help them when playing outside and a curious unfamiliar dog comes along.

I have to say the King Charles Spaniel is a dog who can get very jealous. Good quality time with his owner is what he needs every day. Even when you get a newborn, make sure you spend some time with your Cav. If you don’t, they will have a difficult time can quickly get disobedient or hurt themselves.

Are Cavaliers Susceptible to Separation Anxiety

The King Charles Spaniel is a very social dog who has a lot of affection for his family and can be susceptible to the effects of separation anxiety. Because of this, it’s a good idea to keep your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel busy every day so that he doesn’t get bored staying home alone.

This can be accomplished through a regular dog walk, a game of fetch, or an enjoyable activity such as obedience training. If you can, it’s a good idea to give your Cav King Charles Spaniel a job to keep him busy while you’re away from home.

If you follow these rules, your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel can definitely stay home alone for the whole day.

Also, keeping a good routine will make a lot of difference. If your doggie is used to you being home every day and suddenly you are away long hours every day. He might not feel too happy about it and get destructive or urinate on the couch.

So keeping a good daily routine is important, and when do you need to leave home for long periods? I suggest you build it up day by day, so your dog slowly gets used to being alone.

It is best if you can tackle separation anxiety in its early stages. The sooner you can do this, the better. An excellent place to start is your vet. Schedule an appointment, and he can help you with a good solution. In some extreme situations, he can subscribe to medication if needed.

A well-experienced dog trainer should also be able to help you overcome this problem by training both you and your dog and handing out the tools you need so you can deal with it.

Last thing I want to say. Don’t wait to get help in the fight against separation anxiety. If you wait too long, things can get seriously worse. Not something you want for your dog and yourself.

Whatever you will try. Consistency is key. Stick with it. Healing separation anxiety is like healing homesickness. It takes time.


Want to know more about bad habbits of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel? You can read my article here on what is bad about the cavalier king charles spaniels?

Erwin Borgers

Hi, I’m Erwin. I grew up with two cats, but I always wanted to have a dog. Since my wife and I lived together, we have Mayla. She is a very sweet King Charles Spaniel. Together we spend countless of hours in the forest near our home. We love to walk together and now I want to share what I learned about walking dogs and what I learned about dog gear with you.

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