Small Toy Spaniels are popular in Great Britain and Europe since the 16th century. They were one of the most favorite subjects of the famous painters from 16th, 17th, 18th centuries. It is assumed that the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a descendant of toy spaniels. During the dominion of Charles II, they got the royal title King Charles spaniel. But earlier they were used by the ordinary people as ladies’ pets.
Its face structure was changed to the Pug look during the dog breeding show in England. It continued until Roswell Eldridge, an American citizen who offered award at the Crufts Dog Show for the same dog that portrayed in ancient paintings. To win the prize, breeders bred carefully, and the dogs with shorter face became English Toy Spaniel (King Charles spaniel) and other who intimately portrayed the original became famous as Cavalier.
After long years of hard work by the breeder, Kennel Club recognized Cavalier King Charles spaniel as a separate breed in 1945. The only registering body and the official breed club named Cavalier King Charles spaniel Club, USA was founded in 1954. In March 1995, AKC officially recognized this breed. Presently, it is popular as a companion dog and a toy dog. It
Temperament & Personality
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an intelligent and cheerful dog. It is a confident dog who easily bonds firmly with its people, making an excellent family companion. They are very affectionate toward family members and try to be around them. It is very gentle and courageous, but also stranger friendly which makes it a poor watchdog. They go well with other pets and kids in the house, but supervision is essential as kids can knock them down while playing. Like other breeds, they require socialization at an early stage to polish their behavior skills. They are ideal for apartment living provided it gets an adequate amount of exercise.
They are not highly energetic and do not have massive exercising requirements. Regular walks jog with sufficient play time in a fenced yard will suffice their needs. They enjoy playing freely in a park. It is advisable to keep them unleash while playing. Some activities will provide not only physical but mental exercises too, the list includes fetching games, neighborhood games, agility training and tracking exercises.
Brush them twice a week with a soft slicker brush and a comb to keep their coat in shape. Occasional bath will keep their coat tangle and mat free. They shed seasonally, and during this time, owners should brush them regularly to prevent matting and remove the loose fur from their coat.
Like other dog breeds, they also have other grooming requirements, brush their teeth twice a week to avoid development tartar and oral problems. Their ears can catch up infections due to water, dirt buildup and need regular checking to prevent infections and pain. Clean their ears with Vet prescribed ear solution. Like other dogs, they tend to grow nails faster than other breeds which can crack if not appropriately trimmed and hinder regular activities like walking, run, etc. However, cutting them twice a month will serve the purpose. Clean their corner of the eyes with a damp cloth to remove tear stains.
They are prone to specific health issues like other breeds. Major health issues are Syringomyelia (SM), Mitral Valve Disease (MVD), Hip Dysplasia, Episodic Falling, Patellar Luxation, Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca (Dry Eye). However, Occasional vet visits and tests like complete physical tests, blood tests, etc will keep the dog healthy.
Training Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is not very easy, they are slow learners and picks up tricks gradually. Hence, a consistent and firm trainer is essential to train them. They are very sensitive, and owners should be very calm while interacting. They can teach themselves or can seek help from a professional trainer. Positive reinforcement, with short and varied training sessions, will be beneficial for this breed.
Socialization is crucial to make them well behaved and a good companion. Take them to different busy places like a supermarket, bus stops busy roads and Dogs Park, etc. It will allow them to meet unknown faces, different sounds and situations and make them more flexible.
Command training is essential to polish their skills, enhance the relationship between the dog and the owner and to minimize their excessive barking behavior. Commands like ‘no,’ ‘yes,’ ’stop,’ ‘come’ are some simple commands which are essential.
They do well with a high-quality food or homemade food. But it is essential to visit a dietician or a vet before opting for the food. Generally, 1/5 to 1 cups of dry food is advisable for this breed. Also, owners can opt for a raw meat diet to offer them protein. But diet should be created depending upon the dog’s size, age, activity level and metabolism. The owner should offer them small meals multiple times a day and prevent heavy exercises to minimize the risk. Owners should check their weight level and calorie consumption. If they gain weight reduce table scraps, treats, etc.