At first glance, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel looks like a breed you might find being carried around in someone’s purse. If you look past their dainty looking exterior, you’ll find that they bare the sporty characteristics of their hunting ancestors. Although they are technically considered a toy breed, they can keep up with some of the most athletic breeds. Not only can they keep up, but they thoroughly enjoy staying active.
This dog breed loves to run, hike, fetch, and frolic along the beach. Although their ancestors have passed down athleticism, these dogs have adapted to crave companionship. They make excellent family dogs, who love to curl up on your lap and take a snooze.
Charles Spaniel’s can often be found right behind your heels as you move from room to room throughout the day. For this reason, if you’re considering owning one, it’s recommended that your living situation allows him to have human contact for most of the day.
They don’t particularly like being left alone for extended periods. They may become depressed, suffer from canine separation anxiety or become destructive and frustrated.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Personality Traits
Friendly, affectionate and fun-loving. These furry little friends will take affection pretty much anywhere they can get it. They love a good belly rub and curling up with their favorite human.
Some Charles Spaniels are known for being untrainable. But for the most part, with a little persistent they are an adaptable breed. In many cases, they are known for being the stubborn one in the family.
Typically you won’t have to worry much about issues such as territorial-ness, dominance, or possessiveness. They see just see other dogs—even big ones— as an opportunity for friendship.
Using a Charles Spaniel as a guard dog wouldn’t be the wisest choice. They often do let out a bark when someone’s at the door, but that’s usually just to signal, “more friends are here.”
Their small size makes them a fragile breed, and they know it too, roughhousing usually isn’t their favorite pastime.
It should be noted that separation anxiety and timidness are quite common with poorly socialized Charles Spaniels. Having human interaction throughout the day is the best way to avoid mental issues from developing.
While they are happy to cozy up around the couch and casually follow you around the house all day, if presented with the opportunity to play, they enjoy a long play session. It’s much better for their mental and physical longevity to stay active on a regular basis.
You always have to walk a Charles Spaniel with a leash. While most of them are trainable, they can’t always resist the temptation to chase birds, chipmunks or even butterflies, it’s built into their hunter DNA.
They’re a very small breed who blindly follow people anywhere, so be careful when cooking, performing hazardous tasks, or when children are around, because you may not even notice these little guys sneak up on you.
They are known for getting along with most people and with other animals very well, but it’s always recommended that you socialize them as early as possible. If they are a little older when you get them, then it’s important to use rewards and praise to help build their confidence and trust.
Health Problems You Should Know About
Their fun-loving nature is very easy to fall in love with, so you should consider some of the common health risks before you make a Charles Spaniel your new companion.
Due to increased prevalence of serious conditions, their average lifespan is between 8-11 years.
- Mitral valve disease – a very common heart condition where the valve thickens and deteriorates, forcing the heart to work overtime. This condition can come on fairly early.
- Syringomyelia – a congenital bone deformity in the posterior area of the skull affects nervous by obstructing the flow of cerebrospinal fluid.
Unfortunately, every breed is going to come with a downside, but the upsides of Cavalier King Charles Spaniel are many. Owners rave about how easy they are to insert into the family, almost like the can’t imagine life without them.
Whether you’re looking for a therapy dog or a colorful character to brighten up your home, the Cavalier King will bring you joy for years to come.