Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Breed Profile

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

This week’s breed in focus is the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, affectionately known as the Cavie, originating from the United Kingdom where they were used to warm laps during cold carriage rides and while waiting about in chilly castles!


Affectionate, happy and outgoing, they love human company and are an ideal companion dog.

They are playful and willing to please, and, while they are generally good with children, they do not appreciate rough handling so need to be supervised around young kids.

Physical attributes

The breed comes in a variety of colours, including tan and white, black and tan, red and white, tri-colour and a mahogany red, with a medium to long coat and an expected lifespan of 9-14 years.


The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is intelligent and usually easy to train, responding best to gentle positive training methods.

As with many smaller dogs, they tend to develop behavioural problems if they are allowed to get away with misbehaving, so setting clear and consistent boundaries from the get-go will help, as it does with any dog.

They require a daily walk and family play sessions to keep them active and stimulated.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are not excessive barkers and are certainly not a guard dog as they will greet most people warmly. They generally get along with everyone, including cats and other small pets.

The cavie does need companionship though, so is not a dog to be left alone all day or they will become stressed and can develop separation anxiety.

Lifestyle considerations

Cavies are okay with a smaller living environment, and suit families with children or older owners.

An average ‘shedder’ they require regular brushing and can be prone to tangling and matting on ears.  Their eyes and inside the ear need regular inspection and cleaning, to avoid infection.


Cavies are prone to a number of health issues including heart conditions, eye diseases, syringomyelia, allergic skin disease and ear infections.

To get a quote from Bow Wow Meow Pet insurance specific to the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed, or to cover your own dog for illness or injury*, visit their website.

You can use their Breed Selector tool too if you would like to find out if the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is compatible with your lifestyle.

*Waiting Periods, limits and conditions apply. Any advice is general only. You should read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) available at bowwowinsurance.com.au. Pet Insurance issued by Hollard AFSL 241436, administered by PetSure AFSL 420183 and promoted by Pet Tag Holdings AR no. 318913.

About the Author: Lara Shannon is a NDTF certified dog behaviourist and trainer, Executive Producer and Host of Pooches at Play on Channel 10 and editor of Poochesatplay.com. Lara also runs her own dog training and boarding business in Melbourne’s Bayside area and is the Author of Eat, Play, Love Your Dog.

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