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Why You Need a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

My Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is the best companion I could ask for.

Who wouldn't want one of these guys!

Who wouldn't want one of these guys!

A Cure for Migraines and Strange Anti-Dog People

To the outside observer, your average Cavalier King Charles Spaniel owner may seem like a bit of a fanatic. For one thing, we talk about our dogs incessantly, and not in doggy terms either. It's not all about the roll-over and the fetch, it's about rain boots, special cookies, and morning cuddles that linger past the buzzing of the alarm.

Many of us refer to our pups as children, and oftentimes Cavalier owners find that, like potato chips, it's hard to stop at just one Cavalier. So what is it about this obscenely cute little dog breed that turns once-sane people into fluffy puppy slaves? After looking objectively (or at least trying to) at my own life, I think I may have a few answers.

What Makes King Charles Cavelier Spaniels Special?

  1. They are unique.
  2. They love food.
  3. They are great with children.
  4. They are loyal companions.
  5. They are smart and clever.

1. Cavaliers Are Unique—Just Ask Your Cat

One of the most endearing and unusual traits about the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is his affinity for felines. Many dogs will either chase cats or be scared out of their proverbial boots when a cat comes around. But a Cavalier? No way!

Cavaliers love cats and will try to cuddle, lick, and love any cat that comes within their sight. Cats = best friends. The funny thing about it? Most cats will allow these strange dogs to be their friends, and interspecies cuddling (sometimes large piles) is not uncommon. Perhaps this is because Cavaliers think they are cats—they sure think so when they try to perch on the back of your chair, your neck, or your table.

Cavaliers aren't picky when it comes to treats—they'll gladly spin in circles for anything from a green bean to their favorite biscuit.

Cavaliers aren't picky when it comes to treats—they'll gladly spin in circles for anything from a green bean to their favorite biscuit.

2. Cavaliers Love Food

You can get a Cavalier to do anything for a cookie or a bit of food. In fact, it doesn't matter if the bit of food is a green bean, he'll still roll over, play dead, and do somersaults for a morsel. Now, the caveat here is that you have to be careful to walk a fine line while training your Cavalier in order to avoid constant begging, but it always feels great to have someone around the house who will be eternally grateful, no matter what you feed them. Plus, some of the behaviors (such as the trademark Cavalier spin) inspired by a simple dog cookie will have you in stitches for hours.

A young King Charles II with his favorite spaniels.

A young King Charles II with his favorite spaniels.

3. Cavaliers Are Great With Children

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is descended from the toy spaniels so beloved by King Charles II of England, which you see in the painting above of the king as a boy. In modern times as well as past history these little spaniels have been superb companions for children, being loving, loyal, and above all patient with the antics of fussy little nuggets.

Cavaliers are naturally drawn to children and tolerate being picked up, hauled around, and dressed up with minimal fuss. My black-and-tan Cavalier, Byron, is always captivated by friends' babies, standing by their rockers for hours watching them sleep. I never worry about my pups around children!

4. Cavaliers Stick to You Like Glue

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is not a dog for people who aren't looking for a constant, close companion. A Cavalier lives and dies for his human, and pines when his human is away. My dogs have even been known to howl piteously when I lock them out of the bathroom. They love to sleep in bed with their humans. And forget leaving them on the floor while watching T.V. In fact, I haven't knit on road trips for about two years because both of my Cavaliers insist on riding in my lap, which can be difficult to juggle! But for anyone who likes the reassuring physical contact of a warm, furry little body, you couldn't wish for a more perfect companion.

5. Cavaliers Are Pretty Clever

Unlike some companion breeds who may be a little dim, a Cavalier still has some of his spaniel-esque hunting and outdoor smarts. Sometimes his tail will shoot straight out like a rod and his nose will point sharply when a bird flies into the air. Though small, he loves to fetch and play like any big dog. Try hiding a dog cookie and turning him loose and he'll amaze you with his smarts! Playing with a Cavalier is just as fun as cuddling with one because they are always curious and inquisitive and willing to partake in any new game.

Why You Should Buy From a Reputable Breeder

While Cavaliers are undoubtedly the best dogs ever (completely biased am I) they also suffer from the same plight many other purebred dogs do: puppy mills. Especially as the breed becomes more popular, puppy mills will churn out more pets for consumers. Please put a stop to these horrible mills and buy your puppy from a reputable breeder who can show you the puppy's health history and parents. Or better yet, rescue a Cavalier!

My Favorite Food for Cavaliers


RAjasekhara Mohanrao on August 31, 2020:

I’m getting a Cavalier King Charles on November I’m gonna name her Victoria and it took me a long time to convince my parents to get me a dog I am from India so I have to go to Delhi for her

RAjasekhara Mohanrao on August 30, 2020:

I’m trying to ask my mom for a Cavalier King Charles thank you pet helpful for me getting my Cocoa

Roberta Meadow on May 16, 2020:

I have had the joy of owning these wonderful pups for over 30 year's. They are amazing companions. Each one has their own personality. They are little comedians. 100% love.❣

Peter on May 23, 2019:

I have two..I adore them. I too have had several breeds over the years but never have I seen the best attributes rolled into one dog. Clever, affectionate and above other, Loyal. I just love them

Jose on May 16, 2019:

I have had different kinds of dog breeds through out my lifetime..e.x.: Doberman, Cocker Spaniel, German Shepard and Staffordshire bull terrier. Each breed had a unique quality. Now, with Hope (our CKCS)we have everything we wanted in a dog and more. This article I right on the money, Cavies are just the best breed, I have never seen a breed like this, so affectionate, so lovable so full of happiness and joy. BEST BREED EVER !!!

Hope Lyon on January 20, 2019:

This article is my Cav mix to a T!!! Hes the 2nd one I've had and is the light of my life. I even trained him - although it didn't take much training - to be my PTSD Service Dog. He even adopted a CAT!!! Our neighbors ran a cat recuse and Buddy would always be outside playing with this one cat, Midnight. So Midnight started following Buddy in the dog door to play, and eventually she would stay the night. Lol So I started feeding her. Buddy acted like a cat, and Midnight would run around with huge dog toys in her mouth!! Friends would ask "Oh when did you get a cat?" And we would say, we didn't! Buddy adopted the cat!" Lol Thanks for the PERFECT Cavalier article!!!!

KARA TURNBULL on November 24, 2018:

We have had a bleinham and he is 14. He is deaf, we have taught him sign language. We love him so much. He is great with kids, babys, cats, dogs. I would love to get another one, a tri-color.

Greta on August 03, 2018:

I have a cavalier and yes you are right, can't just stick with one. She'll be 11 months this month and I'm already planning to have a second one. I also have a cat and they're best friends. I love this breed so so much.

Buddy Davidson on April 10, 2018:

Just recently lost our Yorkie and want to get two kingcha

Charles Spaniels can you help

Robert Proctor on January 10, 2018:

We lost ours about a month or so ago and around the end of March we would to get another one. we live in the Richmond,VA. do you have any idea were a breeder may be in our area. Would like your help if possible.

Thank you: Robert Proctor

Thelma Alberts from Germany on April 16, 2011:

Hello, CennyWenny. Thanks for sharing. I have a cavalier king charles spaniel. He´s an amazing dog like any other cavalier king charles. Great hub.

CennyWenny (author) from Washington on January 04, 2010:

Judith-Congratulations on the longevity of your fur babies! I looked to the parents for heart health, and am very pleased that Byron's mommy is 9 with no problems yet. Having a 15 year old Cavvie is an achievement to be proud of!

Judith Gill from New Zealand on January 03, 2010:

I enjoyed this hub a lot! I have 3 Cavaliers myself and I do love my family. My eldest is Chrissy, she'll be 15 this year, followed by Kobi at 12, and Shelley at 8.

Chrissy has been on heart pills for about 3 years now and I am pleased to say she has not deteriorated during that time. Shelley has just started on these pills too. Too closely inbred has been the problem, I believe. So, to you dog lovers out there considering buying a Cavalier: make sure you buy a dog not so closely bred if you want it to have a trouble-free life.

Again, thanks for sharing.

CennyWenny (author) from Washington on November 05, 2009:

I love all dogs really:) But these guys are just so adorable they worm their way into the grumpiest of hearts. Be careful with the food though! Mine needs to go on a diet because his dad can't resist his little face.

Enelle Lamb from Canada's 'California' on November 05, 2009:

I have always had a soft spot for spaniels - and this breed seems to be perfect - likes cats, likes kids, likes cuddles - hmmm...might just be my new addition to the fold LOL!