Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Dog Breed

12 to 13 inches
13 to 18 pounds
Obedience, Conformation

Enthusiastic and eager to please, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel makes an ideal companion.


Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are affectionate, smart and eager to please, making them easy to train. They thrive on companionship and get along well with children and other pets.

Cavaliers are an adaptable breed, so they’ll do well in active or sedentary households. As descendants of hunting dogs, they love to romp outdoors, but are also happy to curl up on their owners’ laps.


The Cavalier is easily recognized by his rich, soft coat and big, round eyes.


12 to 15 years


Cavaliers have four distinct color variations: white with chestnut markings (known as “Blenheim), white with black markings, black with tan markings and ruby, which is a rich red color.


Cavaliers shed occasionally. Regular brushing is recommended to prevent tangles and matting of the medium-length coat.


Like other small dogs, Cavaliers are at risk of obesity. Other health risks include eye conditions like cataracts, knee and hip problems and ear infections. They also have a higher risk for heart problems and certain neurological conditions.

Best Dog Food for Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Dogs & Puppies

A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel will thrive on a complete and balanced small or toy breed dog food. These specially formulated foods are easier for small breeds to chew, thanks to the smaller kibble size.

Cavalier puppies should eat a complete and balanced small or toy breed puppy food for the first year of life. Puppy formulas have added nutrients to aid a puppy’s mental and physical development during this time.


The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel was named for King Charles II. Toy-sized spaniels remained favorites among British nobility into the 19th century.

In the Victorian age, the Cavalier was bred with Asian toy breeds like the Pug, resulting in the English Toy Spaniel (as it’s known in America; in the United Kingdom, it’s known as the King Charles Spaniel).

The English Toy Spaniel had a flatter face and rounder skull like the Pug and over time, the Cavalier was rendered nearly extinct.

In the 1920s, Roswell Eldridge, an American, offered a cash prize to any British breeder who could reproduce the classic Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, thus resurrecting the breed.


  • The Cavalier gained notoriety on the television show “Sex and the City” as Charlotte York’s beloved pet.
  • After the house of Stuart fell, people distanced themselves from the breed, making the Cavalier rare.
  • The breed’s four distinct color patterns were each associated with a British noble family at one time or another.