Cavanese (Havanese x Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Mix): All You Need to Know

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Cavanese (Havanese x Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Mix)The Cavanese is a brilliant mixture of two very well-loved dog breeds. It is slightly larger than some other Havanese hybrids and can make an absolutely wonderful pet for the right type of person.

If you’re not sure whether that’s you or not, here’s everything that you need to know about this delightful little breed to determine whether or not you’re a good fit!

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Cavanese (Havanese x Cavalier King Charles Spaniel) History

The Cavanese, sometimes called the Havalier, is a hybrid dog breed. It is the result of breeding the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Havanese together. The breed is very much a companion breed, like both of its parents, and experts believe that it originated in the 1980s. As a relatively new hybrid, it is quite hard to know exactly when and where the breed originated, but most estimates assume North America, as this is where many designer breeds were developed.

While we do not know a whole lot about how the Cavanese came to be, we know plenty about its parent breeds. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, for example, we know was named after King Charles I of the United Kingdom. The breed was small, with short, flat faces and a recognizable domed skull.

Over time, though, this look changed, and it wasn’t until the 20th century that the breed was purposefully bred to look like they had when King Charles I had loved them so dearly. It is this that influenced the breed standard included in the American Kennel Club documentation that followed its recognition of the breed in 1996.

The Havanese, on the other hand, originated in the sunny country of Cuba. The breed is thought to have developed from Bichon-type dogs that were taken to Cuba by Spanish settlers in addition to Blanquito de la Habana (the little white dog of Havana). When the breed first emerged, it was instantly very popular among the rich, and to some extent become a symbol of status.

Eventually, the breed’s popularity spread to the lower classes, who found the breed’s adaptability and size incredibly useful within busy cities such as Havana. The breed remained popular, and it began to gain attention in Europe. Before long, the breed spread over to Europe, and then, when the Cuban revolution began and immigration increased to the United States, the wonderful breed entered the USA.

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Cavanese Appearance, Coat, Size, and Weight

The Cavanese, as a relatively new breed, does not yet have a set standard. As such, the breed can vary in appearance to look more like one of the parents than the other. Generally, though, the breed has brown eyes and a black nose, and a coat that can come in fawn, pied, brown, black, and white. The breed’s coat is wavy and dense, but relatively short.

It will usually measure around 8” to 12” tall and will weigh between 8 and 15 lbs. The Cavanese is classified as a toy breed because of its stature and size. Like most toy breeds, it will reach its full size by the time that is around a year old. After that, owners may find that the breed fills out, but it is unlikely to grow.

Cavanese Maintenance, Activity, and Space Requirements

Below, we’ll look at some of the requirements for keeping this breed.

Cavanese Grooming Requirements

The Cavanese only requires a moderate amount of grooming on a regular basis. The breed will need to be brushed around two or three times per week, and this should ideally be done with a stiff-bristled brush. Cavaneses closer resembling a Havanese are likely to need regular trims as well as brushes.

The breed only needs to be washed when it is visibly dirty or beginning to smell but will need its teeth cleaned multiple times a week. It will also need its nails trimmed if it does not wear them down naturally and will need to have its ears checked regularly for infection.

Cavanese Activity Requirements

One of the most important things to consider when getting a new dog is that you have the time and commitment to meet their exercise needs. Failing to do so can lead to a dog breed becoming restless, anxious, and frustrated, and can even lead to certain health conditions.

The Cavanese is a relatively energetic dog. Its energy levels can probably be described as medium or normal. The breed will need to burn off energy on a daily basis to prevent any of the above, but this can be done in a number of ways, with the easiest being walking.

Cavaneses require around 30 minutes of exercise on a daily basis and usually walk around nine miles per week. If you are not keen on walking, though, you can break this exercise into smaller chunks or you can choose to exercise your Cavanese in a different way.

For example, a Cavanese could be exercised by taking it on a run or jog, taking the breed for a swim, or even just engaging in some high-intensity play or agility training. Anything that gets the Cavanese up and moving!

Cavanese Living Space Requirements

The Cavanese, as a small dog breed that is highly adaptable, is more than happy to live in almost any kind of space. So long as it is provided with sufficient stimulus on a day-to-day basis and is well exercised, the breed can live in family homes, condos, apartments, or even studios!

Cavanese Temperament and Intelligence

The Cavanese is a loyal and very loving dog breed. Both parent breeds make wonderful companion dogs, so it should really come as no surprise that the Cavanese makes a perfect friend for life.

The breed forms very strong bonds with those it lives with. It is a dog that will show the utmost loyalty and affection to those it loves but will also be happy to play and run around after you when it’s excited.

The breed is very sensitive, which can be both a benefit and a disadvantage. It means that the breed is very good at knowing how you are feeling, and often this can help to solidify a bond between the two of you, but it also means that the Cavanese is prone to developing things like separation anxiety and depression. Steps can be made to ensure that this doesn’t happen, but it is always something that owners should consider before bringing a Cavanese home with them.

In addition to being loving and loyal, the Cavanese is a relatively intelligent dog breed. With enough effort and commitment, a Cavanese shouldn’t be too difficult to train. The breed, fortunately, misses out on the stubborn streak that follows a lot of Havense hybrids.

Cavanese Health and Lifespan

All dog breeds have a series of health conditions and injuries that they are more prone to than other breeds simply because of their genetics. With purebred dogs, this is more common and often more severe. That is one reason that hybrid dogs emerged, to try and provide the breeds with a wider gene pool and hopefully reduce the number of health conditions that they are prone to.

When it comes to the Cavanese, the breed is prone to mitral valve disease, Legg-Calves Perthes disease (an issue within the hips), syringomyelia, deafness, eye conditions, patellar luxation (knee dislocation), and liver shunts.

These conditions can affect the amount that you are expected to pay for things like veterinary insurance, but they can be handled, prevented, and treated with the support of a medical professional. With a Cavanese, you may find that the breed will need X-rays, ECGs, eye examinations, and blood tests done throughout its life to help keep on top of its health.

Despite these conditions, the Cavanese has an estimated life expectancy of 12 to 15 years. This is, of course, an estimate, and Cavaneses may live longer with sufficient care and diet. To help promote health in Cavanese, owners should try to feed them high-quality food with minimal grains.

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Is Cavanese the Right Breed for You?

It is also important to consider, when looking at a new dog breed, whether the breed will fit into your household and lifestyle. For example, not all dogs are friendly to children. Some dogs are likely to develop jealousy toward children, and this can lead to them acting aggressively or anxiously.

In this case, the Cavanese is absolutely fine. Children who do intend to play with the breed should, however, be given a talk and demonstration on how best to interact with the dog. The breed is small, and around clumsy children, it is very vulnerable and could get injured fairly easily.

This can be targeted by encouraging children to play gently, and by crate training the Cavanese so that when the breed feels overwhelmed or in danger due to lots of excitable children, it has somewhere to go. It’s also worth setting boundaries between the children and the Cavanese, like ensuring the children do not take food from the dog’s bowl.

It’s also important to know that any pre-existing pets will get on alright with the new addition. Not all dogs are safe to have around other animals. In this case, other dogs are absolutely fine, but other pets like cats or rodents may find themselves being chased off!

Finally, it is useful to know whether or not the new addition to your family will be able to cope with your social life. If you are often hosting and having people over, or perhaps you’re often out of the house at work – can your pup deal with it? The Cavanese will be fine with guests, as the breed just wants to make friends, but it is very prone to separation anxiety, so anyone who needs to be out at work all day may wish to choose a different breed!

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