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lccreature
15th June 2011, 03:10 PM
Hi there. I am new to the forum. I don't have a cavalier...yet. My daughter has inherited my love and passion for animals, especially dogs. She is very interested in getting a small breed dog that she can show (conformation, obideince, agility, 4-H, etc...) We have looked at many different breeds and the breed that she is most interested in and I feel would be an excellent match for our family is the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. I have had several clients (I am a dog trainer) that have them and am familiar with the breed, but prior to doing some onlie research for breeders and discovering this site I had no idea of the serious health issues surrounding this breed. My questions are what is the likely hood of getting a puppy with little to no problems? Does anyone reccomend a breeder in the US that does health screening/testing? Do you still advise getting a Cavalier even with the health issues they can have? I was a vet tech for over 20 years so I can handle medicating,etc. I am more concered about the quality of life for the dog.

thanks so much!
Laura

mommytoClaire
16th June 2011, 03:40 AM
Hi Laura, and welcome. I am hoping that someone that has more experience with Cavs and health issues will leave a response. I've only had my Claire just a year, and it's my first Cavalier.

RodRussell
16th June 2011, 04:41 AM
I was waiting for others to answer your questions, but no one seems to have jumped in, so, here goes:



... My questions are what is the likely hood of getting a puppy with little to no problems?...

The likelihood is good that, as a puppy, the cavalier will be healthy, if obtained from a responsible breeder.

The likelihood is that, before the cavalier's fifth birthday, it will have a 50-50 chance of developing a mitral valve backflow murmur. Those odds get worse each day thereafter.

The likelihood is about 90-10 that as the dog matures to adulthood, by age 2 years, if it is examined by an MRI scan, it will have Chiari-like malformation, and the likelihood is about 60-40 that it also will have syringomyelia.

The likelihood is about 35-65 that it will develop an eye disorder, like dry eye.

The likelihood is about 30-70 that it will become deaf by about five years.



... Does anyone reccomend a breeder in the US that does health screening/testing?...

I think the better practice is to recommend how to find a responsible breeder, but keep in mind that every litter is different, and a breeder can be responsible about breeding one litter and then irresponsible about breeding another litter.

I suggest that you read the article at this website about how to find a cavalier puppy in the USA.
http://bit.ly/eSn7ud


... Do you still advise getting a Cavalier even with the health issues they can have? ...

I would. I've never met a cavalier I didn't want to take home. But, that's just me.

Ladybug
16th June 2011, 08:48 AM
It's a completely personal choice, but it's good you are investigating the health issues Cavaliers are prone to so you can make an informed decision. My pup, Lady, is 6 months and she is the perfect companion. Even though I was aware that Cavaliers had some health problems, I admit I did not know the extent of it, and even though Lady is currently in perfect health I would personally consider other breeds before getting a second.

That being said, Lady has been easy to train and is the most beautiful and loving dog I have ever had. Since joining this forum I have realised how important pet insurance is and so now I am not so concerned financially if she does experience ill health in the future, although I certainly hope for her sake that she remains healthy.

I hope you get more replies from more experienced owners.

lccreature
16th June 2011, 03:22 PM
Cindy, Rod and Matilda, thanks for your responses!

Matilda, I see that you have a silver tabby british shorthair, I absolutely LOVE those cats. I bet she is adorable!

anniemac
16th June 2011, 04:17 PM
http://www.roycroftinformationcenter.com/Cavalier Infosite/Cavalier InfoCenter Welcome Page.html
Hi there. I am new to the forum. I don't have a cavalier...yet. My daughter has inherited my love and passion for animals, especially dogs. She is very interested in getting a small breed dog that she can show (conformation, obideince, agility, 4-H, etc...) We have looked at many different breeds and the breed that she is most interested in and I feel would be an excellent match for our family is the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. I have had several clients (I am a dog trainer) that have them and am familiar with the breed, but prior to doing some onlie research for breeders and discovering this site I had no idea of the serious health issues surrounding this breed. My questions are what is the likely hood of getting a puppy with little to no problems? Does anyone reccomend a breeder in the US that does health screening/testing? Do you still advise getting a Cavalier even with the health issues they can have? I was a vet tech for over 20 years so I can handle medicating,etc. I am more concered about the quality of life for the dog.

thanks so much!
Laura

Hey Laura,

I want to give you my personal experience and feelings about this having owned a Cavalier with SM. I would still get another Cavalier even knowing there are health issues. I am not familiar with other breeds but I do know that there are recommended protocols breeders can follow to help reduce an inherited condition. I'm sure you know there are no guarantees and as far as comparing to other toy spaniels, I don't know there health issues.

I will say that this forum is more health focused and is where pet owners will go with SM or MVD health issues. Not all, but keep that in mind. Also know that Rod's link is from his website and is very thorough but it lists every possible condition a Cavalier can have. The statistics can be alarming and from reading his post, I wanted to mention that it is more important on doing research and finding a good breeding.

It's a personal choice, along with Rod's website www.cavalierhealth.org (http://www.cavalierhealth.org), and the puppy buying guide here I recommend this site also cavalier (http://www.roycroftinformationcenter.com/Cavalier Infosite/Cavalier InfoCenter Welcome Page.html) info center but I would contact the parent clubs in the usa. www.ckcsc.org (http://www.ckcsc.org) and www.ackcsc.org (http://www.ackcsc.org) to start, as well as

RodRussell
16th June 2011, 08:55 PM
... Also know that Rod's link is from his website and is very thorough but it lists every possible condition a Cavalier can have. ...

Not quite; in fact, not even close. It only lists the serious ones that may not develop or appear at or soon after birth. It also does not include every genetic defect known to occur in cavaliers. It focuses upon the most severe traits, those that are lethal, painful, blinding, causing deafness, requiring lifetime treatment, or requiring surgery.

There are several other genetic defects which are fairly prevalent in the cavalier King Charles spaniel but which are not classified as severe or life-threatening. And, thus far, the website has excluded some rare disorders which CKCSs are believed to be predisposed to, such as various eosinophilic syndromes (other than eosinophilic stomatitis), myotonia, xanthine urolithiasis, lymphangiectasia, a mutation of the dystrophin gene causing a form of muscular dystrophy, and pneumocystis pneumonia due to immunoglobulin deficiency.

anniemac
16th June 2011, 09:53 PM
Not quite; in fact, not even close. It only lists the serious ones that may not develop or appear at or soon after birth. It also does not include every genetic defect known to occur in cavaliers. It focuses upon the most severe traits, those that are lethal, painful, blinding, causing deafness, requiring lifetime treatment, or requiring surgery.

There are several other genetic defects which are fairly prevalent in the cavalier King Charles spaniel but which are not classified as severe or life-threatening. And, thus far, the website has excluded some rare disorders which CKCSs are believed to be predisposed to, such as various eosinophilic syndromes (other than eosinophilic stomatitis), myotonia, xanthine urolithiasis, lymphangiectasia, a mutation of the dystrophin gene causing a form of muscular dystrophy, and pneumocystis pneumonia due to immunoglobulin deficiency.

The point is you would still get a cavalier. I guess you don't have every condition but you do have a lot of information. Anyway, Laura if you decide on a Cavalier, it is a wonderful breed. If there is another one that suits you better, wonderful. I wish you luck and I am glad you are trying to do research before buying a puppy.

KingCav
16th June 2011, 10:17 PM
Not quite; in fact, not even close. It only lists the serious ones that may not develop or appear at or soon after birth. It also does not include every genetic defect known to occur in cavaliers. It focuses upon the most severe traits, those that are lethal, painful, blinding, causing deafness, requiring lifetime treatment, or requiring surgery.

There are several other genetic defects which are fairly prevalent in the cavalier King Charles spaniel but which are not classified as severe or life-threatening. And, thus far, the website has excluded some rare disorders which CKCSs are believed to be predisposed to, such as various eosinophilic syndromes (other than eosinophilic stomatitis), myotonia, xanthine urolithiasis, lymphangiectasia, a mutation of the dystrophin gene causing a form of muscular dystrophy, and pneumocystis pneumonia due to immunoglobulin deficiency.

Are you trying to scare people Rod? It seems to me that you are. All animals including the human race have genetic defects.

RodRussell
16th June 2011, 11:56 PM
Are you trying to scare people Rod? It seems to me that you are.

Well. you would be wrong. If you don't want to know what genetic health problems this breed has, then just delete or don't read about them.

I am referring to serious genetic disorders that cavaliers are reported by veterinary researchers to be predisposed to. I don't make this stuff up. If you have a complaint about researchers doing genetic research in this breed and reporting on it, then complain to the researchers and not the messenger.

If you want to remain ignorant about mitral valve disease, Chiari-like malformation, syringomyelia, episodic falling, PSOM, progressive deafness, cerebellar infarcts, dry eye, curly coat syndrome, eosinophilic stomatitis, hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, masticatory muscle myositis, giant platelets and low platelet counts, then be my guest.

I just hope you're not a cavalier breeder.

RodRussell
17th June 2011, 12:34 AM
The point is you would still get a cavalier. ...

Oh, yeah, we'd still get a cavalier, and one after that, and one after that, too. But, I think anybody wanting one needs to go in with their eyes open and be well informed.

anniemac
17th June 2011, 12:50 AM
Oh, yeah, we'd still get a cavalier, and one after that, and one after that, too. But, I think anybody wanting one needs to go in with their eyes open and be well informed.

I agree with that.

Sent from my Droid using Tapatalk

RodRussell
17th June 2011, 02:01 AM
I agree with that.

Figured that!

Reptigirl
17th June 2011, 05:37 AM
Have 3 Cavaliers all with health issues.

I don't believe people on this forum are trying to "Scare" anyone out of cavaliers... but in general the public seems to be under educated about the severity of the diseases in cavaliers. I went to 3 different vets to get 1 dog diagnosed! All 3 of mine have CM & 2 have SM. 1 has MVD. They are all under 5 years of age. My youngest showed symptoms when I brought him home at 12 weeks of age... I find owning severely affected Cavaliers makes you want to educate people about them. Maybe Rod comes off a little gruff about the health issues but I do believe it is deserved. I know I might come off as trying to "scare" new owners out there puppy. Not what I'm trying to do. But when you live with an affected Cavalier and watch the pain that can happen during an SM episodes it really changes you. It is not pleasant. I love my Cavaliers and would own another one. But just realize the chances and be prepared. Also most dog breeds have health issues if you look them up.... But I do personally believe Cavaliers are a high risk breed to own! They likely hood that they will come down with something is so great.

Ladybug
17th June 2011, 08:49 AM
Matilda, I see that you have a silver tabby british shorthair, I absolutely LOVE those cats. I bet she is adorable!

She's a beauty! She arrived home last week. I posted photos in this thread (http://www.cavaliertalk.com/forums/showthread.php?38541-Kitty-Lola-Meets-Puppy-Lady).

lccreature
17th June 2011, 04:45 PM
I want to say that I don't feel anyone is trying to "scare" me or anyone else away from this breed. Like someone else previously stated, every breed has it's own set of health issues. I have had German Shepherds all my live (up until the past few years), one of which had hip surgery at 4 months to correct severe dysplasia. And working in the veterinary field for nearly 20 years, I am well aware of the health issues with most breeds. However, I was not aware of the severity/prevalence of the health issues with Cavaliers. I came here to ask a specific question and along with my own research I feel my questions were answered. As much as I think a Cavalier would be a perfect match for my daughter and our family. I am not sure she is ready to take on dealing with a dog with potential serious issues. It is such a shame that these beautiful dogs and their owners are having to deal with these health issues and I believe the public needs to be better educated about this. Thanks to all of you for responding!!

mommytoClaire
17th June 2011, 06:20 PM
I too appreciate everyone's honesty. It's better for the potential owner to know the whole truth.That said, I think it's a good reminder for all, that it's almost a necessity to have Pet Health Insurance for our Cavaliers. And of course one that covers these predisposed conditions.