View Full Version : Hello, I'm new and looking for info about the breed.

18th October 2011, 05:19 PM

I have decided to get another dog sometime within the next few years and think a cavalier is the breed for me :)
I joined here so I could get as much information as possible from people who know about cavaliers.

I have some questions, I hope someone doesn't mind answering them. I am a complete newbie to the breed and don't know much icon_blshing

When looking for a breeder what should I look out for, a part from showing their dogs are there any specific health tests that should be done, or anything else I should look for? Also, what health problems are cavaliers prone to and what should be done to prevent them?

Except colour are there any differences between the 4 different colours - like one has better coat quality etc?

In general, are they a good family dog - good with kids?

Thank you :)

19th October 2011, 05:46 PM
Should I have posted this in a different section? :?

19th October 2011, 09:40 PM
Hi - yes maybe to the main section, but rather than repost, and I think rather than having people writing long lists of what to look for in a breeder and reinvent the wheel here :) , why not check the many puppy buyer links we already have (box in the right hand column on the main page) that all go into this topic in great detail? The first link is a guide we offer right on this site then there are a number of additional relevant links that answer exactly this question. Maybe read through those then come back with any specific resulting questions? As they will answer all that you have asked above. :D

Showing is perhaps becoming less of a must-have, as there are a lot of show breeders who do little testing and don't fully, or at all, follow the two main, proven breeding protocols (for SM and MVD). In general nearly all the health focused responsible breeders also show BUT there are exceptions including one of the most health focused breeders I know. Anyone who does NOT show needs to be investigated carefully -- but then so do show breeders, who can be as deceptive as the puppy farmers and backyard breeders and online puppy outlets (and I am talking well known breeders here, internationally) -- any buyer really needs to ask lots of questions and ask for actual certificates and discuss health in detail with any prospective breeders. We have heard here of breeders who offered certs that had been whited out and altered to be used for a different dog than was originally tested too, so deception comes in all forms.

There is no difference in the colours (speaking as someone who has owned three of the four, and worked with hundreds of rescue cavaliers of all colours, with lots of cavalier-owning friends) -- it is just a cosmetic aspect to the same breed and it is possible for a single litter to have all four colours (and every cavalier will have in its genetic history, dogs of probably all four colours) so parent personalities, the throw of genes in shaping the individual dog, and the way a dog is raised will have the most impact on the dog a puppy grows into. The latter two are the most important assuming parents do not have temperament issues. Coat also varies per individual and parents will give some indication of what an offspring may look like. Coats with black in them tend to be more profuse but not necessarily heavier, wavier, etc.

They are generally good with kids but many breeders will not home such a small breed puppy to homes with children under 7 to 10 or so (typical age restrictions). Of course all interactions should always be supervised with kids under 10 with any dog ad especially any puppy, which is far more in need of a safe place and time outs from small kids than vice versa. In the Library section I have lots of good links for information to consider if considering a cavalier in a home with younger kids. Cavaliers are a breed with some prominent and widespread health issues one of which (SM) can produce chronic and sometimes severe pain which means that may be a consideration as well, as kids may not really be compatible with a dog that needs not to be handled or touched.

I have a post entitled 'considering a cavalier' in the Library section that is also worth reading for pros and cons of the breed. :thmbsup:

19th October 2011, 11:27 PM
Thank you so much Karlin!

Love my Cavaliers
20th October 2011, 01:30 AM
I know Karlin has given you a lot to read and digest. As you can tell by my signature, I am in love with the breed. My four have had their share of health problems, some of them very serious. And yet I will probably still get another cavalier when the timing is right. But this time I will do my homework and only buy from a health focused breeder or get a rescue. I have one of each color and my ruby has the thickest coat, my blenheim seems to shed the most. But if you asked everyone on this forum, I bet you'd get a different answer from everyone about coat colors and properties.

My kids were in high school when we got our first cavalier (we had a german shepherd before cavaliers), so can't answer the kid question, but they have just been the best dog ever in my life. My husband says he is seventh in my life. The kids are number 1 and 2, then the 4 dogs and then him. Sometimes it's true!!!

Good luck with your decison making.