4th August 2010, 09:47 AM
Hi everyone, we don't actually have a CKC yet, we're thinking of getting one though and just want some advice about exercise.
Our existing dog, a collie/whippet cross is exercise mad and we're a pretty active family. We'll generally fit in three or four walks a day, including if possible a 2.5 mile run and most evenings an hour and a bit of cycling. We like trips to the mountains for a bit of scrambling and waterfall climbing.
Does this sound like a lifestyle a CKC would enjoy?
Thanks in advance
4th August 2010, 12:25 PM
Speaking as the owner of a Cavalier who in his younger days would happily run around off-lead for 10 or 12 miles, most Cavaliers would be happy with plenty of exercise - with several provisos.
1. Cavaliers on long walks don't seem to tear around like collies and whippets - my Oliver trots steadily (except when sighting a pheasant or rabbit!), enjoying sniffing the ground and investigating the undergrowth as he goes, and can carry on like that for many miles - so running beside a bike would probably not suit them. (Put yours in the bike basket!) It's a matter of physical differences dictated by original function - bursts of speed herding sheep or chasing hares (collie or hound), or steady progress in thick undergrowth hunting for game (spaniel).
2. Start exercise gently if you have a young one - 5 minutes for every month of age is a good rule of thumb.
3. However carefully you choose your Cavalier from the health point of view, many of them will have a heart murmur by the age of 5, so concentrated exercise like running beside a bicycle could be damaging, although it becomes even more important to keep them slim and fit. If your Cavalier does have a murmur, you will need to cut down drastically on exercise in hot weather.
Having said all this, I think my greatest pleasure as a Cavalier owner is walking in the country with my dogs, watching them enjoying themselves. And in my experience, one of the great pluses of Cavaliers is that they love a long country walk, but they don't wreck your house with boredom if they don't get long walks for a few days!
I think if I had your lifestyle, I might look at one of the bigger spaniel breeds, like an English Springer, rather than a Cavalier (it's the bicycle bit that concerns me, rather than lots of walking).
Hope that helps,
Kate, Oliver (who still enjoys 5 miles in spite of SM), and Aled
4th August 2010, 03:28 PM
I would suggest leaving him/her home for the cycling, the speed may be overwhelming. A friend of mine has a ckc who goes for a 6 mile run with her every day, so as long as your dog is in shape they should be happy to join for a good long run. Puppies should never be exercised as much it can lead to permanent skeletal damage, so be sure to build up slowly.
I would suggest you look for a breeder whose dogs compete in agility, they will be able to give you suggestions on how much to exercise as a puppy grows. Are you in US? I know of one breeder who competes seriously with her dogs (they also hunt with their ckc's, which is rare)
4th August 2010, 03:39 PM
I guess you've gotten some good advice already from Kate and Soushiruiuma. Cavaliers are wonderful dogs all around, but they tend to be less active than other breeds. One of the main reasons why I got a cavalier is that they are not as energetic other types of dogs. While I love cavaliers for all kinds of reasons, maybe a more energetic dog such as a collie, labrador or a retriever would be more suitable...
Welcome to the forum, by the way, and Good Luck with your search for another furry friend!
Last edited by Desrae; 4th August 2010 at 03:40 PM.
21st August 2010, 08:00 PM
Hi everyone, thanks for all the responses and advice, we've dropped the cycling from the exercise regime so our household is a little more cav friendly
We've also been doing a little searching and have added a rather lovely new addition to the family......everyone meet Olly! He's 6 months old and is just adorable, bags of energy and character, bit of a challenge but what youngster isn't?
Anyway here are some pics of the little fellow
And playing with Sophie who he's rather too keen on!