The Cavachon is the delightful combination of a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Bichon Frise. These are happy-go-lucky, people-friendly dogs. They make for wonderful family pets. They are as happy cuddling with you on the couch as they are out and about seeing the world.
Prepare to have your heart melted by this adorable designer dog!
The Origin of the Cute Cavachon Dog Breed!
A fairly new kid on the block. It is believed that the first Cavachons were bred by an American breeder in 1996. The breeding of a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Bichon Frise resulted in an adorable companion dog.
This designer breed has gained popularity rapidly. It is a firm favorite right across the world. The bonus is that they have a low-shedding coat and are suitable pets for allergy sufferers.
What the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Adds to the Mix!
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed combines the affection and gentle nature of a toy breed with the energy and athleticism of a sporting dog. Cavachons tend to inherit both these delightful characteristics. Their adorable looks are completed with the sweet, large, round eyes of the Cavalier Spaniel.
Those Fun and Fabulous Bichon Frise Traits!
Purebred Bichon Frise are also fantastic companion dogs. They have a wonderful people-pleasing personality and get along with just about anyone and anything. Bichons are confident dogs that aim to delight during training.
Although they are super-friendly, Cavachons do tend to inherit the alarm-sounding watchdog abilities of their curious and alert Bichon parents.
The Appearance of These Fluffballs!
Adorable, adorable, adorable!
With their big brown eyes and their delightful little noses, you would have to have a heart of stone to withstand this level of cuteness. These are quite solid little dogs. They have a broad back and ribcage, atop strong, sturdy legs.
The shape of the head and the face of these pups can vary. Mostly, they have a good length muzzle. Their ears are usually long and floppy like the Cavalier Spaniel’s.
Average Size and Weight!
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Bichon Frise are both small dog breeds. Neither exceed an adult height of 13 inches tall or a weight of 18 pounds. So their offspring can be expected to remain in this size range.
Adult Cavachons measure to a height of 12 – 13 inches (30 – 33 cm) at the shoulders. These dogs generally inherit the sturdy bone structure of the Bichon Frise. This makes them a little heavier than their size would suggest.
Depending on their size, Cavachons can weigh anything between 10 and 20 pounds (4.5 – 9 kg).
The Coats and Colors!
These pups have fluffy thick coats that can be straight, wavy or curly. You might not be able to tell whether the coat will be straight, curly or wavy right away.
Puppies usually only get their adult coats at around 4 – 6 months. The length of the coat hair can be medium or long. Interestingly, the coat of a first-generation (F-1) Cavachon is usually more non-shedding than that of subsequent generations.
Even though these puff ball dogs are low-shedding, their coats do require some maintenance. They should be groomed at least once a week. During seasonal changes, they might need more regular grooming. Some dogs look fabulous with doggie parlor styles.
Taking your pup to the parlor for a trim every 7 – 8 weeks will lessen the amount of grooming that needs to be done at home. Parlor trims are especially advisable for pet owners with allergies.
Bichons are white in color. Cavaliers come in many different colors. They can be white and tan, or white and apricot, Blenheim or tricolored. Therefore, the coat color of the offspring of this cross can be as varied:
· White with tan, apricot or black markings
· Tricolor (White with black and tan)
Temperament and Personality: What to Expect!
There are few guarantees when crossing two different breeds. Yet, with the Bichon and the Cavalier Spaniel both being such delightful companion dogs, you are quite sure that these traits will come up tops in their hybrid offspring.
Cavachon dogs are kind and gentle, and all-round good-natured. They are affectionate pets that thrive on human company. It is fortunate that they are small in stature as they are avid lap dogs and want to be involved in everything that you do!
These friendly canines are fond of socializing, both with people and with other pets. They are wonderful pets for families with young and older children. They will also get along well with other household pets.
The downside to the Cavachon temperament is that they are not happy if left alone for any length of time. These dogs are best suited to households where there is a member of the family home for most of the day.
If they are left alone for too long, they could suffer from separation anxiety and/or destructive behavior.
The combination of the Cavaliers’ intelligence and the Bichons’ people-pleasing attitude make this a fun and easy dog to train. Cavachon pups respond very well to positive reinforcement obedience training. Their fun-loving spirit will also make it rewarding to teach them entertaining tricks to show off with to guests and other family members!
These puffball pups have an affable and affectionate nature. They are, therefore, well suited to first-time pet owners. As with all puppies, one must have the time and energy to devote to do obedience training and socialization to raise a well-rounded, sociable pup.
Dogs that are not sufficiently socialized from an early age can develop small dog syndrome.
How Long do They Live?
The average life expectancy of a Cavachon is 10 – 12 years. To ensure a long and happy life, feed your canine bestie a veterinary-approved, well balanced diet. Despite being small dogs, they are energetic and do require daily exercise. It is advisable to take your Cavachon for a daily walk of about 30 minutes.
Keep in mind that nutritional and activity needs are different at different stages of your pet’s life.
Due to their small stature and irresistible doe-eyes, these pups do tend to be spoiled with too many treats. They easily become overweight or obese. Obesity can lead to so many awful health complications.
Guard against this by keeping a cap on the number of treats that you give your puppy pal and allowing for daily age-appropriate exercise.
5 Potential Health Issues to Be Aware Of!
Hybrid dogs are usually more resilient and less disease prone than purebred dogs. However, one must look to the parent breeds to acquaint with the diseases and conditions that could possibly arise in the mixed breed:
1. Atopic Dermatitis – This disease is quite prevalent amongst Cavachons. Signs can appear as early as 4 months of age. Symptoms include itchiness and redness of the skin. If your dog shows signs of allergies, it is best to take it to the vet as soon as possible. Discovering the trigger of these allergies is sometimes quite a long journey. The sooner that one starts on it, the better. Untreated allergies can lead to ear infections and other maladies.
2. Cataracts – This is usually a condition associated with older dogs. However, some Cavachon puppies are born with congenital (inherited) cataracts that may affect their vision.
3. Mitral Valve Disease (MVD) – This disease is, sadly, very prevalent amongst Cavaliers. It is one of the primary reasons why these Spaniels can die too early in their lives. It is estimated that 50 % of Cavaliers will be afflicted with MVD by the time that they are 5 years old. MVD is a degenerative disorder that affects the mitral valve in the dog’s heart. Inability of this valve to function correctly leads to stress on the heart muscle and poor blood circulation. This in turn can lead to congestive heart failure and death.
4. Cushing’s Disease – Also known as hyperadrenocorticism, this syndrome is caused by excess levels of the stress hormone cortisol. The condition can be caused by a tumor in the pituitary gland in the brain or in the abdominal adrenal glands. It is treatable, usually with medication rather than surgery.
5. Patellar luxation – This condition is caused by deformities in the bone in the hind limbs. These deformities can result in the patella (kneecap) to slip out of its natural position. This causes lameness, a skipping gait, discomfort, and/or trauma to the joint.
Cavachon Puppies for Sale!
Is your heart melted?! Ready to take the next step in bringing one of these cutesie canines into your life?! Being a very popular type of dog at present, you should be able to find a Cavachon breeder quite easily.
Ask your local vet or dog breeders club if they know of any reputable Cavachon breeders in the area.
You could also contact your local animal shelter or Cavachon rescue group to find out about any Cavachons that might be looking for a new, happy home!
Be Sure to Get Your Cavachon Puppy from a Reputable Breeder!
Smaller, more affable breeds do unfortunately suffer at the hands of breeders running puppy mills. Buyer beware! Responsible breeders will be happy to share any information about their dogs with you.
They will also have health certification of the puppy’s parents for you to peruse. Insist on seeing these, as well as on meeting the parents of the litter. It is also wise to visit the breeder’s premises to find out whether your potential pup is being raised in a hygienic and loving environment.