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All About Cavachon

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headshot of a Cavachon dog

Cavachons are adorable little pups that make for the perfect addition to nearly any family. Before adopting one, first read all about their history, personality, care-taking needs, and health.

About the Breed

What is a Cavachon? Cavachon dogs are a mix between a Cavalier King Charles and a Bichon Frise. This new breed is adaptable to nearly any type of living situation, and they can be happy living in an apartment or house, with a large family or a single person, and with or without a yard.

What matters most to Cavachons is that they get to spend plenty of time with their family. These dogs do not enjoy being left alone for extended periods, but having another dog or cat in the house can help your dog from becoming bored. Cavachons are easy to get along with, so they enjoy the company of another four-legged family member.

Cavachons additionally enjoy being around children. However, it’s essential that kids of all ages are taught to interact with a dog safely. Due to this breed’s smaller stature, they could accidentally be injured by kids playing too rough. If you have younger children around your pup, it’s recommended that you supervise all interactions. 

These canines rarely bark, but when they do, it’s typically to let you know that someone is at the door. Rest assured, Cavachons enjoy meeting new people and usually view everyone as their friend. Be prepared to add some extra ‘meet and greet’ time to your walks or outings when your Cavachon has joined you.

One of the many great characteristics of this breed is that they are undoubtedly adorable—even fully grown, they still resemble puppies. Just like puppies, Cavachons are very playful. Though their energy on a walk may run low within half an hour, when it comes to playing, your Cavachon won’t soon tire out.

Breed History

Cavachon dogs are a new breed, first appearing in 1996. Mixing the Cavalier King Charles and the Bichon Frise, the goal was to create a small family dog with a kind personality, was playful and smart, did not require extensive exercise, and was low shedding.

Both parents of the Cavachon come from a royal lineage. The Cavalier King Charles breed originated in England with King Charles II. Meanwhile, the Bichon Frise was developed by French Royalty. Though they have an impressive ancestry, don’t assume this makes the Cavachon a stuffy or prissy dog—that couldn’t be further from the truth.

As more people have discovered this breed, it is no surprise that Cavachons are growing in popularity. These pups are becoming increasingly more common throughout the United States and even outside of the country.

Attributes

Cavachons are adorable, so it’s no wonder why people typically want their own Cavachon soon after meeting one. Before adopting a Cavachon, most pet parents have some questions they first want to be answered. Common questions include:

Do Cavachons Shed?

Cavachons shed very little, though it may vary based on your Cavachon’s coat.

Are Cavachons Hypoallergenic?

Cavachons are typically considered to be hypoallergenic. It is worth noting that some individuals who have a dog allergy could still have a reaction around a Cavachon, though the odds of an allergic reaction are significantly lower.

Do Cavachons Bark a Lot?

Unlike some other small breeds, Cavachons do not bark a lot. Typically, when they have something to say, it’s just to alert you of something, like someone coming to the door.

How Long Do Cavachons Live?

The average lifespan for a Cavachon is 10-15 years. Keep in mind that a dog’s life expectancy can be affected by numerous factors such as their health and diet.

How Big Do Cavachons Get?

Cavachons typically weigh between 15-25 pounds, though it is not unusual for some to weigh outside of this range. Height-wise, these dogs often stand around 12-13 inches.

The coat of a Cavachon is around medium in length and can vary from a slight wave to a curl. Typical colors for this breed include cream, white, pied, brown, black, red, or tri-color, and the pattern for their coats can vary, though they are rarely, if ever, a solid color.

Cavachon dog sitting at home in front of a blue couch

Training

Training is an implemental part of raising a dog. You will want to begin training your Cavachon the day you bring them home and continue working on training throughout their life. Helpful commands to start with include sit, down, stay, and drop it. It’s also valuable to crate train your pup.

Training sessions should be a fun experience for your dog. Be sure to use positive reinforcement and reward your pal with treats, a toy, or some ear scratches afterward. Since Cavachons are an intelligent breed, it shouldn’t take yours too long to catch onto new commands or tricks, but since every dog is an individual, some may learn faster than others.

As you notice your dog perfecting their current commands, don’t be hesitant to start adding more. Training is invaluable to raising a well-behaved dog and a pleasant housemate. Plus, training gives you time to bond with your four-legged friend and provide them with mental and physical exercise.

Along with training, it’s essential to socialize your dog. Socialization should ideally begin as early as possible, though if you have a puppy, you will need to wait until they are updated on all shots.

Socialization consists of introducing your dog to new people, places, animals, sights, and smells. Fortunately, socialization opportunities exist practically everywhere. Great places to start include a dog park, pet-friendly restaurants, pet stores, and new walking routes. It’s also an excellent practice to invite people over to your home or take your dog to others’ houses on occasion.

Just like training, socialization should be a positive experience and one that you continue to work on throughout your dog’s life.

Grooming

In order to keep your Cavachon looking and feeling their best, it’s essential that you keep your dog well-groomed. They should be brushed about every other day, give or take, depending upon how much your dog sheds.

Your dog’s teeth should also be brushed multiple times a week. Be sure to use a toothbrush made for dogs (they have softer bristles) and some dog-safe toothpaste—peanut butter flavor is typically a favorite.

About once a week to every other week, you should do a quick check of your dog’s ears. If they ever appear dirty, clean them out with a cotton ball and dog-safe ear cleaning solution. Be sure never to use cotton swabs or clean your pup’s inner ear, as this could cause injury. While checking your pal’s ears, if you ever notice unusual redness or an odd odor, this could be the sign of an ear infection, in which case, you should immediately schedule a veterinary appointment.

Cavachons are overall a tidy breed and do not require frequent baths. Typically, just once every few months does the trick unless your pal finds something stinky to roll in beforehand. While it generally is routine to trim a dog’s nails whenever they receive a bath, chances are your Cavachon will need their nails cut closer to a schedule of once a month.

Care

Cavachons are relatively easy dogs to care for, making them a wonderful choice for first-time dog parents. Besides training and keeping them well-groomed, you will also need to provide your pup with some daily exercise. Usually, a short to moderate, 30-minute walk a day will do the trick—with some additional playtime, of course. If your dog is a fan of burning off energy by running outside in the grass, it’s vital that they are only ever off-leash whenever they are in a fenced-in area.

A key part of caring for a Cavachon is to provide them with a nutritious diet. Dogs of this breed are prone to weight gain and can quickly become obese if you don’t watch how much food they are given—including extra treats. It’s helpful to measure out your dog’s meals and provide them with multiple meals throughout the day instead of one large portion.

If you are unsure what a healthy weight looks like for your dog, talk with your veterinarian. They can give you a weight range that is ideal for your dog, and they can provide helpful tips on how you can keep those unwanted extra pounds away. 

As a general rule of thumb, if you notice your dog is beginning to gain weight, that typically means you need to cut back on their food and increase their exercise.

Common Health Issues

Cavachons are relatively healthy, but because these dogs are a direct mix of the Cavalier King Charles and Bichon Frise, Cavachons can inherit health issues from both breeds. According to our claims data,** the top issues for this breed include,

  1. Allergies*
  2. Gastrointestinal issues
  3. Ear infections
  4. Irritated skin
  5. Intervertebral disc disease

Since these health issues are the most common among this breed, as a Cavachon parent, it can be helpful to familiarize yourself with the most prominent signs for each issue. By knowing what to keep an eye out for, you can hopefully stay a step ahead with your dog’s health.

Starting from the same week that you adopt your dog, it’s crucial that you establish them with a local veterinarian. If you adopt your pal as a puppy, they will need to receive some necessary shots right off the bat, but other than that, your dog will just need a check-up once a year. 

In the instance that you notice a change in your dog’s behavior or health, never hesitate to schedule a veterinarian visit sooner.

**Internal Claims Data, 2015-20

The information presented in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute or substitute for the advice of your veterinarian.

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