Toy spaniels were the province of European nobility from at least Renaissance times. Two 17th-century British monarchs, the ill-fated King Charles I and his son Charles II, were especially devoted to a black and tan variety of toy spaniel that eventually was named in the latter’s honor. According to the famed diarist of the Restoration era, Samuel Pepys, Charles II seemed more concerned with breeding spaniels than ruling Britain.
Toy spaniels remained a great favorite of British aristocrats into the early 19th century. Among their upper-crust partisans of this era was the Marlborough family, who bred a line of red-and-whites at Blenheim Palace. Later in the century, in the age of Victoria, the breed was crossed with Asian toys, probably Pugs and Japanese Chin, and became what is known in America as the English Toy Spaniel (or, in the United Kingdom, the King Charles Spaniel).
This new-style toy spaniel had a domed skull and a flatter face than those of Charles’s time. Before long, this type came to dominate, and the traditional toy spaniel of the Restoration was rendered nearly extinct—but not forgotten.
Fanciers of the 1920s wondered whether there still existed the old-type toy spaniel immortalized in ancestor portraits hanging in the stately halls of English manors. A wealthy American named Roswell Eldridge offered a cash prize to British breeders who could produce “Bleinheim Spaniels of the Old World type.” The prospect of prize money drove breeders to revive the old style. These dogs were dubbed Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. (The name Cavalier is a nod to the monarchist party that supported the Stuarts during the civil war that cost Charles I his head.)
The breed is notable for its four distinct color patterns, each of which, at various times, was associated with a particular noble family: Blenheim (chestnut markings on a white background), Tricolor (black markings on a white background), Black and Tan (black with tan markings), and Ruby (a rich red).
Cavaliers are the best of two worlds, combining the gentle attentiveness of a toy breed with the verve and athleticism of a sporting spaniel. The Cavalier's all-around beauty, regal grace, and even temper mark him as one of dogdom's noblemen. The sweet, gentle, melting expression emanating from large, round eyes is a breed hallmark. Another is the silky, richly colored coat that can be one of four distinct varieties
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a generally healthy breed with an average lifespan of 9-14 years.
The Cavalier King Charles spaniel is one of the sweetest dogs you're ever going to meet.They were literally born to sit in your lap, and these dogs are blessed with one of the most affable personalities in all of dogdom. They get along great with dogs of all sizes, can easily learn to live comfortably with cats, love playing with children, and are just as comfortable lying on the couch with seniors.
One of the things that makes the Cavalier King Charles such a great family dog is their ludicrous level of adaptability. Spaniels at heart, they love to run and play and will do well with games of fetch or chase, as well as in obedience, agility, and field competitions. However, for more sedentary owners, seniors, or people with mobility issues, the Cavalier is every bit as happy to blow all that off and live the life of a couch potato.
They love following you around the house, they love sleeping next to you, they love sitting on the couch by you, and they will follow you into the bathroom. They are going to be around you every minute they can. Because of this nearly single-minded devotion to being around YOU, they can get along in just about any environment.
They do great in apartment settings and love a nice yard every bit as much.
The Cavalier's lustrous, silky coat requires little more than regular brushing. Brushing daily helps prevent tangles for the King Charles and helps spread their natural oils throughout their fur. Focus on the longer, more feathered parts of their coat, especially around their legs and feet.
Limit Bathing To Once A Month
King Charles spaniels have natural oils throughout their coats which keep them and their skin moist. It also makes their fur water-resistant. While they will only need a bath once a month or so, it’s important to shampoo them up twice to make sure they get completely clean.
Use A Hairdryer On Low
After the bath, towel dry your King Charles spaniel to remove excess water. Using your hair dryer on its lowest setting, brush through the feathers of your dog’s coat. Any remaining moisture may cause issues, so make sure to get your pet’s fur completely dry.
Clean Their Ears
A King Charles’s floppy ears are a prime environment for retaining moisture and waxy buildup. Make sure to clean inside them with an ear wipe or with a cotton ball with a cleaning solution at least once a week.
Trim Around Their Feet
The feathered, fluffy parts around a King Charles’s paw pads might become a nuisance if they aren’t trimmed regularly. Unlike other parts of their coats, this is the one area that needs regular cutting. Use an electric clippers, scissors, or consult a professional groomer to help you.