Lisa Selvaggio
by Lisa Selvaggio
fast facts

About Cavanese

8-17 lb
12-15 years
not applicable
Best Suited For
Singles, seniors, and families with children and other pets, living in an apartment or a house, with or without a yard
Social, smart, loving, friendly
Comparable Breeds
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Havanese
9-13 inches
Cavanese Basics

Also known as the Havalier, the Cavanese makes an ideal companion for anyone who is looking for a loving dog who will always be at your side. These little pooches are sweet, affectionate, and smart. They aim to please, and they long to be the center of attention. So if you have the time to devote to this breed, check out more information about these dogs below before bringing one home.

The Cavanese is a cross between a purebred Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Havanese.


The Cavanese is a designer dog breed whose origins aren’t entirely clear. However, it is believed that this breed was likely developed during the 1980s, a time during which designer breeds started growing in popularity.


The Cavanese is a cross between a purebred Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Havanese.

Food / Diet

Nutrition plays an important role in your dog’s overall health, so choose from one of the many high quality canine diets that are available. If you are planning on feeding your Cavanese a dry food, you can provide about ¾ cup of food every day, but split this amount up into at least two meals. If you are also going to be feeding your dog some canned food, you should reduce the amount of dry food that you are giving him so he won’t gain too much weight.

Whenever you have any questions about what you should be feeding your pet, or how much, it is best to consult with your veterinarian. And if you wish to feed your dog a home-prepared diet or a raw diet, be sure to talk to your vet to ensure all of your pooch’s nutritional needs will be met.

Cavaneses are sweet, affectionate, and smart.


In terms of training, you can expect that a Cavanese will be moderately easy to work with. You should expect that results will come about gradually, so you need to be patient, firm, and consistent in your approach.

Always use positive techniques that incorporate the use of treats, rewards, and praise, as these dogs won’t respond to negative or harsh training. They are eager to please, so as long as you establish yourself as the pack leader and you make your pet a part of the family, you will see good results.


A small-sized breed, the Cavanese weighs between 12 and 17 pounds.

Temperament / Behavior

The Cavanese is so popular because it is a cheerful, smart, social, and affectionate little dog that makes the perfect companion and family pet. However, this breed won’t be a good choice if you don’t spend a lot of time at home, as these dogs suffer from separation anxiety when they are left alone for hours on end. On the other hand, if you have the time to dedicate to your pet, and if you are able to make him the center of attention, this breed is a great choice.

If you have children or other pets in the family, your Cavanese will get along well with them. If you are searching for a watchdog, though, the Cavanese probably isn’t a good choice because these pooches are generally friendly and welcoming.

Common Health Problems

Because the Cavanese is a hybrid breed, it might inherit some of the health problems that most commonly affect its parent breeds. However, it’s important to note that there is no way to predict an individual dog’s long-term health, there is no guarantee that your dog will develop any of these problems, and hybrid breeds tend to be surprisingly healthy and hardy. Be sure to purchase your pet from a reputable breeder who can prove the health of the parents, and work with your vet to keep your pooch happy and healthy.

Some of the health conditions that affect the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Havanese include patellar luxation, hip and joint dysplasia, Legg-Calve Perthes, mitral valve disease, eye conditions, ear problems, liver problems, heart problems, skin problems, deafness, and chondrodysplasia.

Life Expectancy

The Cavanese has an average lifespan of 12 to 15 years.

Exercise Requirements

The small Cavanese is energetic and fairly active, so he will require daily physical activity, in addition to a variety of toys that can keep him occupied and mentally stimulated while he is spending time indoors. You can take your dog for a walk once or twice every day, or you can head to the dog park, as a couple of examples. If you have a yard that is safe, you can let your pet run around and play off-leash, and he will have a blast playing games like fetch with you. Aim to give your Cavanese at least 30 minutes of exercise every day, in addition to other forms of playtime.

If you have children or other pets in the family, your Cavanese will get along well with them.

Recognized Clubs

The Cavanese is not recognized by the American Kennel Club, as it is considered to be a hybrid breed. However, this breed is recognized by the American Canine Hybrid Club (ACHC), the Designer Dogs Kennel Club (DDKC), the Dog Registry of America, Inc. (DRA), and the International Designer Canine Registry (IDCR).


The Cavanese’s coat will be medium to long and wavy, so you should brush your pet at least weekly to keep the fur clean and smooth. If your dog has more of the Havanese coat, you’ll need to trim it on a regular basis, but if your pooch inherited more of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel coat, you can just trim the fur that’s in between his toes and around the ears.


The Cavanese is a small dog as an adult, so puppies will be tiny. Be sure to give your pet a safe environment in which to grow. Supervise time that your puppy spends playing with children and bigger dogs so that you can prevent injuries.

As with all other puppies, the Cavanese will benefit from early training and socialization. Let your furry buddy meet a variety of people and other animals so that he can grow up to be calm and confident in various settings.

Photo credit: adogslifephoto/Depositphoto; eriklam/Depositphoto; imagesetc/Depositphoto

Lisa Selvaggio
Lisa Selvaggio

Lisa Selvaggio is a freelance writer and editor, and our resident cats-pert, with certifications in pet nutrition and pet first aid. She enjoys producing content that helps people understand animals better so they can give their pets a safe and happy home.

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