The Cavoodle

A complete breed guide

LAST UPDATED 30 JANUARY 2020

This article is written by Pet Circle veterinarian, Dr Elise Barry BVSc (Hons), BSc

The Cavoodle is a very trendy breed ranking in the top ten of most popular dog breeds in Australia. The Cavoodle is believed to have first been bred in the USA in the 1950's by crossing a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel with a Miniature Poodle. This breed was popularised with crossbreeding programs in the 1990's in Australia due to the breed's excellent temperament, low to non-shedding coat (hypoallergenic) and having an outgoing, affectionate nature.

Our top product recommendations for Cavoodles

Contents:

At a glance

History

Personality

Top health recommendations for Anxiety

Health Concerns

Nutrition

Further reading

1. At a glance

Breed size: Place of origin: Other names:
Small USA/Australia Cavapoo/Cavadoodle
Breed group: Energy level: Weight range:
Crossbreed, 'oodle' Medium to high 5 - 12kg (depends on parentage Toy/Miniature Poodle)
Life expectancy: Tendency to bark: Height range:
10 - 15 years Low Toy: 28-35cm, Mini: 33-45cm at shoulder
Drool factor: Coat length: Colours:
Low Long 6-10 colours (red/ruby/chestnut, black, black & tan, black & white, tri colours (Blenheim), gold, chocolate)
Shedding factor: Social needs: Overall grooming needs:
Low to Non-shedding Moderate Low maintenance although regular trims needed

2. History

The breed was believed to have been first developed in the United States of America in the 1950's by crossing a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel with a Miniature Poodle. However, the breed has been popularised and further established in Australia by crossbreeding programs in the 1990's with both Miniature and Toy Poodles.

3. Personality

Cavoodles are a sociable breed that love people and make a great family dog. They're robust, active and intelligent making them easily trainable. They prefer companionship and can become very attached to caretakers therefore ensuring they have lots of stimulation when left alone will help prevent behavioural issues developing, like separation anxiety.

Take a look at our recommended training treats and interactive toys to keep your Cavoodle busy and mentally worn out.

Top recommendations for Cavoodles with stress & anxiety

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4. Health Concerns

Cavoodles are considered to be in the low health risk category. Being a robust breed and a hybrid cross ensures many of the common health risks of the Cavalier and Poodle are less likely. Despite this there are a few inherited conditions to be aware of.

Syringomyelia is a condition quite common in Cavoodles, where the skull is too small for the brain. This can cause mild to severe discomfort depending on the severity of compression. If your Cavoodle shows tenderness around the head, neck or shoulders, or is crying out in pain when these areas are touched, a veterinary assessment is recommended.

Mitral Valve Disease is very common in the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. MVD is first noted with a heart murmur that can progress to congestive heart failure. This form of heart disease can occur in many breeds but is seen at a higher incidence in young Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. The condition is thought to be genetic, therefore Cavoodle owners need to be aware and ensure regular health checks are performed by their veterinarian.

Cataracts occur when eyes have a cloudy appearance due to changes to the lens. Cataracts can lead to vision loss however they can be removed surgically.

Hip dysplasia is a condition where the femur and hip joint do not fit together properly, causing pain and lameness. Less severe cases can be treated with anti-inflammatory medication, however surgery may be required for serious cases.

Patellar luxation occurs when the dog's kneecap does not fit in its groove properly, leading to it popping in out and out of place. This can cause pain and changes to the dog's gait. Mild cases typically do not require treatment however surgery may be necessary in severe cases.

As with any type of joint disease, arthritis can be a concern. Take a look at our article Arthritis Care in Dogs to see how to help your Cavoodle.

Progressive retinal atrophy is a condition that gradually results in the loss of vision through deterioration of the retina. First observed as a night vision loss (night blindness) it eventually progresses to full blindness. No treatment exists however as with any changes to vision a veterinarian should always be consulted.

Epilepsy. Cavoodles can be prone to idiopathic epilepsy, which leads to seizures with no known cause. There is treatment available for seizure control.

5. Nutrition

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It's very important that you feed your Cavoodle a suitable diet that is age appropriate and meets all of their nutritional needs. Small Breed Adult Dog Food includes many recommended brands that have smaller kibble to suit small and toy breeds. They also contain balanced levels of protein, fat and carbohydrate plus vitamins, minerals and antioxidants for health and wellbeing. Puppy food designed specifically for small breeds is also available.

Seeing as Cavoodles can inherit genetic diseases from Cavalier King Charles Spaniels or Poodles it may be advisable to feed a breed specific diet. Royal Canin Cavalier King Charles Adult Dry Dog Food contains taurine and omega 3 fatty acids to support cardiac function. Also Royal Canin Poodle Adult Dry Dog Food has adapted protein content and l-carnitine to support healthy muscle mass.

Best food for Cavoodle puppies

Best food for adult Cavoodles

Further reading

Premium pet food: Is it worth it?

Does your dog have a food allergy?

New puppy guide

What's in your pet's food?

How to read the label on a bag of pet food

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