Do Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Cats Get Along?

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Whether you’re a current dog owner or a future dog owner, a major concern when picking a dog breed is if they can get along with cats. 

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and cats can quite happily befriend each other. In fact, they are probably one of the best breeds to have if you have or are thinking of getting a Cat or Kitten.

Cavalier King Charles-Spaniels and Cats

Breed considerations and why a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel makes an excellent feline companion.

You can rejoice because yes they can. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel are notorious for their cat befriending skills.

As I’m sure you know there is a huge difference between how a German Shepherd and a Cavalier will receive a new guest. So for selecting the breed of dog we want something that will be able to interact positively with his feline companion.

Generally, dogs and cats can co-habit however there are certain spaniel breeds that are not as suited to living with feline companions, these tend to be hunting breeds such as Springer Spaniels which have much higher prey drives.

Any soon to be Cavalier owner who also owns a cat will be sure to want to know one thing, can Cavalier King Charles Spaniels live with cats?

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an excellent choice because of its easy going yet playful nature. Being a toy breed, they are much less likely to scare a much smaller Cat.

Likewise, Cats are much more likely befriend a smaller dog. And the small size of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel makes them an excellent playmate.

While some smaller dogs are known to bark more, which may annoy cats, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are fairly timid, and unlikely to bark excessively.

By nature, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel will respect an older cat and follow its lead.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are known to have a low prey drive. So, they are more concerned with smaller prey like birds and mice.

They may chase a cat but only as a form of play and not hunting.

Do Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Cats Get Along

Tips for Introducing Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Cats

As with any introduction, there are things you can do to make the transition of stranger to best friend easy and stress free.

As a pet owner, it is not always easy owning multiple furry friends.

It is easy enough to assume dogs will befriend kittens instantly. There’s certainly lots of evidence that they can become very good friends.

And you’d assume the calm temperament of the Cavalier, would make introducing a Cat to a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel easy.

But we have this saying for a very good reason:

“fighting like cats and dogs”

Often when the two meet at least one of them runs home with their tail between their legs. This is often due to the over active play and chase nature of dogs. Paired with the scaredy-cat response of a young Kitten.

Both are things that we love about our four legged friends and would never want to change, but then how can we hope for them to get along?

Rest assured it can be done and it is possible to introduce a Cat to a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. All it takes is a little planning and paying attention to the specific needs of both species.

Age also plays a role. A Puppy will be easier to introduce to a Cat because they’re still young and impressionable. Likewise, it is often easier to introduce a Kitten to a Dog.

When introducing the two make sure there are high places the cat can retreat to if they feel uncomfortable.

cat climbing frame is an excellent way of ensuring your cat has a safe hiding spot.

You don’t need to go too overboard. As long as your cat has an elevated spot they should be fine.​

cat climbing frame

Remember: Make sure you don’t force them to interact and instead, let them build their bond together, slowly and naturally.

Choosing a Dog Friendly Cat Breed

Generally speaking, the breed of cat is far less important than the breed of dog.

However, the breed of Cat is still something you should consider. Some are much more Dog friendly than others.

To make sure both members of the family are able to enjoy the relationship, select a breed that is either very playful or very tolerant.

An excellent Dog friendly example would be a Munchkin as they are full of energy. Ragdolls are known for their easy going nature, so also make a great choice.

cavalier kitten

Introducing your kitten to a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

​Introducing a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel to a Kitten is slightly different to introducing them to a Cat.

To get around the skittish nature that most cats have, it is a good idea to introduce the two when the kitten is still young.

Plus, who doesn’t want to see a wobbly headed cotton ball cuddling with a tiny dog?

But before introducing the two it is best to take some precautions.

These include getting each used to seeing other dogs or cats, and getting the newly arrived kitten time to get used to the sounds and smells of its new home.

There is no need to expose them to neighbors that might give them bad impressions, but to at least let them know what the other species looks and possibly smells like is a good idea.

While keeping the two new housemates separate but in the same house for a few days will give both enough time to accept the other’s scent.

Lastly comes the best part, when the two meet for the first time!

The first few exchanges might be tense, but before long the two will happily live side by side. In some cases, they may even become inseparable friends.

It’s not uncommon for young kitten to accept an older dog as an adoptive parent.

It is often counterproductive to try and force anything, and much more rewarding to let things develop naturally once they are getting along.

As long as the kitten is provided time to adapt and the dog is given time to lessen its curiosity, the two should have no problems.

You can expect two furry family members that get along even better than actual siblings.

Introducing a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel to a Kitten

Ensuring the Purfect Outcome

A final tip is to watch to see where your dog is sniffing. Butt means friend and back of the neck means prey.

There’s no way to accurately predict whether your dog is going to get along with a cat. Like people, all cats and dogs have different personalities. But by choosing a breed that has a reputation for being cat friendly will increase the chances of a successful friendship.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is one of the best picks of all the Spaniel breeds.

One common negative about the Cavaliers, is that they are known for suffering from separation anxiety.

What better way to help your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel out while you’re gone then by giving him a feline friend.

Take your time, give them both space and your Dog and Cat will be very happy and thankful for a long lasting friendship.

5 thoughts on “Do Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Cats Get Along?”

  1. I have a cat which is blind and we would love a king Charles spaniel would that be safe for both pets to live in the same home ?

    • I’m not a vet, so don’t take this as professional advice but I think it would be fine from personal experience. Just introduce them slowly and at the cats own pace.

  2. My son and daughter in law are staying with us for a year, and in this time they have brought home two cavs. One is about 1.5 years old now, the other 9 months. They got them both as ~10 week old puppies. The older one keeps attacking our cat, has food aggression, toy aggression, owner protection issues, and is a total pita. I can’t say anything about it because it’s my DIL, and I don’t want to cause issue there. But I see how the battles play out. The cat will walk through the room, the younger dog will have a toy, the older dog will attack the cat merely for walking into the room. And then the older dog will be rewarded and calmed down with hugs and attention for ‘his trauma’. The dogs are not friendly to all, they love their owners, and will ignore any and all attempts by anyone else to have any interaction. I do not recommend this breed to anyone. One more thing, these two pups are from different breeders, I can not say it is the breeder who bred for these bad temperaments.

    • Thanks for the comment, my experience was the complete opposite, however they we’re brought up together so quite a different situation


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