Adding a canine to your family is always exciting but before you can do that, it’s important to ask yourself which breed fits your lifestyle.
That’s where the Cavapoo comes into the picture.
The Cavapoo is a crossbreed between Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Poodle and many families think that you’ll small, friendly canine companion that sheds surprisingly little.
These are the names for the Cavalier Spaniel and Poodle mix:
Before we dive deeper into this crossbreed, it’s important to note that if you’re getting a puppy from a breeder, there’s really no reason to go with a mixed breed as it’s rarely the best of both dog breeds as many people are led to believe.
However, if you’ve found a crossbreed in a shelter and you’re told it’s a Cavapoo (or maybe you’re just suspecting it due to the appearance), here’s more information about their temperament, training, size, and more.
Cavapoo Full Grown
Fully grown Cavapoos range wildly in size due to the differences in the Poodle sizes (ranging from 10 to 22 inches).
However, most Cavapoos are categorized as small dogs while some rare specimens make the cut for the medium-sized dog breed.
Knowing the size of your future dog is extremely important as the exercise needs for small dogs can differ wildly from those for large breeds (even dog breeds of the same size have different needs).
If you have younger kids and want to get a dog that they’re able to go for a walk with, the Cavapoo might not be a bad choice.
That being said, small dogs can become quite stressed when children haven’t been instructed properly and play too rough with a small puppy.
While the underlying idea is that the Cavadoodle is a very friendly, outgoing and curious crossbreed, they’re not as resilient as other large dog breeds.
On the other hand, they’re easier to handle.
We’ll go into more detail on their size below.
Size is not all that matters though and breeds also vary in temperament and trainability, so let’s dive into that aspect.
Are Cavapoos Hard To (Potty) Train?
Finding out how trainable your potential pooch will be, can be quite important for many.
While there are differences in trainability, there are generally no difference in how easy or hard some breeds are to potty train.
Doesn’t matter what anybody tells you, there is no specific breed that is super easy to potty train, period.
Breeds only play a role so far as to determine their overall intelligence (even that varies between individuals of the same breed).
There are individuals that are easy to potty train because they’re super smart or pick up on training faster.
Small breeds generally take a bit longer to potty train due to their small bladder size.
With proper training and guidance, your dog will get there so you shouldn’t worry about potty training.
As for general intelligence, the Cavalier Spaniel is a pretty smart breed and we’ve all seen the videos where the Poodle delivers incredible dog dancing or flying disk performances.
That being said, it’s up to really challenge your dog mentally and provide them with fun games and mental stimulation.
Are Cavapoos Barkers?
While small breeds are generally known to be more frequent barkers than large breeds (heavily depends on the breed though as there are definitely very vocal German Shepherds too), the Cavapoo is not known to be an extreme barker.
However, you have to set your dog up to be a confident dog and build up proper communication.
Barking is almost always due to frustration, attention-seeking, or alarming.
Building up a great bond makes it far easier for you to discern why your Cavoodle might be barking.
It’s the owner’s job to introduce on/off barking commands to let your dog know when he’s doing something good (and rewarding the positive behavior).
Keep in mind that there’s always a reason why a dog is barking and it’s up to us to find out what’s going on (potty, boredom, hungry, wanting to go on the couch) and the more time you spend on training, the more it will pay off.
Prone to Separation Anxiety?
Since Cavoodles are very friendly dogs, it’s understandable that they want to be with their family as much as possible.
That’s the case for most of the breeds that are not really independent (think livestock guardian dogs).
My Rottweiler will always get up and follow us into another room and she’s always in proximity on off-leash walks but we can still leave her alone for hours with no problem at all.
Your dog needs to be sure that you’re coming back and he needs to be exercised, fed, and have access to a couple of toys and water, of course.
Most owners who complain about dogs destroying the house when they’re away (alongside the aforementioned barking), have set themselves up for failure.
Read more about separation anxiety and what causes it in my comprehensive guide.
The Cavapoo is very eager to please and quite easy-going.
As long as the parents are well-tempered a Cavaoodle should never be fearful, antsy, or otherwise unsuitable to participate in your daily life.
In fact, it’s mentioned as “faults” in the AKC Poodle breed standard if the Poodle is shy or sharp.
Yes, sharpness is also not desired in these breeds. While they’re quite the intelligent dog breeds, they’re definitely no guard dogs and this would also clash with them often being very open to strangers.
Breeding two dogs (especially crossbreeding which is highly uncontrolled due to the genetics wild card) with poor temperament will most likely produce a dog with poor temperament.
When getting a rescue, you should be aware that there’s always some level of work to be done and you should think about whether or not you’re the right person for the job.
Do Cavapoos Shed?
Unfortunately, yes. Cavapoos do shed.
While Poodles can shed less than other dog breeds, there will be some level of fur flying around and the allergens are not only in the fur either.
More on the hypoallergenic myth of the Poodle and other breeds breed below.
To minimize the impact it might have on you, groom your dog regularly and provide them with a healthy diet and exercise to maintain the silky, lustrous and often curly coat from your Cavapoo.
Are Cavapoos Hypoallergenic?
Contrary to what many breeders of these designer dogs want you to believe, crossing the King Charles Spaniel with the seemingly “hypoallergenic” Poodle will not produce a dog which can safely be around humans with allergies.
As mentioned, you can definitely reduce the impact it has on you, but if you’re allergic, chances are there that you’ll be allergic to this breed too.
There is no really hypoallergenic breed in the sense it’s advertised by many “breed experts”.
Are Cavapoos Good Dogs?
Depends on what you define as good dogs.
Since Cavapoos should generally be easy to train due to their intelligence and eager-to-please temperament, Cavapoos can make great family dogs.
However, there’s nothing that either one of these breeds couldn’t fulfill without the risk of passing on the tendencies of hereditary diseases of both breeds.
Cavadoodles need training, as does any breed. Potty training generally takes a bit longer than with larger breeds but that should not hinder you from rescuing one of these little fellows.
Many people love their stunning coat with the silky feel from the Spaniel and the curly hair from the Poodle.
However, appearance definitely shouldn’t be your leading criteria when choosing your next dog. Health, character and behavior are much more important.
How big your Cavapoo will be depends heavily on the kind of Poodle that was mixed in. Generally speaking, there are three types of Poodle heights.
- Toys 10 inches and under
- Miniatures are 10-15 inches
- Standards are 15 or more (mostly around 22 inches)
Assuming a King Charles Spaniel was paired with an average-sized Standard Poodle, your average Cavapoo will be 12-16 inches (30-40cm) and 13-23 pounds (6-10kg).
Breeding a toy poodle with a Cavalier Spaniel will likely produce a dog with a height of 12 inches or less and a weight of less than 13 pounds.
If you’re mixing a particularly large Poodle, then the resulting pooch might turn out to be above 16 inches with more than 23 pounds (female Poodles can be 22 inches or above with a weight between 40-50 pounds and for males these numbers are even higher).
Crossbreeds are never regulated and there’s no really standard to use as orientation, so take all the heights and sizes with a grain of salt.
Prices for the Cavapoo can range wildly, with some breeders even demanding several thousands dollars.
It’s my own personal opinion that you should always go with a health-tested purebred if you’re buying from a breeder and make sure are well-tempered, are properly socialised and so on.
Check this article to find out which questions you should definitely ask your breeder to make sure you get a healthy and well-tempered puppy.
Demanding $,$$$ for what is essentially crossbreed seems insane but breeders jumped onto the hype train and the more people demand these designer dogs, the more will continue to be sold.
Disclaimer: I’m opposed to deliberate cross-breeding of any glorified designer dog breed. The resulting dog is a genetic gamble in terms of health and temperament and offers no advantage to a health-tested, properly selected purebred puppy.