Find a Puppy

Welcome to Find a Puppy, your guide to choosing the perfect puppy!

Embarking on the journey to find your new four-legged friend is an exciting and rewarding experience. Here at the Scottish Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club, we are dedicated to helping you navigate this journey with confidence. Our "Find a Puppy" guide is designed to provide you with essential insights and practical tips as you embark on the quest for your furry family member.

There are many important factors to consider before getting a dog. Firstly, discovering if you're ready for the commitment and which breed best suits your lifestyle. Should you buy a pedigree puppy or get a dog from a breed rescue? Let's help you find your new best friend.

In the following sections, we will delve into various aspects to ensure you are well-prepared to bring a wonderful Cavalier puppy into your life. From connecting with the right people to exploring the world of dog shows, and from prioritising health and lineage to understanding the breeder's perspective – we've got you covered.

Our aim is to empower you with the knowledge you need to make an informed decision when welcoming a new Cavalier puppy into your life. Whether you are seeking a loyal family pet or a potential show star, our guide will offer insights that resonate with modern sensibilities.

Remember, finding the perfect puppy is a journey that requires patience and a clear understanding of what you're looking for.

Let's dive into the exciting world of finding your new furry friend!

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What you should do before you buy a puppy.

Before You Get a Puppy – A Quick Guide

Do you have the time and lifestyle to give a good quality life to a Cavalier who will hopefully live into their teens? Here are some tips to consider before you take the leap into puppy parenthood.

  1. Connect with Local Cavalier Clubs: If you're in the UK, you're in luck! There are various Cavalier Clubs across all regions. They're a great resource for finding reputable breeders in your area.

  2. Explore Dog Shows: Attend dog shows to meet Cavaliers up close and chat with experienced Cavalier enthusiasts, including breeders. Even if you're not interested in showing your pup, this is a great way to get connected.

  3. Healthy Lineage Matters: You want a healthy puppy? Look for breeders with a strong line of Cavaliers. Healthy parents often lead to healthy puppies.

  4. Visit the Pups in Their Home: It is crucial you meet the puppies in their natural environment, surrounded by their mum and litter-mates. This tells you a lot about their upbringing.

  5. Ask Questions: Breeders might ask you lots of questions, and that's a good sign! They care about their puppies and want to ensure they're going to a loving home.

  6. The Home Environment: Puppies can be messy, so a spotless setting isn't necessary. Look for clean and sensible surroundings, as well as bright and healthy pups.

  7. Parental Health Checks: Ask if the parents have been regularly checked for heart and eye health. This shows the breeder's commitment to responsible breeding.

  8. Consider Both Parents: While you might not see the father, knowing about him and even seeing his picture can provide insight into the puppy's lineage.

  9. Socialisation Matters: If being around kids or other pets is essential to you, ask if the puppies have been exposed to such experiences.

  10. Observe the Mother: A happy and friendly mother often raises happy and friendly pups. If she's in good spirits, it's a positive sign.

  11. Be Honest About Your Intentions: Let the breeder know if you're looking for a family pet or one with potential for shows. Remember, a pup's true potential might not be fully clear at eight weeks.

  12. Take Your Time: Don't rush the process. Finding the right pup might take time, but remember, you're in it for the long haul.

  13. Ask and Learn: It's okay to have doubts or questions. A responsible breeder will patiently address your concerns and provide guidance.

  14. Be Prepared to Answer Questions: Breeders are invested in their puppies' future. They'll want to know about your lifestyle and ability to care for a pup.

Now that you're armed with these pointers, you're well-prepared to begin your journey towards bringing a wonderful Cavalier companion into your life!

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Caring for your Cavalier Puppy

Please note, advice re feeding and exercise should be referred back to breeders and any health issues referred to your local vet.

General Care

Grooming and Coat Care

Introduce your puppy to brushing at a young age. The adult Cavalier boasts a beautiful, long silky coat with feathering, which shines when well-maintained but can look messy when tangled. It's recommended to groom your adult dog daily, or at least three times a week. Pay daily attention to their ears, and make sure to comb their feet to prevent matting. Trim the thick hair under their paws to keep them comfortable.

Ears and Hygiene

Check the puppy’s ears regularly to ensure they're not waxy or smelly. Swiftly address any ear discomfort by visiting your vet promptly.

Caring for Eyes

Cavaliers might experience occasional watery eyes, leading to staining beneath them. Use fresh, damp cotton wool to wipe their eyes daily, using a new piece for each eye. For watery eyes, gently dry them with a clean paper handkerchief. If their eyes show redness, discharge, or excessive watering, consult your vet.

Regularly check for any bothersome long hairs around their eyes and trim as needed.

Nail Care and Teeth

Frequent walks on paved surfaces usually keep their nails in check. However, if they grow too long, you'll need to trim them. Your vet can show you how to do this. Chew toys like nylon or fresh marrow bones can maintain dental health. Avoid small bones like chicken or chop bones that can splinter. Special toothpastes and brushes are available for dogs' teeth. For dirty teeth, consult your vet for cleaning. Wipe the mouth, especially the bottom lip, a few times a week with damp cotton wool to prevent odours and sores.

Anal Glands and Worming

If your dog drags their bottom along the ground, it's often a sign of full anal glands. Consult your vet for proper emptying or guidance on how to do this yourself. Check regularly for worms – tapeworms look like small white grains sticking to the dog's rear. Regular worming is crucial for your dog's health and the safety of your family.

Vaccination and Health

Protect your dog from deadly diseases like Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvo Virus, and Leptospirosis through vaccinations. Start them at 8 - 12 weeks and keep up with the annual boosters. Speak to your vet for guidance.

Community and Clubs

Don't forget your dog's need for companionship. Dogs are social animals and can become distressed if left alone for long periods. Provide a quiet space for rest, and ensure children understand the importance of rest between play sessions. The affectionate nature of Cavaliers makes the effort of care worthwhile.

Cavaliers thrive in the company of others. Joining a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club allows you to connect with fellow breed enthusiasts, sharing experiences and care tips.

Important Note: The Scottish Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club's Puppy Register

The Scottish Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club operates a Puppy Register to connect potential puppy buyers with breeders. However, it's crucial to understand that the Club does not take on the role of selecting breeders or the puppies individuals decide to purchase. The Puppy Register acts as a platform for connections, but it's essential for buyers to practice due diligence and responsible choices when selecting a puppy.

The Club neither endorses nor guarantees the practices, ethics, or quality of puppies from breeders listed on the Puppy Register. It's the buyer's responsibility to thoroughly research and evaluate breeders before making any commitments. We strongly recommend adhering to the provided guidelines when considering a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel puppy.

Please be aware that while the Club aims to encourage responsible breeding, it cannot be held responsible for individual transactions or resulting experiences. Buyers must ensure that chosen breeders are reputable, follow ethical breeding standards, and prioritise their dogs' health and well-being.

Armed with knowledge, the right enquiries, and comprehensive research, buyers can make informed decisions that positively impact the welfare of Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and contribute to the breed's betterment.