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14-18 lbs
United States
Cavalier King Charles
Japanese Chin

The Cava-chin is a hybrid breed. Its parents are the regal King Charles Cavalier Spaniel and the spritely Japanese Chin (also known as the Japanese Spaniel). He is a small dog that is likely to be less than eighteen pounds, depending on the size of his parents. He is child friendly, and is a great dog for first time dog owners. He is actually a very easygoing dog; he is not too active. He is likely to be a variety of colors, and he actually requires low maintenance even though his parent breeds often need more grooming. He is perfect for one who lives in an apartment as well as a family with a fenced-in backyard.

Date of Origin
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Japanese Chin

Cava-Chin Health

Average Size
Male Cava-Chin size stats
Height: 8-12 inches Weight: 14-18 lbs
Female Cava-Chin size stats
Height: 10-12 inches Weight: 14-18 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Mitral Valve Disease
  • Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease
Minor Concerns
  • Cataracts
Occasional Diagnoses
  • None
Occasional Tests
  • X-Rays
  • Eye Examination
  • Physical Examination

Cava-Chin Breed History

While there is not much information on the Cava-chin breed itself, one can still learn much about the breed by studying the parent breeds.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel itself is a relatively new breed who has gone though several transitions, in looks especially, to become the dog he is today. A treasured companion to nobility and royalty alike, he was the favorite palace attendant to Mary Queen of Scots and her grandson and great-grandson, Charles I  and II, owned many of the spaniels, eventually giving their name to the breed. Cavalier King Charles Spaniels migrated to the United States in the 1940s and soon after, in the 1950s, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club was formed. Once an excellent hunter, the breed is often called the "comforter spaniel" and they have become the chosen addition to many families. They joined the American Kennel Club in 1995. The Japanese Chin was originally called the Japanese Spaniel. While the exact origin of the breed is unknown, some believe the breed is related to the Pekingese and was brought to Japan by Buddhist teachers sometime around 520 A.D. Others think that around 1000 A.D., the Chinese emperor presented the dogs to the Emperor of Japan as a gift. From the time it was brought to Japan, it became a highly popular dog. Japanese nobility were quite fond of the dog. Most believe that Chin was brought to Europe by Portuguese sailors who had traded in Japan. We know for certain that Princess Catherine of Braganza was given a Japanese Chin by Portuguese sailors. Commodore Matthew Perry officially brought the Chin to Europe in 1854. Perry gave a pair to Queen Victoria and would later give another pair to the president of the United States. In the late 1800s, the Chin was recognized by American Kennel Club under the name Japanese Spaniel. In 1977, the AKC officially changed the name to Japanese Chin. The dog is still held in high regard in Japan.  

Cava-Chin Breed Appearance

The Cava-chin is usually quite small. Ultimately it will depend on the dominant genes of the parents but this hybrid generally does not weigh over fourteen pounds and is around one foot in height at the shoulder. The female tends to be slightly larger than her male counterpart. His hair will generally be medium to long in length. Sometimes he may have wavy or curly hair.  He may be a variety of colors, but often he will be patterned much like the parent breed Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. He may be white with brown, red, fawn, or black markings. It is also important to know about the appearance of the Japanese Chin in order to determine what the Cava-chin might look like. The Japanese Chin actually comes in a variety of shapes and sizes due to different breeds being introduced to the gene pool over the years. Some Chin are distinctly bigger than their counterparts. Your Cava-Chin may have a broad head with large, wide-set eyes and a flat, brachycephalic face, meaning the muzzle is short. Its ears are small and V-shaped with long hair covering them. These dogs have an underbite. The tail may be curled over the back with hair feathered down the tail. The coat, if similar to the Japanese Chin, could be white with colored patches; the most common colors are black, red, lemon, orange, sable, black and white with tan points, or brindle. Some Chins are over seven pounds. Without a standard for the Cava-chin hybrid, your pet may take on characteristics inherited by either parent. Either way, he will be adorable.

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Cava-Chin eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Cava-Chin nose
Coat Color Possibilities
brown Cava-Chin coat
red Cava-Chin coat
fawn Cava-Chin coat
black Cava-Chin coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
Cava-Chin wavy coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Cava-Chin Breed Maintenance

The Cava-chin has moderate grooming requirements. He is not difficult to maintain; grooming really depends on the type of coat he inherits. Generally, the Cava-chin does not shed as much as his Cavalier King Charles Spaniel parent. He will need a going over of the coat with a pin brush at least once a week. If he needs a bath, be sure to work any tangles and mats out of his hair before getting him wet; otherwise the tangles will be near impossible to remove. During shedding season, daily care may be the best idea. Nail and teeth care are important as well - the Cava-chin may be prone to tooth decay as all small canines are. If his nails make a clicking sound when he walks, then his nails are due right away for a clipping.

Brushes for Cava-Chin
Pin Brush
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
Cava-Chin requires weekly brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Cava-Chin Temperament

The Cava-chin is a very sweet dog. He is energetic and lively. He is most definitely a companion dog, though having a sense of humor, and an “impish” temperament, he may have a talent for pursuing his own interests. He has a great memory and well remembers anyone who upsets him in any way. He loves people and loves being surrounded by his family; Cava-chins can experience separation anxiety. He needs reinforcement with treats and other positive measures during training. He is known for obeying commands and listening to his owner. He has a reputation for being playful and energetic with kids as well as being highly affectionate. The Cava-chin is a great dog for novice owners.

Cava-Chin Activity Requirements

The Cava-chin is a lively, playful little dog. However, he needs a minimum of thirty minutes of daily exercise to keep him from having pent-up energy, which might lead to his being destructive. Dog parks are recommended for the Cava-chin; he will definitely enjoy the interaction with other dogs. If you don’t have a dog park in your area, perhaps he could accompany you on a walk or jog. It is not recommended that you let your Cava-chin outside in a yard without a fence, and it is not recommended that you leave the Cava-chin unattended. He has a reputation for chasing cars, so if you are outside with him, he should be on a leash or in a fenced-in area. It is also important not to overexert your Cava-chin. It is always possible that the Cava-chin may inherit the brachycephalic snout of his Japanese Chin parent. If so, overheating can cause the Cava-chin to have difficulty breathing.

Activity Level
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
6 miles
Minutes of Activity Per Day
30 minutes

Cava-Chin Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1 cups
Daily Cost
$0.8 - $1
Monthly Cost
$25 - $30

Cava-Chin Owner Experiences

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