why is my Cavalier King Charles Spaniel so big

Why is my Cavalier King Charles Spaniel so big?

Do you have a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel it does not correspond to the given size specifications, i.e., it is bigger or heavier? Then you are indeed interested in why it could be like that. In this article, I will go into this in more detail and tell you why this can happen.

If the size and/or the weight of your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel deviates from the standard values, there can be different reasons. It could be that the breeder breeds for size and has selected large parents. But maybe you didn’t get him from a certified breeder, and he is not purebred. Or perhaps he is just overweight.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel was purposefully bred large

As a rule, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels reach a withers of 30 to 33 cm and weigh between 5.5 to 8 kg. However, there is always an exceptional case.

Some Cavaliers are on the border of the lowest measurements, and some again are on the edge of the highest measurements. If the breeder always mates the large specimens with each other, the consequence is that the offspring will exceed the top limit.

Occasionally it happens that only one puppy from an average litter carries the genes of a large ancestor and therefore becomes particularly large.

It is not necessary that the breeding goal was an extraordinary size. Often the males grow a little larger than the females.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is not purebred.

However, if you did not buy him from a certified breeder or took him from a shelter or even a private home, then it could also be that he is not a purebred Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

If he was perhaps crossed with a slightly larger but similar breed, the appearance might be very close to him, but the height at the withers will then go towards the crossed dog.

Possible would be, for example, the Cocker Spaniel, which grows on average up to 43 cm and can weigh about 14 kg. This makes it bigger and heavier than the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, but it looks similar.

Being overweight makes dogs look bigger.

It would be best if you did not necessarily rely on the given average measurements; there will always be one or the other who confirms the exception. It also depends on the stage of development of your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

But if your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is overweight, he can also appear bigger and bulkier. This would be a big problem, though, because being overweight can quickly lead to severe illnesses.


  • Constipation
  • Joint problems
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Breathing problems
  • Cardiovascular disease

Being overweight can lower the lifespan of your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

Too much or the wrong food

There are many reasons why your Cavalier can become overweight. One could be due to feeding. In general, wrong food with too much grain or sugar can be why he is too fat and looks so big.

Or he gets too much food and treats. There they usually become calmer and more comfortable and move accordingly less. Then they also need less food. Is your Cavalier now 2 to 3 years old?

But also a castration, the hormone stick in males, or medication could have the side effect that your Cavalier becomes overweight.

Diseases lead to being overweight.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is not a healthy dog breed.

There are also a number of diseases that can cause your dog to be heavier than he should be, such as metabolic diseases.

If you are unsure if your dog is overweight, there is a good feel test you can do yourself.

Stroke the side of your dog; you should be able to feel the ribs; in the best case the waist is well-defined, which you can see from above.

If this is not the case and you even have trouble feeling the ribs because there is a good layer of fat over them, then you suspect he is overweight.

Suppose it is unclear to you what caused your dog to become overweight. In that case, you should involve your veterinarian, who can check for disease-related overweight and give tips on getting your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel slim again.

If your dog tends to be thinner in the growth phase, you should not give him more food than necessary because he will become overweight at an advanced age.

The Cavalier is fully grown at about 10-12 months, but the weight will still fluctuate until about the 2nd year of life.

Conclusion: Why your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is so big!

Several reasons may be the cause why your Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is so big. It may be that he was purposefully bred large and is above the standard. It may also be that he is not a purebred Cavalier or just too fat, which is why he seems so “big.”

@ CaptureLight-depositphotos.com/ (Contributed image)

I am Marco with my Cane Corso and my Broholmer


I am Marco, and I am very lucky to live with 3 big Mastiff-type dogs. In this blog, I want to share all my experiences and knowledge about dogs.

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