CHOOSING A PUREBRED CAVALIER
If you are on our website, you are no doubt curious, researching and/or considering the purchase of a beautiful purebred Cavalier King Charles Spaniel to join your family.
To assist you with this very important choice, we’d like to give you some background information in regard to purebred dogs, including the Cavalier. Unfortunately, the world of purebreds can be confusing sometimes. We're hoping to assist with making it easy to understand and help you have the background to make an informed decision on your new member of the family.
Having the right information always helps give confidence in the choices one makes. Do take five minutes to read this before you browse our website.
As a family seeking a new member of your family, please keep in mind that you have every right to a puppy which has been carefully and responsibly bred and that is true to the breed and healthy. There is no such thing as ‘just’ a pet puppy when choosing a new member of your family.
Let’s start with what makes up a purebred dog.
What is a purebred dog?
A purebred dog is bred to what is called a ‘Breed Standard’. The Breed Standard defines each of the different breeds as to the physical makeup and personality traits of the dog.
These Breed Standards have been established for, and over, many years under strict guidelines, and are maintained by the overall Governing Body for the purebred dog which, in Australia, is the Australian National Kennel Council (ANKC). The Cavalier breed standard is shown below for you.
If you are seeking a purebred dog or puppy, it's helpful for you to get to know your chosen breed’s entire makeup and look for it in your prospective new puppy. Deviations to this standard are not accepted for registration with the ANKC.
Purebred dogs are all registered with the country's governing body for purebred dogs. They all have registration papers issued by this governing body.
Who looks after breeding purebred dogs and makes sure it’s all proper
There are strict rules and regulations to be followed by breeders registered with the ANKC through their State branches, which in Queensland, is Dogs Queensland. This regulation body has been in existence for as long as purebred dogs have existed, basically.
The ANKC (Dogs Queensland etc) aim to ensure the integrity of purebred dogs and breeders, with rules and regulations that are updated from time to time to ensure this integrity. Every breeder registered with the organisation is required to work within these rules and regulations.
This governing body regulates the breed's physical attributes and health of all purebred dogs and is continually adding or changing regulations to ensure that the purebred dog is true to it's breed and healthy.
There are Kennel clubs and Breed Clubs throughout the country who work closely with ANKC in all aspects of the purebred dog worlds as well. They make recommendations to the ANKC regarding their individuial breeds and hold shows from time to time for purebred dogs.
Dog Shows are for breeders who wish to showcase their breeding stock, in the very same way shows are held for horses and cattle etc. Some breeders like to participate in these activities, others don't wish to, for whatever reasons. Whether a breeder shows their dogs or not, a registered breeder is obligated to breed true to the breed standard, healthy puppies. All registered breeders are under the same rules, regulations and obligations.
If you would like to know more about your state’s regulation body, you can visit their websites. In Queensland you can click on this link. http://www.dogsqueensland.org.au/
There is another, more newly established registration body, which is not attached to the ANKC at all, called Master Dog Breeders & Associates (MDBA). They do not have the same overall strictness of the ANKC and are more flexible in what they will register and their definition of breeds. Some pet puppy breeders prefer these more flexible rules and hence have chosen to register with this organisation.
Some State Governments have instigated a government registry of breeders to encompass those breeders which are not registered with a canine governing body. The ANKC members are also listed on this registry and everyone who breeds within Australia ought to be listed on this registry by law. This was instigated to hopefully decrease or at least improve the backyard breeding and puppy farmer sections of the dog world.
The ANKC however continue to work closely and directly with their breeders and their members and breeders and maintain all their normal registries, rules and conditions and obligations.
How do we know it’s purebred?
The only way to be sure a puppy or dog is a purebred is to be able to obtain what are called, ANKC Registration Papers.
This is not council or microchip registration papers, these are Registration Papers issued by the overall governing body for purebred dogs, the Australian National Kennel Council (ANKC).
They will have the dog’s microchip number listed on them to be able to check that the papers relate to a specific dog or puppy.
If these papers cannot be obtained from a breeder, then it cannot be definite that the puppy or dog is purebred.
Dogs from other countries are not necessarily registerable in Australia with the ANKC, so an overseas registration papers does not necessarily mean the dog is registered here. It is important to know that puppies from a dog that is registered overseas but not in Ausrtralia are not registerable in Australia with the ANKC, so proof of purebred by registration papers is not available.
How do we know the breeder is a registered breeder?
Registered breeders have to comply with the ANKC’s standard and regulations and are tested before being accepted as a registered breeder.
They will be able to produce their Membership card which is also their Prefix Card.
'Prefix' is their registered kennel name.
You are at liberty to see this identification on request.
The breeder’s name and ANKC number should also be listed on the puppy’s ANKC registration papers, and the first name of the puppy or dog will be the breeder’s prefix (kennel name).
In our case, all our puppies are named ‘Cavalrite ’ Spot, or Cavalrite Prince and the like.
What should I ask a breeder?
To ensure you’re getting full and correct information, be specific about the questions you ask, for instance:
Registration: specifically ask whether the breeder, or the puppy or dog is registered with the ANKC, or Dogs (and your state), to be sure it is registered with the parent registration body.
Simply asking whether they are registered could bring a ‘yes’ answer, but it does not mean it’s the answer you’re seeking. Be specific.
Health Testing: Again, be specific. Ask the breeder what health testing is done by DNA or specialist veterinary services and what the results are.
Testing by veterinary staff is not indepth enough to cover inherent problems in breeds … it needs to be specialists performing the tests.
Also, ask the results. You want to see a 'full breed profile' for both parents.
Simply testing is not sufficient. The results need to be taken into account for both parents to endeavour to breed clear results in the puppies. With DNA results you want to see a 'clear' result wherever possible and at the most a carrier in one parent only. If both parents are carriers of the same thing, they increase the chances of the puppy being affected by the problem.
Full Breed Profiling are the preferred results to view because they include the results for every test available for the breed and other traits, rather than just one, two or three inherent problems. They give a more overall view of the parents' health. If the breeder does DNA test, check that it is a Full Breed Profile DNA testing.
What do I do if the puppy I’ve bought has inherent problems?
Firstly you should go back to the breeder with copies of veterinary and specialist veterinary reports in regard to the problems you are encountering.
A responsible breeder will want to know these things in order to stand with you and alter any breeding programmes to eliminate the problem and will want to work with you and support you on this matter.
If the breeder proves unapproachable, then you do have recourse through various means.
· You can contact the registration body in your State....... Dogs Queensland etc.
· You can contact the State Registration Body in your State, where all breeders are listed, registered or otherwise, such as in Queensland where the website is www.business.qld.gov.au/industries/farms-fishing-forestry/agriculture/livestock/animal- welfare/dog-breeder-registration.
· You can contact your local Ombudsman
Bear in mind though that the breeder may exercise its right to have the puppy returned if a refund is sought by you.
A responsible breeder will not general remove a puppy from a home where it is loved and well cared for, but it could be part of the negotiations with you.
If you remain concerned about the breeder’s practices, you are still able to approach the State Canine controlling body and/or the State Dog Welfare Registration body.
The Cavalier Standard is below. it is worth your while to study this standard and know what you should expect when purchasing a Cavalier puppy or dog.
Thank you for taking the time to read through this very important information. We sincerly hope it stands you in good stead while choosing a new canine family member …… and enjoy browsing the rest of our website.
Maggie & Robbie
Australian National Kennel Association Standard
Cavalier King Charles - Breed Standard
Group 1 (Toys)
Active, graceful and well balanced, with gentle expression.
Sporting, affectionate, absolutely fearless.
Gay, friendly, non-aggressive; no tendency to nervousness.
Head And Skull:
Skull almost flat between ears. Stop shallow. Length from base of stop to tip of nose about 3.8 cms (11?2 ins). Nostrils black and well developed without flesh marks, muzzle well tapered. Lips well developed but not pendulous. Face well filled below eyes. Any tendency to snipiness undesirable.
Large, dark, round but not prominent; spaced well apart.
Long, set high, with plenty of feather.
Jaws strong, with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. the upper teeth closely overlapping the lower teeth and set square to the jaws.
Moderate length, slightly arched.
Chest moderate, shoulders well laid back; straight legs, moderately boned.
Short-coupled with good spring of rib. Level back.
Legs with moderate bone; well turned stifle - no tendency to cow or sickle hocks.
Compact, cushioned and well feathered.
Length of tail in balance with body, well set on, carried happily but never much above the level of the back. Docking optional. If docked no more than one-third to be removed.
Free moving and elegant in action, plenty of drive from behind. Fore and hind legs move parallel when viewed from in front and behind.
Long, silky, free from curl. Slight wave permissible. Plenty of feathering. Totally free from trimming.
Recognised colours are four only:
Black and Tan - Raven black with tan markings above the eyes, on cheeks, inside ears, on chest and legs and underside of tail. Tan should be bright. White marks undesirable.
Ruby - Whole coloured rich red. White markings undesirable.
Blenheim - Rich chestnut markings well broken up, on pearly white ground. Markings evenly divided on head, leaving room between ears for much valued lozenge mark or spot (a unique characteristic of the breed).
Tricolour - Black and white well spaced, broken up, with tan markings over eyes, cheeks, inside ears, inside legs, and on underside of tail.
Any other colour or combination of colours highly undesirable.
Weight: 5.4-8.2 kg (12-18 lbs).
A small well-balanced dog well within these weights desirable.
Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.
Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.