Cavalier King Charles Spaniels love their food. I mean, seriously, obsess over it. Like me, they cannot wait until meal times, and also, like me, they love a snack in between meal times.
But what treats do you give them? You don’t want them to gain weight, so you want a healthy but tasty treat. So we decided to look for 17 treats your Cavalier will love.
1. Small Dog Biscuits
Small dog biscuits make an ideal treat for Cavalier King Charles Spaniels for several reasons (listed below). But you must choose small dog biscuits made from high-quality ingredients, free from artificial additives or fillers.
Look for specially formulated biscuits made for small dog breeds, and always take the caloric information into consideration, as you don’t want to overfeed your Cavvy. If in any doubt, consult with your veterinarian first.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are small breed dogs, typically weighing 13-18 pounds (5.9-8.2 kilograms). Their small size means that treats designed specifically for small dogs are more suitable for them. Small dog biscuits are appropriately portioned for their small mouths, making them easy to chew and swallow without posing a choking hazard.
Small dog biscuits are formulated with the nutritional needs of small dogs in mind. They are usually made with high-quality ingredients that are easily digestible for dogs with sensitive stomachs, and Cavvys can be prone to digestive issues.
These biscuits are typically well-balanced in terms of protein, fat, and carbohydrates to support the overall health and well-being of your Cavalier.
Many small dog biscuits are designed to promote dental health. They often have a crunchy texture that helps to remove plaque and tartar buildup as your dog chews on them.
Small dog biscuits come in appropriately sized portions, which helps you control the number of treats your Cavalier receives. It’s important to offer treats in moderation to prevent excessive calorie intake and potential weight gain.
With small biscuits, you can easily monitor and limit the number of treats you give, ensuring your Cavalier maintains a healthy weight.
Training and Reinforcement
Small dog biscuits are convenient for training sessions and positive reinforcement. Due to their small size, they can be quickly consumed, allowing for a swift reward during training.
Cavaliers are intelligent and eager to please, making them responsive to training techniques that involve positive reinforcement. Using small biscuits as rewards can be effective in reinforcing desired behaviors and building a strong bond between you and your Cavvy.
2. Chewy Chicken Jerky
High-quality, lean chicken strips make for a delicious and healthy snack and are one of our Cavvys favorite treats.
We buy the dried full chicken breast and cut them down as there are no additives, which you tend to find when the chicken is reformed into a strip or chunk. That being said, some manufacturers use healthy alternatives, so check the ingredients.
Top Tip – If buying dried chicken breasts, get some sharp scissors, as they can be tough to cut.
Taste and Appeal
Chicken jerky has a delicious flavor and aroma, which makes it highly appealing to dogs. These treats can be irresistible to your Cavvy, making them a great option for training, rewarding good behavior, or simply indulging your furry friend.
High in Protein
Chicken is a rich source of high-quality protein, an essential dog nutrient. Protein is crucial in maintaining healthy muscles, supporting growth and development, and promoting a strong immune system.
Including chicken jerky in your Cavalier’s diet can help ensure they receive an adequate amount of protein.
Chewy chicken jerky is typically made from lean cuts of chicken, which means it contains minimal fat and is generally more digestible for dogs.
Cavaliers, like other small breeds, can be prone to digestive issues, and offering easily digestible treats can help prevent gastrointestinal upset and promote healthy digestion.
Natural and Minimal Ingredients
High-quality chicken jerky treats for dogs often have minimal ingredients, with chicken being the primary component.
They are typically free from artificial additives, preservatives, or fillers that may be found in lower-quality treats.
Chicken jerky can have additional benefits for your Cavalier’s dental health. The texture and chewing action required to consume it can help remove plaque and tartar buildup from your dog’s teeth.
Regularly offering dental-friendly treats like chicken jerky can improve oral hygiene and reduce the risk of dental problems such as gum disease or tooth decay.
Suitable Size and Texture
As discussed earlier, you can get chicken jerky in small, bite-sized pieces or strips that small breed dogs like Cavaliers can easily manage. The chewy texture provides some resistance, giving your dog a satisfying chewing experience without being too hard or tough on their teeth.
3. Dental Chews
Another of Lady’s favorites, dental chews, not only provide a tasty treat but also help maintain good oral health.
Fun fact, we used to buy Lady expensive dental chews, which she enjoyed very much, but when the store had run out, we had to purchase some store-brand cheaper ones, which she loved.
After the store had the expensive brand back in stock, I purchased them, but Lady refused to eat them, so it was back to the store brand ones, saving me money. And to save even more money, we buy the larger chews, cut them in half, and store them in this cute little tub.
Dental chews make an ideal treat for Cavalier King Charles Spaniels for several reasons:
Oral Health Benefits
Dental chews are specifically designed to promote oral health in dogs. They are formulated to help reduce plaque and tartar buildup, freshen breath, and support gum health.
Cavaliers, like many small dog breeds, are prone to dental issues, including periodontal disease. Providing dental chews can help maintain better oral hygiene and prevent dental problems.
Dental chews have a firm texture that requires dogs to chew on them for an extended period. This chewing action helps to mechanically remove plaque and tartar from the teeth’s surface, providing a natural teeth-cleaning effect and reducing the accumulation of plaque and tartar that can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
Entertainment and Mental Stimulation
Dental chews can provide entertainment and mental stimulation for your Cavalier. Chewing on a dental chew helps satisfy their natural instinct to chew and can alleviate boredom or anxiety.
It can also help redirect their chewing behavior towards an appropriate and beneficial activity, preventing them from chewing on household items or furniture.
Regularly providing dental chews as part of your Cavalier’s oral care routine can be a preventive measure against more serious dental issues in the future.
By reducing plaque and tartar buildup, you can help prevent the development of periodontal disease, leading to tooth loss, pain, and other health complications.
Controlled Calorie Intake
Dental chews are often formulated to be low in calories and fat, making them a suitable treat option for dogs, including Cavaliers, who may be prone to weight gain. By choosing dental chews with appropriate calorie content, you can offer your dog a satisfying treat without contributing significantly to their overall calorie intake.
Convenient and Easy to Use
Dental chews are typically ready to use and require no additional preparation. They come in various shapes and sizes, allowing you to choose the most appropriate option for your Cavalier’s breed and size.
Additionally, dental chews can be given as a standalone treat or incorporated into a dental care routine that includes brushing your Cavalier’s teeth.
Remember to choose dental chews that are appropriately sized for your Cavalier and made from high-quality, safe ingredients. Consult with your veterinarian for recommendations on dental chew brands or if you have any concerns regarding your Cavalier’s dental health.
4. Sweet Potato Chews
When Lady was diagnosed with diabetes, we started to look at her food and treats more intensely, weeding out the ones with hidden sugars and additives (when you start to look, you’d be shocked at how many are unsuitable).
Sweet potato chews were the number one favorite. We bought dried packs from the store, as it said on the back that they suit diabetics. Better still, you can slice sweet potatoes into thin strips and bake them for a chewy delight.
Sweet potatoes are highly nutritious and provide various health benefits. They are rich in dietary fiber, vitamins A and C, and several minerals, including potassium and manganese.
These nutrients support overall health, boost the immune system, and contribute to healthy skin and coat in Cavaliers.
The dietary fiber in sweet potatoes promotes healthy digestion and regular bowel movements in dogs. It can also help regulate the digestive system and prevent constipation.
Natural and Wholesome
They are typically made from dehydrated sweet potato slices or strips, making them a natural and wholesome treat.
They are also free from artificial additives, colors, and preservatives, providing a healthy alternative to processed treats. Sweet potato chews often retain the natural flavor of sweet potatoes, making them appealing to dogs.
The chewy texture of sweet potato chews can help promote dental health in Cavaliers. Chewing on the chews can aid in removing plaque and tartar buildup, supporting good oral hygiene.
However, sweet potato chews should not replace regular brushing or professional dental care for your Cavvy.
Sweet potato chews are low in fat and calories compared to many other dog treats, making them suitable for Cavaliers on a weight management plan. They can be a satisfying snack without adding excessive calories or contributing to weight gain.
Sweet potatoes are a good alternative to common allergenic ingredients, such as grains or proteins like chicken or beef. This makes sweet potato chews a suitable treat for Cavaliers with known food allergies or sensitivities.
When offering sweet potato chews as treats, it’s important to choose high-quality chews made from pure sweet potatoes without any added ingredients.
Homemade sweet potato chews can be prepared by slicing and dehydrating them in the oven or using a food dehydrator.
Monitor your Cavalier while they chew on sweet potato chews to ensure they don’t swallow large pieces or choke.
As with any treat, moderation is key. Sweet potato chews should be given in appropriate portion sizes to avoid overconsumption and to maintain a balanced diet.
Consult your veterinarian for personalized recommendations, especially if your Cavalier has specific health conditions or dietary restrictions.
5. Salmon Bites
Small pieces of cooked salmon make for a delicious and nutritious reward. As some Cavaliers can be allergic to chicken, this is a great alternative as a tasty treat.
When offering salmon bites as treats, it’s important to choose high-quality, reputable brands that use real salmon and minimal additives or preservatives.
Look for products specifically formulated for dogs and follow the recommended serving sizes. Never feed raw salmon to dogs, as it can contain parasites or harmful bacteria.
Salmon is a rich source of high-quality protein, essential for building and repairing tissues, supporting muscle development, and maintaining overall health in dogs.
Protein is particularly important for Cavaliers, as they are an active breed that requires adequate protein intake for energy and muscle function.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Known for its high content of omega-3 fatty acids, salmon provides numerous health benefits for dogs, including promoting a healthy coat and skin, reducing inflammation, supporting brain development and cognitive function, and enhancing joint health.
Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to affect dogs’ overall well-being positively.
Salmon is packed with essential nutrients, including vitamins B12, D, and selenium.
These nutrients contribute to a strong immune system, optimal bone health, and overall vitality in Cavaliers.
Providing salmon bites as treats can help supplement your dog’s nutrient intake and support their overall health.
Cavaliers find the taste and smell of salmon very appealing. The natural oils and flavors of salmon can make it a highly palatable treat option for dogs. This makes it easier to train, reward, or treat your Cavalier.
Salmon is a hypoallergenic protein source, which means it is less likely to cause adverse reactions in dogs with food sensitivities or allergies. It is a good alternative for Cavaliers with allergies or sensitivities to common proteins like chicken or beef.
Easy to Digest
Salmon is generally easy to digest for dogs, making it a suitable treat for Cavaliers with sensitive stomachs or digestive issues.
The high-quality protein and omega-3 fatty acids in salmon are readily absorbed and utilized by the dog’s body.
As with any treat, moderation is key. Monitor the number of salmon bites you offer to prevent overconsumption and maintain a balanced diet.
6. Rice Cakes
Plain rice cakes can be broken into small pieces and offered as a low-calorie treat.
When offering rice cakes as treats, it’s important to choose plain, unflavored varieties that do not contain added sugars, salt, or artificial additives, as they can harm your dog’s health.
Always check the ingredient list to ensure the rice cakes are made solely from rice or rice flour.
Rice cakes are made from rice, a highly digestible grain for dogs. They are easily broken down in the digestive system, making them gentle on your Cavalier’s stomach.
Rice cakes can be a suitable option for dogs with sensitive digestive systems or those prone to gastrointestinal upset.
Low in Fat and Calories
Rice cakes are generally low in fat and calories, which makes them a light and healthy treat option for Cavaliers. They can be given as a low-calorie alternative to higher-fat treats, helping to manage your dog’s weight and prevent excessive calorie intake.
Rice cakes are typically gluten-free, benefiting Cavaliers with gluten sensitivities or allergies. Gluten intolerance is common in dogs, and providing gluten-free treats can help prevent digestive issues and discomfort.
Easy to Chew
Rice cakes have a soft and crunchy texture that is easy for Cavaliers to chew and enjoy. Their bite-sized nature makes them suitable for dogs of all sizes, including Cavaliers, who may have smaller mouths.
The texture of rice cakes provides a satisfying crunch that Cavaliers enjoy. The sound and sensation of crunching can be rewarding for your Cavvy, making rice cakes a pleasant treat during training or as an occasional snack.
Overall, rice cakes can be a light, digestible, and customizable treat option for Cavaliers. Their low-fat, low-calorie nature, combined with their pleasing texture, makes them a convenient and healthy choice for rewarding your Cavalier during training sessions or as an occasional snack.
7. Plain Popcorn
Air-popped plain popcorn (without butter or salt) can be a light, crunchy treat.
Avoid using microwave popcorn, which often contains added flavors, oils, or seasonings that may harm your Cavalier.
Always monitor your Cavalier while they are enjoying popcorn to ensure they chew it properly and do not try to swallow large pieces.
Light and Low in Calories
Plain popcorn is a light and low-calorie snack, making it a suitable treat for Cavaliers, especially for those watching their weight or on a calorie-controlled diet. It provides a satisfying crunch without adding excessive calories to their daily intake.
High in Fiber
Popcorn is a good source of dietary fiber, which aids in digestion and promotes a healthy gastrointestinal system in dogs.
Fiber helps regulate bowel movements and can be particularly beneficial for Cavaliers prone to digestive issues or constipation.
Whole Grain Goodness
Popcorn is made from whole grains, specifically from the kernel of corn. Whole grains are rich in essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Popcorn can provide mental stimulation for your Cavalier, especially when served in interactive treat-dispensing toys or puzzles. Sniffing out and retrieving individual popcorn pieces can engage their senses and provide a fun and engaging activity.
Plain popcorn is readily available and affordable, making it a convenient treat.
It can be easily prepared at home without any additives or seasoning, ensuring it remains a healthy choice for your Cavalier.
While plain popcorn is generally safe for dogs, it should be given in appropriate portions and accounted for in your Cavalier’s overall calorie intake.
Always consult your veterinarian for personalized recommendations, especially if your dog has specific dietary needs or health conditions.