Can Cavachons Swim? [21 Other Cavachon Owners Chime In]

Can Cavachons Swim

Are you taking a trip to the beach or wish you could bring your dog to the pool with you? Many dog owners wonder whether their canine can swim, and Cavachon owners are no different. We have a Cavachon who we would love to take swimming, but we live in a big city and rarely have the opportunity for this fun activity. Can our dog, Kirby, and other Cavachons like him swim?

Cavachons do not have a strong background in swimming, but they may come to love the water in time. Always put them in a life vest for safety and monitor how they are doing. Take things slowly if the dog has never been exposed to water or swimming before, allowing them to play in the shallow end.

If you want to learn more about your Cavachon’s inclination to water, this detailed guide with input from real owners will help you figure out how to make swimming fun!

Can Cavachons Swim?

When it comes to whether Cavachons can swim, taking a look at their ancestry can help shape their feelings about water. The Cavachon is a designer dog breed created from a Bichon Frise and a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. Both parents have their heritage when it comes to swimming and water play.

The Bichon Frise is a descendant of a water spaniel, meaning that they instinctively swim. Practice makes perfect, and these dogs have the potential to become strong swimmers with enough exposure to water.

However, they do not typically enjoy being in the water despite their inherent bias toward the sport.

Much like the Bichon Frise, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is not necessarily bred to be a strong swimmer. They have lots of energy and are known for their ability to help retrieve while on a hunt, sometimes diving into the water to collect waterfowl.

Over time, they can become quite strong swimmers because they love the activity and are very motivated by their owners and other dogs. If they have an example to follow, the chances are that they will be pleased to give swimming their full attention.

Now that you know what genes they inherited from their parents, it is time to turn a closer eye on the Cavachon. Can they swim? Much like their Cavalier King Charles Spaniel parent, these dogs tend to be very people-oriented. If you are in the water, splashing and having a good time, then your Cavachon is likely to want to join in.

They have plenty of energy, allowing them to exercise or swim for extended periods. A 30-minute swim session will be plenty of exercise for them in a single day.

Do Cavachons Like Water?

While the ability to swim may take some time to develop, many Cavachons do enjoy the water in general. Similar to the Cavapoo or the Yorkiepoo, your Cavachon may splash and play in the shallow waters at the beach or on the shore of your local lake. This is a great way to ease your dog into swimming as it is less overwhelming for them at first.

The trick to teaching your Cavachon to love water is to take things slowly with them. Never throw your dog into the deep end of the pool and hope that their instincts will kick in. If you want your dog to love the water, you must work up to swimming in deeper waters slowly.

Start by splashing around with them on the shore. As they get used to the feeling of water around their feet, you can start playing games like fetch with them. Toss their toy just a little deeper into the water so that they have to submerge their bellies and chest in the water. Gradually throw it deeper and deeper until they have to doggie paddle to get to their favorite toy.

Survey Results

We asked some other Cavachon owners on Instagram to weigh in on their dog’s feelings about the water. Here are a few of the responses we got:

Unfortunately, we haven’t


I’ve taken Dolly to the beach on a couple of occasions and she’s splashed about, however on one occasion she randomly jumped into a local lake and began swimming in circles before returning! It was the most random thing as I hadn’t thrown anything into the water. It was just a spontaneous jump!

cavachons stella and sophie on a kayak
Cavachon Sisters Stella and Sophie out Kayaking

Yes they have been in the water and they know how to paddle but they had life jackets on. Stella is almost 2 and Sophie is 8 months.


No, I have never taken him, but I want to!


I’m afraid I haven’t taken Willow out in water deep enough to see if she can swim. She’s 4 months old.


We haven’t gotten the chance to take Zoey out to swim. When we do hold her midsection, she does move her arms like she’s swimming.


Not yet.


I have not taken Benji to water yet, sorry.

cavachons at the beach
Cavachons Lexie and Parker at the beach

Yes. Both Lexie and Parker love water. Only seen Lexie swim. I’m sure Parker would be able to though. Lexie swam in a pool about a year ago.


I have yet to take Honeybee in the water. He’s about to turn one, and I will try sometime in the summer.


Yes! She can swim using the doggie paddle. Does she like it? Eh… gonna try again this summer. Put her in the pool a couple of times last summer, and she swam to get out.


Hi, no we have not.


Yes he can swim. He swam at a local river on a very hot day. Ralph was 5 months then and was very keen on getting into the water.


He hasn’t been swimming yet. He seems to like the water, but haven’t had the opportunity to let him swim this year. Hoping to get him out soon to a dog-friendly lake.


I went to the beach with mine but she was afraid of the water. We live in the city so there is no pool. We have not attempted swimming. She’s only 8 months.

Finn the Cavachon looking for fish by the river
Finn the Cavachon looking for Fish

Our Cavachon LOVES the water. We have a small paddling pool for the backyard in the summer which he plays in and we’ve taken him to the river and beach. He doesn’t like deep water so usually only goes in so far as the top of his legs. If he gets too far in he will stop and turn around. Apart from that he is a little water baby and could splash around in the water for hours.


No we don’t know if Oliver can swim. We haven’t tried. He’s 5 months old.


Yes. We’ve taken Lili out to the beach once and as soon as we put her into the water, she was able to swim. She was nearly 4 months old.


Tilly definitely doesn’t like swimming. She’ll walk in for a little paddle, but won’t actually swim. It’s usually at the beach. She’ll go into the paddling pools at her doggy daycare too sometimes! She was probably about 8 months when she first went in and she’s just over 2 years old now.


I haven’t taken Mila out on the water yet.


Yes she can. She always jumps into the hot tub before we heat it up. She’s 2 years old and we took her to the beach just after her last set of shots.


According to our informal survey, many Cavachon owners are interested in taking their beloved four-legged friends to the water, but few have done so. Those who have say their dog is ambivalent toward the water, mainly aiming to get themselves out of the deep end of the pool.

Teaching your Cavachon to love the water is a process that doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time and effort to get them slowly used to swimming and being submerged in the water. Be sure to take things slow if you want to lay the foundation for your pup to be able to swim proficiently no matter where you take them.

Remember always to follow safety precautions, such as keeping your Cavachon on a leash and putting a life vest on them, especially in the beginning.

Are Cavachons Good Swimmers?

our cavachon kirby and me in cape cod
Our Cavachon Kirby and Me in Cape Cod

Many dog owners believe the myth that all dogs can naturally swim. While many do the doggie paddle as if their life depends on it, the truth is that not all dogs are natural swimmers. It can take time for your canine companion to learn the ropes of propelling themselves through the water.

How Do Cavachons Compare to Other Dog Breeds?

The truth is that some Cavachons will love the water while others may prefer to steer clear. If your Cavachon learns to enjoy the water, they tend to be reasonably capable swimmers. They may not be as proficient as some water breeds like the Poodle or the Labrador Retriever, but they can learn to move forward in the water with some ease.

You must keep in mind that the Cavachon is a relatively small dog. This means that they will not swim as far as a larger breed. Always be sure to take safety precautions in case your dog gets tired while swimming and cannot go any farther to get back to shore or the exit point.

Safety Precautions

When it comes to swimming, you need to take a few precautions to ensure that the activity remains healthy and safe for your Cavachon.

First and foremost, every dog should wear a life vest when in the water. This is true regardless of whether you swim in a large body of water or a local pool. If your dog gets tired of swimming before reaching the exit point, it can stop and still float due to the life vest. Look for adjustable models that will give you a custom fit for your Cavachon.

Other safety precautions include:

  • Keeping your Cavachon on leash
  • Getting into the water with them
  • Starting slowly at the edge of the water
  • Not forcing them into the deep end of the water

If you want swimming to become a natural part of your dog’s life, taking things slow is key to success. Never try to force your Cavachon to do more than they are comfortable with, or they may panic. This panic can lead them to associate water and swimming with negative experiences, making it less likely that they will want to swim again in the future.

You may want to take other safety precautions, but it will depend on the location where you take your Cavachon swimming.

Swimming in Large Bodies of Water

When you are in a less controlled environment like at the beach or the lake, you have to be extra aware of all the potential dangers your dog might face. Taking your dog to a large body of water to practice their swimming is often a great idea because it allows them to gently wade in the shallow waters until they get more comfortable. However, you need to take a few safety precautions with these surroundings.

One of the things you must be conscious of when you allow your dog to swim in large bodies of water is whether others are participating in fishing nearby. Your dog can quickly become tangled in fishing lines, step on fish hooks, or ingest bait that they shouldn’t be eating.

Dog owners must also be aware of how rough the waters are. Consistent waves and rip currents make it more difficult for your Cavachon to keep its head above the water. It can also tire them out faster as they will have to be more active, so swimming in rough waters should be minimal.

Water temperature is also less controlled in large bodies of water. Dogs will burn more energy trying to swim in colder waters, so be aware that they may need to cut their swimming session short if the weather or water temperature is less than ideal.

Remember to always make sure your Cavachon wears a life vest when in the water. This is one safety precaution that you should always take when swimming.

Swimming in Pools

Many Cavachon owners prefer the more controlled environment of a local pool that is pet-friendly to large bodies of water. There are certainly fewer hazards that you need to be aware of when taking your dog to a swimming pool instead of the beach or a lake, where fishing may be a popular pastime.

Despite the relative safety of the pool, there are still a few things to keep in mind.

If you choose to take your dog to the pool, always teach them where the exits are first. Show them how they can get in and out of the water. In many cases, this means you may have to get in the water to show them how to exit safely. Otherwise, they may swim to the side of the pool and struggle to figure out how to get out when they are too tired to keep swimming, leading to accidental drownings.

Your dog can safely swim in a properly-balanced chlorinated pool or a saltwater pool. You should make every effort to monitor how much of the pool water they are drinking, though. Water intoxication is a serious issue that can lead to diluted sodium levels in the blood with chlorinated pools and salt poisoning in saltwater pools. Both conditions are pretty severe.

To avoid this, be sure to provide your pup with fresh water outside of the pool and give them frequent breaks so that they have an opportunity to drink from their dish. When you notice that they are ingesting too much pool water, it is time to take a break from swimming for a little while until they can rehydrate.

Swimming in pools maintained with chemicals may also lead to irritated skin. If you take your dog to swim in the pool regularly, you may notice more itching or flaking skin. Cavachons with skin issues should not be in the pool to avoid worsening their condition. To help prevent this from happening, you can hose down your dog with fresh water whenever they leave the pool.

Final Thoughts – Swimming for Sport with Your Cavachon

Cavachons don’t come from a solid background of swimmers, but many of them do come to love the water. Don’t buy into the myth that all dogs know how to swim, though. Take things slowly and always follow the safety precautions if you want your dog to learn to enjoy the water. Try taking your Cavachon to the water today to see how your dog feels about this fun activity!

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