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Trusted Resources


For the past 5 years I’ve been climbing a steep learning curve. Some of my favorite sources include books, websites and products. I think you’ll like them, too.

Black and white photo shows a woman peering into a microscope

Books that will answer your new puppy questions

How do you get ready for a new puppy? What is different about Cavaliers vs other breeds? What is housebreaking or crate training and how do you do it? These books are rich in practical advice and guidance for every new puppy owner, whether you’ve done this before or not.

Before & After getting your puppy, by Dr. Ian dunbar

I’m pretty sure this guy speaks dog.

Your Pandemic Puppy, by Marty Greer, DVM JD

In response to the flood of new puppy owners during the Pandemic, Dr. Greer wrote this practical, easy-to read guide. She covers most things you need to know!

The Puppy Primer, by Patricia B. McConnell, Ph. D

Must know info about puppies from a dog behavior expert.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels by D. Caroline Coile, Ph.D

This book is PERFECT! It is small (made for middle schoolers who love puppies) but honestly STUFFED full of good info. It is out of print, but you can find it used at

family Friendly Dog Training …and

Anything Else by Patricia Mcconnell, Ph. D.

… amazing. She’s a canine behaviorist and is truly brilliant, compassionate and wise.

What do I feed my puppies?

By the time your Blue House Cavalier puppy comes home, this is what he will be eating. We start them at about 4 weeks with goat’s milk and Royal Canin canned starter mousse, supplemented with probiotics. They gradually transition to soaked kibble and goat’s milk and they’re eating this kibble by 9 weeks old.
Diamond Naturals is easy to find online and carries the AAFCO statement.

Here is a third-party review of Diamond Naturals food.

Product image of a bottle of NuVet Plus Canine wafers vitamins.


I’ve been using NuVet Plus vitamins ever since I got my first Cavalier in 2018. I can confidently recommend this supplement to support your puppy’s immune system, digestive tract, skin, and coat.

Crates and Pads

no affiliate links here, these are just products I really recommend!

Your puppy will need enough room to stand up and turn around and lay down. At first, if he/she has too much room, he/she will pee in the back corner and sleep in the front. Dogs have to learn to keep their crate clean first! And if they decide that some of the crate isn’t really their den and they can avoid that spot, they will soil it. So once he’s keeping his crate clean, and he’s bigger and needing more room, you can promote him to a larger one. (Crate training dog-mentality is explained in the book about housebreaking that I recommended above.)

Small Puppy travel kennel in medium blue with a black base, plastic.  12.6 inches wide, 19.1 inches long and 10 inches tall.

I like to start with something like this

Yes, you will probably need a bigger crate eventually. I prefer to start with the travel crate because it has more of a closed, Den-like feeling for the dogs. But many people like to use the open-grid wire versions with a tray and pad in the bottom.

And a Washable pad works great for that crate

I have tried a few different pads over the years. A nice soft one is great. Make sure it’s washable, because you’ll want to run it through the washing machine. You’ll want to choose the 18 or 22 inch version to go with the crate shown to the left.

Black wire crate is shown to measure 21 inches high, 19 inches wide and 30 inches long.  There are two doors for access and a black plastic removable tray on the bottom.

Here’s a wire crate, if you prefer, for when they get bigger.

This is the crate that’s been the right size —choose the 30 inch size—for my own adult cavaliers. It folds flat and is easy to hose off.

Washable padded dog bed with a plush interior surface and microfiber outer surface.  Measurements are shown to be 6.7 inches high, 27.6 inches long and 19.7 inches wide.

And this is the bed that I recommend for the larger wire crate

Either get a larger version of the flat pad above, or you can choose this one. Once again, nice and soft and machine washable.

If you have a dog, you might need this stuff.

These are suggestions only, and you can find something similar you like better, or you can do without them, if you prefer. These are things that have made my life with dogs EASIER.

Free-standing play yard fence in 6 panels of 2 feet high white plastic form a hexagonal area on the floor of a living room.   Two toddlers are shown playing inside.

Free-standing fence panels

These things are lifesavers. They keep the puppy and your floors and belongings safe. I’m a big believer in proper management. That means that a puppy needs to be restricted to the space that he can handle. At first that is going to be a very small space where people can’t be grabbing at him all the time. Give your new pup time to get used to the sights, sounds, smells and rhythms of his new environment from a safe place where he can observe for the first few days and he’ll be able to adapt at his pace.

My favorite brand of collar comes in many colors and sizes. They also make fantastic leashes. BLUEBERRY

This is the name/ID tag I like best. Why? The secret is in the description: DEEP Engraved.

This bowl doesn’t tip over and your pup won’t land in the middle of it. Probably. DuraPet Slow Feed

If your puppy never pees in your house, you will never need this. But if your puppy is normal—This stuff works! My Pet Peed. And stock up on paper towels! And rubber gloves. 😉

Here’s a set of two “puzzle balls”. They dispense kibble according to how he plays with it. Dogs like to work for their food and this will entertain AND feed your puppy. OurPets IQ

Official info from clubs, websites and organizations

The American Kennel Club is a great go-to for answers to many of your dog-related questions. They have a fantastic page all about Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.

What makes a perfect Cavalier? This is the Official Breed Standard from the AKC.

7 Things To Know About Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, by the American Kennel Club.

How and why to socialize your puppy, by the AKC.

I’ve joined the Mount Ogden Kennel Club, an all-breed club based in Logan, Utah.

This website on dog training, management and behavior is super informative, and best of all—practical! Here’s a link to a free course on Managing Dogs in Your Home. is packed full of great information. Check out their articles on puppies, training, and all things dog.