At first glance, Cavapoos and Cockapoos might look similar, which is not surprising considering they share 50% of their genes.
The other 50% is responsible for their differences, both in appearance and in character.
Knowing what those differences are will help you decide which one of these lovable little creatures would suit your lifestyle the best.
So, let’s explore them!
What’s the difference between a Cavapoo and a Cockapoo?
In spite of many similarities between Cavapoos and Cockapoos that often get them mixed up, they are separate dog breeds that differ in a lot of ways.
The main difference between them is that Cavapoos are a crossbreed between a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Poodle, while Cockapoos are the result of mixing a Poodle with a Cocker Spaniel.
This means they are both Poodle mixes whose cute looks, lovable personality, and low-shedding coats have made them widely popular in the last few decades.
They somewhat differ in size and appearance, but both have calm, loyal, and playful temperament, which makes them great family pets or companion dogs.
It is believed that Cavoodles originated from Australia, and were first intentionally crossbred in the 1990’s. The goal of this might have been to combine a Poodle’s physical characteristics with the temperament of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.
Since mixed breeds are known to have hybrid vigor, meaning they are generally healthier than their purebred parents, the possible health benefits of the cross may have played a role in the decision to create these adorable pups.
From the 1990’s onward, Cavoodle’s, as they are called in their homeland, started increasing in popularity, and soon became one of the most sought after small-breed dogs across the globe.
The same can be said for Cockapoos, whose popularity took off since the early 2000’s.
A Cockapoo, sometimes called a Cockapoodle or a Cockerpoo, dates back to the 1960’s, which makes them one of the oldest hybrid dogs around.
Unlike purebred dogs that tend to be uniform, Cockapoos vary greatly in size, color, hair texture, and other physical traits.
Neither of these dogs is recognized by any major kennel club or organization.
Cavapoo vs Cockapoo: A Size Comparison
Both Cavapoos and Cockapoos are small- to medium-sized dogs that come in more than one size.
Depending on the size of its Poodle parent , a Cavapoo can grow to be between nine and 14 inches in height from paw to shoulder, with a weight of 10 to 25 pounds.
How tall they will get primarily depends on genetics. In other words, it’s determined by the type of Poodle used for breeding… Toy or Miniature.
Toy Poodles, as their name indicates, are quite small dogs that don’t grow much taller than 10 inches and only weigh four to six pounds. Therefore, the Cavapoos that were bred from them will stay on the smaller side of the size spectrum.
On the other hand, a Miniature Poodles can grow from 10 to 15 inches tall and weigh 15 to 17 pounds. It’s more common for Cavapoos to be bred from them, which means they’re also more likely to be bigger than smaller.
Due to their small size, Cavapoos are fully grown by their first birthday. Though genetics is the most important factor that impacts the dog’s size, exercise, diet, and health can also have an effect on it.
Puppies born in the same litter may not be of uniform height or weight as each one is unique.
A Cockapoo’s size also depends on its genetic makeup. There are four different size categories:
1. The Teacup Toy.
2. The Toy Cockapoo.
3. The Miniature Cockapoo.
4. The Standard or Maxi Cockapoo.
As we can realize from their names, these also depend on the type of Poodle used during the crossing.
A Teacup Toy is an extremely tiny dog, weighing less than six pounds and being no more than 10 inches tall.
The Toy Cockapoos are somewhat larger, but are still very small dogs whose height is around 10 inches and weight is under 12 pounds. Both of these types of Cockapoo have a Toy Poodle as one of their parents.
A Miniature Cockapoo is bred from a Miniature Poodle. It can weigh 13 to 18 pounds and grow to be 11 to 14 inches tall.
The Standard or the Maxi Cockapoo is the biggest type, with its parent being the Standard Poodle. It needs to be at least 15 inches in height and more than 19 pounds in weight.
What do they look like?
What exactly a Cavapoo or a Cockapoo puppy will look like depends on what genes they inherited from each parent.
If they were bred from the same type of Poodle and they’ve got more of its genes in the mix, then their mutual resemblance will be higher as well. On the other hand, they’ll look more apart if they resemble their Spaniel side.
It’s common for hybrid animals to have unpredictable appearances as opposed to purebreds that tend to have pretty uniform looks. That’s why these dogs come in a variety of sizes and colors.
We’ve already explained the differences in size between these dogs, but how different can they be in terms of looks?
Cavapoos usually have compact, round faces dominated by large eyebrows, with floppy ears on their heads.
They’ve got round, brown eyes, and their noses are almost always of black coloration. A teddy-bear like appearance helps these little dogs melt hearts wherever they show up.
Their dense, wavy or curly coats come in a wide range of colors as both its parents can be quite colorful as well.
A Cavapoo puppy can be anything from white or brown and black to tan, peach, chestnut, bi-color, or even tri-color.
The most common are the bi-colored Cavapoos in different color variations since the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is usually bi-colored as well. Tri-colored, all-white, or all-black dogs are rarer.
The color of their coats can get lighter as they age, which is good to know when choosing the perfect puppy for yourself.
A Cockapoo’s large, dark brown eyes are not easy to resist either.
Their noses are also of black coloration, but they’re more elongated compared to the Cavapoo’s. The effect of the Cocker Spaniel genes makes a Cockapoo’s ears longer. These two dog breeds also differ in the shape of their skull.
Their coats come in many different colors, though not as many as a Cavapoos’. The most common solid colors for these pups are black, cream, apricot, red, and chocolate.
Cockapoos can also be parti-colored; typically, they’ll have a white base with patches of other colors. When it comes to hair texture, they can have straight, wavy, or curly hair.
Both dogs can be hypoallergenic if they inherit the fur characteristics from their Poodle parent. That’s why they could be a good choice as a companion for allergy sufferers.
Both Cavapoos and Cockapoos require regular grooming. This includes brushing and trimming their hair, bathing them, brushing their teeth, cleaning their ears, and clipping their nails.
The type of grooming needed depends on the type of the coat the dog has. Puppies of both breeds can have a variety of hair textures depending on their genetic makeup.
Cockapoos usually need more brushing and regular trimming as they have longer, rapidly-growing coats. Cavapoos, on the other hand, tend to be easier to take care of.
Cavapoos and Cockapoos with curly hair require daily brushing to ensure there won’t be any matting, while for those with straight or wavy coats, brushing two or three times a week should be enough.
Those with curlier hair shed less, which makes them more allergy friendly. If one of the reasons why you’d like to get one of these pups is their hypoallergenic coat, it will be helpful to know that proper grooming can significantly reduce the amount of pet dander and hair in your home.
Brushing your puppy’s coat regularly will make them more used to being handled, so they’ll be less stressed when they find themselves in the hands of professional groomers.
Your dog will need to have its hair trimmed as well. People usually take their dogs for a trim every four to six weeks. Since these dogs don’t have a strong body odor, they don’t need to be bathed too often; once a month should be enough.
Ear-cleaning is an extremely important part of grooming, especially for Cockapoos whose ears are a bit longer. It helps prevent ear infections and parasites.
Cavapoos and Cockapoos are both mix-breeds whose popularity keeps increasing over time, suppressing even some well-liked purebred dogs.
The crave for these designer dogs can be explained by their endearing, gentle, and lively personalities. They make great family dogs that go well with apartment-living since they don’t require as much space as bigger breeds.
They can be great companions to elders as they only need moderate amounts of exercise, and their small size makes them easier to handle.
These little pups get along with everyone and children are no exception. Even so, you shouldn’t leave them unsupervised around young children since they could accidentally hurt them due to their small build.
We’ve explored how different Cavapoos and Cockapoos can be physically, but how does their temperament compare?
Cavapoos are described as playful, affectionate, loyal, and sociable dogs. They feel extremely attached to their owners, which is why they are prone to developing separation anxiety.
That means they are probably not a good choice as a pet for those who can’t afford to spend much time at home.
They may not need a lot of exercise, about half an hour of walking or playing daily, but they can be very energetic. It’s not uncommon for puppies to get ”the zoomies”.
Personality is affected by both nature and nurture. What the temperament of a particular dog will be depends on what personality traits he has inherited as well as what environment he grows up in.
Photo from @_cooper_the_cavapoo
The character traits that a Cavapoo puppy can inherit from a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel are gracefulness, adaptability, and gentleness.
Poodles are known for their intelligence, pride, and athleticism. Even though they are people-oriented, they can be reserved around strangers.
To avoid any behavioral issues from developing, a dog needs to be properly socialized and trained from an early age. They are intelligent dogs that pick up new tricks easily. Dog training always takes some effort, but it does pay off in the long run.
Just like Cavapoos, Cockapoos are very loving, friendly, outgoing dogs. A puppy could inherit some of these listed Poodle traits, but it could also end up with a Cocker Spaniel’s affectionate personality, playfulness, or faithfulness.
Due to the Cocker Spaniel genes, Cockapoos are more high energy, so they need more exercise and playtime compared to Cavoodles.
They are not strangers to separation anxiety either, so keep that in mind if you’re thinking of getting one.
There’s no significant difference in trainability between these two dogs; both are considered intelligent and easily trainable. Their short attention span might make things a bit harder at times, but nothing can’t be overcome with patience and understanding.
All in all, Cavapoos and Cockapoos usually have very similar temperaments, with some minor differences in activity level.
Are Cavapoos barkers?
Cavapos can be quite vocal. Although they don’t always bark excessively, they will let their voices be heard when there’s a need for it. Cockapoos, on the other hand, are usually quieter.
In spite of being similar in so many other ways, these two dog breeds are different in this aspect.
Barking tendencies can have a great influence on your decision when choosing the right dog for yourself, especially if you’re living in an apartment with neighbors all around.
We need to accept that barking is a natural way of communication for dogs, and stop trying to prevent it at any cost. When it is excessive, it can be a sign that there’s a problem of either a medical or a behavioral nature.
To fix the problem, you’ll need to understand what’s causing it first.
Cavapoos will bark when they’re trying to get your attention. These little pups don’t like being ignored, and they’re not too shy to let you know what they need with a little ”woof”.
As dogs that are prone to separation anxiety, Cavapoos may bark out of frustration and stress when left alone. Other types of frustration, as well as territorial or defensive attitude, can also be the cause of barking.
On the other hand, Cockapoos are known to be low-barking dogs, making them the perfect choice for apartment dwellers. If they do bark a lot, it might be due to behavioral issues that need to be solved.
Common health issues
Cross breeds generally tend to have fewer health problems then their purebred parents; this is a phenomenon called hybrid vigor. However, this doesn’t mean they never develop genetic diseases passed on to them from either side.
Cavapoos have an average life expectancy of 12 to 15 years while the average lifespan of Cockapoos is slightly longer; 13 to 15 years.
Both breeds can develop the same genetic diseases that are common in Poodles. Some of them are:
1. Hip Dysplasia.
3. Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA).
4. Legg-Perthis Disease.
5. Patella Luxation.
Hip Dysplasia is an orthopedic disease that’s common in many dogs. It’s an abnormality of the hip joint, which increases the risk of joint dislocation. This condition can be very painful for a dog.
Epilepsy is a central nervous system disorder that causes abnormal brain activity and seizures. It’s an incurable condition that affects all varieties of Poodles, with its consequences ranging from mild to very severe.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy is a disease that affects the photoreceptors in the eye. It usually starts with night blindness and eventually leads to a complete loss of vision.
Legg-Perthis Disease is a common condition in small and toy breeds that affects the hip joint. It can be extremely painful for a dog, causing him to limp on the affected leg, which progresses over time.
Patella luxation is also particularly common in small breeds. It’s a dislocation of the kneecap or the patella.
The main health issues of Cavaliers that a Cavapoo might inherit are:
1. Syringomyelia (SM).
2. Multi-focal Retinal Dysplasia (MRD).
3. Heart Mitral Valve Disease (MVD).
Syringomyelia is a serious condition where fluid-containing cavities develop within the spinal cord. It damages the spinal cord over time, causing pain, stiffness, and weakness to a dog.
Retinal Dysplasia is a hereditary health condition that affects a dog’s vision.
The multi-focal type of retinal dysplasia appears as streaks and dots in the central retina. The worst outcome of it is retinal detachment, which is accompanied by blindness. It can also have an effect on developing other eye problems, like cataracts or glaucoma.
Heart Mitral Valve Disease, or MVD, is a serious progressive disease in which the mitral valve of the heart deteriorates, allowing the blood to flow backwards. In its worst form, the disease causes heart failure and death.
The Cocker Spaniel genes in Cockapoos make the possibility of developing familial nephropathy higher. This disease, caused by a genetic mutation, can lead to fatal renal failure.
The long, floppy ears of these dogs also make them susceptible to ear infections, but these can be prevented with regular ear cleaning.
Which is better – a Cavapoo or a Cockapoo?
Cavapoos and Cockapoos are very similar in many ways, so it’s hard to call one better than the other. However, the differences they do have, like size, barking tendencies, and energy levels, can make them a better or worse fit for a specific dog owner.
Have you decided to bring a new puppy into your home, but you’re stuck choosing between a Cockapoo and a Cavapoo? All you’ve got is a dog name and nothing else?
Here are some things you need to consider in order to make the best decision.
The first step is to figure out whether either of them would fit your lifestyle. If you spend a lot of time away from home and your future pup would be alone most of the day, then emotionally-dependent dogs like these might not be the right fit for you.
Is the dog’s size an important factor for you? Cockapoos come in more sizes. They can be both smaller or bigger than Cavapoos, which grow to be from nine to 14 inches tall, and can be 10 to 25 pounds in weight.
When it comes to their appearance, there can be as many differences among puppies of the same breed as there are between Cavapoos and Cockapoos.
These dogs come in a variety of colors from which you can choose. If you get yourself a dog with a curly coat, you’ll need to invest more time in their grooming.
However, if you’re looking for a dog that won’t trigger your allergies, then these puppies are the best choice as they shed less.
Both dogs usually have playful, loyal, and gentle characteristics, but their energy levels are different. Cockapoos are the better choice for those with more active lifestyles since they need more exercise.
If you have a lot of neighbors, you might want to take into consideration their barking tendencies. Cavapoos can be quite vocal compared to Cockapoos.
They are both prone to certain hereditary diseases, but getting your puppy from a reputable breeder will minimize the risks of them developing.
Whatever your decision is at the end, these lovable pups will definitely bring a lot of joy and fun into your life.
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