The fluffy ‘teddy bear’ that results from breeding the tiny lapdog known as the King Charles Cavalier Spaniel with the larger, intelligent fleecy Poodle, the Cavapoo is a downy, playful, and friendly little dog.
Cavapoos are outgoing, loyal, and super bright! But are Cavapoos aggressive? What is aggression, and how can you identify aggressive behaviors? What should you do about aggression in a Cavapoo? This is what we’re looking at in this article. So, read on to find out more.
The quick answer is
No a Cavapoo is not naturally aggressive. The Cavapoo was initially bred to make a calm, hypoallergenic lapdog. Neither the Poodle nor the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is regarded as being notoriously aggressive dogs.
What is aggression in Cavapoos?
As with other dogs, a Cavapoo might show aggression by growling or biting. If you touch an aggressive Cavapoo or approach them, they can start to growl or even bark loudly.
This is a warning for you to stop whatever you’re doing. If you keep doing whatever your Cavapoo doesn’t want you to do, they may bare their teeth or nip you. You could be petting your Cavapoo at the time or just simply walking around your house.
So, you can see why aggression is so dangerous and why it’s essential to find out why your Cavapoo is acting aggressively. It’s imperative to stop your Cavapoo’s aggression in its tracks!
That being said, your Cavapoo may also show what appears to be slightly aggressive behaviors in the course of play. This behavior is normal, up to a point, and doesn’t need to be discouraged.
Why could a Cavapoo be aggressive?
Some Cavapoos show signs of food aggression, where they bark or try to bite anyone who touches their bowl or moves past them while they are eating. Your Cavapoo may also be protective of treats and titbits, running off to eat them, hiding them, and growling at anyone who tries to remove it. This is more common in households with multiple dogs.
Cavapoos are an alert breed, too. Some owners report that their Cavapoos often appear to start growling or barking at absolutely nothing. If your Cavapoo does this, the aggressive behavior could just be your Cavapoo reacting to noise or movement in the distance, like a squirrel, cat, bat, or high-pitched whistle.
Maybe your Cavapoo acts aggressively when you try to pet them? If your Cavapoo growls and snaps at you when you rub or apply pressure to a specific area of their body, there’s a chance they have sustained an injury in this area.
This could be anything from something as simple as a bruise, cut, or small matt-up to a breakage or parasite infestation. Get in contact with your vet if you suspect any kind of injury in your Cavapoo.
If your Cavapoo shows aggression and is not yet neutered or spayed, consider the possibility that they may be experiencing a hormonal imbalance. Hormones can cause fluctuations with your Cavapoo’s brain chemistry, resulting in aggressive behaviors like growling or snapping.
Female Cavapoos are more likely to exhibit aggression when they are in heat, around every six months. Be sure to give your Cavapoo the space they need during this time.
Is your Cavapoo a rescue? If so, you may have minimal information on your pooch’s past. A rehomed Cavapoo may show aggression as a result of a previous owner abusing them.
Or, even if a Cavapoo has never been abused, they may still feel unsure of their new surroundings if recently rehomed. Whatever the reason, aggressive behaviors are common among rehomed Cavapoos.
And of course, if you have multiple dogs, this is another big reason for aggression. Your Cavapoo may feel protective of toys, treats, and their food bowl. If your dogs eat together, your Cavapoo may growl at the other dog or dogs throughout the meal, especially if other dogs try to take a bite of food out of your Cavapoo’s bowl.
If your dogs sleep in the same room, your Cavapoo may refuse to let other dogs anywhere near their basket, biting other dogs if they put a paw in or walk past.
How can I prevent aggression in my Cavapoo?
If you want to prevent or treat your Cavapoo’s aggression, the first thing you have to do is find out why your Cavapoo is behaving aggressively.
For example, if your Cavapoo shows signs of food aggression, the best thing to do is feed your Cavapoo in a room by themselves, away from other people or dogs. This way, your Cavapoo can be much more relaxed about eating. Your Cavapoo may even stop exhibiting food aggression after some time being fed alone.
Or, if your Cavapoo snaps at you because of an injury or a condition, they should stop showing aggression as soon as their medical condition is fully treated and healed.
If your Cavapoo shows extreme aggression when they are in heat or experiencing a hormonal imbalance, consider getting your Cavapoo neutered or spayed. Neutering or spaying your Cavapoo not only reduces aggression but also reduces the risk of many health conditions, as well as preventing unwanted canine pregnancies.
Perhaps you have recently rescued your Cavapoo. If your rescue Cavapoo is acting aggressively, they may still be getting used to their new situation and need some time to decompress.
After all, it can take adult dogs weeks to get used to a new owner and home. It can take your Cavapoo much longer to adjust if they have been mistreated in any way in their previous home.
If your Cavapoo is exhibiting aggression towards the other dogs in the household, make sure that every dog has their own bit of personal space they can go to whenever they feel like having some alone time.
A crate or bed is excellent for this. Some dogs may choose their own chill-out spots, and this is okay too. Give each dog free access to their relaxation area, ensuring they can visit there pretty much any time they want to.
Make sure each dog has somewhere entirely separate for sleep. You could try moving the beds or baskets apart at night or even moving each dog to a different room.
Are Cavapoos naturally aggressive?
With all the different ways a Cavapoo can act aggressively, you might now be wondering whether the Cavapoo is a naturally aggressive breed. How true is this?
Well, the Cavapoo was initially bred to make a calm, hypoallergenic lapdog. For the most part, breeders have certainly succeeded in creating this placid dog. Plus, neither the Poodle nor the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is regarded as being notoriously aggressive dogs. So, no – the Cavapoo is not naturally aggressive.
That being said, the Cavapoo breed has only been around since the late 1990s. So, there’s no telling how a Cavapoo might turn out to act. If you like this then read our Complete Cavapoo Guide: Must Read Facts here.