Lesser Known Dog Breeds - The Charleston King Charles Spaniel


The Charleston dance craze was one of the most memorable and notable features of the roaring twenties in America. At the height of the dances popularity from mid 1926 - 1927, it seemed as though it was not just every other person who was joining in on the dance, but also quite a few dogs as well. Due to the widespread popularity of the dance, it was difficult to turn a corner and not see it going on, dance hall promoters thought they could introduce a new twist to the dance by having a dog dance along with the usual flappers. With it’s long ears, swishing about along with the strings of pearls, the Charleston King Charles Spaniel was an instant hit.


One of the most notable, and notorious, afficionados of the breed was the mobster Al ‘The Toothbrush’ Bolonzo.


A keen fan, Bolonzo kept several for his own personal entertainment.


spaniel cartoon

With the onset of the Great Depression, the breed’s popularity began to wane, as the dog was just a little too peppy for the now more sober times.

Just as various other breeds have had to evolve with their changing role, think of all the working dogs that are now no longer required to fil their intended role, the Charleston King Charles too had to change.

Examples of the breed can still be found in Berlin and New York engaged in experimental Jazz dance.