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You are here: myPetSmart.com > Breeds > Havanese


Origin: Cuba

AKC Group: Toy

Height: 8.5 inches (Male)

Weight: 7 pounds (Male)

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Male height: 
8.5 inches
Male weight: 
7 pounds
The profuse double coat varies from wavy to curly.
All coat colors and patterns are acceptable; the most common colors are fawn, white and black.

The Havanese is a descendant of the Old World Bichon-type dog, but whether the breed came from the Bolognese of Italy or the Bichon Frise of Tenerife is not known. What is known is that the little white dogs brought to Cuba in the 17th century adapted to the climate and customs of the island and produced a smaller, silkier-coated dog called the "Blanquito de la Habana," or Havanese Silk Dog. This dog was a favorite of the Cuban aristocracy during the 18th and 19th centuries. When French and German Poodles became popular, the dogs were crossed with them and produced the Bichon Havanese. When Cubans began fleeing their country during the 1960s and migrating to the United States, some brought their dogs. While the breed may have perished in Cuba, an American dog breeder, Mrs. Goodale, is credited with keeping the Havanese alive in the United States.

The Havanese is a delightful companion - responsive, alert, curious, mindful, and fond of everyone. He grows very attached to his family and loves to amuse them with funny antics. Outgoing and intelligent, he lives up to his reputation as a charming companion.
At home: 
This dog is at home in the city or country, as long as he can spend lots of time with his family. The Havanese is a good choice for some allergy sufferers because his coat is practically nonshedding. He is a good watchdog and will alert his owner to unusual activity, yet he is not prone to excessive barking or nervousness.
Although the Havanese doesn't need huge amounts of exercise, he enjoys getting out and about to socialize and stretch his legs. He will gladly accompany his family wherever they go, whether it's around the house or around the block.
The Havanese needs a high-quality, nutritious diet. Most do well when fed twice a day.
A dog who thrives on the attention of his family, the Havanese is a quick and eager learner. He learns all kinds of tricks and requests with pleasure, as long as he is taught with positive, reward-based methods.
The Havanese gets along with people of all ages - including children - as well as all kinds of other pets.
The average life span of the Havanese is 13 to 15 years. While generally a very healthy breed, some health concerns include cataracts; dry skin; and patellar luxation.
Fun fact: 

A natural clown, the Havanese has been trained as a circus performer.

Grooming blurb: 
Pet owners typically keep their Havanese in a short, clipped coat, as the long hair needs a great deal of attention. Because the coat is practically nonshedding, the dead hair must be removed by brushing, which should be done several times a week.
This document has been published with the intent to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter within. While every reasonable precaution has been taken in preparation of this document, the author and publisher expressly disclaim responsibility for any errors, omissions, or adverse effects arising from the use or application of the information contained herein. The techniques and suggestions are used at the reader's discretion.