Breed Rating

family friendly:
Dog friendly:
Watch/guard dog:
Affection / Dependance:
Exercise needed:
Space needed:
Tendency to bark:
Grooming Requirements:
Tendency to bark:
Grooming Requirements:

Breed Attributes


Breed group: Toy    Type: Pure Breed    Talent: , , ,


Size: Small     Weight: 7-13 lbs     Fur length: Short    Ears: Flappy    Fur type: Straight    Fur Color: Black, Black & Brown, Black & White, Brown & White, Gray / Salt & Pepper, White / Cream


Life Expectancy: About 14-15 years    Rarity: Common    Availability: Easily available    Climate: Good for every climate.

Breed Details


The Havanese originated in Cuba and was bred to be a companion to people. They are a dog that is part of the Bichon breed, which explains why they look so similar to the Bichon Frise. The Havanese was created by the mixture of German Poodles with a now extinct breed called the Blanquito de la Habana of Cuba. These dogs became almost extinct in the 1900's just as their ancestors had, but thanks to careful breeding and a love for this dog, they are now safe and are known as a common breed today.

The name Bichon translates to 'fleecy lap dog' and the ancestor breed, Blanquito de la Habana, translates to ' Havanese silk dog'. With these two dogs together, the final outcome is the Havanese which is a dog of long soft fur. They are a small dog, longer than they are tall with fur fringe on the ears, legs, underbelly and tail. They have a messy look to them which gives this dog their notorious appearance and desired look.

The Havanese comes in its commonly known long shaggy coat but they possess a gene that gives them a short smooth coat with long fur on their legs and tail. These are known as the Smooth coated Havanese which are not considered a breed and are a fault if shown in the show ring which results in disqualification.


The Havanese will come in all colour varieties, but most commonly are, blue, white, tan, black , chocolate or cream. There are also tri-coloured Havanese and parti coloured which use a mixture of any colouring.


This breed has a very long, thick shaggy coat that has a constant messy look to it. There are 2 types of coats for this breed, the long haired and the smooth coated. The long haired is the sought after variety while the smooth coated is a genetic fault and will not be accepted into any show arenas as this is not how the breed should look. The long haired Havanese will need regular grooming as they have a very thick coat that can mat easily.


The Havanese is a pleasant, affectionate dog that make friends wherever they go. They love people, dogs, smaller family pets and are excellent with children, making them a perfect contender for the family dog. The Havanese is a highly intelligent breed and are quite easy to train as they love to go above and beyond to please their masters. They are bright and responsive dogs that will make great watchdogs as their bark can alert the entire household! This breed is known to have a favorite person and will become their shadow! They will tag along to wherever their master goes but isn't a jealous or controlling dog. They enjoy the company of their families even when dining as if one person leaves during dinner, they will take a bit of their food with them to accompany that person.


The Havanese will need to be groomed about once or twice per week and should be bathed every 2-3 months. These dogs are hypo-allergenic making them great for people that suffer from animal related allergies. This breed is prone to eye problems, such as Cataracts and Progressive Retinal Atrophy, skin allergies, and luxating patella's. Heart murmurs, hip dysplasia, and deafness are also genetic diseases the Havanese may inherit.


This is a clever, easily trainable dog making training for either basic obedience or little tricks quite simple. They need positive methods and repetition to succeed in any type of training, as negative methods with this dog will get you nowhere. They can be very sensitive to their owners words so a gentle approach will be needed.


The Havanese will need about half an hour of exercise per day as they burn off most of their energy during the daytime. Regular walks will be perfect to tire this dog out. The Havanese will be perfect for apartments because they are well behaved small dogs that don't take up much space. A back yard will not be needed as they don't need the extra outdoor room to run around in.

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