Havanese Dog Breed: What You Need to Know

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The Havanese is a wonderful family dog and companion that loves the entire family. This little dog is a strong dog, despite its seemingly small stature. With a big personality and an interesting past, it’s not exactly a mystery why this particular dog breed is so famous and so popular around the world. One of the most interesting dog breeds around, the Havanese is growing very quickly in popularity thanks to its friendly demeanor and its position in the family as a small dog that loves to play and enjoy the entire family. Anyone looking to add a pet to their household is immediately intrigued by the Havanese because it loves both adults and children and it’s very happy to play with all other animals, no matter the breed.

It’s the ideal family member, and people are realizing that more and more. If you are considering a Havanese for your own family, there is very little that should stop you from bringing this dog home. However, we always encourage you to learn as much as you can about any given breed before you choose to make it your own. It might not be right for you just because it is the right breed for so many others.

Temperament and Personality

You are going to love the Havanese; it’s a beautiful dog both inside and out. This little dog has a lively and friendly personality, making it open and sweet to anyone that crosses its path. It’s not a watchdog in any sense of the word, but the Havanese will make friends anywhere you go. This sweet dog is very intelligent, which means training is simple. It responds very well to a firm owner with a positive attitude, but it will not respond to anyone who chooses to use harsh discipline with this breed.

The Havanese is a dog that anyone can bring home with a great deal of success. This dog is a family dog in all manners of speaking. It loves adults, and it loves to be with those who love to be with it. The breed is also very child-friendly, making it a great dog for families. Because it is not a large dog, many families are more confident having this particular breed at home with small kids and babies. It’s very loyal and loves affection, and it’s going to want to be your best friend at all times. This little dog is highly affectionate, and it’s very close to the people in its family.

Size and Lifestyle

What most people love so much about the Havanese is that it’s a small dog. This little guy is not going to get much taller than 11 inches, but not much smaller than 8 inches. As far as his weight is concerned, the Havanese is always around 7 to 13 pounds. Females tend to be smaller than males on both ends of this spectrum, but you just never know what might happen with any given puppy from any given breed.

What makes another strong point for many dogs owners is that the Havanese is adaptable and good for just about any living space. This dog is great in big homes, large properties and it is great in small apartments. It is also adaptable, so it can go from one to the other if you are a city dweller during the week and a country home owner on the weekends. These are great dogs that are very active no matter whether they in or outdoors, and they love to be inside. However, they do require daily exercise to keep them healthy and entertained.

Not too much exercise, however. This is a dog that loves a long walk or a romp in the backyard, but the Havanese is not going to beg you to spend hours outdoors or spend miles walking down the street. In fact, he’s going to pretty much play for a while and then want to come back inside and rest. Active, but also a dog that loves to be indoors with the rest of the family most of the time.

The Havanese is a dog that you can expect to have in your home and in your family as many as 15 years, and it’s always a good idea to have your dog fixed if a litter of anywhere from 1 to 9 puppies does not sound all that appealing to you.

Grooming can be a bit more involved if you choose to keep your Havanese’s coat long. However, keeping it clipped short is more manageable for most dog owners. You can expect to keep your dog looking and feeling good with a daily brush, but more like a daily brush and special care with longer coats. Make good friends with your groomer if you choose to keep this dog’s coat long.

Health Concerns

The good news is that the Havanese is a very healthy breed that does not really have any breed-specific health issues. This is a dog that is more likely to have some vision issues such as cataracts or even progressive retinal atrophy than anything else. Dry skin can also be an issue, which is why it is not recommended that you bathe a Havanese on a regular basis but on more of an as-needed basis.

Breed History

This beautiful dog hails primarily from Cuba, though it was almost extinct following the Cuban, Russian and French Revolutions. This dog is now considered rare in its natural home of Cuba, but the Havanese is becoming more and more popular across the world, leading more breeders to take an interest in breeding this type of animal.

The Havanese is a member of the Bichon family, and it was once a dog that belonged to the aristocratic members of Cuban society centuries ago. They came as lapdogs from Europe in the 17th century (The Bichon) and the Havanese was developed in Cuba after that. Over the course of the years, it became a more popular dog with the native families, and now it’s everywhere in countries other than Cuba, where the Havanese is considered very rare today.

Photo by Getty Images

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