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Havanese Characteristics: The friendly and fun-loving Havanese is a breed of small dog classified as a member of the Toy Dog Group (AKC:1996).

The Havanese, is characterized by its adorable, small, refined appearance with a gentle, soft expression. Other characteristics include large, dark, oval shaped eyes; slightly raised hair-covered ears; a puffy tail that curls up and over the back and a springy, lively gait.

The temperament of the Havanese can be described as Companionable, Playful, Gentle. The coat type of the Havanese is described as varied coat (curly, wavy, straight) in assorted colors.  Due to its characteristics and qualities, the Havanese demonstrated the desired traits of a Performer and Lapdog and is known by its nick name the "Dog from Havana". The origin of the Havanese dog breed was in Cuba where it was developed during the 1500's.

Havanese Breed Group and Dog Type - Toy Dog Group (AKC:1996): The Havanese is one of the many breeds of dogs that belong to the Toy Dog Group (AKC:1996).

Other names for the Havanese: The Havanese is known by the nickname of the "Dog from Havana" and the "Skirt Dog". Other names for this breed of dog include the Bichon Havanes, Bichon Havanais, Havana Silk Dog, Bichon Havanese, Havanese Cuban Bichon and Havanezer. The Havanese is the national dog of Cuba, where it is known as the Habanero.

Origin of the name: The origin of the name "Havanese" derives from the dogs place of origin in Havana, Cuba.

Havanese History and Origin: The country of origin of the Havanese breed was in Cuba during the 1500's. The breed was originally known as the 'Bichon Havanese' and was one of the many 'Barbichon' dog breeds, later shortened to 'Bichon', such as the Bichon Frise. The word 'Bichon' was commonly used describe any "small long-haired dog" before breeds were given specific names, including the Bolognese and the Maltese. The Havanese shares a common ancestry with these breeds and also the poodle.

Havanese History: The history of the Havanese dates back to 1511 when the Spanish conquest of Cuba began under the leadership of Spanish explorer and conquistador Diego Velázquez de Cuellar (1465 - 1524) who governed Cuba on behalf of Spain.

The Spanish explorers, sailors and traders were accompanied by their small Bichon ship dogs that had been acquired from various Mediterranean ports. The various Bichon breeds were cross bred creating the the now extinct Blanquito de la Habana ("little white silk dog of Havana") and the Havanese. The wealthy Spanish colonists in Cuba adopted the European fashion of the era and kept the diminutive Havanese as lapdogs and companions. The tradition of keeping the Havanese as a lapdog was continued by the aristocratic owners of vast Cuban sugar plantations who jealously guarded the exclusivity of Havanese ownership.

The tiny Havanese dogs were bred by the wealthy, but never sold. Occasionally the dogs were given as a gift to an honored guest. The pampered Havanese was seen by the lower classes in Havana, riding in the carriages of wealthy women. The Havanese dogs were referred to as "Perritos de la Falda" (meaning 'Skirt dogs') because they were small enough to hide beneath a lady's skirts.

One of the most famous and dedicated Cuban breeders was Senora Catalina Laza, the wife of a wealthy sugar plantation owner, who did much to preserve the attributes of the Havanese breed. As fashions changed the popularity of the Havanese as a lapdog declined in Cuba and by the time of the Cuban Revolution in 1959 the Havanese was on the verge of extinction. Wealthy Cubans such as the Perez and Fantasio families fled Cuba and went to the United States, taking their Havanese dogs with them.

In 1979 the Havanese Club of America (HCA) was founded and the Havanese dog breed was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1996.

Havanese Height: The Havanese breed is classified as a small sized dog. The height to the shoulder of a male dog is 8-11 inches (20-28 cm). The height to the shoulder of a female dog is slightly less.

Havanese Weight: The weight of this small sized dog, in a male dog is 7-13 pounds (3-6 kg). The weight of the smaller female dog is slightly less than the male.


Havanese Coat Type - LOW shedding coat: The coat type is described as varied coat (curly, wavy, straight).

Havanese Coat Colors: The colors of this dog breed consist of assorted colors consisting of Black, Mahogany, Fawn, White, Havana Brown and Tobacco. Havana Brown and Tobacco color are reddish brown, a variation of Brindle which is a brownish or tawny color.

Havanese Grooming - MODERATE Grooming Needs: The dog grooming needs of the Havanese is not extensive and therefore categorized as Moderate in order to maintain a healthy coat, reducing the risk of skin infections.

The modest grooming needs of the Havanese is considered to be mid-maintenance requiring weekly brushing and combing. Dog Grooming Requirements should include bathing the dog on a monthly basis and making regular inspections of the teeth, eyes, nails and ears.

Havanese Litter Size: The litter size of this dog breed ranges from 1 - 9 puppies (Average 4). Havanese puppies for sale can be obtained reputable breeders and from rescue centers. The cost of Havanese puppies varies depending on location, pedigree history and the dog breeder.

Havanese Temperament and personality: The temperament and personality of this popular dog breed is described as Friendly, Companionable, Playful, Gentle and Fun-loving.

Havanese Exercise Requirements - LOW Exercise Requirements: The exercise requirements of this breed of dog is low. The Havanese requires regular daily exercise consisting of approximately 30 minutes to one hour every day. This small dog has a springy, lively gait with small strides and only requires a fairly slow speed by the owner to meet the dogs exercise requirements. Remember that it would take a lot of extra steps by your dog to keep up with your normal walking pace.

Havanese Diet: A fully grown Havanese should be fed twice a day. A diet consisting of a premium dog food can be balanced with fresh food eaten by the family. The question is What Can Dogs Eat?. Check out our comprehensive list of what dogs can and what dogs cannot eat.

Havanese Health Problems: Potential health problems of the Havanese breed include Patellar Luxation, Eye problems . Resolving health problems can prove to be expensive and it is always wise to obtain pet insurance or dog health insurance when buying a dog. Is the Havanese dog breed said to be Hypoallergenic? Answer: Yes (Refer to Hypoallergenic Dogs).

Havanese Lifespan: The life expectancy of dogs vary according to the size, breed of dog and any serious health problems. The typical lifespan of the Havanese breed is 14-15 years.

Havanese Male Dog Names: Male Dog names are most often chosen to reflect favorite names of the owner or the strength, size, coloring and country of origin of the Havanese breed. To give you some inspiration regarding good male Havanese names our small selection might be of help with naming boy dogs. Out top male dog names are: Alonso *** Bertram *** Arthur *** Carlos *** Juan *** Osjami *** Ramon *** Reydel *** Che *** Condela *** Damason.

Havanese Female Dog Names: Female Dog names tend to be softer, prettier and reflect the temperament of the girl dog. Our top choice of good female Havanese names are Cheena *** Armena *** Belgis *** Laline *** Maela *** Yelina *** Roxy *** Lady *** Sasha.

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