1. Home
Send to a Friend via Email

Discuss in my forum

Breed Profile: Havanese


Havanese Dog Breed Photo Photo © iStockphoto.com/Walter Spina




The Havanese is an old breed that was developed in Cuba and is the only breed native to that country. Ancestors of the breed came to Cuba from Spain in the early 1500s by way of Tenerife, one of the Canary Islands. The breed is believed to share lineage with the Bichon. The Havanese was a beloved pet of Cuban aristocrats, and later became popular among wealthy Europeans.

The Havanese has been in the US since the Cuban revolution in 1959. Only 11 dogs were left to save the breed from extinction. The Havanese is now rare in Cuba but has thrived in the US and Europe. The breed was recognized by the AKC in 1996.


7-13 pounds

Colors and Markings:

The Havanese is seen in a variety of colors and markings. The breed may have one or two colors including, but not limited to, black, silver, white, cream, tan, fawn, gold, sable and red.

Health Problems:

Responsible breeders strive to maintain the highest breed standards as established by kennel clubs like the AKC. Dogs bred by these standards are less likely to inherit health conditions. However, some hereditary health problems can occur in the breed. The following are some conditions to be aware of:

About the Breed:

The Havanese is a small and sturdy dog with a playful, affectionate personality. These smart little dogs are overall good-natured and make great family dogs. The Havanese is just one of many dog breeds that are considered hypoallergenic. However, because of its coat type, routine grooming is an absolute necessity. This breed should be brushed often, up to 4-5 times per week if the coat is kept long. Many Havanese owners choose to keep a shorter coat, so haircuts may be necessary every few weeks.

Like all dogs, the Havanese should receive basic obedience training. These dogs are intelligent and attentive, therefore they tend to learn quickly.

An active little dog, the Havanese should get daily exercise. If they have proper outlets for their energy, these dogs are content to cuddle on your lap or play indoors. This breed tends to do quite well with children and other dogs. The friendly and gentle temperament of the Havanese makes this breed suitable for many types of homes.

Browse Dog Breeds A-Z

  1. About.com
  2. Home
  3. Dogs
  4. Dog Breed Information
  5. Dog Breed Profiles
  6. Havanese Dog Breed - Havanese Profile

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.