Havanese dogs have long hair with pearly sheen and those with short coats are nicknamed Shavanese. They are good companions, gentle and respond well. They are good for performing circus tricks and families.


Breed Type: Toy
Weight: 7 to 13 lbs
Height: 8 to 11 inches
Coat type: Profuse untrimmed coat. Havanese dogs do not shed

A breed of dog of the Bichon type, Havanese were developed from the now extinct, Bichon Tenerife. Very playful and jovial, they suit the best with little older and considerate children. Available in many colors, such as cream, gold, silver, champagne, tan, blue, black, chocolate, pure white and even combinations of several colors, the canines are extremely cute and adorable to look at. Havanese makes great watch dogs, making sure to alert the owner when a visitor arrives, but once the owner welcomes the guest it would also do the same. Learn more about the history, appearance and personality of Havanese in the following lines.

During the Cuban revolution, the pretty fluffy companion was culled. Though a few of the Cuban families brought their Havanese to America, the inclination to breed the dogs was lost. It was only in the 1970s that the Americans got interested in the rare variety, but to their dismay, there were only 11 animals left in the US as a whole. However, with dedicated breeding, Havanese has emerged once again successfully thronged the popularity ratio, being one of the fastest growing registration of new dogs in the American Kennel Club (AKC). The rarity, good temperament and publicity gained by famous owners such as Barbara Walters have made Havanese a trendy possession.

Characterized by a unique topline that rises slightly from withers to rump and a gait, Havanese mostly has a sprightly, agile appearance on the move. Small and sturdy, Havanese dog has a plumed tail curled over its back. Though it essentially belongs to the toy breed type, it has a hearty and sturdy appearance which lessens the chances of it being tagged as delicate. Coming to its facial features, the dogs of this breed flaunt of almond shaped eyes and medium well feathered ears that always hand down. Havanese has a tail curve over the back at rest and is covered with a plumb of long fur. The ideal height of the dog varies from 9 and 10½ inches, measured at the withers, which is only slightly less than the length from point of shoulder to point of buttocks. This is the reason that Havanese appears to be slightly longer than tall.

Gentle and responsive, Havanese are affectionate, lively and have a springy gait. They are very intelligent, playful and happy-go-lucky types and live well with children and other pets. Havaneses efficiently adapt themselves to the society and are eager to please everyone around. The canine is extremely sensitive to the tone of the voice and gets deeply affected by harsh tones. One of the most distinctive characteristics of Havanese is that they learn tricks easily and hence have long since enjoyed the reputation of being circus dogs. Positive reinforcement techniques work best with them.