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Havanese Facts 
                      
General Havanese Facts 

                       


Havanese factsThis dog is considered to be a Toy dog, the smallest classification of dogs in the AKC.

This breed is the national dog of Cuba, where it originated from.

Average life span is 15 years with a range of 12 to 17 being typical.

The average size litter is 4, with just 1 and up to 9 puppies not being an uncommon range.

In 1970, there were only 11 Havanese dogs in the U.S. and only due to carefully and dedicated breeding did that number increase.  Today, this breed is the 37th most popular out of 157 AKC purebreds.

Color and Appearance Facts About Havanese

They can be found in any canine color… these may be solids or mixed. This includes mahogany, fawn, tobacco (a dark brown), havana brown, black and white.

It is normal for skin to have freckles.

Nails and paw pads may be white, pink or black.

This breed has hair as opposed to fur and therefore is considered to be hypoallergenic.

The hair is often left to grow long similar to the Shih Tzu...it is the typical appearance of this breed; a soft, long and wavy coat is expected.  It a double coat that consists of both an inner and outer layer.   However, some owners opt for a puppy cut, in which the coat is trimmed closer to the body...one of the best elements of this is that it will not require as much grooming and certainly will not develop as many matts and tangles.

Because this breed originated in a tropical climate, the coat, while appearing to be very heavy, is actually very light and soft.

The fluffy tail is loosely curled over the back.

While the coat around the head can grow long, it is traditionally never put back into a topknot.

Most have very dark, almost shaped eyes….Although those with a chocolate colored coat may have eyes of green, blue or amber.

Chocolates will have dark chocolate pigment (eye rims, nose and lips)… all other colors will have solid black pigment.
 
When they walk, they have a very bouncy gait which is unique to this breed.

The average height is 8.5 to 11.5 inches (.22 to .29 cm)

The weight will range from 7 to 13 pounds (3.18 to 5.9 kg) when fully grown.

Behavior and Temperament Havanese Facts


The Havanese is known for being extremely friendly with a happy personality.

They have a very sweet disposition and are very playful.

They normally get along very well with people, other dogs and with cats.

They are growing more and more popular as a treasured family pet.

The get along exceptionally well with children of all ages and are known to keep watch over them while simultaneously  playing with them.

They crave interaction with their human family members; this seems to be the 1 thing that makes them happy.  Most do not so well when left alone and will suffer from Separation Anxiety in the absence of their human family members.

Most are not barkers and many tend to be shy around strangers.

                       


Grooming Facts

They are considered to be a low-shedding dog and a good choice for those who are normal allergic to canines.  However, dead hairs will fall back into the coat itself as opposed to falling off.  For this reason, regular brushing with a firm bristle brush is recommended.

Havanese puppies have short coats, however by year 1 it will be long and fluffy.  It is not meant to be trimmed; however some owners do prefer a shorter cut that is easier to maintain….if so, it should not be clipped shorter than 2 inches from the body.

The long hairs can become tangled, causing knots (mats).  For this reason, an owner should brush and then comb each day.  This is done to catch any tangles before they become too large to undo.  If found, one should spritz the area with a canine leave-in conditioner or apply the solution directly to their hands and patiently work out the mat.   Only in extreme cases when the mat cannot be untangled should one clip it off.

When bathing, it is suggested to take care that water does not enter the ear canal. This can be accomplished by placing cotton just inside each ear.

After baths, it is best to blow dry the coat, with the dryer set on low… too high of a setting can easily burn or irritate the skin.
If one does not wish to dry the coat, it should at least be patted down with a soft towel to remove excess water and the combed so that it does not dry into clumps of mats.

Tear stains can be an issue, especially on those with light colored coats.  An owner is encouraged to wipe the eye area each day, first with a warm, damp washcloth and then with a dry one to remove any moisture.    Tear stain cleanser will work in many cases and it is best to use stainless steel bowls for both food and water, as plastic containers can slowly release dye that can stain the hairs.

Care

Although it is a fact that they are very small, they do require some exercise.  This should include a daily walk of perhaps 30 minutes or so and several outdoor play time activities during the week.  Many enjoy running free, although this should be only allowed in a fenced in secure area with supervision, as they will want to interact with their owner...some love to run and play so much that they will appear to be smiling as the one pictured below!

Since they need close interaction with humans, these dogs do not do well when left home alone for long periods of time.  They need to be close to their owners in order to feel at peace.

Dental care should be given at home, at least every other day with a good brushing using a canine toothpaste. Once a year full dentals should be done by a professional veterinarian.

Havanese Facts Regarding Training

They are very intelligent and respond well to all types of training; however one will be most successful if training begins at an early age.

Havanese Facts on Health

This is a generally very healthy breed. The few issues that they are prone to are liver and heart disease, eye issues such as cataracts and retinal dysplasia.  They can be prone to luxating patella, which is when the knee cap slips out of place…. Many times this can be avoided by not allowing the dog to jump from too high of places, such as off the sofa, bed, etc.
                        

                         

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