• Back to Dog Database


Havanese Dog Breed Information

Size 8-11 in (21-29 cm)
Weight 6.6-15 lb (3-7 kg)
Origin Cuba
Color White, brown, red, gray, dun, black; multi-colored
Lifespan 12-14 years
Suitable as Family dogs
Personality Sunny disposition, docile, affectionate, curious, always busy
Exercise Dog Exercise
Drooling Dog Drooling
Shedding Dog Shedding
Fur care Dog Fur Care

Rating = very/a lot; Rating = not very/a little

Breed Characteristics

These sociable dogs love being around people, children, other dogs and pets (even cats!). Its boundless love is so great that it follows its owners whereever they go and stick to them like glue or a Velcro.

This is why the dog is also called „Velcro dog“. Havenese feel best when they’re the center of attention. But don't worry, it is a good-natured, happy dog, which antics are guarantee to make you smile.

Cute Havanese Cute Havanese - Photo: Florida Chuck/Shutterstock

Although the Havanesse is small, it is not a lap dog. It has as much energy as a large dog and needs just as much exercise.

By the way, did you know that Havanese have a particularly light-footed, elastic, bouncy gait? When they "gallop" they look a bit like a bunny hopping. That looks pretty cute. Nevertheless, the dog is not always active, but enjoys to relax with its owner on the sofa.

Havanese are not only popular family dogs, but can also be trained to be therapy dogs or learn dog sports such as agility or obedience.

Please note: The fact that Havanese like to spend their whole time with its people is also a downside, because it tends to suffer from anxiety, when it is left alone for too long.

Havanese playing with a toy Havanese playing with a toy - Foto: Dorottya Mathe/Shutterstock


Special highlights of this small dog are its expressive eyes and its absolutely charming long and silky coat. Its seems to be heavy and warm, but it is light and actually serves as a sunscreen.

By the way, if your unsure how to tell the difference between a Havanese from a Maltese, Bolognese or Bichon frisé, then look at the color of its coat. While the other mentioned dogs always have white fur, the Havanese can have a brown, red, gray or multicolored coat, too.


The facts are yet to be established but it is believed that the Bichon Tenerife came to Europe and then to Cuba via the Canary Islands (more precisely Tenerife).

On Cuba the Bichon Tenerife developed into the „Blanquito de la Habana“, which means "little white dog from Havana". The dog was then cross-bred with other breeds, which finally resulted in the Havanese.

Havanese Havanese - Photo: Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH/Shutterstock

Where Does the Name Come From?

The Havanese is named after the city Havana, the capital of the Caribbean island of Cuba.

Health and Care

Havanese have long coat that needs daily brushing so it does not get matted. It also needs to be bathed frequently. Many owners clip the coat regularly or let a hairdresser clip it. This way it is easier to care for.

Did You Know?

Havanese love paper. You better keep an eye on loose paper and secure the toilet paper in bathroom cabinet ;)

Havanese Havanese - Photo: Dorottya Mathe/Shutterstock

Back to Golden Retriever | Continue to Irish Setter