Welcome to Petfinder.com!

Check us out on:

Download our iPhone app
Petfinder at Twitter
Petfinder at Facebook
Petfinder at YouTube

Adopt a Havanese

Havanese Dog Breed

Picture: Yann Arthus-Bertrand/Corbis


bichon, companion, water dog

Area of origin:


Original function:

lapdog, performer

Average size of male:

Ht: 8.5-11.5, Wt: 7-13

Average size of female:

Ht: 8.5-11.5, Wt: 7-13

Other names:

bichon Havanais

  • •••••


  • ••••


  • ••••••


  • ••••••


  • •••••

    Friendliness towards dogs

  • Friendliness towards other pets

  • ••••••

    Friendliness towards strangers

  • •••••

    Ease of training

  • •••••

    Watchdog ability

  • ••

    Protection ability

  • ••••


  • •••

    Cold tolerance

  • ••••

    Heat tolerance

Havanese Dogs Available on Petfinder Right Now

See more adoptable Havanese dogs available on Petfinder

Watch Video About Havanese Dogs

Havanese Video Dogs 101: Havanese More Dog Videos

Havanese Dog Temperament

This is a busy, curious dog; she is happiest when she is the center of attention. She loves to play and clown and is affectionate with her family, children, strangers, other dogs and pets, basically everyone! The Havanese is willing to please and learn easily, but she tends to be vocal.

Havanese Dog Care

Although energetic, the Havanese can have her exercise needs met with a short walk or a good play session. She is not a dog that can live outside. Coat care entails brushing two to four times a week. This is a nonshedding dog, which means that loose hairs are caught in the outer hairs, tending to tangle, unless they are combed out.

Havanese Dog Health

Major concerns: none
Minor concerns: patellar luxation
Occasionally seen: PRA, otitis externa, cataract
Suggested tests: knee, eye
Life span: 12-14 years

Interested in the history of the Havanese dog breed?

The Havanese is one of the barbichon (later shortened to bichon) family of small dogs originating in the Mediterranean in ancient times. Spanish traders brought some of these dogs with them as gifts for Cuban women, allowing them to establish trading relationships. In Cuba, the little dogs were pampered as the special pets of the wealthy. They became known as Habeneros, and eventually some found their way back to Europe, where the breed was called the "white Cuban." They became quite popular, not only as pets of the elite but also as performing dogs. Their popularity as pets waned, however, and their stronghold remained in the circus, where they performed throughout Europe as trick dogs. Eventually the breed declined in numbers to such an extent that she was almost extinct not only in Europe but also in her native Cuba. A few remained in Cuba, however, and three families with their Havanese left Cuba for the United States during the 1950s and 1960s. Most present-day Havanese descend from these dogs. The breed has gradually aroused attention from dog fanciers and pet parents, and in 1996 the first Havanese entered an AKC show ring and was accepted for regular recognition as a member of the toy group as of the first day of 1999. The Havanese is also known as the Havana silk dog.

Copyright © 1998, 2005 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc. based on

Shelters with Havanese Dogs

Some animal welfare organizations with Havaneses ready for adoption:

Pet Videos

Adopting the Right Dog for You

Adopting the Right Dog for You

How to find the right dog for you and your family

Benefits of Adopting an Older Dog

Benefits of Adopting an Older Dog

Why adopting an older dog has many advantages

Preparing Your Home for a Puppy

Preparing Your Home for a Puppy

Prepare in advance to make sure your home is safe for your new pup