Coat & Grooming:The long, silky, wavy coat is practically non-shedding
Energy Level:Somewhat Active; Curious, sociable dogs, Havanese enjoy a good romp but have no special exercise needs
Nicknames: Havana Silk Dog
Meet the Havanese
Havanese (singular or plural, the name’s the same) are happy little dogs with a spring in their step and a gleam in their big, brown eyes. A curled-over tail is a breed hallmark, as is the gorgeous silky coat, which comes in a variety of colors. Some owners enjoy cording the coat, making it look a little like a Puli, and others prefer to clip it short to reduce grooming time. Happily, Havenese are just as cute no matter what hairdo you give them.
What's Their Story?
Havanese were brought to Cuba by European traders in the 1600s and became pampered pets of Havana’s aristocrats and wealthy merchants. Havanese lost their favored place in Cuban society in 1959, when communists overthrew the government. Refugees to America brought the dogs with them and, with help from American dog lovers, the exiled Cubans kept their national breed from going extinct. Since coming into the AKC in 1996, the breed’s popularity has soared with Americans looking for an adorable, long-lived companion.
Their small but sturdy bodies, adaptable nature, and easy way with people make Havanese perfect city dogs. Not that Havanese need a city to be happy. They’re thrilled to be anyplace where they can be the center of attention for their lucky humans. Havanese are smart, trainable, and natural clowns—in fact, some have worked in circuses. But the breed isn’t all fun and games. Havanese are excellent watchdogs and take the job seriously, but normally won’t annoy you with a lot of yapping.