A cheery, little, round-faced dog with long, straight, golden hair and floppy ears sits on the grass patiently waiting for some fuss.


The Havanese is known to be a affectionate and loyal companion dog. They are an adorable small breed and because of this, are very adaptable to various living situations.

If you are considering bringing a Havanese home, or would like to spend cuddling these little balls fur by borrowing a Havanese, we’ve gathered lots of information about the breed.

A white, curly-haired dog is sitting on a bench at a picnic table

What is a Havanese?

The Havanese dog breed, also known as the Havanese Silk Dog, are a small breed growing up to 28 cm in height. They have a long life span and average 14-16 years. They were originally bred as a companion dog to the Cuban aristocracy in the 1800s. They became very popular in England when Queen Victoria owned one. Charles Dickens was also known to have of owned one.

They are part of the Bichon family of dogs, including breeds such as Coton de Tulear, Maltese, Bichon Frise and Bolognese.

As they are the national dog of Cuba, their coats are rather unique as they keep the dogs from overheating.

How much exercise does a Havanese need?

Due to the size of the Havanese, they are rather low maintenance when it comes to exercise as they only require up to 30 minutes per day. The much prefer to be curled up next to their owner on the sofa.

Sarah says her Havanese, Jeff is:

“loving and just wants to be with people, all the time. He will follow you around constantly seek cuddles and affection. He loves being with other dogs he knows but really he loves people best! He is very cute, doesn't smell or shed and is very easy going, he's happy to do whatever you are doing as long as you are doing it together”

What is their typical temperament?

The Havanese is a lively and affectionate breed. They are incredibly loyal to their owner as they are a companion dog, always wanting to be near you and entertain you. They are often referred to as “show offs” as they love to be the centre of attention, as with the rest of the breeds in their Bichon family.

They require a lot of human companionship and aren’t a breed that can be left on their own for any period of time. This does mean if you spend a lot of time out of the house, then this may not be the breed for you. Or you could consider finding a lovely borrower who could keep them company when you are out.

They are amazing with children as they love to play and lap up any attention possible. If you have a child who is nervous around dogs, but you want them to get used to dogs, Havanese’s (or any breed in the Bichon family) would be the perfect dog to introduce them to.

Doggy member, Lucy is:

“a complete people person and loves everyone she meets. Belly rubs are her favourite things. She loves children...especially babies. She also loves cats. She loves to play in the park, but when she is at home, she curls up and has lots of naps. Lucy is incredibly quiet. I've had people comment on how you forget she is there sometimes.”

Are the Havanese easy to train?

The Havanese is a highly intelligent breed, and because they are people pleasers they are rather easy to train making them the perfect breed for first time owners.

They do need to know who is in charge from day one, otherwise they can develop “small dog syndrome” making them fairly difficult to live with.

Gail’s Havanese, Harvey:

is a very cute lovable little dog, who seems to create smiles wherever he is. He loves a walk and a run around but he also loves a cuddle in the evening and will snuggle up to you while you are on the sofa.

Thanks to the Havanese (and owners) from the BorrowMyDoggy community for sharing their wooftastic photos and quotes.

  • Owners - if you’re looking to find your Havanese a new friend or some extra cuddles, why not get in touch with borrowers from the community who would love to help you out?
  • Borrowers - if you’re looking to learn more about the Havanese (or any other breeds) why not reach out to local owners in the community who are looking for a helping hand and to share the love of their dog?

As more owners and borrowers join the community and start messaging, more woofs, walks and waggy tails can be spread to share the love of dogs.

Why not join the BorrowMyDoggy community today?

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