Description: The Havanese is small but not fragile. She has large, dark, expressive eyes that contribute to a soft, intelligent, but mischievous expression. Unlike most dogs, her back rises slightly from shoulders to rump, making her a bit taller in the rear. With jer head held high and plumed tail carried jauntly over her back, the Havanese is ready to enjoy the delights og the world. The body is somewhat longer than it is tall. The hight ranges from 23 to 30 cm at the withers; the ideal being 27 cm.
Coat: Characteristic of the Havanese is her crowning glory - her "profuse mantle of untrimmed, long, silky wavy hair." It may be straight, wavy, or curly. The wavy coat is preferred and easiest to maintain. The coat can be up to 12 to 18 cm long on the body, with the leg hair shorter. The Havanese has a double coat, with an outer coat and an undercoat. The outer coat is longer. The undercoat is shorter, softer, and seen next to the body when the outer coat is parted. Both are soft in texture. Because of the double coat and the lihgt texture, the Havanese coat stands off the body somewhat. This coat provides some protectio from the heat, appropriate to the breed's development in the warm Cuban climate. However, the lightweight cvoat offers no protection against cold. Some pet owners keep their Havanese in full show coat, usually with weekly trips to a groomer, but clip or tie the hair upo ot of the dog's eyes. Most pets and retiredshow dogs are clipped down for easier maintenance and fewer mats and tangles.
Color: The coat can be any color. Havaese come in white, shades of cream and champagne, gold, black, blue, silver, and chocolate. They can be parti-colored, which is one color on a white or lighter background, tricolored, or even brindle (striped). The darker colors may fade and gray as the dog gets older.
Temperament: Although the uniqe coat and attractive size and shape have attracted admirers, the delightful temperament has won the Havanese their growing popularity. They were bred soleley to be sompanions adn well-loved pets, and their temperametn is wonderfully suited to that happy task. They are people dogs, friendly and devoted to their owners. They are social and easygoing, getting along well with all sorts of people and other family pets. Their merry disposition makes them excellent playmates for children. Havanese are intelligent, eager to please, and learn tricks and commands quickly. Lively and alert, they are ready for any activitiy, indoors or out. Although Havaense were developed as companions adnd live in the hhouse, they enjoy activity and exercise. As small dogs, they can get their exercise on walks, in a yard, or zooming around the house. They are not delicate dogs needing to be carried, pampered, or spoiled. Havanese will bark and alert you to company coming to visit. However, they have no guarding instinct, preferring to be your visitor's new best friend. Although they will announce incoming guests, a well-bred Havanese never displays aggression, cowardice, or shyness with people or other dogs.
(Source: Nikki Riggsbee: Havanese: everyting about purchase, care, nutrition, behavior, and training; Copyright 2006 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.)
STANDARD FCI no. 250