What do you get when you mix the Havanese, the small-but-sturdy national dog of Cuba, with their long, luxurious locks, and the bichon frise, France’s canine with the curly coat that gives them the look of the world’s cutest cotton ball?
You get one of today’s most beloved and popular mixed breeds—the Havachon. The Havachon is the perfect mix of both the Havanese and the bichon frise’s best traits—and that includes their trademark coats.
But when it comes to grooming, what’s the best way to keep this mixed pup looking their best? Let’s take a deep dive into all things Havachon grooming, from bathing to brushing, nail care to haircuts, and just about everything in between.
The biggest factor to consider when grooming your Havachon is, without a doubt, their coat.
The Havanese have a smooth, silky, lightweight coat that, if left to its own devices, will easily grow all the way to the floor. It can be straight or have a wavier texture—but either way, when allowed to grow, it grows long and luxurious.
Bichons, on the other hand, have a denser, curly coat (“frise” translates to curly in French). While the bichon’s coat definitely grows, it has a tendency to grow more in height than in length—which is where this breed gets their trademark “cotton ball” appearance.
A Havachon’s coat can more closely resemble either their Havanese or bichon parent, or their coat can be some combination of the two breeds.
The good news is that both breeds are low shedding, so with a Havachon, you don’t have to worry about dog hair covering everything in your home (including you!). But just because this pup doesn’t shed much doesn’t mean they don’t need much in the way of grooming.
You should plan to brush your dog at least three times a week to prevent any mats or tangles (more often—up to every day—if they have a longer, more Havanese-inspired coat). Regular brushing also helps distribute your dog’s natural oils throughout their coat, keeping it healthy and shiny.
In addition to bi-weekly to daily brushing, bathe your Havachon at least once per month and after any particularly muddy trips to the dog part. Make sure any shampoo, conditioner, and cleansing products you use are specifically formulated for dogs. Rinse any products completely out of your pet’s coat,as excess product can cause skin irritation and unnecessary itching—not exactly fun for your pet.
When you wrap up bath time, make sure to spend plenty of time drying off your dog—preferably with a dog-safe dryer. Because Havachons typically have serious coats, they can take a long time to air dry—and your dog might feel cold and uncomfortable in the process.
Clean the area around your dog’s eyes at the end of every day. Havachons are prone to tear-staining, especially if they have a lighter coat.
Clip your dog’s nails regularly—typically once a month or so. A good rule of thumb: if you can hear their nails on the floor when they walk, they’re overdue and it’s time to bust out those nail clippers.
Lastly, because a Havachon’s coat grows pretty quickly, you should also plan for regular haircuts to keep their coat looking its best.
But which haircuts are the best fit for your pet?
These are some of the most popular haircuts for Havachons.
Havachon haircut #1: Puppy cut
The puppy cut is one of the most versatile and popular hairstyles for just about every dog breed out there. And for good reason! This haircut, which keeps the coat short and even (usually somewhere between one and two inches), is one of the most low-maintenance hairstyles you can get for your Havachon. The shorter your dog’s coat, the less likely it will be to get matted or tangled—and the easier it will be to keep it looking its best. Just keep in mind that you’ll have to schedule regular hair trims to keep your dog’s hair at the puppy cut length (especially for the Havachon and their fast-growing coat!).
Havachon haircut #2: Teddy bear cut
The teddy bear cut (modeled here by a too-cute Havanese dog) is almost identical to the puppy cut—with one noticeable exception. Instead of keeping the hair evenly short throughout the head and body, the teddy bear cut leaves a little extra length around the dog’s face and ears. That added length is in all the right places—and gives your dog the distinct look and feel of an extra adorable teddy bear.
Havachon haircut #3: Full-length
If your dog’s coat more closely takes after their Havanese parentage—and you have the time and energy for regular maintenance—one of the most popular hairstyles for this breed? Letting those locks grow long and to the floor. Just make sure to schedule regular trims to maintain the length and shape—and to tackle any mats or tangling you don’t catch in your daily brushing sessions).