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Havanese Health and Care Issues You might Not Know

Jun 26, 2008
Many dog owners have found that the Havanese can be a wonderful choice for a family pet. These compact creatures get along well with adults, kids and other animals, are generally friendly, inquisitive animals that are usually ready to play. If you are thinking about bringing one of these cute puppies home to your family, the first thing you will want to do is brush up on the basics of Havanese care. This way, you will be prepared to give your pup the best environment possible for him to grow up healthy and happy.

Like any breed, these dogs come with specific Havanese health concerns that can be genetic problems for the breed. By becoming familiar with these potential problems, you can find a breeder that offers dogs without the genetic predisposition to some of them. You can also remain vigilant with your own Havanese, so that you can head to the vet at the first sign of a problem. Other Havanese care to educate yourself about include grooming issues and diet and exercise.

All purebred dogs come with a handful of medical problems that they have a genetic predisposition to, and the Havanese is no exception. Part of taking responsibility for Havanese health is to be aware of these problems before you ever begin the selection process for your puppy. Some problems like cataracts, patellar luxation (a slipping of the kneecap) and hip dysplasia can be kept to a minimum through responsible breeding practices. It is important to ask your potential breeder about these problems to find out if he has had any of them appear in his lines of dogs.

Once you have found a Havanese puppy with a low risk of these issues, you will still need to practice regular Havanese health habits to keep your dog looking and feeling his best. Grooming is a very important routine with these dogs, with daily brushings and monthly baths. You might prefer to clip the coat of your Havanese to keep it shorter and easier to maintain, and this can be done through a professional groomer or at home if you learn how to give doggy haircuts.

A nutritious diet is an important component in good Havanese health. Your breeder or veterinarian will probably have some suggestions and recommendations in this area, but it is generally thought that a high-quality commercial food from the pet store will be sufficient. It is best to keep your puppy on the same food that he ate at the breeders, at least during his first few weeks with you. If you decide to switch foods for any reason, gradually transitioning your pup to his new food by adding a little at a time to his dish will help to prevent tummy troubles from the change. Some dog owners are finding too many unhealthy ingredients in manufactured dog food, and are changing their pets to a raw food diet instead.

Along with the nutritious diet, your pup will need regular exercise, and he will enjoy it more if he gets to do it with you! Take him for a walk every day, or play a few rounds of fetch in the backyard. With daily exercise, regular grooming sessions and a healthy diet, your pet will be the healthiest and happiest that he can be.
About the Author
For more information on the havanese or a complete list of dog breeds visit this Dog Behaviour website.
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