Havanese Shih Tzu Mix (Havashu)

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Are you interested in adopting a furry, friendly pup? The Havashu just might be the breed for you! In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about adopting and caring for your Havashu. From feeding to grooming, training and temperament, you will be able to make an informed decision about whether or not a Havashu is the perfect addition to your family.

Havanese Shih Tzu Mix (Havashu)

History and Must Know Facts

The Havashu is a trendy, designer mixed dog breed that originates from the Havanese and the Shih Tzu. It has only been in existence for the past 20-30 years. They are mostly bred in the United States. If you’re looking to avoid puppy mill dogs, this breed may not be for you, as some breeders may not be reputable.

The Havanese breed is native to Cuba and named after its capital city Havana. It was used for bartering among the wealthy, dating back to the 1600s. At the birth of Communist Cuba in 1959, many Havanese came over to the United States with their owners.

The Shih Tzu is a toy breed nicknamed “the lion dog” due to their soft, luscious coats. They were well loved by Chinese royalty in the 17th century. After World War II, military members brought over many Shih Tzu dogs to America. They have also been previously classified as “Apsos”.

Havashu puppies cost anywhere from $300 to $1,200, depending on the breeder. They have a life expectancy of 12-16 years.

Puppies weigh approximately three pounds and have an average height of four inches, while adults and seniors average 10-12 pounds and eight to 15 inches tall.

They have a long, wavy coat that varies in color from white or cream, to brown, gray, or black.  Their noses are typically brown or black, and their eyes amber or brown.

The Havashu is recognized by:

  • American Canine Hybrid Club (ACHC)
  • Designer Breed Registry (DBR)
  • Designer Dogs Kennel Club (DDKC)
  • Dog Registry of America, Inc. (DRA)
  • International Designer Canine Registry (IDCR)

Health and Care

Havashu are alert, hyper, fun dogs that thrive on companionship. They require an hour of activity per day and are considered a medium activity level dog.  The Havashu makes a wonderful family dog, but will also thrive in a smaller household if exercised daily.

They eat about one cup of dry food per day, making them a fairly cost effective pal to have around. Owners should expect to spend $25 to $35 a month on dog food.

There are no known health issues with the Havashu, but they can develop problems passed on from their parents. This includes but may not be limited to bladder stones, heart disease, allergies, and joint issues.

Pets should always be spayed or neutered for optimal health and life expectancy.

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A sturdy, non-retractable dog leash is best for your Havashu. You may also choose to use a harness, which is a helpful and safe way to constrain them during walks or time around unknown dogs or other animals.

Dog shampoo and a good dog brush are essential grooming accessories.

You may choose to clip your dog’s nails at home using dog nail clippers. If you are uncomfortable doing this yourself, a groomer can take care of it for you.

Essential Products and Grooming Accessories


Are Havashu dogs good with children?

The Havashu breed does exceptionally well with children of all ages. They are sturdy enough to keep up with the physical demands of children, but gentle enough for even younger kids to enjoy.

Are they family friendly?

Havashu dogs love to be a part of the family and make terrific family dogs. They are easily adaptable and have a desire to please, making them a wonderful addition to any dog loving family.

Are they awesome companions?

Yes! Havashu make excellent companions, as they love to snuggle with their owners. They may even come off as a bit clingy, but if you’re looking for someone to keep you company, the Havashu definitely fits the bill.

Havashu pups are:

  • Affectionate
  • Loyal
  • Funny
  • Intelligent
  • Fun to have around!

What are the Pros and Cons of getting a Havashu?


  • They are loyal and want to please their owner
  • They’re cute and cuddly
  • They are compact and easy to transport
  • They love to play
  • They can be hypoallergenic


  • They are designer dogs specifically bred for purchase
  • They can be extremely expensive
  • They require grooming and maintenance that can be costly

Temperament and Personality

Havashu are full of energy and love to play. They are a sturdy little breed due to their activity level, and have a surprising amount of strength for their size.

Havashu dogs love to be with people and other dogs, though they can also thrive in a single pet household.

They are cuddly and affectionate, making them the perfect lap dog for any dog lover.

If you’re searching for a support dog, the Havashu is the perfect breed. Their soft coat and general cuteness is calming, and they will stay by your side all day long.

Another perk of the Havashu is that they bark infrequently, unlike some other small dog breeds.

The Basics of Grooming

Although the Havashu doesn’t do a lot of shedding, your furry friend will need to be brushed two or three times a week.  They have a long, fine coat that varies from wavy to curly.

Occasional bathing is best for this breed.

Their teeth should be brushed regularly to keep gums healthy and avoid bad breath.

Your Havashu will need regular grooming, every six to eight weeks, to maintain a healthy coat.

Top Tips for Finding a Havashu

Due to the relative newness of the Havashu breed, there are not many breed rescue or adoption resources available. Popular states selling Havashu puppies include:

  • California
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania

You may also search for Havashu puppies and dogs on general adoption websites

It is recommended that potential dog owners of a Havashu do their due diligence in searching for a reputable, trustworthy breeder to ensure a fair price and good health.

If you are already a dog owner and interested in adding a Havashu to your family, it is recommended that you introduce your pups prior to adopting. Although Havashu have a friendly temperament, every dog is different.

If you have small children, it is recommended that they meet any potential new pet to ensure their safety. It is important to acclimate your children to being around dogs of any size, and to encourage respectfulness towards animals no matter how friendly they are advertised to be.

Training and Exercising Your Havashu

Havashu puppies are moderately easy to train. They can be hyper, easily distracted, and stubborn. Conversely, they have the desire to be obedient and love to please their owners.

A basic obedience training class can go a long way in helping to teach your pet simple commands.

House training your Havashu requires repetition and consistency. Using puppy pads, treats, dog crate, or a dog bell may help them become house broken in a timely manner.

Havashu pups are:

Food and Dietary Requirements

Havashu require one cup of dry dog food per day. It is recommended that dog owners use premium brand dog food for this breed to optimize health and longevity.

Be careful not to overfeed your Havashu in order to avoid obesity, and only give them treats in moderation.

Dogs are not recommended to eat table scraps, as it can cause them to become overweight. Toxic foods include grapes, avocado pits, candy, coffee, and garlic.

Most Popular Names for the Havashu

Female Names:

  • Coco
  • Lady
  • Sweetie
  • Havana
  • Posy
  • Teeny
  • Rosa
  • Birdie
  • Cha Cha

Male names:

  • Tito
  • Manuel
  • Buddy
  • Scrappy
  • Bruiser
  • Lou
  • Pinar
  • Bruiser


The Havashu is a small, affectionate dog breed that loves to be in the company of people and other dogs. They are playful, sweet, and fun dogs with a knack for snuggling. The Havashu’s designer dog status makes it a coveted breed for those with the financial means to go that route, as they are costly to purchase and maintain. They require regular grooming, exercise, and playtime. The Havashu can be fairly easily trained if started early, as they are social creatures that aim to please. Whether you’re looking for a support dog or the newest member of your family, the Havashu makes a wonderful companion.

Other Similar or Comparable Small & Medium Dog Breeds

  • Havanese
  • Shih Tzu
  • Miniature/Toy Poodle
  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • Maltese
  • Bichon Frise
  • Dachshund
  • Boston Terrier
  • King Charles Spaniel