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Blessed with abundant silky hair and a spirited personality, the Havanese is valued as a true companion dog and family pet. Like other dogs of the Bichon type, the Havanese has a short snout, large eyes, and drop ears. Below, we show you how to groom a Havanese face.
The Havanese is a beautiful dog with a sweet temperament. It’s also the national dog of Cuba, where the Havanese breed was first developed. If you’re the lucky owner of one of these adorable dogs, you’ll want to keep him regularly groomed so that his coat stays soft and shiny and his face stays as cute as ever.
Bathing and drying
Remember that every time you bathe your Havanese, his coat loses the natural oils that keep it smooth and glowing. If you live in a warm and humid climate, the Havanese only needs to be bathed monthly and only if he is dirty. In colder climates, the dog should be bathed less frequently.
If your dog isn’t too dirty, a sprinkling of baby powder should be enough to keep his coat clean. Because the Havanese has drop ears, it is prone to ear infections. Regularly wipe the outer ears with a damp cloth dipped in ear cleaning solution.
After a bath, blow dry your pet’s coat on a low heat setting as you gently brush the hairs out, starting from the layers closest to the skin. Use a wide-toothed metal comb or a brush for the body and a smaller metal comb for the face.
Havanese dogs sometimes tear up. Their tears combine with dirt below their eyes and leave goopy tear stains that you should regularly clean out. To get rid of these tear stains, wipe around your dog’s eyes and nose with a soft damp cloth.
If the tears have crusted up, use cotton pads dipped in a saline solution to soften the gunk and wipe it away. After you have cleaned around the eyes, use a small-toothed comb to remove tangles in the area.
To keep your Havanese’s face clean and to keep his hair out of his eyes, you can tie the head on his hair up in a topknot. Just make sure that the hair isn’t being pulled too tight or getting broken.
How to work out tangles
If your dog’s hair is tangled or matted, you need to detangle it before you give him a bath. You can spray a ready-made detangler solution or a mixture of water and dog conditioner onto his coat before gently pulling a wide-toothed comb through the tangles, taking care not to pull out his hair.
Do your best not to cut out any knots. Instead, gently untangle matted hair with your fingers or with a mat-and-tangle comb.
Regularly comb your Havanese’s coat and check for tangles to avoid dealing with severely matted or tangled fur. According to the American Kennel Club, the coat of Havanese dogs should be groomed every day.
How to clean the face of your Havanese
Havanese dogs have very hairy faces that tend to be littered with dried up dog food and other stuff they get their muzzles in, like leaves, grass, gravel, and soil.
First, clean out your dog’s eyes, nose, and mouth area as described above. Then use a liquid tangle remover spray to smoothen out any tangles in the facial hair. Leave the detangling solution in the soiled or matted hair while you brush or comb your dog’s body.
By the time you’re done combing out your dog’s torso and limbs, the solution would have soaked into his facial hair and loosened the tangles. After you’ve worked the tangles out, comb the rest of his face with a fine-toothed comb. Don’t forget to do his beard and the corners of his eyes.
Trimming Havanese facial hair
Hair trimming or clipping is best done by a professional. But if you have the tools, you can try giving your Havanese a trim at home.
After detangling, bathing, drying, and combing your Havanese, use dog clippers to trim the hairs on the sides of his face. Swipe from above the ears, down the cheeks, and down towards the beard. Trim the hair on the inner corners of his eyes with thinning shears.
Get a comb and trim the hair on the sides of the muzzle. Comb out the top of the head and round it off. Trim the hair on the cheeks, jawline, and under the ears.
Comb the hair on the ears and trim them into a slightly rounded shape. If you want to highlight the eyes of your Havanese, trim the outer corners of the eyes.
Don’t trim too much hair off because the more hair you remove, the less your pooch will resemble a Havanese. Don’t shave the coat down to the skin because this leaves your Havanese vulnerable to sunburn and the many potential diseases that can result, including infections and skin cancer.
The younger your Havanese is when you start regularly grooming him, the better it will be for the both of you. Just follow this guide on how to groom a Havanese face. When your pooch is regularly bathed and combed, he comes to expect it as part of his normal routine and the less fussy he will be during these sessions.