We live in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. We have owned and showed Havanese since 2003.
My husband and I met in 1978 in Puerto Rico. When we met, I also met his family pet Havanese “Toby”. Toby became a part of the Roque family when his mother’s cousin gave Toby to them as a gift. Toby was a cream Havanese and was loved and adored by Hugo’s family.
My husband’s family is originally from Holguin, Cuba. His family left Cuba just as most Cubans had to after Castro and his communist regime took over the island. They left in one of the last exile flights out of Cuba in August 1971 and headed to Miami, Florida where family members anxiously awaited them. Shortly after they moved to New York and lived there for a few years until they moved to Puerto Rico.
I (Arlene) was born in Ft. Bragg, North Carolina. My family moved to Puerto Rico when I was just a wee 3 years old. I lived in Puerto Rico and grew up speaking both English and Spanish. As a child, our family pets were a Miniature Schnauzer named “Toodles”, and a Havanese called “Lulu”
My dad bought Lulu from a Cuban breeder in Puerto Rico. Lulu was not a Maltese which is what her Cuban breeder called her - she was much bigger and weighed 3 times what a Maltese should weigh. Her temperament that was a delight! At the time Havanese were not well known and were not AKC registerable, and most Cubans called them “Malte’s”. We believe that LuLu was a Havanese bred by a Cuban gentleman who brought a few of his dogs from his homeland.
After I graduated from high school, I attended Tulane University in New Orleans and earned my Bachelor’s degree in computer science. I returned to Puerto Rico in 1985. Hubby and I were high school sweethearts - I met him when I was 15. We married in 1990 and shortly after moving in to our new home, “Hasso” the Rottweiler became our beloved pet. In 1992 our beautiful twins were born. In our search for the perfect place to live and raise our children, we moved to Minnesota in 1995.
We purchased our foundation Havanese from Tapscott’s B.I.S. Havanese in 2003. We are absolutely in love with this breed, so shortly after, “Viva” a German import and our first owner-handled champion, “M.C.”, and “MeMe” became members of our family. As a result of owning and showing these fabulous dogs, we now have a van and a camper. Nowadays you can find us having a great time at dog shows and at campgrounds with our family and our beautiful Havanese.
We would like our prospective puppy buyers to be absolutely sure that a Havanese is the correct breed for them. The only way we believe that we can accomplish this is by being glaringly honest about the pros and cons of owning a Havanese, and about the best way to go about finding a good, responsible breeder. If you are given the facts to work with, you are better able to make an educated and hopefully correct decision. In the long run, it is better for the puppy owner and a definite advantage for that adorable little Havanese that is about to become a member of your family, and believe us, occupy a very special place in your heart.
So many times we have heard of people who buy a puppy for all of the wrong reasons (i.e. they are so cute, my neighbor has one, an actor has one, for a birthday or Christmas gift, etc,) only to realize later that they have overcommitted and are not able to properly care for the puppy, socialize and train the puppy, or even worse, the puppy just “didn’t fit in” with their lifestyle full of social activities, business or vacation trips, or hectic work schedule. By then, this adorable little living creature has become attached to its new family and the pain suffered by both the dog and owner is heart wrenching. Sometimes these dogs end up being abandoned or given up to shelters or rescue organizations.
Please visit the Informational Links on our website so that you can learn some of the pros and cons of owning a Havanese and also find some great tips to assist you in finding a reputable, responsible breeder. We are also available to recommend a breeder if we do not have a puppy for you.