Havamalt

5-12 lbs
9-12"
United States
Havanese
Maltese

Those who know their toy breeds might be able to work out the ancestry of a Havamalt from the name alone — this is a Havanese Maltese mix, two super-cute canines that share distant relatives.

Just as their parent breeds have become adorable lap dogs in family homes across the world, the Havamalt shares the same affectionate spirit, as well as the hypoallergenic coat that’s a real blessing for parents who suffer from allergies.

In this introduction to the Havamalt, you’ll learn that:

  • Their long and silky coat only needs brushing once a week
  • Havamalts can be prone to joint and eye issues
  • This is a dog that only needs 45 minutes of activity a day
  • They get along well with young children after socialization

Havamalt Breed Overview

The Havamalt might not have been around for all too long, but we already know enough about them to let you know what life with this hybrid would be like.

For a start, they’re pretty small as dogs go, which means they don’t require a massive amount of food or exercise. This makes them an ideal pal for the elderly or those who live in small apartments — the fact that they’re known to yap at intruders acts as reassurance for the security-conscious, as well.

Having said that, don’t be fooled into thinking that a Havamalt barks at everything. In fact, they’re generally considered friendly and loving animals, even with young children.

One thing prospective parents need to know is that this is a hybrid that needs a fair bit of attention in the grooming department. Although Havamalts don’t shed, their coat is often long and silky, which requires regular brushing to keep it unknotted and looking presentable.




If you want to give your Havamalt the best chance of living a long and healthy life, a pet insurance policy is a wise investment — use Wag!’s online comparison tool to find a good choice.




purpose Purpose
Companion
history Date of Origin
Unknown
ancestry Ancestry
Havanese and Maltese

Havamalt Health

Average Size
Male Havamalt size stats
Height: 9-12 inches Weight: 5-12 lbs
Female Havamalt size stats
Height: 9-12 inches Weight: 5-12 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Hip Dysplasia
Minor Concerns
  • Elbow Dysplasia
  • Cataracts
  • Glaucoma
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Liver Shunts
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Collapsed Trachea
  • Reverse Sneezing
Occasional Tests
  • Eye Examination
  • Physical Examination
  • Radiographs

Havamalt Breed History

Like many hybrid breeds — among them, the Shollie, Labradoodle and Alusky — the Havamalt is thought to have emerged during the crossbreeding boom in the USA during the last two decades of the 20th century. 

Documentation as to the exact origin is lacking and there’s still little by the way of breed standards to this day. We do know a lot more about the Havamalt’s parents, however.

You don’t have to be a canine expert to see that the Havanese and Maltese are cut from the same cloth. The Maltese is the older of the two. There’s evidence of these tiny white dogs in writing and artworks dating back to Ancient Egypt. They continued to be popular among royalty and artists in both Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire, as well as across the wider Mediterranean as the years went on — including the island of Malta from which the breed gets its name.

In the 15th century, the Maltese — or another close relative in the Bichon family — made its way to Cuba on the ships of European explorers. Just as had happened in Europe for 

centuries up to this point, this dog quickly gained popularity among the echelons of society and was named after the island’s capital, Havana.

In the proceeding 300 years, the Havanese breed became its own distinctive canine variety, perhaps interbred with other dogs, which would explain the slight divergence from the appearance of the Maltese.

Midway through the 20th century, the Cuban revolution spelt bad news for the Havanese and numbers drastically declined — by the 1970s, US breeders could only account for 11 Havanese. Thankfully, a breeding programme saved the breed from going extinct and the American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized the Cuban breed in 1996.

As a crossbreed, the Havamalt hasn’t earned this honor yet, but it’s recognized by five registries: the American Canine Hybrid Club, the Designer Dogs Kennel Club, the Designer Breed Registry, the Dog Registry of America, and the International Designer Canine Registry.

Havamalt Breed Appearance

The first thing you’ll notice about the Havamalt is that it’s a petite pooch, usually taller than a Maltese but smaller than an average Havanese — a Havamalt will typically grow to between 9 and 12 inches tall and weigh anything between 5 and 12 pounds.

Given that Maltese and Havanese dogs already look pretty similar, it’s unsurprising that Havamalts also bear a close resemblance to these parent breeds. Their eyes are large, wide apart and usually brown in color. Noses are black and large, while the feathered ears are also big and hang low.

Havamalts tend to have little legs that are much shorter than the body is long. They’re covered with long and silky fur, and this can be seen in red, black, white, gray, silver or cream. At the other end is a tail with a moderate-sized plume that curls over the back.

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Havamalt eyes
Brown
Nose Color Possibilities
black Havamalt nose
Black
Coat Color Possibilities
red Havamalt coat
Red
black Havamalt coat
Black
white Havamalt coat
White
cream Havamalt coat
Cream
gray Havamalt coat
Gray
silver Havamalt coat
Silver
Coat Length
coat
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
coat density
pin
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
coat texture
Havamalt wiry coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Havamalt Breed Maintenance

You may have seen pictures of a Maltese or Havanese being paraded at a dog show with impeccably straightened fur. You’re more than welcome to treat your Havamalt to a similar makeover, but day-to-day care is a lot simpler.

A Havamalt should be brushed at least once a week to keep their long fur untangled and unmatted — fortunately, they don’t shed much. Be sure to check the hair around their ears for dirt and debris, as this can cause infection if left alone.

If your Havamalt is white, they may have issues with tear staining (this is particularly common in Maltese dogs). Parents can clean their eyes to prevent this. Nails should be clipped and teeth brushed, too.

When it comes to exercise, the Havamalt needs around 45 minutes of activity a day, but not high-intensity workouts. In fact, they can expel a lot of energy indoors, especially if the weather isn’t particularly inviting outside. Around seven miles of walking a week should suffice — remember, their legs are only little!


Havamalt Health Risks

Even though some animal experts believe hybrid animals are generally healthier than purebred counterparts, it’s clear that the Havamalt is — like almost every type of dog — more predisposed to certain medical conditions than others. Here are the ones parents should watch out for:

Joint Problems

When it comes to toy breeds, one of the most commonly diagnosed disorders is Patellar Luxation. This is when the kneecap frequently dislocates while a dog is moving, leading to a characteristic hopping motion and a fair amount of pain.

Vets will look to treat this with medication to treat the swelling and discomfort, often followed by a surgical procedure to correct the malformation.

Similarly, Hip and Elbow Dysplasia are not unheard of in a full grown Havamalt dog, even though these complaints are usually spotted in medium-to-large-sized dogs. This occurs when the hip or elbow joint fails to develop correctly, resulting in the bone moving with friction against the corresponding socket in either the elbow or hip. The main symptoms are limited mobility, limping and evident distress.

There are a range of treatments vets can offer for dogs suffering from Hip or Elbow Dysplasia. Mild cases can be alleviated with weight loss or supplements, but more serious instances might require physiotherapy or surgery.

Eye Issues

Havamalts are no strangers to eye complaints, either. Cataracts are one of them and this happens when the eye lens becomes cloudy, leading to partial or even complete vision loss.

If you see a marked appearance in your dog’s eyes or they seem a lot more uncoordinated than usual, they might have cataracts. If a vet settles on this diagnosis, surgery is often an option.

In other cases, Havamalts might develop glaucoma, which arises when pressure in the eye increases, causing damage to the retina and optic nerve. This can be painful for a dog, leading them to rub or scratch their eyes. It might also lead to redness, cloudiness or the appearance of vessels in the eyes.

Glaucoma is fast-acting and treatment should be immediately sought to prevent total vision loss. If caught early enough, vets have a greater chance of restoring the correct pressure with either medication or surgery.

Liver Shunts

One of the liver’s main functions is to remove toxins from the blood. However, there are instances in which an improperly connected vein means that contaminated blood bypasses the liver and continues circulating around the body — this is called Liver Shunts.

While it’s comparatively rare, the condition is mostly seen in smaller breeds, such as the Havamalt. The symptoms are quite general, usually involving gastrointestinal distress such as vomiting, diarrhea, constipation and lethargy. A vet will have to carry out various tests to confirm a diagnosis of Liver Shunts.

Once this is done, your vet can begin treatment. Some cases can be solved with a diet change and medication, but others need surgery to be cured — a dog will need to be healthy enough to go under anesthesia, however. 




Regular testing at the vets can help catch diseases at a crucially early stage — this is one of the main benefits that comes with getting a wellness plan for your dog.




What to feed a Havamalt

As small dogs that don’t do a massive amount of exercise, a Havamalt doesn’t need a lot of food. The fact that portions are modest makes it extra-important to go for recipes designed specifically for small breeds, as these will be more nutritionally dense. Kibble will also be more appropriately sized for smaller mouths, too.

When shopping for dog food, go for products packed full of top-quality foodstuffs — look for meat as the first listed ingredient and as little filler content as possible.



It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the huge amount of dog food available to buy — that’s why it helps to lean on the expertise of our partner Dog Food Advisor, which has published a list of the best dog food for small breeds.



Brushes for Havamalt
Comb
Comb
Hemostat
Hemostat
Nail Clipper
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
fur daily fur weekly fur monthly
Havamalt requires weekly brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Havamalt Temperament

If you want a dog that’s always smiley and spritely, a Havamalt is a great choice. Much like their ancestors, the hybrid will be playful one moment, but more than happy to snuggle up to parents the next.

As is the case with all breeds, Havamalt puppies must undergo an effective socialization period. This will help them get used to the presence of strangers and young children, both of whom they can be initially intolerant towards. Fortunately, it’s been noted by multiple parents that they’re an easy dog to train.

Activity Level
low activity medium activity high activity
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
7 miles
walk mileage
Minutes of Activity Per Day
45 minutes
activity minutes

Havamalt Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1 cups
cup per day cost
Daily Cost
$0.75 - $1.00
food bowls daily cost
Monthly Cost
$20.00 - $25.00
food bag monthly cost

Havamalt Owner Experiences

Pouchy
3 Years
4 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Love the other dog
Play
Explore the city
sleep
Explore the woods
He is a very joyful dog. He always wags his fluffy tail. He hates stranger (both humans and dogs). However he is the most affectionate dog within the family. He loves his dog sister too! Always full of energy, enjoys new tastes, and spends a lot of time in his garden.
1 year, 3 months ago
Parker
11 Months
1 People
House
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Parker is a very sweet puppy and well behaved. I got him when I moved to “work from home” and he is SO attached to me. When I work at home, he has to be sitting on my chair next to me or behind me. He doesn’t really chew anything up in the house but he does like to drag out my shoes when I’m gone and lay on them. 🥴. He is a cuddler at night, slights right up against my back! I love him so much!
1 year, 4 months ago
beau
1 Year
5 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Cuddles
Bath time
hes a sweet boy. he does well with the other dog and loves meeting new people. i would do anything to make him live forever. his hair does get tangled easily and it needs to be brushed a lot. he loves his little sister (whos bigger than him lol) but is very picky with food and only eats from my hands
2 years, 4 months ago
Prince
8 Years
2 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Prince is definitely a velcro dog. He was adopted right before the pandemic but adjusted to me and my daughter pretty quickly. He's generally sweet, but will sometimes growl at my daughter. My biggest concern is while he follows me everywhere, he still stays at a distance. He doesn't seem to want to cuddle with me, but with strangers, he's all hugs. He is super spoiled and definitely loved, so I really don't get it. Any insight?
2 years, 9 months ago
Mokie
15 Months
3 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
She is a joy. She shows her favoritism to her Daddy. She is like a child when their parent comes home. Well behaved and quiet all day. The minute Daddy walks in the door, she goes crazy, playing, running and getting all her toys and bones out!
4 years, 6 months ago
paco
3 Years
4 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Spa day
Bath time
Bike ride
Tug-of-war
Playing in the snow
he is cool. i would clone him if i could.
5 years, 10 months ago
Muffin
4 Years
5 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
She’s very cute but eats and barks a lot.
5 years, 10 months ago
Diamond
11 Weeks
5 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Fetch
Lovable dog very enthusiastic
4 years, 11 months ago
Charlie
6 Months
4 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Fetch
Walks
swimming
I have had my Havamalt for a few months and he is such a good boy! He’s a little naughty sometimes and gets in to things, as most puppies tend to do, but overall is great! He’s playful, but will also snuggle, is easy to train, and is a fun member of the house!
4 years, 9 months ago
Bear
8 Years
4 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
This is our first one. Our son wanted a dog & we searched for one that was hypoallergenic & didn’t shed much. Bear was the runt. He could fit in our pockets. He brought a lot of joy to our household. He is funny & entertaining. We tried getting him a companion. A brother from another litter. It didn’t work out. We are happy with him & he is happy with being the only dog. Great traveler & companion. Very intelligent.🙏🏾❤️
2 years, 10 months ago
Sebastian
1 Year
2 People
Apartment
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
My havamalt Sebastian is a dream come true! He is such a good boy with lots of energy but loves to cuddle as well. He loves people and brings so much love into our house. I can't imagine life without him. He loves short walks by the water and is just as happy sitting on my lap looking out at the water. Such a lovable pup!!
4 years, 2 months ago
Kitty
11 Years
5 People
Apartment
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Tug-of-war
Fetch
Hide & Seek
Shake
Tag
Snuggle
Tv
My little baby is almost 12 years old now. I got her as a little pup and she has always been the most affectionate and loving doggie ever. Best companion, loves to cuddle and snuggle Very picky eater though. And sometimes described as velcro dog because she's attached to me everywhere I go. The whole house loves her. She used to take care of my late Granny. Very sensitive dog, loves to play and makes people all around her happy. Scared of loud noises, especially thunder. Doesnt sleep alone, but very obedient and quiet.
3 years, 11 months ago
toby
9 Years
7 People
House
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Play
Tug-of-war
Walk
Our havamalt is very grumpy and annoying especially when he sees strangers, but of course, we still love him. He is cutest when he's still half asleep and usually plays hard to get with everyone except with grandma (he loves grandma). It could be because of his age but he has been less and less fun to play with over the years and whenever we would call him, he either came really slow or would just never come. It is sad seeing him age, but we still love having him as our companion. Hopefully he stays with us long.
3 years, 9 months ago
Skyffr (s-ki-fer)
10 Months
1 People
Studio
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Tug-of-war
Play
Snuggle
My fur baby is so sweet, he always follows me wherever I go inside my place. He also wants he's belly to rub most of the time and he loves more when I'm rubbing his ear and hug him. He's so obedient. He's my best friend!I love him so much!☺
3 years, 8 months ago
Giovanni
15 Months
2 People
Condo
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Adventures
Fetch
treats
Nature walks
Beaching
soapy weekly baths
Evening cuddles
puppachino at Starbucks
fluffed coat
Netflix and chill
Quality time
Paw power
Play ball
Kisses
Belly rubs
Trips
In love he’s such a good sweet doggy
3 years, 8 months ago
Morty
3 Years
2 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
We got Morty at the Humane Society. He is the sweetest, most loving dog I have ever seen. He likes to snuggle but can also be very energetic and funny. I highly recommend this precious and adorable breed!!
3 years, 6 months ago
Cosmo
7 Years
2 People
House
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Lovable, stubborn, loves to be petted, does not play with toys, a rescue.
3 years, 2 months ago
Roxy
5 Years
3 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Run
Play ball
Look out the window
Car rides
Swim
Friendly
Happy
She's one of the best dogs I've ever had she loves to cuddle go on adventures. Super hyper and energetic Always wants to play She gets along with everyone
3 years ago
Zoe
4 Months
4 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Chase
Fetch
Tricks
Play
Tug-of-war
Her genetics are outstanding! Even the vet (Dr at a large animal hospital) is amazed at her quality, her vision/alertness is outstanding, she is extremely loving/friendly of ALL people! Even a complete stranger will get their face licked off by her! (LoL). She learned: sit, lay-down, speak (bark on command), shake & sit-up-pretty all before she was 3mo old! Her desire to please is never ending. She does have separation anxiety, which is very common in this mixed breed! She goes “crazy” with excitement & love when daddy (myself) comes home after being away for several hours…mommy too, to a slight lesser level. She does VERY well with our kids (12 & 14) and also with younger kids that understand to be gentile. We owned two purebred Maltese before Zoe & they too were amazing dogs! Zoe is an integral part of our family for sure!
2 years, 9 months ago
Animal Expert Question Icon
Question - My pet
Question

My mokie had four puppies and they died why is that and she has one left that looks healthy the one that died to had to be baby feed she was small

Answer
Animal Expert Question Icon
Question - Behavior
Question

Hello, I have a havamalt named Eli. He is 9 months old. He has been hard to train. Barks a lot, knows to potty and poop outside, but he is always marking stuff. He also tear up stuff around the house. I never had an issue training any of my old dogs I’ve had.

Answer
Book me a walkiee?
Pweeeze!
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd