It was a busy weekend at the National Show Centre in Dublin last weekend, with many Club’s holding their annual shows. At the All Terrier All Breed Open Show, Andrea Akkad’s and Olive Carty’s young girl, Heartland’s Scandal at Flordecuba (USA) won her puppy class and was awarded BOS, whilst their young boy, Bailemos Poker Face, continued to fly the flag for Havanese, winning BOB, then went on to win first place in Group 9, and then on to win third Best in Show! Later on in the day, at the Russkaya Tsvetnaya Bolonka’s inaugural Limit Show, Bailemos Poker Face was awarded 1st Place in AV Open D/B. Congratulations ladies!
There were also a number of open shows taking place in the UK over the weekend and I see great results posted for Havanese. At the Caenarfon Open Show, Susanna Thorne’s boy, Jamboree Lee Coeur De Masai Avec Blevwil (IMP Fra) was awarded Best of Breed. His son, Dyffrynsands Che Nolan, owned by Louise Elizabeth Salmon was awarded Best Puppy in Breed and second in the Puppy Group. Another offspring, Dyffryndands Lady Cecilia owned by Wayne and Gaynor Morris, was awarded Best Puppy AVNSC and Best AVNSC and then went on to win Best Puppy in Show! Celia is usually handled by Wayne and Gaynor’s grandson Jake, but I believe he had football on Saturday, so gran Gaynor kindly stepped in to help out.
I have recently been asked for advice from some owners, who are having difficulty managing knots and mats in their havanese’s coats. When I asked the age of the havanese in question, it became clear to me that each of these owner’s havanese were going through their coat change, which can start as early as 8 months and may last for any time up to 2 years of age. During this time, the puppy coat is changing to adult coat and it is the undercoat coming in that causes to coat to mat or knot more. From my experience, no two dogs are the same and some may go through this knotting stage for only a few weeks, others may go in and out of phases of knotting a few times until they are about two years old. It really depends on how fast the undercoat comes in. I find when the length of the new growth is about half as long as the old growth, it gets a lot easier and more manageable.
So what can we do to help us through this phase? There are a few tips that I have found useful. Firstly, and I cannot stress this enough, a clean coat will knot a lot less. When a coat is dirty, I find it causes the hair to fuse together, creating more knots. So during this difficult period, I will bath more often. As soon as I feel the hair beginning to fuse together when combing, I know it’s time for a bath. A great product that I would recommend, which has also been receiving a lot of positive feedback in the Havanese Club of GB Facebook Group is Secret Weapon. Secret Weapon has a range of products specifically for dematting and detangling. They also hydrate and condition the coat, thus helping to prevent knots and mats forming. You can purchase their products direct from their website, https://www.secretweaponuk.com/. This site also has useful step by step videos on how to use their products. It is also very important to ensure that you have a daily grooming routine, which includes line brushing and combing your havanese. Line brushing is the best way to ensure that you have reached the root of the hair and have brushed every hair. There are many useful videos on youtube, demonstrating how to line brush a double coated dog. Finally, I would highly recommend any havanese owner purchase a copy of the Havanese Fanciers of Canada’s wonderful book on havanese grooming, From Nose to Tail. The book is packed with lots of tips and advice on grooming your havanese and is available for purchase directly from the Havanese Fanciers of Canada http://nosetotailbook.havanesefanciers.com/?q=thebook