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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all!

I am struggling to find a responsible and credible breeder in California. So many I have found here give me bad vibes and seem as though their main concern is not the care and happiness of the pup, but the dollar sign.

I live in Oakland, but have family down in Southern California, so can easily pick up from anywhere in the state. Do any of you have tried and true California breeders?

A couple that are a maybes on my list are:
  • Havanese in SoCal (Hemet)
  • Siempre Adalante Havanese (Seaside)
  • Once Upon A Havanese (Lodi)

Thank you!
 

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You could also try to adopt a havanese from a rescue. Check out https://petfinder.com and put in your zip code. They have collected the dogs from thousands of shelters and rescues and put them in one website, which is super convenient. Also, you can add filters that include breed, age, gender, etc. so you don't have to go on a big search.
If you still want a breeder, you could go to Good Dog: Find the Dog of Your Dreams from Good Breeders and Shelters and type in the breed and then type in the zip code. It pulls up breeders that meet specific health standards.
I'm not saying you should endorse these websites. In fact, even if it's on one of these websites, you should still check the place out! After all, you never know.
Have fun!
 

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Metrowest, MA
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You could also try to adopt a havanese from a rescue. Check out https://petfinder.com and put in your zip code. They have collected the dogs from thousands of shelters and rescues and put them in one website, which is super convenient. Also, you can add filters that include breed, age, gender, etc. so you don't have to go on a big search.
If you still want a breeder, you could go to Good Dog: Find the Dog of Your Dreams from Good Breeders and Shelters and type in the breed and then type in the zip code. It pulls up breeders that meet specific health standards.
I'm not saying you should endorse these websites. In fact, even if it's on one of these websites, you should still check the place out! After all, you never know.
Have fun!
There are almost no Havanese available in rescue these days. Lots of “fluffy small dogs” labeled as “Havanese mixes” just because they have no idea what they are, and they don’t have smooshed in noses.

Good Dog has a couple of good Havanese breeders on it, but the vast majority of reputable Havanese breeders do not bother with Good Dog, because you are on a constant “on call” list from them, whether you have puppies available or not.
 

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There are almost no Havanese available in rescue these days. Lots of “fluffy small dogs” labeled as “Havanese mixes” just because they have no idea what they are, and they don’t have smooshed in noses.
I wasn’t aware of this. Thanks for saying!
Good Dog has a couple of good Havanese breeders on it, but the vast majority of reputable Havanese breeders do not bother with Good Dog, because you are on a constant “on call” list from them, whether you have puppies available or not.
I know, but it’s better then just pulling up random websites from the web. Also, Once Upon a Havanese, one of the breeders the poster listed, is there, so you haven’t lost all hope.

Also, to help, this is the link to the Good Dog Havanese breeders in California:
 

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Arf! Arf!
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There are almost no Havanese available in rescue these days. Lots of “fluffy small dogs” labeled as “Havanese mixes” just because they have no idea what they are, and they don’t have smooshed in noses.
The other thing is that "Havanese" breed is a hot commodity right now. Rescue sites and disreputable breeders with mixed breeds will call them a Havanese to move them quicker. It is always 'buyer beware' to avoid disappointments and being scammed.
 

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Metrowest, MA
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I wasn’t aware of this. Thanks for saying!

I know, but it’s better then just pulling up random websites from the web. Also, Once Upon a Havanese, one of the breeders the poster listed, is there, so you haven’t lost all hope.

Also, to help, this is the link to the Good Dog Havanese breeders in California:
Well the good news is that I can vouch for the top three breeders that come up on that list. I don’t know any of the ones further down.
 
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I live in SoCal and have just been through this process for the past 6 months....FWIW, here's what I have learnt....
  • Start with the HCA breeder directory - always a safe start
  • Listen to the members on this forum....they do know better than you (I'm biased to @Ricky Ricardo, @krandall & @Tux's Mom)
  • I emailed all of the 6 breeders and called them too - the only two that responded were Lisa Estrada from Ohana Havanese, who is also the President of the SoCal Havanese Club Chapter and Vicki Gray from Artwyrks Havanese (current board member of HCA). I called Vicki and had a really good conversation but she wanted a non-refundable $800 deposit to be on her waiting list (if you search the forum, the deposit should be refundable) and also referred me to a non-breeder acquaintance who had an 'oops' puppy....red flag for me there (based of the learning from this amazing forum).
  • Lisa seemed very nice, professional, and very picky on who she wants as a client which is the tell-tale sign that you are going in the right direction - she also has a good reputation and I'd start with her if it were me.
  • I ended up finding a breeder I love in Missouri and am currently on her waiting list - it may be a few months or until the end of the year. I'm willing to wait based on the relationship that I have developed with her - it's my personal preference and the trip to pick up the puplet will be an adventure!
I wish you the best of luck - I'm very happy that you have posted as this forum has become a daily drug in my thirst for knowledge of the beautiful Havanese breed!

Sam.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I live in SoCal and have just been through this process for the past 6 months....FWIW, here's what I have learnt....
  • Start with the HCA breeder directory - always a safe start
  • Listen to the members on this forum....they do know better than you (I'm biased to @Ricky Ricardo, @krandall & @Tux's Mom)
  • I emailed all of the 6 breeders and called them too - the only two that responded were Lisa Estrada from Ohana Havanese, who is also the President of the SoCal Havanese Club Chapter and Vicki Gray from Artwyrks Havanese (current board member of HCA). I called Vicki and had a really good conversation but she wanted a non-refundable $800 deposit to be on her waiting list (if you search the forum, the deposit should be refundable) and also referred me to a non-breeder acquaintance who had an 'oops' puppy....red flag for me there (based of the learning from this amazing forum).
  • Lisa seemed very nice, professional, and very picky on who she wants as a client which is the tell-tale sign that you are going in the right direction - she also has a good reputation and I'd start with her if it were me.
  • I ended up finding a breeder I love in Missouri and am currently on her waiting list - it may be a few months or until the end of the year. I'm willing to wait based on the relationship that I have developed with her - it's my personal preference and the trip to pick up the puplet will be an adventure!
I wish you the best of luck - I'm very happy that you have posted as this forum has become a daily drug in my thirst for knowledge of the beautiful Havanese breed!

Sam.
Thank you (and everyone else!) so much for your thoughtful responses! I am currently in conversation with Lisa of Ohana Havanese. She did mention that she must meet all potential adopters either in person or via a Zoom call. Hearing that she is particular, now I am a bit nervous I won't make the cut haha! I am absolutely confident in my abilities to raise a Hava and live in a safe and loving environment, I am just not sure how picky she is.
 

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I had the same thought but after filling out 6 or 7 questionnaires, the breeders are just looking for a responsible person(s) who will provide forever homes for their little ones that they’ve lovingly raised). They want to see safety, love, stability (financial as well as home environment). I’m sure you’ll be ok!!
 

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I’m glad you found a good breeder! I’m sure you’ll pass, they just want responsible owners, and I’m sure you are.
Once you get your furry bundle of joy, make sure to give us updates! :D
 

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Welcome! I'm glad to hear you have found a reputable breeder. I live on the other side of the Bay and only know of one breeder in this area. Our two came from Canada and Florida. :)
 

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Arf! Arf!
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Thank you (and everyone else!) so much for your thoughtful responses! I am currently in conversation with Lisa of Ohana Havanese. She did mention that she must meet all potential adopters either in person or via a Zoom call. Hearing that she is particular, now I am a bit nervous I won't make the cut haha! I am absolutely confident in my abilities to raise a Hava and live in a safe and loving environment, I am just not sure how picky she is.
Oh Lisa is picky alright, VERY picky. She is just like two of our Forum members/breeders who post here regularly - High Jump and Starborn. Very picky. But you can use that to your advantage. The best way to impress Lisa is to have a basic understanding of Havanese characteristics, general personality, and their needs and necessities. She wants someone who is already researching Havanese in preparation for bringing one home. Mention that you are already a member of Havanese Forum and asking lots of questions. Lisa is a very busy person so don't make a nuisance of yourself. Text (short text) her periodically to let her now you still want a Ohana Havanese and you are not giving up until you get one! NEVER ask about price at this time. She wants someone who wants a quality Havanese more than trying to save money on your purchase. Price discussion will happen when she has selected a puppy for you regardless of color, gender, or selecting from a photo. Follow these general guidelines and you should have no problem with Lisa and getting on her list..
 

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Hello from Berkeley, and welcome to the fun world of finding a reputable breeder in CA (or anywhere in the country for that matter). There are several very reputable breeders that are no longer breeding, and unfortunately a LOT of not so reputable ones. Ohana and La Brisa have consistently come up in convos about reputable breeders. I’ve talked to Amanda from La Brisa and she seems wonderful and to be doing all the ‘right’ things, and sounds like she may have an upcoming litter in the fall. Ive played phone tag a bit with Lisa at Ohana but haven’t connected. I’ve also connected with Mary from Amor who is expecting puppies this summer, but haven’t had a conversation with her about approach so can’t suggest one way or another.

Awesome if you’re able to get on Ohana’s list, and if not, I’d definitely suggest looking outside CA as well! As it sounds like you’ve gathered from your research, great breeders are highly sought after anywhere, and the population of CA, plus demand given popularity of the breed here, is enormous compared to the number of breeders doing all the ‘right’ things (many of whom only have pups once a year!) I brought my Charlie home from CO on a plane at 11 weeks old nearly 9 years ago, and it definitey helped make him comfortable with flying— ppl are always surprised to find out there’s a dog under the seat!

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hi all!

Man, I cannot thank you guys enough for all of your thoughtful and thorough messages. It has been hard to find responsible breeders (let alone get a message back), but this breed is worth it and you all have been crucial in my search!

Update:

- I was able to fill out a questionnaire and have it printed & saved by Lisa of Ohana - she says she has a breeding later this year in which she will interview families. She seems extremely particular so I’m not sure how that will go!

- I sent in a questionnaire and follow up email for Amor Havanese last Friday, but have not heard back from them yet. Anyone have insight on when I might hear back?

- Lastly: so many of you have adopted your Havanese’s from other states. I never considered this until now. What breeders are you adopting from? Could you give me the name and maybe the reason why you decided to go with them?

Thank you so much!
 

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Arf! Arf!
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It has been hard to find responsible breeders (let alone get a message back), but this breed is worth it and you all have been crucial in my search!
👌👍👍👍

PD13 you are going about your search in the right way. Just be patient, ALL GOOD THINGS COME TO THOSE WHO WAIT. I have an appointment to talk with Lisa @ Ohana next week about other matters. I will talk about your case. You just never know what might develop!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
👌👍👍👍

PD13 you are going about your search in the right way. Just be patient, ALL GOOD THINGS COME TO THOSE WHO WAIT. I have an appointment to talk with Lisa @ Ohana next week about other matters. I will talk about your case. You just never know what might develop!
Exactly my mindset!! I absolutely will not rush this process. Obviously I could have a puppy by now if went about it in a reckless way, but it's important to me that I find the right breeder and that the pups are raised in loving and healthy environments. Thank you so so soooooo much, that would be great if you brought up my case with Lisa! I am happy to answer any questions you may have!
 

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Hi all!

Man, I cannot thank you guys enough for all of your thoughtful and thorough messages. It has been hard to find responsible breeders (let alone get a message back), but this breed is worth it and you all have been crucial in my search!

Update:

- I was able to fill out a questionnaire and have it printed & saved by Lisa of Ohana - she says she has a breeding later this year in which she will interview families. She seems extremely particular so I’m not sure how that will go!

- I sent in a questionnaire and follow up email for Amor Havanese last Friday, but have not heard back from them yet. Anyone have insight on when I might hear back?

- Lastly: so many of you have adopted your Havanese’s from other states. I never considered this until now. What breeders are you adopting from? Could you give me the name and maybe the reason why you decided to go with them?

Thank you so much!
My experience with Mary at Amor is that she is a little spotty on follow-up… a couple times I heard back immediately, and then she didn’t respond. I know breeders gets tons of inquiries, so think it’s okay to send (respectful of course) follow ups to let them know you’re still interested, and to ask if they have updates. I’ve also found I get more responses when I write a bit about myself, my family, why we’re looking for a Havanese, etc, in my email. You may have already done this but if not could be worth a try— as you have seen, good breeders deeply care that their puppies are going to great homes that have thought out this decision!
 
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