Who we are

Make your family complete when you adopt a Bolognese puppy from our dog breeders based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Backed by more than 10 years of experience, Bolognese Iowa strives to warm the homes of families in the central United States by finding homes for our affectionate, easy-going purebred puppies.

As one of the finest breeders in the state, we take pride in assisting you through every step from selecting your puppy to arranging transportation to even returning your money in the event that your puppy is not quite the right fit for your lifestyle. Contact us in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to discover why we are your first-choice dog breeders. Bologneseofiowa@outlook.com

Breed History

At Bolognese Iowa, we take pride in doing our part to preserve the rich history and future of this rare dog breed. We invite you to read the fascinating history of Bolognese dogs below.

Historical Legacy

The queen Sharing its early ancestral roots with Bichon Frise and Havanese dog breeds, Bolognese (pronounced “bowl-own-KNEES”) dogs most likely descended from Bichon-type dogs raised in 11th and 12th century southern Italy, most notably in the city of Bologna. Also called “Bichon Bolognese,” these dogs became popular pets among European royalty after Cosimo the Elder, an influential Florentine leader in the 1400s, bought several dogs to be given as gifts during his political and diplomatic visits.

Bolognese dogs take its name from the Italian city of Bologna, where they were a very popular companion to the rich and noble. According to Alice Bixler, their history dates back as early as the 11th century and it wasn’t until the 14th to 16th centuries that the Bolognese caught the fancy of nobility. They brought them to the courts of wealthy Medici, Gonzaga and Este, and romped in the throne rooms of Queen Maria Theresa of Austria and Russia’s Catherine the Great. Dedicated Bolognese breeder Cosimo de Medici (1389-1464) gifted several Belgian noblemen with his dogs on a trip to their country. The Duke d’Este sent a pair to Phillip II, King of Spain from 1556-1598, and received a gracious thank you note from the monarch: “These two dogs are the most royal gifts one can make to an emperor.”

How did the Bolognese dogs first come to the United States? We have Bert and Dorothy Goodale of Delta, Colorado to thank, as they imported the first Bolognese dog in 1986. The following year, the couple founded the Bolognese Club of America. The breed is still extremely rare in the country, but it is growing steadily in the US and is recognized by the United Kennel Club and the American Rare Breed Association.

Now there are several wonderful accredited breeders of Bolognese in the United States. They are a dedicated group of people who network together to ensure the quality and standard of the breed.

Over the course of the following centuries, Bolognese dogs became a sought-after breed. These dogs were prominently featured in the artistic works of Francisco Goya and Tiziana Vecelli. However, soon the desire for the breed waned and, despite the recent efforts of Italian breeder Gianfranco Giannelli, the breed remains a rare find, with only an estimated 1,000 Bolognese currently residing in the United States.

Modern Standing

While the breed made its first recent appearance at the Crufts Dog Show in 2002, the breed is not yet recognized by American Kennel Club, nor is it eligible for AKC registration. However, it is registered though the organization’s Foundation Stock Service® program in order to maintain reputable records of the breed’s development.

Contact our dog breeders based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to bring home a little piece of history in the form of our Bolognese puppies.


Country of Origin:

The Bolognese (pronounced ‘bowl-owe-KNEES’), shares its early ancestry with the Bichon Frise and the Havanese, likely descending from ‘Bichon’-type breeds in southern Italy in the 11th and 12th century. It is named after the Italian city ‘Bologna’, and sometimes called the ‘Bichon Bolognese’.

The Bolognese became a popular pet among royalty in Spain when Cosimo the Elder, an influential political leader from Florence, Italy, brought several with him as gifts during his visits in the 1400’s. Over the next few centuries, the Bolognese increased in popularity throughout Europe, appearing prominently in paintings by artists Francisco Goya and Tiziano Vecelli. However, its numbers dropped off dramatically in the following years. Recently Italian breeder Gian Franco Giannelli has led an effort to revitalize the Bolognese, but it remains a rare breed with less than 1,000 estimated Bolognese in the United States.

The Bolognese is not yet recognized with the American Kennel Club, but is registered with its Foundation Stock Service. It made its first appearance at Crufts, the world’s largest international dog show, in 2002.

PLEASE NOTE: This breed has been accepted for recording in the AKC Foundation Stock Service (FSS).

This is simply an avenue to maintain reputable records regarding the breed’s development. This breed is not eligible for AKC (American Kennel Club) registration.


The Bolognese has a shoulder height of 25-30 cm (10-12 in) and weighs 2-4 kg (5-9 lbs). It has large, dark eyes and nose, square muzzle, white teeth, pincer or scissors bite, and long, highly set ears. Bolognese have a deep chest and tail curled over the back. The Bolognese is a small, squarish dog which is about as tall as it is wide.


The Bolognese has a very distinctive coat. It is a large mass of long, straight, fluffy locks which covers the entire body, slightly shorter on the face. The Bolognese has a woolly, not silky, texture, and is never clipped or cut. There is no undercoat. Bolognese are pure white without any markings or shadings. The Bolognese is hypoallergenic.


The Bolognese is cheerful, intelligent, focused and obedient. It is highly attached to its owners, following them from room to room. The Bolognese does not bark frequently, but will raise the alarm at potential dangers, making a good watchdog. It is playful and affectionate, bonding closely with its owners. The Bolognese is less energetic than the Bichon Frise. It makes an excellent companion.


The Bolognese enjoys the company of other dogs, pets, and children.

Contact our dog breeders based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to discover why our Bolognese puppies are the perfect breed for you.


Bolognese Iowa

Give our purebred Bolognese puppies the perfect home when you purchase a puppy from our dog breeders based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. At Bolognese Iowa, we understand that nothing turns a house into a home quite the same way a bounding, happy puppy can. All of our puppies are pedigreed and registered through the Bolognese Breed Association of America.

This breed is recognized as being easy to train and for their high intellect, affection, focus, and mellow temperament. While less energetic than their sister breed, the Bichon Frise, Bolognese dogs bond closely with their owners and are known to follow you from room to room.

While they are always excited to greet new guests to your home, they also make great watch dogs, as they rarely bark expect to raise alarm for potential dangers. This makes them the perfect for families with small children.


Bolognese iowa testimonial of molly sardella

On April 17 we surprised our 3 girls with a puppy from Bolognese of Iowa. My family lives outside of Philadelphia. I do have to say I was very nervous about purchasing a puppy from so far away. I was also nervous about purchasing a puppy that I never saw in person. However the breeder Chuck helped me through the process of adopting our adorable Bolognese.

Chuck is knowledgeable, patient, and answered the hundreds of questions I had throughout the process. After talking to him and looking at the pictures and videos I knew that the Bolognese was the right puppy for us, and that we had found a breeder that truly loves and cares for their puppies. I could tell that Rocco came from a loving home.

I can't say enough how beautiful Rocco is. He is an absolute joy to have in our home and I am so happy we made the decision to adopt him from Bolognese of Iowa.

The transition to our home was smooth. Chuck had every detail of his plane ride organized and made it comfortable for Rocco. He also included an informative book about the puppy.

This was truly a great experience for us, and I would highly recommend using this breeder.

Molly Sardella

Bolognese iowa testimonial of birgitta

My little Chocolate Havanese passed away at 2 1/2 this march from Live Shunts. I could not bear to get another Havanese and always think it would happen again. I searched for a small non shedding dog under 20 pounds. It was between a Coton or a Bolognese.

Cotons are prone to Live Shunts also, so that ended that breed. Bolognese are not prone to any disorder, and fit the bill.

Chuck was awesome, helping me and arranging for Mia to be shipped to Boston. He answered all my questions and was very attentive through the whole process. She is a doll, and everyone asks what is she. Even one of the vets said "a What!?" They had never had one in their office.

Each day that goes by she is more loving and fun. She is 17 weeks now and have been to Martha’s Vineyard, Maine and All Over Colorado. She traveled well, but I was a reck thinking I would have a howling puppy on the plane. I recommend for you to buy your puppy from Chuck At Bolognese Iowa and have a fun time with these little cotton balls.


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