It is reputed of being the oldest dog (as early as 1500 B.C) and has the references in the ancient Greek art. The Maltese was first developed in Italy, but as the breed was first recognized as a breed in Malta; so it got the name "Ye ancient dogge of Malta." It possibly has the miniature Spaniel and Poodle blood. The Greeks erected tombs for their Maltese dogs. The breed has the pride of being owned by royalty throughout the world. Women were so fond of it, that they carried it around in their sleeves and slept with it in their beds. It was first brought to England by the Crusaders who were returning home from the Mediterranean. The breed was recognized by AKC in 1888.
The Maltese is playful, spirited and lively dog. It is gentle, loving and devoted towards its master. It is very intelligent and good at learning tricks. It is bold and quick to raise the alarm in case of hearing some suspicious sounds. It is graceful and loves to play outdoors; and also enjoy jumping the puddles.
- Activity Level: 3/5(moderately active)
- Intelligence Level: 4/5(very intelligent)
- Curiosity: 4/5(very curious)
- Friendliness: 3/5(highly affectionate towards family, but not too friendly with strangers)
- Vocal: 4/5(can be quite vocal)
The Maltese is a small dog with stunning silky hair going all the way to the ground. The skull is slightly rounded at the top. It has a deep chest. The ears are close to the head have heavy feathers.
- Fur: The silky, single layered coat is either white or ivory in colour.
- Eyes: The eyes are large and round; are black in colour. They are set apart and have dark rims.
- Body Structure: The body structure is compact, sturdy and fine-boned.
- Facial Features: The nose is black and has open nostrils.
- Weight: They weigh up to 7 pounds.
The major health concerns in Maltese are hip dysplasia elbow dysplasia, hypothyroidism, and von Willebrand's disease; and it should be tested for the same. Some other diseases which might occur in it are Patellar luxation, White Dog Shaker Syndrome, Portosystemic liver shunt, Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), Hypoglycemia, and reverse sneezing.
For grooming, its long coat should be combed and brushed gently; on daily basis. The detangle spray or coat condition should be applied to remove the mats. The eyes should be cleaned daily to prevent staining and beard should be cleaned after every meals. Its nails should be trimmed once or twice a month. Its teeth should be brushed twice or thrice a month to avoid the tartar formation. It can be given bath or dry shampoo regularly; but it should be dried and warmed immediately after the bath. The hair can be cut short or can be tied at the top.
We have gathered this information from our breeders based on their experience with this breed. However, remember that each animal is different with its own personality and needs (just like people!), so use this information wisely.
Do you know more about this breed and want to share your knowledge with us? Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org