Dalmatian

Breed History

 

Dalmatian Head shot

Dalmatian is a beautiful white dog with black liver spots all over their body. Lean and muscular dog who is fast with a lot of stamina. Intelligent and quick learner with the ability to work in different capacities.

In Central Europe the country of Croatia in an area known as Dalmatia, at the time, is where they are known to come from historically and that’s where they got their name.

Paintings in this area date back to the 16th century showing the dog in church artwork. Due to the location and description of the dog there is no disagreement about which dog they’re describing.

Popular for being firefighting dogs goes back to the 19th century. They a long history with this association. Firefighters would use horses to combat fires and these dogs were known to be excellent carriage dogs. All dog breeds don’t have to ability to not focus on the horses like the Dalmatian.

Fire departments now use the popular and resourceful big diesel engines, but their origins are with horses and Dalmatians.

Great guard dog there are many times in history where they are in use as war dogs or guardians or property. Decent retriever and they can hunt down game without destroying it before brining it back to the owners.

Hunting instincts makes them flexible due to their medium build. Owners used packs of dogs to hunt bigger animals and can hunt down smaller rabbits as well as rats individually.

Circus dogs that can perform many tricks in front of an audience is spectacular. Memory to remember multiple long series commands makes them special and unique without stage freight.

One of the earliest dogs to receive registration in 1888 with the AKC within the first decade of their existence which is 1878.

Registration

Known all over the world and they are shown recognition at all the major Kennel Clubs. Not as popular as they use to be, but they still rank around the top 50 in dog registration in America.

Here are the major Kennel Clubs who show recognition along with their breed standards.

Size

Male Height: 19-24 inches

Female Height: 19-24 inches

Male Weight: 45-70 pounds

Female Weight: 45-70 pounds

One of the few breeds at this size that the females can be bigger than males and most of the time they are the same size. You will have to be more diligent to figure out the gender of the dog.

Litter Size

Dalmatians litter size is around 8 puppies and sometimes they are known to have 15 plus puppies in one litter. I bring up the huge litter size because dog owners should be aware that your dog can drop a lot of puppies and you should have some awareness

Colors

  • White and Black
  • White and Liver Brown
  • White and Lemon
  • White and Orange

The most common colors for the standard are the first two colors and down the list you will see these colors less often. They’re official breed colors for this animal.

Price

Dalmatian’s can cost $1,000-$5,000 depending on the quality, currency, supply, demand and goals of the breeders. Papers will enhance the chances of you getting an incredible puppy. Getting a full breed dog is one of the most important aspects whether you are buying with papers or not.

Without papers you can expect to pay less money than if the dog did have papers. Bloodlines, kennel clubs, and other aspects of documentation will be nonexistent. You can expect to pay a few hundred dollars.

Grooming

Dalmatians are an easy dog to take care of regarding grooming. The coat is short and there is little shedding during shedding season. Overall, you will have a low maintenance coat to manage.

Here are the areas you need to focus on when it comes to grooming.

  1. Brushing
  2. Combing
  3. Bathing
  4. Ears
  5. Nails
  6. Professional Help

Brushing this dog be the most maintenance you will need to do to effectively groom them. Multiple times per week will be ideal. Extra or loose hair twice per year will help remove dead hair quicker.

Combing will be of no use for this breed. Fur is too short and there is no danger of getting matted or tangled. Although you don’t need to comb keep an eye out for missing hair or bald spots.

Bathing will be done in one of these two way. Getting them on a schedule will be most effective for people who are busy and work a nine to five. Others will prefer to wing it and wash when dirty or stinky.

Ears can be prone to getting an infection especially for those in desert climates. Vet bills can add up and the maintenance for them can become laborious.

Nails will be trim from exercising the dog outside, which we recommend. We don’t recommend not exercising the dog but if you choose not to exercise you will need to trim nails with clippers for canines.

Professional help is not a recommendation for this breed. Dalmatians are great dogs to groom at home.

Life Span

The lifespan is 10-12 years of age which is average for dogs. Having your dog for a decade is a long time. Preparation for a long time together is key to sustaining and long relationship.

Health Issues

Hips – there are many issues that can come from the hips most noticeably hip dysplasia. Their kennel club advises that you get a hip check preferably around 24 months of age. When x-rays are done, they will see the condition and what severity, if any, this dog will have at the time of the exam.

Congenital Deafness – one of the few acceptable tests is the BAER test to get the dog an auditory test. Animals with spots or a white coat are more prone to getting this condition. Dalmatians are the breed with the highest chance of becoming deaf and it is inherited.

Eyes – Eye exams should be done on an annual basis until the dog is at least five years old. After this the checkups should be every other year. Recommendation for this exam is given by their Kennel Club. Cataracts, cherry eye, and glaucoma can all affect any dog. Some conditions lead to blindness others are less serious. See your local vet to evaluation the situation.

Thyroid – There are a lot of symptoms that are in association with Thyroid dysfunction. You will notice health patterns that seem unusual with coat, weight gain, and skin issues. Tests can determine what is the functionality of the Thyroid and if it is working in a normal capacity.

Breed Group

Member of the Non-Sporting Dog Group in almost any Kennel Club you look up. This group has diversity in all categories and don’t have much in common. Most are known to guard the home and other high value items over their history, but none are tied to anything specific other than that.

One of the most popular dog groups. There are many small house dogs and exotic bigger dogs that are unique in many regards.

Here are some of the dogs that make up this group.

Exercise Needs

You need to provide a lot of daily exercise to your dog consistently. High energy is a good quality for a dog owner that wants to exercise and get the dog outside. You don’t need to run marathons in order to exercise your dog.

Undesirable behavior will be the result of not getting this dog any exercise. Owing a dog and not exercising them is a dangerous combination and should be avoided.

There is no set amount of running or walking that applies to all dogs. With that being the case, we must figure out the best solution that does apply to all dogs.

When the dog is misbehaving you will need to exercise them more than you currently are exercising them. Soon as the dog starts whining, barking excessively, scratching, chewing up items, and other behaviors you wish they would stop doing just increase their workload.

Focusing all their attention on working out and recovery while training will give your dog a new sense of fulfillment without being destructive.

This is how we recommend you start the program and work your way up if you need to

Morning: One hour (run, walk, or treadmill)

Evening: One hour (run, walk, or treadmill)

Let’s think about a homeless person who owns a dog. There dog is social, getting exercise, walks without a leash, and does everything they are told. Only difference between what you do and what they do is exercising the dog.

Training

  1. Exercise program
  2. Commands
  3. Socialization
  4. Corrections

You will spend most of your time exercising your dog in comparison to any other method in the training program. Think of it this way what is the best way to make your dog listen to you for two hours? Telling them where to walk, how long to walk, how to walk, on which side, not to pay attention to dogs, and other tasks during the walk. Only walking can get you that type of timeframe under instruction of the owner.

Commands are a smaller part of the program. Honestly, most people teach their dog to do these tasks by the time I start training them on what is important. Sit, stay, and lay can be done by children if they give themselves and the dogs enough repetition. Use life events to continue to utilize these commands before they eat, drink water, go out of any doors, and stay consistent.

Socialization should be done after the exercise program is in full effect. Leaving the exercise portion out of this section is not possible. A calm dog will socialize naturally with other dogs. Unlike many people who take their dog to parks to exercise you bring him with lower energy and they can conduct themselves correctly.

Correcting dogs is a big part of the first phase of training and becomes something you do once in a blue moon. At first you will be correcting everything and once the dog learns the rules you will find yourself having nothing to correct.

Are Dalmatians Good Family Dogs?

Family, kids, and other dogs are easy to integrate with the Dalmatian. Socially there are no issues in a normal situation. Train ability is great and you can teach this dog anything. Additions to the family after this dog has arrived would be easy to integrate.

The only thing this wonderful dog needs is a good owner that would exercise and train every day. Going to the lengths  that the dog requires and nothing less will ensure a great relationship.

Additional Resources