About the Dalmatian

Is it the "Right Breed" for You?

There's hardly anything cuter than a Dalmatian pup, except perhaps two pups! The adult Dalmatian is a handsome, stylish dog, that is sure to attract attention wherever he goes. Dals are currently quite popular, and many people are interested in the breed. If you are thinking of buying a Dal, please take the time to consider all aspects of that decision. Each breed has its good and bad points and no one breed is perfect for all situations. You must pick the breed that has the right characteristics to fit your needs and lifestyle, then raise and train the dog correctly. Dogs don't just "grow up" to be great family companions - they also take a lot of time and effort and patience. PLEASE think it over carefully.

DALS DO SHED, as do ALL smooth coated breeds. Dal hair is stiff and abundant, and will work its way into fabric. Although it is easy to sweep or vacuum, Dal hair is hard to brush off. If you are bothered by dog hair, the need to groom the dog regularly, and the necessity of extra sweeping or vacuuming, you will probably be unhappy with a Dalmatian. Shedding is heaviest in the spring and fall, but there are some loose hairs year-round. Also, if there are allergies in your family, a shedding breed like the Dalmatian can be a serious problem.

DALS ARE ACTIVE, especially diring puppyhood (which can last until 18 months or more). You will need a fenced yard, and the time and energy to take the dog for regular walks. A Dal that is confined too much may become noisy and destructive. They should NEVER be allowed to run free, without supervision. Dals need to be part of the family, require a lot of time and attention, and do not do well if kept outdoors and away from the family. Dalmatians should be house dogs.

DALS ARE BASICALLY A WATCH DOG BREED, and need to be raised with fairness, firmness and discipline. Although they are related to Pointers, Dals were originally watch dogs in the stables and ran with the horses and carriages to protect them from stray dogs and highwaymen. ALL Dals need basic obedience training and they need to know the rules of the household right frm the beginning. If you are unwilling or unable to function as "pack leader", your Dal will quickly step in and assume that role. Dals are smart, and can be stuborn, quickly learning what they can get away with. This is often a very dominant breed, and permissively raised Dals, often become problem dogs.

DALS ARE CLOWNS, and can be very exasperating. You MUST have a sense of humor to enjoy owning a Dalmatian. Adolescent Dals are particularly trying.

ON THE POSITIVE SIDE, Dals are delightful and intelligent companions, VERY affectionate, excellent family dogs if raised properly, are clean in the house, have little doggy odor, and are generally quite easy to house train. They are not normally barkers, but are good watchdogs. Dals are "easy keepers" - not expensive to feed, generally healthy, and easy to keep neat and clean. They love to ride in the car, run with horses, bikes or joggers. They have enormous amounts of energy, endless enthusiasm, and will play with the kids for hours. They can be taught to hunt game birds and make excellent ratters. Most Dals are quite sensitive to human moods, and will do their best to cheer up gloomy human friends. They CAN be a great deal of fun for the entire family. HOWEVER, Dals don't just "grow up" that way. It takes a lot of time and patience and a firm commitment to raise any dog properly - especially a smart, dominant, energetic one with a sense of humor!

A FEW STATISTICS - Size normally 21" to 24", and 45 to 65 pounds. Females average about 22" and 50 pounds, males about 23" and 60 pounds. Color is either black spotted or liver (brown) spotted: liver is becoming increasingly popular. Size is normally the main deciding factor when choosing between a male or a female. Dalmatians are a healthy breed and quite long lived, retaining their youthful vigor and appearance for many years. males live t be about 12 (10-14) years, and females often slightly longer - 10 to 15 years is reasonable to expect.



Author unknown

I wish someone would tell me what it is that I've done wrong,

Why I have to stay chained up and Left alone so long?

they seemed so glad to have me when I came here as a pup,

There were so many things we'd do while I was growing up.

They couldn't wait to train me as a companion and a friend,

And told me how they'd never fear being left alone again.

The children said they'd feed me and brush me every day,

They'd play with me and walk me if I could only stay.

But now the family "Hasn't time", they say I often shed,

They do not want me in the house not even to be fed.

THe children never walk me, they always say "Not Now!"

I wish that I could please them, won't someone tell me how?

All I had, you see, was love -- I wish they would explain,

Why they said they wanted me, then left me on a chain?



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