Dalmatian dogs have been around such a long time that no one can say, for sure, exactly what they were bred to do. That being the case, here are a few of their purported jobs - you can use your own judgment as to which ones you think are the most likely: Chariot runner, coach follower/protector, traveling companion to the gypsies, sentinel, shepherd, ratter, bird dog, retriever, hunter, circus entertainer and guard dog.
The physical stamina of the breed would certainly make any of these activities possible, but based on this resume, he might
get labelled as a job hopper!
Joking aside, in the more recent history of the Dalmatian, it was discovered that he had a great way with horses and this explains his known work in Firehouses during the 1800's where he was used to clear the path for horse drawn fire equipment, as well as assist in rescue operations.
It also ties in with his role of
accompanying carriages while providing clear passage for the coaches and
protection for the passengers.
As to the Dalmatian's actual place of origin, there are no verified findings, but some authorities believe it to be in the region of Croatia. Many experts however do agree that this is an ancient breed of dog. Some evidence to support this belief lies in the discovery of artifacts from as far back as 2000 BC, depicting images of very similar spotted dogs.
In the modern world, hardly anyone would be unfamiliar with the unique black and white (or brown and white) appearance of Dalmatian dogs, if only from having seen many of them in the well-promoted Disney movie - 101 Dalmatians.
The Dalmatian has a smooth coat that is short, fine yet dense and lies
close to the body. Its coat should have a sleek, glossy and healthy
Although this breed is considered to be very clean and pretty much without odor, it does shed year round and even more so during its seasonal shedding times.
Maintenance includes daily brushing and frequent use of a de-shedding tool to handle the ongoing shedding and keep the nice sheen on the coat. Nail clipping, and ear cleaning should be done routinely especially because of their tendency toward deafness.
Bathing is not usually needed very often unless there has been exposure to messy terrain, etc., but freshening up of the coat with these cleaning dog wipes is nice for everyone!
Dalmatian dogs are considered to be highly intelligent, eager to please
and very trainable. They are known for their incredible retentive memory
which has to be a big plus in training them.
They are extremely people oriented - this means they don't like to be left alone or outside for too long!
They will become sad if you ignore them and must be part of everyday family activities, which includes your loving attention - lots of it. In return owners can enjoy a loyal companion that will give back doubly.
This is another breed that at one time became immensley popular (following the well-known Disney movie), which led to a spate of indiscriminate breeding. Those interested in the Dalmatian are advised to avoid inexperienced back yard breeders and seek referrals to responsible breeders who strive to perpetuate desirable traits in the breed.
A very important thing to keep in mind, is that Dalmatian dogs need confident owners to be their pack leaders. Ones who can train them with consistency - firmly, yet fairly. They can spot weaknesses in individuals very quickly, so if you don't maintain your leadership, don't be surprised if they take over as the boss.
Early socialization is beneficial to the breed to expose them to other people, plus a variety of experiences, places and situations, as well as other canines.
When it comes to house training, the Dalmatian usually gets the hang of this very quickly because of his intelligence as well as his natural desire to be clean.
Weight: 50 to 55 pounds
Height: Ranges between 19 to 23 inches
The basic coat color of pure white is adorned with evenly distributed distinct spots of black or liver-brown that vary in size.
Only these two
colors of spots are recognized by the AKC breed standard.
Deafness is a fairly common inherited condition in this breed because
they lack a particular enzyme related to hearing, but they still can make marvelous pets and be trained very well - perhaps with a
little help from a specialist at the beginning.
Finding a reliable vet to evaluate their health before you acquire one, is a very good idea.
For more detailed health information visit Dalmatian Club of America Foundation
A very energetic breed with almost unlimited stamina. They need both mental and physical exercise and love to play games.
Daily long walks are a must. They also make great partners for those who enjoy distance running - providing they are gradually conditioned to the duration. Swimming is another excellent activity suited to the breed.
When families are time-challenged or weather inclement, a dog treadmill is a handy exercise alternative.
The ideal situation is house with a fenced yard where they can spend time playing - preferably with you in the game.
They can adapt to other apartment or condo living accommodations providing sufficient exercise is provided.
Best suited to families with young adult children who are more mature in their understanding of pets and have had good relationships with them.
As with any breed, it is always the recommended policy to have an adult supervise interactions between children and pets.
Dalmatian dogs can be good companions for the seniors or more sedentary
families, but generally in this case, it would be better if they are
acquired at an adult age where they are beyond the more boisterous and
highly active puppy years.
They do make good alarm dogs for those living alone.
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