The Dalmatian is one of the most popular dog breeds known for their peculiar black (or brown) spots on the white. It is a very loyal dog, with a stable and calm character, whenever you perform the exercise sufficient to release the accumulated tension.
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Whether you are thinking of adopting a Dalmatian puppy or an adult dog , we will explain everything you need to know about your character, the main characteristics of the breed, your education or some of the most important health problems .
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History of the Dalmatian
Despite being a race long known, the ancient history and origins of the Dalmatian are really unknown. The Dalmatian’s first images are of Croatian paintings and frescoes dating to the 17th century. This is the main reason why the International Cynological Federation (FCI) attributes the origin of the breed to the Croatian region of Dalmatia, but there are different hypotheses that suggest that this dog originated much earlier elsewhere.
In any case, the Dalmatian has become popular all over the world. Throughout its existence, it has performed various functions. It was used as hunting dog, companion, guard, etc. However, his consecration as ” carriage dog ” of the English upper class occurred in the late seventeenth century. At this time the wealthy nobles and British made several Dalmatians accompany their cars to show their power. This fulfilled two functions: protecting the horses from the stray dogs and providing a more beautiful view of the car.
With the invention of the automobile, carriage dogs have disappeared and race popularity has declined. However, the Dalmatians also accompanied the fire trucks and this tradition remained. Today, they remain part of the fire brigades in many regions of the world, although now they travel on the truck.
The popularity of the breed came about again in the 1960s thanks to the movie ” The 101 Dalmatians ” of Disney and then had a new increase with the second version of it. Unfortunately, this ended up harming the breed, since the old carriage dog became a popular and requested dog, so it began to breed indiscriminately. The result was overpopulation of the breed and many hereditary diseases due to high inbreeding. Nowadays, the Dalmatian is a very popular companion and family dog.
Characteristics of the Dalmatian
This is a beautiful breed, elegant and distinguished by its white fur with black spots . The head is proportional and harmonious with the rest of the body, is free of wrinkles and has a prism shape. The set is moderately set. The nose should be the same color as the body stains. The eyes are oval and their color also corresponds to that of the spots. The ears are high insertion, triangular, with round, hanging and stained edges.
The body is rectangular, its length being slightly larger than the height at the withers. The back is powerful and straight, while the loin is short and the back slightly sloping. The chest is deep and not too broad. The belly is moderately retracted but not too deep. The tail is long, saber-shaped and it is preferable to be with males. The coat is short, shiny, hard and dense. It is white with black or brown spots.
Character of the Dalmatian
The Dalmatian is a friendly, self-confident and very active dog . Overall, they love to swim, run and practice exercise following traces and their own curiosity. They usually get along with other dogs and other animals. As a rule, they are also friendly with unfamiliar people, although they are not as sociable as the Labrador Retriever or the Golden Retriever . Some, however, are reserved with strangers, but innate aggression is a very unusual feature in the breed.
They are perfect for active families who practice exercise with their dogs and want a faithful and energetic companion at their side. However, indoors the Dalmatian is a calm and serene dog, able to relax without problem.
These dogs tolerate perfectly the children who know how to respect them and take care of them as they deserve, but they do not always react well to the tail or ear pulling. For this reason, it will be important to teach your children to play with the Dalmatian appropriately, always with respect and care. The education of the dog is also very important to achieve a more affable, relaxed and tolerant. But let’s talk about it for the future.
Care of the Dalmatian
The Dalmatian of the care is really simple, as it needs only a brushing occasionally to remove the dead and give him a bath when you’re really dirty.
What you should really pay attention to is the exercise needs this dog needs. It is essential to have this point clear if you want to adopt a Dalmatian dog, because if you do not fulfill this need of it, it can become destructive in the house. Your energy needs are truly high so you should do a minimum of three moderately long walks every day and devote at least one hour of active exercise . It can also help us release your accumulated stress by practicing games of intelligence that, in addition to entertaining the dog, will stimulate you mentally to further develop your excellent abilities.
Finally, it is good to note that although the Dalmatian is sometimes a bit independent, it is a dog that loves to feel that it is part of a social group and that it does not like solitude at all . Spending too much alone can lead to behavioral problems such as separation anxiety .
Education of the Dalmatian
The Dalmatian is located at Stanley Coren’s intelligence scale number 39 , however, and although many trainers regard him as a stubborn dog, he has a natural predisposition for learning when positive reinforcement is used . It is a tireless and active dog so, in addition to exercising with him, the training will be very useful to improve his well-being and state of mental health.
Deve começar com a educação do filhote quando atinge os 3 meses de idade. Nesta altura deve começar com a socialização do filhote nos seus primeiros passeios apresentado-lhe pessoas, animais e o ambiente no qual vai viver. Este processo é dos mais importantes na educação do cachorro uma vez que repercutirá diretamente no hábito dos comportamentos sociais e estáveis, longe do medo e da agressividade que pode provocar uma falta de socialização. Mais para a frente e neste mesmo período também deve ensinar ao cachorro a inibição da mordida, como deve brincar conosco ou ensinar-lhe a fazer as necessidades na rua. Não se esqueça que para o cachorro puder sair para a rua deve ter todas as suas vacinas em dia.
Later you should begin to teach him the basic commands of obedience , a very important point for your safety and to foster good communication with us. At this point we reinforce the importance of using positive reinforcement as punishment and scolding are detrimental to learning and may lead to unwanted behaviors.
Once you have mastered and learned your orders, you can start your advanced training, practice fun tricks or advanced activities such as agility , an obstacle course that mixes exercise and obedience orders. Agility is undoubtedly an ideal sport for this active breed.
Devoting time to the dog’s education is very important but it is also good to remind him of the orders on a regular basis to prevent him from forgetting. The average daily training time is between 5 and 10 minutes.
Health of the Dalmatian
The Dalmatian is a dog prone to many diseases due to the consanguinity to which this breed has been subjected for so many years. The most common diseases in Dalmatian are:
- Allergic Dermatitis
- Atopic dermatitis
- Fungal Infections
- Food Allergies
- Skin Tumors
- Kidney stones
- Urethral stones
Deafness has a very high incidence on the breed and affects more than 10% of this breed. In turn, kidney and urethral stones are very common in the breed because the Dalmatian is the only mammal that can not metabolize uric acid in allantoin. This directly affects the formation of stones in the urinary tract.
To maintain an optimal health of our dog it will be essential to take him to an appointment with the veterinarian every 6 months to make sure that all is well and to follow his vaccination schedule . Good nutrition, exercise and good care are key to achieving a happy, healthy and long-lived Dalmatian.