Source: www.4simpsons.wordpress.com

Source: www.4simpsons.wordpress.com

Known for its unique white coat with black spots this Croatian originated dog was mainly used as carriage dog in the early days. Post the “101 Dalmatians” frenzy; this dog is now a well loved family pet and a prize winner at many kennel competitions.

Appearance and Size: On an average these dogs weigh between 16 – 32 kg, with an average height of up to 24 inches tall.  Males marginally larger than the females, their spots vary in shapes and sizes. The newly born pup is devoid of spots and the initial signs of spots only begin after three weeks. Over a period of time the spots grow up to 60 mm and are commonly black/brown in color. Few rare breeds have their spots in varied colors like blue, mosaic, orange, lemon and even tricolored. The Dalmatian coat is short, fine and dense; nevertheless they still shed a lot of fur which gets really difficult to get rid of as it weaves itself into carpets, rugs and clothing. The litter size can vary from 9 – 13 pups.

Temperament / Personality: Dalmatians are good watch dogs and are quite often used as firehouse dogs. Like their ancestors, this breed was used for hunting and guarding the borders across Europe and till today the instinct carries on. They are very intelligent dogs and were even used in sporting events. Their trait of sharp senses still exists which makes them excellent guard dogs.

Source: www.warrenphotograpic.co.uk

Source: www.warrenphotograpic.co.uk

Grooming: Pet owners should weekly groom their dog with a de-shedder which can lessen the fur fall that these dogs experience, but till date the shedding question hasn’t been answered. Unlike other dogs this breed has a unique trait to its coat, their coat has very minimal oil which makes them lack the “doggy smell” and stay moderately clean. Buy dog grooming products online, available here: http://www.headsupfortails.com/category_Grooming_6

Health: The average lifespan of this dog is 12 – 14 years, although some have lived up to 15 – 16 years as well. A frequent health issues with this breed is deafness. Some studies say that the cause of deafness may be attributed to the absence of melanocytes in the ears, but the theory is still to be proven. Like the human condition- hyperuricemia, Dalmatians also fall prey to this disease and pet owners should avoid feeding their dogs organ meats and animal byproducts as a preventive measure.