Most people know a Dalmatian right away because of his distinctive spotty coat. The Dalmatian has a muscular build, a keen and alert expression, and a handsome face. His coat is close fitting, dense, and short, and the coloring is white with black or liver spotting all over the coat. The weight of the Dalmatian is around 45-70 pounds, and the height is around 19-25 inches.
The Dalmatian is an alert, active, and confident dog with plenty of energy and excellent skills when it comes to problem solving and obedience. Courageous, friendly, and outgoing, the Dalmatian is a dog that tends to bond closely with his owners, making him a great family pet, although they can be very strong willed, which may make him better suited to owners with some degree of experience in handling and training dogs. These dignified dogs love a wide range of activities, and are sociable and dependable, but owners will need to provide plenty in terms of physical activity as well as mental stimulation, otherwise these dogs can get bored and this can lead to destructive behavior.
You should ensure that you socialize your Dalmatian early on to aid a more stable temperament, as some lines can be aggressive. However, the Dalmatian tends to get on okay with children when raised with them, and will usually get on well with other pets - again early socialization is recommended. When it comes to strangers the reaction can depend on the individual personality of the dog, and can range from warm and friendly to reserved and polite. The Dalmatian is a protective dog, and this helps to make him quite an effective watchdog. The Dalmatian can be difficult to handle and manage unless you have the confidence, assertiveness, and experience to ensure he is properly trained.
The grooming requirements for the Dalmatian are not overly high, and regular brushing will help to get rid of dead hair and keep the coat looking good. The Dalmatian is a medium shedder, and tends to shed all year round, which means that he is not the ideal dog for those with allergies.
While little is known about where the Dalmatian came from, some seem to think they came from Dalmatia, which is part of Croatia. Evidence of Dalmatians was discovered in Egypt as well.
In the 1800's, Dalmatians were used more often as guard dogs and carriage dogs. Protecting what was inside carriages by running alongside them, Dalmatians were the perfect choice because of their loyalty and endurance.
Dalmatians were also used to guard firehouses for the same reasons why they were used as carriage dogs.
Creating a daily routine will help prevent urination 'accidents' that will occur when you first bring the dog home. Taking your dog outside before you go to work, after you get home, and once more before bedtime will help your dog be able to have more control during the times you aren't at home. Daily routines will also make Dalmatians feel more comfortable around people and their surrounds. Developing a routine could take up to six months, but once your dog is trained, you will need to maintain the routine in order to keep your dog happy.
Other types of training your Dalmatian may require are basic commands for public situations. Walking your dog in public will help them become more comfortable around people. When teaching new commands, give the dog a treat when they are successful. Every time they follow your command, give a treat.
Do not use negative reinforcement with training your Dalmatian. Even though they are even tempered dogs, they could become angry when punished or verbally abused. Keep instructing your dog using positive reinforcement until they learn the commands.
While it is easier to train a puppy, you can still train an adult dog with a little patience and consistency on your part.
If you want to enroll your puppy in obedience training classes, wait until they are at least 5 or 6 months old. Most puppies can learn simple commands at this age. As your puppy grows, they will learn more advanced commands.
The life expectancy of the Dalmatian is around 11-14 years, and this breed has a range of health issues and disorders linked to it. This includes glaucoma, deafness, diabetes, gall stones, allergies, and seizures. The parents of the Dalmatian puppy should have OFA and CERF certificates.