It is probably difficult to imagine a person living in a civilized world who would not know what a Dalmatian is. The cartoon, and later the film by Walt Disney “101 Dalmatians”, made these animals famous everywhere. By the way, following the release of this touching story, the popularity of this breed skyrocketed. Which is not surprising.
The exact origin of the Dalmatian is unknown but the first evidence refers to gypsies. Yes, you read that right – it was this wandering folk who used dogs in performances and hunting. Actually, the very name of the Dalmatian breed refers to the territory called Dalmatia, which corresponds to present-day Croatia. Apparently, these dogs were very popular in this area. Dalmatians acted as shepherds, rat-catchers, retrievers, and even circus dogs.
But this breed received its final and most important place in life in England, thanks to the professionalism of the breeders there. They developed these dogs into a full-fledged breed with certain standards and determined their most effective use. The Dalmatian cleared the way for horses, ran next to carriages, and guarded horses and the carriage during resting periods. Even today, the Dalmatian breed has a natural affinity for horses.
Accordingly, Dalmatians were also used as service dogs to accompany ambulances and fire brigades, and in America, it was even more popular than in England. It is the inner closeness to horses, and the lack of fear of them, that has made the Dalmatians the most used dogs to accompany various modes of transport. In addition, they served as guard dogs at ambulance stations at hospitals, and at fire stations.
The Dalmatian breed is lean but strong and muscular with an aesthetic and proportional physique. The muzzle is elongated, and the ears are folded. Their limbs are slightly longer than average, their chest pronounced, as is their abdominal cavity. The coat is short, soft, thick, and shiny. The color is white with black spots.
To say that the Dalmatian breed has a high energy level would be an understatement. This is a born fidget, who is always happy to be the soul of the company, and longs for new adventures. Dalmatians are ready to spend all of their time outdoors.
If you do not have enough free time to provide your dog with long and active walks, do not get this breed. Since if the animal does not receive the necessary level of activity, it becomes unhappy and sad, loses its appetite, and tends to chew everything around it. In this case – furniture, shoes, doors, etc.
Keep in mind that Dalmatians are as smart as they are active. They can be cunning and stubborn. And therefore, everyone who starts with this breed should be aware that he will need to carry out consistent educational work with his pup. The goal is to make it clear to the dog that you see through its tricks and, so to speak, “are not fooled”, and secondly, to develop obedience, and get rid of that stubbornness.
These animals require early socialization with children, and other animals, as well as situations in life and scents. Then you can be sure that the dog will behave perfectly in any situation.
If a stranger shows a negative attitude, the dog will first loo at the owner’s reaction. Dalmatians do not like to come into conflict with a person. But at the same time, he is good as a watchdog. He has high vigilance and can bark loudly and abundantly. However, keep in mind – he loves people and is not strong enough to attack and pose a serious danger to an adult, large man.
The Dalmatian is an obedient and flexible breed, in terms of character, and, in general. Especially if the owner finds the right approach to the animal. Then everything happens harmoniously and without problems. So what is the correct approach?
Firstly, the stubbornness of the dog must be fought not with aggression and screams but with consistency and patient repetition. In Addition, make the training sessions as active and varied as possible. Then they will love training, and the dog will happily wait for the next session.
Secondly, keep in mind that Dalmatians are emotionally sensitive and do not accept harsh training methods. It can be said that such methods offend their feelings. Therefore, an extremely positive approach and abundant rewards for the correct completion of tasks and good behavior are needed. It is believed that Dalmatians remember abuse for life.
The Dalmatian has a short coat but sheds quite heavily. Usually, the dog needs to be combed once a week, during shedding season 2 times. Bathe the animal once a week, and clean its eyes daily, and ears – 3 times a week. Nails should be trimmed 3 times a month.
In addition, you should always make sure that your Dalmatian has access to clean water and the ability to go to the toilet. This is due to the fact that the Dalmatian has a completely unique urinary system, and is not like other dogs in this regard. Your pet’s food should not be high in protein, and in general, the diet should be selected carefully. Prolonged exposure to cold is not recommended, make sure that your dog has a jumpsuit for the winter.
The Dalmatian breed is prone to a number of diseases, including:
- Hereditary deafness – Approximately 8% of Dalmatians are born completely deaf, and 22 – 24% hear in only one ear.
- Urolithiasis – Dalmatians have a unique urinary tract system that makes them susceptible to the formation of stones in the urinary tract.
- Skin allergies;
- Hip dysplasia;
- Iris sphincter dysplasia;
- Dysplasia of the elbow joint;
- Von Willebrand disease;