Maltese Breed Profile
If you own a Maltese, you already know that they are lively
and fearless dogs. These tiny dogs have
long been symbols of status and royalty.
As far back as 500 years ago, they were sold for $2000 or more! Unlike
some other toy breeds, the Maltese is not simply a smaller version of another
dog. Rather, the first Maltese dogs were
the same size as today’s breed standard.
Attitude and Behavior of Maltese
Maltese dogs are both affectionate lap dogs and exuberant
playmates. They’re friendly with
children, although care should be taken when allowing toy breeds to play
roughly with children. They’re usually
good with other animals, although they may foolishly challenge larger
dogs. Maltese are generally reserved
towards strangers, but are well suited to family life.
Maltese are full of energy, and tend to be bold and
curious. They learn quite quickly, but
can become stubborn. Reward-based
training involving food or play goes a long way to keeping your Maltese engaged
but be careful not to reward too much, or your Maltese’s waistline may suffer!
Maltese tend to stay in reasonable weight, but it may be
difficult to tell because of the abundance of fur. You should be able to feel the ribs, but they
should not be too noticeable by sight.
Feed a balanced diet, as recommended by your veterinarian, and reduce
calories and increase exercise if needed.
Remember that the calories in treats add up fast with a toy breed dog.
Maltese make lively and alert house pets as long as their
exercise needs are met. A daily walk
around the block, coupled with several play sessions, will usually
suffice. Dog parks provide a welcome
change of scenery, but should be considered carefully if there is not an area
separated for small breed dogs. Use
caution when letting your Maltese run off-leash – choose only enclosed areas
such as a well fenced dog park or yards.
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