|Group:||Toys (Group 1)|
|Club:||Toy Dog Club Of Victoria Inc (Group 1)|
|Contact:||Mrs Marilyn Warren|
Background The correct name for this beautiful toy breed is Maltese (not Maltese Terrier as it is often called). No one is certain of the origins of the breed, despite claims that they came from the island of Malta, or are similar to the dogs worshipped by the ancient Egyptians. There is little doubt that they are one of the oldest of all dog breeds, with records of this type of dog dating back to 6000 BC. They were a prized possession of the people of Malta, as well as an exotic article of trade in the Middle East.
Average Lifespan When considering a dog, please realise that you are taking it on for its lifetime. Maltese live from between 12 to 16 years of age.
Breed Personality/Characteristics/Temperament Maltese are not working dogs, although some have gained excellent results in obedience trials and even make good watchdogs. A Maltese is here just to give love and shower you with affection, to let you know who is at the door and generally just make everyone it meets feel happy and welcome. It is very intelligent and lively and just loves to be pampered.
Compatibility with Other Pets Excellent.
Care Requirements Maltese are definitely "house dogs" and, although they will find a securely fenced garden a joy to play in, they prefer to be inside with their owners. If kept in a flat or a unit a daily walk on a lead is desirable, and is as good for the owner’s health as the dog’s. Although Maltese are very glamorous show dogs - even wearing bows in their head coat when being exhibited - when kept as pets they do not have to remain in full coat. The hair can be trimmed back and shaped for ease of care. Daily brushing is essential to keep all the knots and mats at bay, and the dog will enjoy a weekly bath, but remember to blow dry thoroughly. A good bristle brush, a small face comb and scissors for trimming away hair from the pads of the feet are essential tools of trade, along with nail clippers, boracic acid and a toothbrush for cleaning stained areas around the eye. Grooming a Maltese should be the responsibility of an adult member of the household. Maltese can be fussy eaters, so if you don’t want to make a rod for your own back, please start off correctly. Dedicated breeders are only too happy to supply a diet chart explaining likes and dislikes.
Please Take Note Although this is classified as a "toy" breed, Maltese still require normal exercise and an adequate diet to ensure they do not run to fat.
Ideal Owner/s Almost everyone looking for a companion to "live in".
In Conclusion Now you know a little about the Maltese and have decided this is the dog for you or you want more information, make contact with the breed club or your State controlling body for purebred dogs. They will be able to give you information about available puppies and also suggest dog shows where you can see the breed and speak to breeders. In this way you will gain a better perspective of the breed and its needs.