If you are thinking of buying a Dal, please take the time to consider all aspects of that decision.
Each breed has its good and bad points and no one breed is perfect for all situations. You must
pick the breed that has the right characteristics to fit your needs and lifestyle, then raise and train
the dog correctly. Dogs don't just "grow up" to be great family companions -they take a lot of
time, effort and patience. PLEASE, think it over carefully.
DALS DO SHED as do ALL smooth coated breeds. Dal hair is stiff and abundant and will work
its way into fabric. Although it is easy to sweep or vacuum, Dal hair is hard to brush off. If you
are bothered by dog hair, the need to groom the dog regularly, and the necessity of extra
sweeping or vacuuming, you will probably be unhappy with a Dalmatian. Shedding is heaviest in
the spring and fall, but there are some loose hairs year around. Also, if there are allergies in your
family, a shedding breed like the Dalmatian can be a serious problem.
DALS ARE ACTIVE especially during puppy hood (which can last until 18 months or more). You
will need a fenced yard, and the time and energy to take the dog for regular walks. A Dal that is
confined too much may become noisy and destructive. They should NEVER be allowed to run
free, without supervision. Dals need to be part of the family, require a lot of time and attention,
and do not do well if kept outdoors and away from the family. Dalmatians should be housedogs.
DALS ARE BASICALLY A GUARD DOG BREED and need to be raised with firmness and
discipline. Although they are related to pointers, Dals were originally guard dogs in the stables
and ran with the horses and carriages to protect them from stray dogs and highwaymen. ALL
Dals need basic obedience training and they need to know the rules of the household right from
the beginning. If you are unwilling or unable to function as "pack leader", your Dal will quickly
step in and assume that role. Dals are smart and stubborn, and quickly learn what they can get
away with. This is often a very dominant breed, and permissively raised Dals often become problem dogs.
DALS ARE CLOWNS and can be very exasperating. You MUST have a sense of humour to
enjoy owning a Dalmatian. Adolescent Dals are particularly trying.
ON THE POSITIVE SIDE, Dals are delightful and intelligent companions, VERY affectionate,
excellent family dogs if raised properly, are clean in the house, have little doggy odour, and are
generally quite easy to house train. They are not normally barkers, but
are good watchdogs.
DALS ARE "EASY KEEPERS" not expensive to feed, generally healthy, and easy to keep neat and
clean. They love to ride in the car, run with horses, bikes or joggers and often love to swim.
They have enormous amounts of energy, endless enthusiasm, and will play with the kids for
hours. They can be taught to hunt game birds and make excellent ratters. Most Dals are quite
sensitive to human moods, and will do their best to cheer up gloomy human friends. They CAN
be a great deal of fun for the entire family. HOWEVER, Dals don't just "grow up" that way. It
takes a lot of time and patience and a firm commitment to raise a dog properly -especially a smart, dominant, energetic one with a sense of humour!
A FEW STATISTICS - Size normally 20" to 24", and 35 to 65 pounds. Females average about
22" and 45 pounds, males about 23" or 24" and 60 pounds. Colour is either black spotted or liver
(brown) spotted liver is becoming increasingly popular. Eyes are black, brown, gold or blue (one
or both eyes may be blue). Black dogs have black noses and liver dogs have brown noses and
usually have gold rather than brown eyes. Patching is common -a large coloured area around
one eye or above an ear means they can't be shown and shouldn't be bred, but they make very
attractive pets. Males especially when neutered make exceptionally good companions, so size is
normally the deciding factor when deciding between a male or a female. Dalmatians are a
healthy breed and quite long lived. Males live to be 12 or more and females often live to be at
DOGS ARE NOT DISPOSABLE - BUYING A DOG IS A LIFE TIME COMMITMENT
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