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History of the breed
The name of the breed was given by Dalmatia – the historical region of the Balkan Peninsula, where the Dalmatians were bred. Great Danes, Istrian Pointers and other breeds were used to obtain spotted hardy dogs. Dogs similar to Dalmatians lived in Ancient Egypt and Ancient Greece – recognizable images were found during archaeological excavations. Dark spots on the white coat are a characteristic of the breed. So, it can be argued that the first representatives of the breed existed before our era. It is the Dalmatians – the first breed of spotted dogs in Europe.
It is correct to call this breed “Dalmatian”, not “Dalmatian”. The correct name is recorded in the Russian Spelling Dictionary of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
In the 17th century, Dalmatians were exclusively guard dogs. They were used to guard carriages, carts, carts – because of their amazing endurance. Dogs could travel a very long way, keeping up with the train. The dogs drove away predators, protected from robbers.
In England, the breed was in demand among the aristocracy – as “coach” dogs. The duties of the dog included running in front of the carriage and dispersing people. It was then that aggression and cruelty were introduced into the character of the breed. Thanks to the efforts of English breeders, the breed has taken on its final form and recognizable appearance.
It was during this period of time that Dalmatians began to appear in ceremonial portraits of nobles, religious and secular works of art. You can even find dogs in the painting of churches.
Surprisingly, the written sources that mention the Dalmatians are mostly from the Roman Catholic Church. Bishops Petar Bakić and Andreas Kecskemeta, in the early 18th century, mention in their works the unusual Croatian dogs Canis Dalmatian.
At the end of the century, the English naturalist Thomas Buick introduced the Dalmatians into the General History of the Quadruped.
Dalmatians have shown themselves well as hunting and herding dogs. Endurance and instilled aggression allowed them to attack and defend.
In the United States, Dalmatians have become constant companions of voluntary fire brigades. Before the invention of the internal combustion engine, firefighters used carts to travel. White spotted dogs running in front of the carriage, with a loud bark, alerted people to the approach of firefighters and the need to give way. Today, Dalmatians are a recognizable symbol of the US fire service.
The breed standard was approved in 1890, but the Dalmatians gained real popularity only in the 20th century.
In 1955, the Dalmatians were considered companion dogs.
In our country, the breed appeared only in 1982, but, due to the lack of “fresh blood”, dog breeding progressed slowly. The demand was also not encouraging, because most dog lovers did not even know about the existence of such a breed. Nurseries specialized in breeding Dalmatians only appeared in the early 1990s.
Description of the breed
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- Constitution: Strong build and lean, prominent muscles. Skin without folds or sagging.
- Height at withers: males – up to 61 centimeters, females – up to 58 centimeters.
- Average weight: males – 25 kilograms, females – 23 kilograms.
- Wool: short, coarse and dense, close fitting to the body, without pronounced undercoat.
- Color: the main color is white, on it there are spots with clear contours that do not merge with each other, with a diameter of up to 2 centimeters. The spots on the head, ears, tail and paws are of a smaller diameter than on the body. The color of the spots is black or deep brown. Their even distribution indicates the purity of the breed.
Puppies are born white, the spots appear over time, and not only on the coat. Marks are also present on the skin and mucous membranes. Dalmatian’s nose must be the same color as the spots.
- Head: length and width of skull are approximately equal. Cheekbones are well developed. Smooth transition from forehead to firm muzzle.
- Ears: Medium length, with a wide base, tapering towards the rounded ends. Hanging, pressed to the head. Are covered with spots or solid pigment in the color of the spots.
- Eyes: medium in size, rounded. Color – from amber to black, depending on the color of the spots.
- Neck: curved and lightweight, no dewlap, neck length equal to head length.
- Withers: expressed.
- Back: straight and muscular.
- Small of the back: slightly arched, short, strong.
- TailSet on low, reaching the length of the hock, tapering towards the tip. The more spots, the cleaner the breed.
- Chest: sufficiently wide and deep, long, without prominent sternum.
- Boca: flat.
- Stomach: moderately fit.
- Front limbs: parallel to each other, with a narrow set. The shoulders are oblique, strong, with well-developed muscles. The elbows are close to the body or slightly turned outward. Pasterns short, sloping.
- Hind limbs: with pronounced angles and prominent muscles. Low hock, short metatarsus. Nails short, basic color or in the color of spots.
Dalmatians are calm, balanced dogs. Friendly to “friends”, but wary of strangers. Get along well with children. They maintain friendly relations not only with the owner, but also with all family members. Self-esteem developed. Easy to train, quick-witted.
If a decision is made to buy a puppy of this breed, negative character traits should also be taken into account:
- Dalmatians tend to have rancor. They remember the wrongs for a long time and will not miss an opportunity to take revenge.
- The tendency to melancholy manifests itself with a long stay alone. The dog loses interest in food, an active lifestyle, is sad.
- Males tend to compete with each other..
- When choosing a puppy, you need to pay attention to his socialization. A puppy not accustomed to humans can display aggressiveness, carefully developed in the breed in the 17th century..
- Without proper upbringing, excessive nervousness or timidity may appear..
The breed is bred for long journeys, so a free rural life and long walks are suitable for dogs. Dalmatians love variety of play and attention. Running next to the bike, active games, climbing the mountains, serious physical activity will only be a joy to the pet.
They are friendly towards other animals, especially if the acquaintance took place in advance, in neutral territory. If you have such a dog in the house, you can have other pets. There will be no war for influence and territory.
Brave and sociable Dalmatians become attached to the owner, demand attention and communication. You need to build a hierarchy immediately after purchasing a puppy. From an early age he must understand who is the boss. Such a dog is better for those who already have parenting experience.
The young Dalmatian constantly demands to play, he has a lot of energy, it is almost impossible to tire this dog. If there are small children in the family, a playing dog can be a serious danger – he can accidentally jump on the child or push him, not wanting anything bad.
Both the dog and the child must be taught to coexist: the Dalmatian must be taught neatness and restraint, the child must be kept out of the dog’s eyes, don’t pull its tail: the Dalmatian can take offense and think of revenge.
Attachment to the owner takes the most extreme forms: the dog demands to take it with him everywhere. He is offended by the scream, violently rejoices in praise. The dog will truly become part of the family.
The owner needs to remember that the sounds made by dogs of this breed are varied: grunting, mooing, grunting, whistling. If strange sounds are heard at night, perhaps this pet is thinking about the meaning of life.
Dogs of this breed do not require anything special. Ideal for keeping them: a private house with a large fenced area where the pet can walk on its own.
- Regular brushing to get rid of loose hair will contribute to a well-groomed look. It should be noted that Dalmatians shed slightly, but constantly.
- Long walks and active movement are basic requirements for a pet to stay healthy. Prolonged periods of inactivity can lead to the formation of stones in the bladder..
- Do not bathe often – excessive washing removes the protective layer from the skin and wool. This can lead to allergies.
- With proper walking, claws do not need to be trimmed – they grind off themselves during long walks.
- Dalmatians eat fast: the portion ends faster than fullness comes. Therefore, begging for supplements is characteristic of this breed. Do not give in: after a short period of time, the feeling of satiety will come.
- For nutrition, it is better to use high-quality dry food – “premium” brands. However, do not feed Dalmatians food intended for other dogs, as it can cause a serious allergic reaction.
- Short hair and delicate skin do not allow Dalmatians to constantly live outside the house – they need a place to warm and dry. Excessive moisture can cause fungus.
- Dalmatians easily get used to the cage, perceiving it as their living space. But the cage is not suitable for permanent residence – these dogs cannot stand loneliness. And lack of active movement can lead to illness..
- The animal must have access to fresh water.
Dalmatians are smart and resourceful, yet they feel weak when the owner has no desire or ability to force him to follow the command. The willfulness inherent in these dogs will make living together difficult if the concept of hierarchy is not instilled in the puppy in time. You shouldn’t indulge even the little tricks of the puppy – otherwise it will literally sit on the neck.
Males are distinguished by their independence and love of freedom, therefore, methods with positive reinforcement are used in training. Negative can negatively affect the behavior of the dog.
A crate is a great way to train your dog to behave correctly in the house. Without prior training, a pet left alone can do a lot of troubles, harming both the room and itself..
Predisposition to disease
The average life span of Dalmatians is 10 to 13 years.
- Separately, it is worth noting a distinctive feature: 10-12% of Dalmatians are born deaf. A third of dogs have hearing problems. Before you buy a puppy, you need to make sure of his health.
- The breed has an increased susceptibility to urolithiasis. Uric acid levels are higher than in other dogs. A puppy brought into the house needs a veterinarian examination and possibly a low protein diet to prevent urinary tract diseases.
- Dysplasia of the pelvis.
- Glaucoma and other eye diseases.
The list of disease predispositions is long. Therefore, it is better to buy puppies from trusted breeders, if there are medical records of the parents and the results of examining puppies.
Visits to walking and training sites should not begin before all necessary vaccinations have been completed.
How to choose a puppy
Before buying a pet, you need to carefully check the information about the breeder: his impeccable reputation is the key to a successful purchase, a guarantee that the new family member will be healthy and strong.
Puppies are given to new owners at the age of 10-12 weeks – they have time to pass examinations and acquire pronounced character traits.
A competent breeder will not only answer questions, but also ask counter questions: he does not care in whose hands he gives the puppy. He will make sure that he gives the pet in caring hands, a strong family, suitable living conditions.
And, of course, try to immediately establish relationships with the puppy you like, see his reaction and willingness to make contact.
The price varies in different regions of Russia from 10 to 50 thousand rubles. Pedigree, health, parental indicators, breed purity matter. Only buyers can decide what is more important for them: victories at exhibitions or the appearance of a devoted friend in the family.
On sites with ads there are prices and from 4 to 8 thousand for puppies “without documents”. Of course, in this case, no one can predict the behavior and characteristics of the pet, and there is no question of the purity of the breed at all.
List of nurseries
- Pudding Dog, representative office in different cities of Russia – pudingdog.jimdo.com/
- Vishdaymond Yekaterinburg – vishi-dalm.ucoz.ru/index/0-10
- Apartline Moscow – alartlain.net/
- Avalanche of Love in Togliatti – lavina-lubvi.jimdo.com/