maltese dog maltese breed long haired maltese

The Maltese is a small breed of toy dog. Its primary characteristic is its white hair which is soft and silky. Often times these dogs will have their hair cut so that grooming is more manageable. These dogs originate from the Central Mediterranean Area. This breed is thought to have come from the island of Malta. This is a very ancient breed of dog and has many names. It was first called the "Canis Melitaeus" and has been known in English as the Ancient dog of Malta, the Maltese Lion Dog, and the Bichon. It is thought to have been bred from a Spitz dog which was common among people living around the Swiss lake area. It was specifically bred for small size. The oldest record of this dog is to be found in Greek amphora in the Etruscan town of Vulci. A dog very much resembling the Maltese was portrayed next to the word Melitaie. This is dated at around 500 BC. There are also various references to this dog in Ancient Greek and Roman writing. For example Aristotle mentioned the name Melitaei Catlli.


This dog has a rounded skull, a the body is compact, it has very dark eyes, with a dark skin pigmentation around the eyes (also called a halo), their nose goes pink or light brown if it is not exposed to sun light. The distinctive coat of this dog is very silky, unusually for such a hirsute dog it does not have an undercoat, so it is not as protected as it looks from harsher winters. The Maltese dog ranges in size from 2 kilos to 6 kilos.


These dogs have been specifically bred to be good companions to humans. As such they are lovely dogs and playfulness is their watchword. Old or young these dogs have great energy levels and a warm spirits. As can be expected of any dog that is mistreated by children it can get snappish. So supervised play is recommended for complete safety. Generally this dog is very active within the house. So it does well with apartment dwellers. Unfortunately this dog does have a tendency to bark very frequently, that this has been the class of dog which has been rejected by its owners the most.

Grooming and care

This dog tends to be fairly low maintenance in regards to cleaning up after shedding as it tends to not shed at all as long as its coat is kept in good condition. Regular grooming is needed to keep this dog in good condition. A brisk walk in the part is an essential part of this dogs day, or a run around the yard if it is big enough.


This dog is generally of good health, it can get reverse sneezing which generally occurs when the dog is very excited, or due to allergies. It does not harm the dog but it can be worrisome as the dog can sound like it is chocking.