A member of the AKC Non-sporting group, The Dalmatian is capable of great endurance, combined with a fair amount of speed. They are an active, energetic dog that enjoys lots of exercise.
The Dalmatian is best known by its striking black-spotted coat. Its name stems from Dalmatia, a region located in western Yugoslavia. Originally bred to run for hours under, or alongside the axles of horse-drawn coaches, they do not tire easily either.
Especially in the United States, their earlier use as carriage dogs was transferred later to working with horse-drawn fire engines.
Today they often serve as a firehouse mascot and are also associated with Budweiser beer and the Busch Gardens theme parks in the United States. They have a great fondness for running long distances.
They do have an instinctive fondness for humans, horses, and other Dals and do quite well playing with children. As with all dog breeds, they do best when given the opportunity to spend lots of time with their human family. Keep in mind that these dogs can become territorial if not properly socialized.
It is a distinctively spotted dog; poised and alert; strong, muscular and active; intelligent and symmetrical. In fact, this beautiful spotted coat is unique to this dog breed alone.
Watch a Dal in action
They are a naturally clean dog who is easy to bathe and groom while brushing minimizes shedding. This breed is very active and needs plenty of exercise so keep that in mind if you are considering adding one of these dogs to your home.
Other things to consider: Dals are not good outdoor dog candidates due to their sensitive skin and short hair!
They may appear snobbish with strangers, but loves his family. It has a great sense of humor and many of them smile when happy. Dalmatian puppies are born solid white in color and develop their spots later on as they mature.
Dals activities have varied over the years from a dog of war to a bird dog or a retriever. However, they are best known for coaching. In the United States, they are best recognized as fire house dogs in many fire stations all over the country.
Country of origin: Believed to have originated in the Croatian province of Dalmatia Lifespan: 10-12 years Colors: White with black spots, sometimes white with liver spots Known health problems: Deafness, skin allergies, urinary stones Famous Dals: Sublime front man Brad Nowell's pet dog Louie; 1956 novel, The Hundred and One Dalmatians by Dodie Smith; Disney films based on the book