Recognized: AKC, ANKC, CKC, FCI, KC (GB), KUSA
Height: 10 in (25.5cm) maximum
Weight: 7 lb (3kg) maximum
Coat: Long, straight, and silky
Color: White; slight lemon markings on ears permissible
|A member of the bichon family, this small, white dog
is one of the oldest European breeds. It has existed on
the island of Malta for centuries, and also found its
way to China and the Philippines via Maltese traders.
However, in about AD 25, the Greek historian Strabo
reported: "There is a town in Sicily called Melita
whence are exported many beautiful dogs called
Canis Melitei," raising the possibility of Italian
origin for the breed.
The long-established Maltese seems to have been
overtaken in popularity by other toys, and is now
seldom seen outside the show ring. This is unfortunate
because it is a happy, healthy, long-lived little dog that
is good with children and makes a lovable pet. It is
fairly adaptable as far as exercise is concerned, but
requires grooming every day with a bristle brush.
Owners are advised to check with the breeder about