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Dalmatians are a very distinct-looking breed. No other breed rocks the spotted coat patterns better than Dalmatians. 

But it’s not just their striking looks that make them popular. They also have ridiculous levels of energy. Whenever they get excited, they’ll either push you over or jump on your lap. 

More Information

The Ultimate Guide to Dalmatians

Key Characteristics Of Dalmatians
How Can I Take Good Care Of A Dalmatian Puppy?
Most Asked Dalmatian Questions
Similar Dog Breeds

Dalmatians are a very distinct-looking breed. No other breed rocks the spotted coat patterns better than Dalmatians. 

But it’s not just their striking looks that make them popular. They also have ridiculous levels of energy. Whenever they get excited, they’ll either push you over or jump on your lap. 

Dalmatian Origins

As is the case with most dog breeds, very little is known about where Dalmatians came from. As a matter of fact, there’s no evidence that the breed has any ancestry in Dalmatia.

What is known is that several spotted breeds were found in different areas. The dogs, which closely resembled Dalmatians, were discovered in Europe, Africa and Asia.

Also, Dalmatians were featured in ancient Egyptian wall paintings and Italian frescoes.

Although the breed’s ancestry is a bit rusty, their physical strength, and fondness for horses aren’t. It is this affinity for horses that made them the perfect carriage dogs for the 17th century England.

Back in the day, the main firecarts were horse-driven carriages. So once the sirens went off, firefighters would make their way to the scene using these carriages.

Unfortunately, they did not have ample time to inform people and clear the streets. This meant that anytime they had to pass through a crowded area, the horses had to slow down or stop due to traffic.

It is these problems that led to the discovery of the Dalmatian’s talents. These dogs were able to run ahead and clear a pathway for the carriages. They could run for very long distances without getting fatigued.

To date, the Dalmatians make the finest companions for horseback-riding pet owners. They also serve as family pets, show dogs and sporting buddies.


Key Characteristics of Dalmatians

Are Dalmations Family-Friendly?They are a great match, as they are playful with everyone and protective of their families.
Daily Exercise Needs?At least an hour of exercise everyday.
Common Health Issues & ConsiderationsDalmatians have these health risks:
● Deafness.
● Allergies.
● Skin conditions.
● Laryngeal paralysis.
● Urate Uroliths.
Lifespan10 to 13 years.
Nature / Temperament
Energetic, affectionate, alert, intelligent and sometimes stubborn.
Even though they look like teddy bears, these dogs are intelligent as they are trainable.
Male: 15 - 32 kg.
Female: 16 - 24 kg.

Male: 58 - 61 cm.
Female: 56 - 58 cm.
Suitable EnvironmentBest suited for country living or homes with a yard.
GroomingBrush their coat 3 to 4 times per week.

Other considerations:

Dalmatians are known by other names. These include the Plum Pudding Dog, the Carriage Dog and the English Coach Dog.
They are versatile dogs. Over the years, they have been used for different purposes. These include trailing, hunting and retrieving.
Dalmatians are family dogs. In other words, they like to be engaged in most family activities.
● They are best known for their spotty black and white spots. Sometimes though, they also come with brown, lemon, blue or brindle spots.
● Despite their entire bodies being covered in spots, they are snow-white when they’re born. Puppies start developing their trademark spots when they reach about four weeks.


How can I take good care of my Dalmatian or Dalmatian Puppy?


Dalmatians are a highly-active breed. As such, you will need to factor this when determining what to feed them. Generally, they need 1.5 to 2 cups of high-quality dog food daily. 

Another point to consider is the fact that Dalmatians are prone to hyperuricemia. What this means is that they have a high likelihood of developing kidney and bladder stones.

One way to reduce this risk is to avoid giving them dog foods with high concentrations of purine. Purine is a kind of protein commonly found in some red meats and poultry game. Your Dal will be safer on a diet consisting of plant-based proteins.


Grooming Dalmatians is relatively easy. They have short coats but they shed quite a bit. 

Therefore, it’s good to brush them at least three times per week. Not only will this help to get rid of dead hair but also minimise the rate at which they shed. 

When brushing, start by wetting their coats with mist using a spray bottle. Next, use a curry brush. 

Experts also recommend using the line brushing technique. This entails, brushing from their shoulders then working going downwards and backwards.

Recommended grooming tips:

● With Dalmatians, baths aren’t needed often. Bathing them once every 4 – 6 months is enough, or as required.
Cut their nails whenever they grow too long. Ideally, a Dal’s nails should reach about half an inch from the surface.
Remember to clean between their paw pads. This is because small debris can be trapped in these areas.
● Also, moisturise these paw pads if they become too dry.


Dalmatians no longer run alongside horse-driven carriages. But even then, they need adequate amounts of exercise. An hour or two daily of physical activity will boost their strength and calm their minds. 

You can vary their exercises by taking them for walks or engaging them in games. These dogs also don’t mind going for runs or jogs and they’re able to maintain a steady pace for long periods. 


Dalmatians have a reputation for being strong-willed and independent-minded. Due to this, you should start training them as soon as they get home. 

So if you don’t want your Dal lounging on the couch, then start training them to avoid this area right from the first day. Also, use a positive reinforcement approach when training puppies. This way, they’ll trust you and follow your commands more easily.

This is general information and should not be relied on for adopting or purchasing advice.

Most Asked Dalmatian Questions

What is it like living with Dalmatians?

These dogs need an active owner/family. They don’t get tired fast, and always seem to have a lot of energy. Therefore, the ideal owner for this breed is a jogger, runner or one who has an interest in physical activities.

Can one adopt an adult Dalmatian?

Yes, you may come across adolescent or adult Dals that have been put up for adoption. Still, there are a couple of points you should take into account.

For one, examine the dog’s medical history. This will help you verify that they don’t have any looming health problems. Also, ask about the reason for the dog being placed for adoption.

How much does a Dalmatian puppy cost?

Dalmations for sale cost approximately $1,400 – $2,500.

Similar Breeds

Rhodesian Ridgeback

Australian Shepherd


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