Original Name : Maltese
Type : Braccoid
Male size : 8¼-9¾ inches
Male weight : 6½-8¾ lbs
Female size : 7¾-9 inches
Female weight : 6½-8¾ lbs
Degree of grooming :
Countries of origin : Italy
Lively, affectionate, very docile and highly intelligent, Malteses are excellent companion dogs. These very elegant animals, with small but elongated bodies, carry their heads with pride and distinction.
The skull is slightly longer than the muzzle and the same length as the width at the zygomatic arches.
Straight topline through the tail set-on, slight withers, very broad, long croup, ample chest let down below the elbows.
Dense, shiny, glossy, falling heavily, silky in texture, very long on the whole body, straight along its whole length without any traces of waves or curls.
Almost triangular, around three times as long as they are broad, hanging close to the sides of the head.
Forming a single large curve, ending between the hips, touching the croup.
Pure white; pale ivory permitted.
Despite the name, Malteses are not from Malta at all. The word is derived from a word in one of the Semitic languages for haven or harbor, which just happens to be at the root of the word Malta too. The ancestors of these little dogs lived in the ports and towns of the central Mediterranean, where they were used to catch mice and rats with which warehouses and ship holds were teeming.
In his list of contemporaneous dogs, Aristotle (384-322 BC) included a breed of small dogs he named Melitaei Catelli. It was known in antique Rome, where it was the preferred companion of the wives of Roman citizens, and its praises were sung by Strabo in 1 AD. Several Renaissance painters depicted the dog in contemporary salons alongside high-society women.