Dalmatian Breed Origins and Caracteristics

This European breed is very old, but its origin is not known accurately. Some say that these dogs were raised in Dalmatia in the 13th century but the chronicles from 1822 of the city of Zadar, for example qualifies them as Danish dogs. At first, they were used for hunting, as tracker dogs. The English that introduced the Dalmatians to Great Britain in 1862, called them "Dalmatian customs dogs". They have not been used for hunting since a long time. In the 17th century, the Dalmatian transformed in a Pope symbol and in the 18th century in France and in England, they accompanied in a theatrical way the gentelmen and carriages. Nowadays it is only known as a pet dog although in the United States there have been attempts to train them as police dogs. The Dalmatian is a tranquil dog which is easy to train and mistrustful with strangers. It acquired its current physical appearance in England, mainly for the influence of the pointer.

In the 18th century, the Dalmatian was known as "Bengal pointer". Although the experts discuss about the Asian origin of the Dalmatian, there is no doubt that in Asia there were tracker dogs with a similar fur. In Russia, for example, the harlequin pointer, now extinct, had a similar hair. It has as a descendant, the Dunker, a Norwegian tracker dog breed that at the beginning of the 19th century was especially raised to hunt hares.

Dalmatian. Size: male 55-60 cm; female 50-55 cm. Weight: 23-25 kg. Color: white with very separated round black (1) or chestnut patches. The diameter of the patches is 20-30 mm. The patches on the head, the ears, the tail and the limbs must be smaller than the body. The dogs with black patches must have a black snout and black or chestnut eyes; the dogs with brown patches, brown snout and yellow or brown eyes.

Dunker. Size: 47-57 cm. Weight: 18-20 kg. There are three tonalities: flecked blue (harlequin -2), black and chestnut. In the flecked specimens the white patches are always accepted provided that they do not prevail.

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