At birth, they have a plain coat, and the spots begin to develop by the time they are two or three weeks old. By the time they are one month, a majority of the spots develop. However, they continue to get them as long as they live, though the numbers are comparatively less. The spots are sized between 30 and 60 mm, mostly being of a brown or black color.
There has been a lot of controversy about the actual origin of the Dalmatian. Croatia is said to be its country of origin, with historical sources validating this information. In fact, their name has stemmed from Dalmatia, the historical region in Croatia, where they were actually said to develop. The churches of Croatia had paintings of the Dalmatian on their walls while its mention was also made in their chronicles. The Dalmatian nomads used them as a guard as well as a companion dog.
However, when it comes to the development of this breed, England has to be credited for the same. They were mostly the pets of the English nobles who even nicknamed them as Spotted Dick, English Coach Dogs (since they were seen trotting by, beside carriages pulled by horses), and Plum Pudding Dog (their spots were similar to the fruit and nut candies that formed a common part of the Brit’s holiday dessert). Vero Shaw, an Englishman, was credited for setting up the first standard of the breed, though unofficially, in the year 1882.
The Dalmatian Club in England developed in 1890, which led on to establishing the breed’s official standard. Their popularity gradually spread to all over Europe and eventually they reached the United States of America.
They entered the stud book of the American Kennel Club in 1888 and the Dalmatian Club of America was established in 1905 for the purpose of protecting, preserving as well as promoting the breed.
As carriage dogs: In Dalmatia as well as England, they were used for running beside coaches driven by horses or even beneath it in between the axel. The Dal also guarded the horses when they rested.
As carriage dogs: In Dalmatia as well as England, they were used for running beside coaches driven by horses or even beneath it in between the axel. The Dal also guarded the horses when they rested..
Though horse-drawn engines are no more in vogue, these dogs are still used for guarding a firehouse alongside its equipment, being a preferred pet choice for most firefighters. Pi Kappa Alpha International Fraternity of West Virginia, engaged in firefighting uses the Dalmatian as its mascot.
Dalmatians are a perfect companion dog when in the bounds of its family, as they are affectionate, loyal with a great sense of humor, amusing and entertaining all with its clownish antics.
Having said this, they always love to be among the members of their family and detest being left alone for prolonged periods.
They are alert, curious, excelling as remarkable watch and guard dogs, always on the run to protect its family and their property. This makes them reserved around strangers, but not aggressive, though some of them could even jump enthusiastically at the sight of an unknown face.
They make for a great playmate with older kids but could be too rambunctious for little ones, often dropping or pushing them in pursuit of play.
Since they are known for their equation with horses, the Dalmatians are indeed not territorial and can get along with other dogs as well as cats especially when socialized or brought up with them.