Interesting facts about Dalmatians


The Dalmatian is a breed of dog.

A sleek, symmetrically built, short-haired dog, the Dalmatian is characterized by its dark-spotted white coat.

The Dalmatian is known for its ready-and-willing attitude and seemingly endless energy. These dogs are quite smart, despite what some may think. The extreme energy level of the Dalmatian makes the breed appear goofy at times.

The average lifespan for a Dalmatian is between 10 to 13 years, although some can live as long as 18 years.


The Dalmatian is a medium-sized, well-defined, muscular dog.

Males are from 58 to 61 cm (23 to 24 in) tall at the shoulder and weigh between 16 and 32 kg (35 and 70 lbs).

Females are from 56 to 58 cm (22 to 23 in) tall at the shoulder and weigh between 15 and 24 kg (33 and 53 lbs).

It is named after the Adriatic coast of Dalmatia, in Croatia.


The Dalmatian’s true origins are up for debate, but evidence of similar types of dogs goes back to ancient times. It is likely that the breed did not actually originate in Dalmatia, but it is certain that Dalmatians were once used as sentinels in the area. They appear in artwork from the early 1600s.

In 1771, Thomas Pennant described the breed in his book Synopsis of Quadrupeds, writing that the origin of the breed is from Dalmatia, he referred to it as Dalmatian.

It was mainly used as a carriage dog in its early days. Carriage dogs were usually bred and trained to trot alongside carriages to protect the occupants from banditry or other interference. They were usually owned and used by the wealthy or traders and merchants. The dogs were trained to attack the horses used by highwaymen, giving the owners’ human security time to respond to the actual robbers.


During the Regency period, the Dalmatian became a status symbol trotting alongside the horse-drawn carriages and those with decorative spotting were highly prized.

The breed had been developed and cultivated chiefly in England. The first unofficial standard for the breed was introduced by an Englishman Vero Shaw in 1882. In 1890 with the formation of the first Dalmatian Club in England the standard became official.

The tradition of Dalmatians in firehouses dates back more than a century. Nowadays they mainly serve as mascots, but before fire trucks had engines, Dalmatians played a vital role every time firefighters raced to a blaze.


The Dalmatian has been also used as a war dog, hunter, shepherd, and performer.

The breed’s unique coat became popular and widely distributed over the continent of Europe beginning in 1920.

Today, it is a popular family pet and many dog enthusiasts enter Dalmatians into kennel club competitions.

Dalmatians usually have litters of six to nine pups, but larger litters of up to 15 puppies are common.

dalmatian puppies

Dalmatian puppies are born with plain white coats and their first spots usually appear within 10 days; however, spots are visible on their skin from birth. They continue to develop until the dog is around 18 months old. Spots usually range in size from 3 to 6 cm (1.25 to 2.5 in), and are most commonly black or liver on a white background.

Eye color varies between brown, amber, and blue, with some dogs having one blue eye and one brown eye, or other combinations.


The Dalmatian breed experienced a massive surge in popularity as a result of the 1956 novel The Hundred and One Dalmatians written by British author Dodie Smith, and later due to the two Walt Disney films based on the book. The Disney animated film, released in 1961, later spawned a 1996 live-action remake, 101 Dalmatians. In the years following the release of the sequel 102 Dalmatians, the breed suffered greatly at the hands of irresponsible breeders and inexperienced owners.