Endurance could well be the Dalmatians middle name. This dog is a true road warrior, having for centuries run alongside horses, carriages and fire wagons. The breeds history as a performance animal, working at myriad difficult tasks, has etched stamina deep into his character and he is programmed for action. The Dal is a dog that can travel many, many miles without tiring; thus, his need for exercise is huge. After centuries of employment, this dog will not be satisfied with a life of inactivity.
Throughout his history, the also has demonstrated remarkable intelligence tempered with a willingness to do his masters bidding. These combined qualities create training challenges for anyone who adds this spotted athlete to his family. Bluntly put, living with a Dalmatian is a lot of work.
Despite these challenges, a well-bred Dalmatian is indeed an excellent family dog. He is highly affectionate and needs to be with his human family. He is loving and patient with children if he is properly socialized with them at an early age, and is sturdy enough to tolerate childs play, although all play should be supervised by an adult. That said, children also must be taught how to properly behave around their dogs, whether puppy or adult.
The Dal is an excellent watchdog and views strangers with a most discerning eye. He prefers to maintain a mannerly distance as he watches protectively over his master and human family. He is never threatening or aggressive unless his instincts warn him of some danger, and he will bark when he senses something is awry.
The Dal gets along well with other animals, and his affinity for horses has continued into the 21st-century. For years the St. Louis-based Anheuser Busch brewing company used Dalmatians to protect their horses and guard their delivery wagons. Today their dogs ride atop the wagons, entertaining the crowds at parades, festivals and major sporting events.Page 1 | 2