Maltese dogs are of noble origins and have been worshiped by royals for centuries. Their instinct is to keep you company and this makes them perfect pets. They are also great for first-time owners and are not very high maintenance.
Their small stature is convenient and they hardly exceed a weight of 7-pounds. They also have black button noses and black eyes that give them the ultimate teddy bear faces. A Maltese only has one coat color and their luscious locks are their most distinguishing feature.
These dogs make great companions and are easy and fun to have around. They are great for families and older people alike but can come with a hefty price tag. Pedigree dogs don’t come cheap but if you are willing to bite the bullet, you will be rewarded with a lifelong friend.
Read on to see the pros and cons of Maltese and what else you can expect from this snowy bundle of joy.
Pros of Owning a Maltese
1. Healthy Little Breed
Maltese do not suffer from many health issues and are overall very healthy, an awesome pro of Maltese. They also live longer and can keep you company anywhere from 12 to 15 years. One of the small things to watch out for is their dental hygiene. Make sure to brush their teeth several times a week to avoid gum disease and bad breath.
Make sure to clear their eyes of invasive hairs to avoid conjunctivitis and excessive tearing. It is also good practice to buy Maltese from a reputable breeder that can provide you with thorough a family history, this will ensure you don’t get avoidable surprises down the line. They don’t need a lot of exercises and will stay fairly healthy with a normal diet.
2. Great Companion Dogs
Maltese have energetic personalities and they are easily excitable. They love to play and enjoy lots of attention. This makes them great companions as they will always be close to your side and happy to play. Older people enjoy this about them as they combat loneliness and solitude. They are smart and quick learners and can even perform a few tricks if you train them with enough patience.
Companion dogs need lots of conditioning and you will need to lay down the law with your dog. Even though they are small, they can have some bratty tendencies that will make them less likable. They should get along well with everyone in the household and accept other pets too.
3. Convenient Size
Maltese are amongst the smallest dogs that are classified under the toy breed. A pro of Maltese is that this makes Maltese very easy to carry around or transport. They are also a great size to be on your lap and it’s a good thing that is one of their favorite spots! Apartments are perfectly adequate homes for them and they don’t necessarily need a yard if you can take your dog outside once a day.
On the downside, their size makes them prone to injury. Thus, you should always closely monitor them when they play around young children. You should also watch your step or make sure the coast is clear before sitting down as they can easily get under your feet. This being said, they love being carried around or going outside with you and can easily fit into a bag or carrier.
A Maltese’s long white coat is iconic and many owners favor their hypoallergenic nature. Their long, draped hair looks regal and is not prone to shedding. It is not a double-layered coat which means they do not have an undercoat. They also do not drool which is a huge bonus in this department.
Cons of Owning a Maltese
1. Lots of Grooming Needed
Their hair is beautiful and they don’t shed often but to keep it looking fabulous considerable grooming is needed. If you choose to have your dog wear its hair long, you will have to brush it nearly daily. Their long tresses are prone to knotting or picking up any dirt and debris lying around which also means you will need to bathe them nearly every week.
You can also choose to have them groomed and cut into various styles but this comes at a cost. Always keep their eye area clean as tear stains easily form on their soft white fur.
2. Can be Very Dependent
They are lap dogs through and through but spoiling them at a young age can be very bad for their independence, a con of owning a Maltese. Your dog will not enjoy being left alone if they are used to be carried around all the time or traveling with you on errands. You will have to take extra care to not leave them alone for long periods of time and to supply them with plenty to keep them occupied while you are away.
Their clingy nature is hard to avoid and needs to be managed rather than deterred. They have been described as “Velcro dogs” which aren’t necessarily a great thing. Even though they are loyal, it can manifest in negative ways. Some of these dogs will get nippy if strangers approach their owners so you will need to expose them to new people often to avoid this type of behavior.
They do their reputation as being “yappy” justice. They have high-pitched, shrill barks that can feel incessant at times, a disadvantage of Maltese. Your neighbors also might not take too kindly to their barks. They don’t only bark when they are lonely, even though this is a major problem. Maltese are very alert dogs that know about everything that is going on in and around their domain. They tend to bark at any changes in their environment especially new visitors.
Your dog will have to be socialized at a very young age with other dogs, other people, and things around their environment.
I hope that this article on the pros and cons of Maltese was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Dog Category!