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Dalmatians aren't really bad with kids, are they?

If you are wondering what is the right dog for you, this is the place to be. In this introductory forum we talk about topics such as breed vs. mix, size, age, grooming, breeders, shelters, rescues as well as requirements for exercise, space and care. No question is too silly here. This particular forum is for getting and giving helpful, nice advice. It is definitely not a forum for criticizing someone else's opinion, knowledge or advice. This forum is all about tail wagging and learning.

  
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Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
 
 
Barked: Mon Dec 10, '12 6:42pm PST 
When I was managing the shelter, the biggest dog bite problems we had to deal with were Dalmatians, followed very closely by huskies. Now, I will admit, it was during the 101 Dalmations craze, but still. And, prior to my shelter experience, I managed a boarding kennel and got bitten by THREE different dals, NOTHING else ever bit me!!!
I think they are more of a problem in a boarding kennel as they are so owner oriented and their owners LEFT THEM.
Most of the dal bite dogs at the shelter WERE neighbor kids or visiting guests, most of the huskies were when people tried to get chickens, cats, etc., away from them OR tried to break up fights.
I have to admit, I have NEVER heard of a single dal that had ANY dog aggression, come to think of it!!
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Member Since
01/04/2009
 
 
Barked: Tue Dec 11, '12 5:58am PST 
Stella, the worst health issue that Dals have isn't deafness. Not by far. I would suggest that perhaps you look into breeds a bit further before making assumptions.

I don't disagree that Dals can be born deaf and that the BAER testing is vital and probably all decent breeders do BAER test.

From my friends who have dals, the worst health problem is one that's currently being corrected as they are sort of in recovery as a breed at the moment. It has to do with the way their bodies cannot process certain protiens which cause renal failure.

That's why the AKC allowed dalmations to open the stud books and include pointers into their breedings, because the issue of renal failure occured in SO MANY dalmations it was unbelievable.

It would be nice for them if deafness was the biggest problem, but that's probably the mildest thing someone would have to worry about with a dalmation.
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Lucille

I am the Sock- Bandit!!!
 
 
Barked: Tue Dec 11, '12 8:22am PST 
"That's why the AKC allowed dalmations to open the stud books and include pointers into their breedings, because the issue of renal failure occured in SO MANY dalmations it was unbelievable."

This is absolutely correct. OP, for the AKC to allow this or even to consider it is extrememly rare. Dals were near collapse due to such a low healthy breeding population. That alone lets you know just how severely this breed was in decline due to massive health issues brought on in part by poor breeding practices. I agree, if you think deafness is the primary major health issue with this breed, you have more reading to do. Renal failure, kidney stones, special lifelong dietary needs etc. are all quite common in Dals. It's not a bad thing to have your heart set on a breed, just know all the costs involved and be ready to pay. Emotional, monetary, all of it. As mentioned be ready for all of the bad the breed has to offer along with the good; and best of luck with your future pup.
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"Selli"

The Muddy- Princess
 
 
Barked: Tue Dec 11, '12 5:04pm PST 
I think if you are looking for an agility or freestyle dog, a Dal is not the direction to go. They aren't terribly biddable or handler focused. Yes they do run and like to run, but you need so much more for an agility dog. Slow dogs that are biddable make much better agility dogs since you can work on speeding a dog up. A dog that has no natural desire to work with you is much harder obstacle to overcome.
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Calamity- Jane

1139619
 
 
Barked: Tue Dec 11, '12 7:31pm PST 
Thanks Lucille.

And I know they're not biddable dogs. I've never owned a biddable dog though, I'm used to that. If I didn't like a challenge, I wouldn't be going for a Dal at all smile
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Milton

Im just a little- guy
 
 
Barked: Tue Dec 11, '12 10:40pm PST 
My mom found one and brought her home. Nobody claimed this dog and we were sure she was dumped. I am not sure she was pure bred, but her spots were perfect and she looked like a dalmatian. She was good with us, but we did not have any young children in the house hold. With dogs she was very aggressive and attacked 2 small dogs unprovoked. She did not attack the dogs we already had, but would go after the unknown ones. She severely injured the neighbors small terrier and almost got a hold of a relative's maltese. This dog was not separated from our other dogs and none of them were injured.

We often had younger cousins at the house and none of them where ever bit by her. She was a yard dog and would not come in the house. She was minimally exposed to young children. I often tried to bring her in the house and she would want to leave soon after.

She was grumpy.
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Member Since
01/04/2009
 
 
Barked: Wed Dec 12, '12 4:39am PST 
I have to be honest, OP, with what your needs are and with what everyone has said, I don't think that Dals are a good fit for you.

If you had come here saying, "I am looking for a challenge dog with super high energy that doesn't have to be great with kids or strangers that I can just enjoy for what he/she is," then I'd be more likely to say, "Well, maybe a Dal would be a good fit."

But, you came on here saying that you want a dog that's good with kids, and that can do agility and obedience and you basically picked a dog (because of looks?) that's the opposite of what your needs are.

Honestly, you'd be much better off with a field-bred lab then a dalmation. They're exactly what you're looking for, except for the fact that they aren't flashy.

When I first got into dogs, I had a huge crush on Samoyeds. I LOVED the way they looked, moved, the fact that they are a working breed, can also herd, etc etc etc.

BUT, what I needed was a smaller dog with less coat who had a biddable nature and wanted to work with me. I ended up with corgis LOL

Don't get caught up in the flash and glamour. Be realistic and you'll be a much happier dog owner. You need a dog that fits into YOUR lifestyle. Most of the high energy dogs that are rehomed are given away because their owners had to fit their life styles around the dog, that unfortunately that just doesn't work.
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Calamity- Jane

1139619
 
 
Barked: Wed Dec 12, '12 6:18am PST 
Maybe you're right guest, I have a tendency to try and make things that I really want fit into my lifestyle, even if they really don't. But I chose the Dal because of their energy and because they are a challenge, not because of their looks. I do want a breed that will challenge me, even with agility and advanced obedience on the table. Though maybe y'all are right and that is going a bit overkill on challenge.

If you want to give me a list of breeds that you think would suit me better, I'm open to suggestions. I still want a Dal eventually, but maybe this just isn't the right time for it.

Edited by author Wed Dec 12, '12 6:23am PST

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Squ'mey

too old to eat- any more KD
 
 
Barked: Wed Dec 12, '12 7:05am PST 
Have you talked to any Dal owners in real life? Maybe you could go to a local dog show & talk to someone who has real experience with them instead of relying on second hand anecdotes? Yes, all the info given is accurate, but it doesn't reflect actual experience. shrug
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Calamity- Jane

1139619
 
 
Barked: Wed Dec 12, '12 7:20am PST 
Yes Squ'mey, I went to a show this past weekend as a matter of fact. I spoke with some Dal owners about the breed. I'm in contact with the president of the Dalmatian Club of North Texas and several breeders as well. I'll be going to another show in January to get some more experience and perspective.
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