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Maltese puppy? yes or no? =D (Should we even get a dog?)

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We haven't had a dog in 15 years, but I'm thinking about getting one now! I guess I'm imagining a sweet little companion that our youngest can play with inside and out. (So, mostly for me and our youngest.) Our kids are 15, 13, & 7, so we have an age gap between #2 & #3. Our youngest has less school and more time than they do too, and goes through phases of asking for a dog.


Do you think a maltese puppy would be a good option? Our local animal shelter has some right now. Our oldest is definitely allergic to cats, and she wonders if she's allergic to dogs too. (She can tell immediately with cats in a house, but most friends with dogs also have cats.) I've read that maltese are good for people with allergies and don't shed (relative to other dogs).


Should I be concerned about our new furniture getting damaged? What dog books/sites should I read? What else should I consider, as someone who hasn't had a dog for so long?


When I see how much people love their dogs, I wonder if we are missing out by not having one. Are we? =D

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Well, I would have a hard time being without a dog, so I may be biased. :D


Maltese are said to be better for people with allergies, and maltese are also supposed to be good family dogs. I don't know how they are with younger children... they are more delicate than something like a retriever, of course, so your youngest would need to be careful and taught how to handle and play with the puppy.


Consider whether you're ready for the expense... toys and supplies, vet bills, food, and the like.


Damage depends completely on the puppy. Some want to chew everything in sight, some not so much. We've usually had bigger dogs that stay in the puppy stage longer. Our current dog went through a book eating stage.


That said, if you have the heart for a dog and are willing to put the time in, I cannot imagine NOT having a canine companion. :)

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Grooming is another expense to consider. We have a shih tzu/maltese rescue and he is groomed every 6-8 weeks.


Maltese are great dogs. Our mix is very friendly with everyone and has been a wonderful family dog. The only issues we've had are with potty training, but from what I understand, that could be his shih tzu part :D.


Here's some breed info you may want to look at:



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Is the puppy a purebred Maltese or a mix? Either one would be fine, of course, 'cuz what's not to love about a sweet little puppy? :) It's just that if it's a mix, all bets are off as far as predictable behavior and whatnot. And the shelter folks wouldn't know if the pups are Maltese or a mix just by looking at them.


For us, the coat care of a Maltese would be a big issue. I know that I am truly, truly bad when it comes to dogs with coat--I've owned an Afghan hound and a purebred, show-quality cocker spaniel, so I know whereof I speak. :( Our choice of small breeds would be those which have no coat, unless and until we can afford to have the critter professionally groomed on a regular basis (and I don't mean shaved to the skin; I mean *groomed*--bathed, brushed, the whole thing)


So that would be my caveat: ponder carefully the care of a long-haired breed.

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We have a 12yo Maltese. He came at the age of two before we had kids. He was already housebroken when we got him. He has no other training.


He does not shed. We keep him in a puppy cut and he gets professionally groomed about every two months. The biggest work is keeping his eyes clean. They do run a lot and stain his hair near the eye. The last time the vet had him under to clean his teeth (tarter is a problem in this breed they told us) they did some kind of hair removal around his eyes. It has made a world of difference and I hate it took 10 years to figure this out.


He had been fine with the kids. He can be snippy if they mess too much, but he is old and grouchy and he was here first. He was an older dog before they arrived, so has never been terribly affectionate -- more like indifferent. I am sure a puppy would be different. All of that to say I think he has a pretty decent tolerance level with them.


He barks A LOT. Not as much now that he is aging, but it can be quite annoying sometimes. I know other Maltese owners who said it wasn't a problem for them, but you might want to consider it.


Our little guy has a tumor and is acting his age. I am not looking forward to what the next year will bring.


I am not sure if I would have another Maltese due to the grooming issues. Right now we do the bare minimum. That is the only reason, though. Other than that I would have another in a heartbeat. I would just pray hard to get a non-barker next time.


And Maltese puppies are SOOOO cute.

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