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Known as “Ye Ancient Dog of Malta”, the Maltese was à dog of the ancient royalties. Iconic for its show-stopping, floor-length fur, the Maltese is a gentle, playful, and fearless toy breed who greets everyone as its friend.
See the fact file below for more information on the Maltese or alternatively, you can download our 19-page Maltese worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- Among the ancient toy breeds, the Maltese has a history that can be traced back at least thousands of years. Artists, poets, and writers immortalized this breed in the early great practices of Greece, Rome, and Egypt, and it was even mentioned by Aristotle in one of his works.
- The Greeks built tombs for their Maltese dogs, while symbols of Maltese-like dogs on Egyptian artifacts hint that they were prized possessions of the ancient people.
- Years later, Egyptians and most Europeans assumed that the breed had the power to cure people of disease and would place one on the pillow of a sick person. This practice inspired one of its names – “The Comforter”. Even before the Christian era, the Maltese was popular across the Mediterranean.
- Despite its eminence in history, the exact roots of the Maltese dog are still debatable. The majority think the breed developed from Spitz- or Spaniel-type dogs of the Isle of Malta.
- Others thought it originated from Italy, while some believe it was developed in Asia and played a role in breeding a number of smaller Asian dogs.
- Wherever the Maltese came from, its line thrived. By the 15th century, it found his home in the arms and hearts of French royalties.
- The Maltese reached the British Isles during the time of Henry VIII.
- In the latter part of the 16th century, these dogs had became a favorite pet for the bourgeoisie and regal women.
- The Maltese was also among the favorite dog breeds of Queen Elizabeth I, Mary Queen of Scots, and Queen Victoria.
- A number of painters, such as Goya and Sir Joshua Reynolds, included these little dogs in their paintings of beautiful women.
- Although they endured the fall of the Roman Empire and the Dark Ages, their line was almost destroyed in the 17th and 18th centuries when trials were conducted to reduce their size to that of a squirrel.
- After this failed attempt, breeders crossbred the Maltese with poodles, miniature spaniels, and East Asian miniature dogs to save it. This resulted in the Maltese becoming so diverse that a lot of new breeds were developed.
- It is assumed by many that the Bichon Frise, Bolognese, and Havanese breeds, are descendants of the Maltese.
- English breeders developed the modern Maltese. Most of the breeds in the United States trace their roots back to English imports. They were initially spotted in the United States in the late 1800s. Moreover, they joined the earliest Westminster Kennel Club shows in the 1870s.
- Normally, a mature Maltese weighs no more than 7 lbs, with 4 to 6 lbs preferred. Males are usually taller than females, ranging between 8 to 10 in tall at the shoulder, while females should stand 8 to 9 in.
- Mature “teacup” Malteses that weigh less than 4 lbs are plagued by genetic disorders.
- The Maltese’s head is of medium length and in proportion to its size. Its skull is somewhat rounded on top, with a moderate stop. It has heavily feathered drop ears, dark and round eyes, medium-sized muzzle, and an edge-to-edge bite.
- As compact breeds, their shoulder blades are sloping, with the elbows held close to their body. The Maltese also has a deep chest with well-sprung ribs.
- It has straight, fine-boned front legs, sturdy and slightly angulated hocks, small and round feet, and a long-haired tail.
- The Maltese is known for its long, flat, and silky white single coat, without an undercoat. Its hair may be tied up in a topknot or left hanging.
- The Maltese is known to have a lively temperament. Since it is a sociable dog, it adapts well to training and responds to positive methods like food rewards, praise, and play.
- Courageous, the Maltese thinks that everyone it meets – human or animal – is a friend. Lovable and adorable, it is famous for always getting its way, even with individuals who have no plan of spoiling it in the first place.
- Its temperament is affected by a number of factors, such as heredity, training, and socialization.
- Maltese puppies with nice personalities are inquisitive and cheerful, ready to go near to people and be held by them.
- They are very smart, athletic, and talented, making them a good choice as competitive companions in dog sports like obedience or agility.
- Patellar luxation. Also referred to as “slipped stifles”, this condition is common to small dogs, caused when the patella is not properly lined up.
- Portosystemic liver shunt. This is a renal condition which happens when an abnormal vessel causes blood to avoid the liver and therefore not be cleansed.
- Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). An eye condition that may lead to blindness.
- Also known as low blood sugar, this disease can plague all toy breed puppies. A puppy with hypoglycemia may become listless, tremble, or shiver, and may collapse and fall into a coma, and die if not brought to a veterinarian.
- White dog shaker syndrome. This abnormality usually plagues white dogs, with symptoms such as tremors over the entire body, lack of balance and coordination, and rapid eye movements.
- Collapsed trachea. This is a genetic condition where fast inhalation of air results in a flattened trachea, making it hard for air to reach the lungs.
- Reverse sneezing. This could happen at any time in a Maltese’s life, and usually occurs when they are overexcited, gulp their food too fast, or are affected by allergies, such as pollen. The Maltese makes a wheezing sound and may become alarmed.
- The Maltese loves a regular walk or playing outdoors. They often stay cheerful well into old age. Since they are active indoors and do not need too much exercise, it does not require a great deal of effort to maintain them in good shape.
- It is appropriate to wait until your Maltese puppy is 8 months old to take it for long walks, because its bones are still developing.
- Allow your puppy to play at its own pace in your fenced backyard until it is old enough, and take it to the vet for a checkup before putting it on a regimented exercise program.
- They are prone to tear stains on their faces, and their coats mat easily and become dirty. Gently brush and comb their coat everyday.
- Trim their nails once or twice a month and brush their teeth at least two or three times a week to get rid of tartar buildup and bacteria.
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Maltese across 19 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Maltese worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the Maltese which was à dog of the ancient royalties. Iconic for its show-stopping, floor-length fur, the Maltese is a gentle, playful, and fearless toy breed who greets everyone as its friend.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Maltese Facts
- Ye Ancient Dogge
- Breed Standards
- Fetch Some Facts
- Growing Up a Maltese
- Maltese FAQs
- White vs White
- Ancient Royalties
- Taking Care of a Maltese
- Pros and Cons of a Maltese
- Adopting a Maltese
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Link will appear as Maltese Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, August 2, 2020
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.