Height: 6-9 inches Weight (males): 2-6lbs
Life expectancy: Up to 16 years
Physical characteristics: Classified as a ‘toy-sized’ dog, it has a body that is longer than it is tall, large erect ears, and a sickle-shaped tail. Coats are normally short and come in a large range of colors.
Temperament: A good companion dog, the Chihuahua is a bright and loyal addition to any household. Small dog syndrome is a huge issue for Chihuahuas as their size means people tend to let them get away with dominant behavior, meaning that unless this is tackled firmly they are not suitable to be homed with children as they can become aggressive.
Exercise: These dogs prefer warmer weather, but are happily suited to apartment living provided they have daily exercise. Play will take care of much of their exercise requirements.
Health: This breed is prone to rheumatism, colds, and gum and eye problems. They gain weight easily and are susceptible to poison so take extra care around toxic products. Their short muzzles mean they are likely to wheeze and snore.
Height (males): 22-24 inches Weight: 55lbs
Height (females): 20-22 inches
Life expectancy: approximately 10-12 years
Physical characteristics: Most commonly recognized by their spotted coats, a variety of colors are known, including lemon and tri-color. They are strong dogs with good muscle tone, hanging ears, and tapered tails. Puppies are born completely white and develop the spots later.
Temperament: Dalmatians have huge amounts of stamina and energy and are very bouncy although friendly pets. They enjoy playing with older children but may be too boisterous for younger family members. They require firm handling, plenty of physical and mental stimulation, and consistent training. As they age, they become more docile and easier to manage.
Exercise: Not suited to living in cold climates, these dogs require a lot of exercise. Several walks per day and access to a large yard are ideal starting points, but be prepared to put in a lot of activity with your Dalmatian.
Health: Approximately 10-12% of Dalmatians are born deaf, but it is possible to raise a deaf dog to become well adjusted. The breed is also prone to urinary stones and skin allergies.
Height: 15 inches or more Weight: 45-70lbs
Life expectancy: 12-15 years
Physical characteristics: A medium to large sized dog, the standard Poodle is distinctive thanks to its curly or corded coat, high-carried tail, and low hanging ears. It will require extensive grooming to ensure the coat doesn’t become matted and dirty.
Temperament: Often considered to be a very proud, graceful, and intelligent animal that is easy to train. It is generally friendly with children and strangers and can mostly get along with other dogs.
Exercise: Poodles are relatively inactive indoors and only require a small yard provided they are given daily walks.
Health: The breed is, unfortunately subject to a number of genetic conditions, including poor eye health, allergies and skin conditions, bloating, hip dysplasia, and ear infections.
We hope that this article has given you an insight into the broad range of physical and behavioral characteristics that are present across different breeds of dog. For further breed information, we recommend visiting www.dogbreedinfo.com.