Maltese Breed Information
Affectionate, cuddly, joyful, and kind, the Maltese are the precious little gems of the dog kingdom. These beautiful dogs are playful, happy, fun, and full of life. They love to be surrounded by their human family and they never seem to grow old – neither in spirit nor in appearance. The adorable Maltese puppies want nothing more than to bring joy and love into their homes. They are natural-born entertainers who love to perform and perfect little cuddle buddies. They train easily, are eager to please, and they’re always happy and up for fun.
Small, gracious, and elegant, the Maltese grows to a height of 9 to 10 inches and weighs 4 to 7 pounds fully grown. Their small stature is beautifully matched with a long white silky coat, a round face, expressive dark eyes, a tiny black nose, feathered floppy ears, and a puffy tail.
- Maltese are cheerful, devoted, and all-around happy dogs. They are very receptive to human emotion and they make wonderful therapy dogs
- Highly social and friendly, Maltese are known to make fast friends with everyone they meet, they are friendly with children of all ages, other pets, and strangers
- The Maltese has a long lifespan (14-16 years) and is believed to be amongst the healthiest of dog breeds
- Clever, curious, and eager to please, the Maltese puppies are easy to train and they find the process very enjoyable
- The Maltese retain their playful nature and young looks well into their teen years
- The Maltese shed very little and are considered to be hypoallergenic dogs
- The Maltese is easy to adapt and thrives in both small apartments and big homes as well as in active and calm lifestyles
- Fearless, alert, and vigilant, the Maltese is an excellent watchdog
- The Maltese is recognized by the American Kennel Club as a member of the Toy Group. The breed received its official recognition in 1888
It truly takes a special breeder to assist with nourishing and raising a Maltese puppy properly. Like people, the most critical moments in a puppy's life starts in the beginning. Providing a safe, natural, comfortable, and healthy environment for the nursing mother and her baby is essential. Only the nation's best Maltese breeders can provide the best quality of life. Here at Premier Pups, we work hand-in-hand with our breeders. We spend consistent on-site time with our selected breeders and can undoubtedly say that our puppies come from a caring environment. The footage produced in our videos is 100% real. We take un-staged, unedited, and only authentic scenes at our breeder locations. We only align ourselves with Maltese breeders whose standards are much higher than the rest.
Elegant and sweet with a proud demeanor and a gracious step, the Maltese has often been called “a living piece of jewelry”. These precious dogs appear friendly, approachable, affectionate, and happy.
The lovely Maltese dogs stand at 9 to 10 inches tall and weigh 4 to 7 pounds. The Maltese size can differ quite a bit in the case of the Mini Maltese, Teacup Maltese, and Toy Maltese, as they are smaller variations of the Standard Maltese. The Maltese weight should remain in the 4 to 7 pound parameter as these dogs are not prone to severe weight gain. There is also little difference in terms of size and weight between a female and male Maltese.
The cute Maltese dogs have a small compact body, a medium-length muzzle, a gorgeous round face, dark round expressive eyes, feathered drop ears, and a puffy tail worn gracefully over the back.
The Maltese has a gorgeous pure white silky coat that is shiny, straight, and quite long. Other Maltese colors like black, brown, or black and white are not part of the breed standard. The black Maltese, brown Maltese, and black and white Maltese are most certainly a Maltese mix such as the Maltipoo, Maltipom, Morkie, or other crossbreeds.
The Maltese coat is hypoallergenic with minimal to no shedding. The Maltese hypoallergenic qualities are famously known to be friendly for people suffering from severe dog allergies.
The Maltese are sweet, highly affectionate, and devoted dogs who love nothing more than to be near their family where they can perform tricks, entertain with stunts, and receive kisses, belly rubs, praise, and cuddles. As dogs of royal descent and background, these sweet pooches retain a great need to be pampered and spoiled. They love jumping from one lap to the next and are quite determined on finding the human that gives the best belly rubs.
Gentle, playful, and fun, the Maltese is excellent around children of all ages and gets along great with other pets especially if games like fetch and chase are involved. Dog parks are their favorite playground and kids remain their best friends. They often like to get into mischief with the younger kids of the house and are quite fond of chasing their fellow fur siblings.
The Maltese is lively, playful, sporty, and athletic. These fun dogs enjoy and excel at canine sports such as agility, rally, obedience, and tracking and they love to participate in family activities, especially ones that allow them to be in the center of attention. Goofy and sometimes too good at tricks, the Maltese dogs love to impress with funny stunts and tail-chasing skills.
Though very small and precious, the Maltese are as feisty and vigilant as they are adorable. They make excellent watchdogs and will bark any unwelcomed intruder right out the door.
Baxter (Formerly Maurice)
in Savannah, GA
We picked up our sweet little guy on Friday. I didn’t have the heart to wait until we got home to give him food and water. I felt he had to have it right away. I gave him half a jar of baby food Karo mix and some water, then waited for a little over 30-minutes and held him all the way home. Before adopting him, I was preparing for over a month for a male Maltese puppy, so we were fully equipped with all necessities plus. It took him over a day to start eating dry food along with a little wet food, and sometimes we feed him the baby food/Karo to ensure he gets enough to eat. Today is his third day, and he’s already mainly eating the dry food, mostly when I feed him out of my hand. This Thursday is his first Vet visit to ensure all is going well. We love him; he has a great personality and a quick learner. I will purchase another puppy from Premier Pups in the future. Maybe another Maltese or a Maltipoo.
Sophie (formerly Betty White)
in Manitou Beach MI
I pick up Sophie from Premier Pups on June 3rd and I just love her to pieces. I am very happy with the entire process and professionalism and would recommend to anyone looking for a new puppy. Sophie is everything I was hoping for-she is perfect!
in Whitehall PA
We bought Lennox around Mother’s Day in 2018, for my mom (and the rest of us) it was love at first sight and we had made our decision.Currently he is about 2 years and 2 months old he is very adventurous, is very alert, loves meeting new people and new dogs, he is the absolute cutest dog in the world, a amazing friend, and loves laying next to or on you.If you are looking for small dogs or a dog general I recommend premier pups they have the best customer service and cutest dogs.
in Reynoldsburg, Ohio
We have now purchased two pups from Premier Pups. We have been very satisfied with both purchases. They have excellent customer service. When we took both pups to the vet, we were told both of our babies were in perfect health condition. The vert was surprised she could not find any defects. Pictured is my Maltese. She has been the light of my life. Today is her first birthday and Premier was kind enough to check in again to see how she was doing. I would purchase here agin if I am ever in the market of another dog.
Jon Snow (previously Hunter)
in Tampa Florida
Jon Snow arrived in Tampa on June 23, 2020 at 1 pound 12 oz. He is now 12 weeks old and 2. 6 pounds. It was like being first time parents again only this time with a puppy. Primer Pup was in constant contact with us. This included constant phone and text messages from Lacey advising us of his travel status; the Facetime with him was priceless, I only wish I had recorded the session; then there are the follow=up check-in from Chelsea and Mike that reassured us, he was okay and that we were doing all the right things. Every time I had a question there was a live person to talk with. Jon Snow came with detail instruction for feeding, preventative medication and a real person checking in with me via a phone call every other day for the first week to ensure he was adjusting. We included membership with Dr. Pup (Dr. Gary Rypka) which I highly recommend. He actually called and spoke to us on a Sunday morning (four days after this little guy arrived) to discuss our concerns. I would not hesitate to go through Primer Pups again to get a healthy, happy puppy from reliable AKC breeders. My special thanks to Mike for all the little hints to get this little guy back on dry food and especially his constant reassurance that Jon Snow was right on que and that we were doing all the right things. Recently we were told that God created dogs as a way to show what unconditional love was all about... well Jon Snow is all that and more.
Precious and Coco Chanelle
in Eastvale, California
So in love with our teacup Maltese Precious and our teacup Yorkie Coco Chanelle! We love them so much! Best company ever... we have purchased a total of 5 puppies from premier pups and will continue to share our preference with our close family and friends! Thank you so much premier pups! I’m very happy with my spoiled babies!
in Clinton, NJ
We adopted Molly in February 2021 and couldn't be happier! She is a blessing to our family that provides love, laughter and lots of energy to the household! Molly has grown into a 1 year old teen that has a spunky personality and loves to learn new commands! Thank you Premier Pups for guiding us through the adoption process, follow-up care and providing us with a healthy, happy pup! Your service is outstanding!
in New Cumberland PA
Premier has been awesome to work with A+ service . They set me up with my perfect Maltese her name is Cinderella. She is healthy , smart and love being around our children. I love how Premier texts and emails about the pups to ensure everyone is transitioning. Thank you again.
in Palmer AK
We received our boy Frosty back in 2008 when your name was Premier Pup. He was so tiny he fit in the palm of our hand. He left this world yesterday at the age of 13 and he was the best pup a person could ask for. Thank you for making him a part of our family. We hope in due time to receive another pup ??
Leo (previously Lennox)
in East Hampton, Ny
We got Lennox (now Leo) on May 8, 2020 and we couldn't have been more happy to get him and have him be part of our family. He is a loving, intelligent, alert, brave, and active dog and we just love him so much. We had come across Premier Pups because a family friend had recommended them because it's where the adopted their toy poodle. We would look ever day through the website awaiting the dog for us, and then finally we found Lennox. We immidently reserved him and couldn't wait to meet him. We called Premier Pups to make sure we reserved him properly and that everything was okay. They help us every step of the way to fully adopting Leo and they were very kind. Days before Lennox's arrive we had received a text from one of the Premier Pups employees saying that Lennox was not able to fly due to Covid-19 and that they would be driving him for Ohio to my State. We were kind of skeptically at first but we knew it would all work out. They sent us many text updates on how far they were making the pick up process very easy. Then they texted us that they have arrived and we got to meet Leo for the very first time and took him home. I remember him being so tiny. We brought him home and he didn't seem at all scared and began to eat the dry food Premier Pups had provided. Lennox (now Leo) is 4 month old and is growing up to be a wonderful dog and we couldn't be happier with Premier Pups. We still look through the website to this day maybe in search for a new fur baby.
Choosing the best dog breed for apartment living can be a tricky task. Some dog lovers believe that being small is all it takes for a dog to be suited for apartment life but that is not always the case.
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The Maltese grooming needs depend on the length and haircut style of their gorgeous coats. The Maltese participants in canine show rings generally have long, luxurious coats and require daily brushing, combing, and spritzing. The most famous Maltese haircuts are the Maltese puppy cut and the Maltese Teddy Bear cut. The Maltese puppy cut and the Maltese short hair require up to three weekly brushes, and the Maltese Teddy Bear cut requires a brush every two days.
It is beneficial for the Maltese to have their nails clipped every two months, their teeth brushed weekly, and their ears cleaned regularly. It is also recommended to bathe the Maltese every 4 to 6 weeks in order to keep their coats healthy, silky, and shiny.
Maltese Exercise Needs
The Maltese are moderately active dogs. They love to chase, fetch, and chew canine toys, play with other dogs, entertain kids, and impress family members with tricks. They also love lazing around, cuddling, and being pampered and spoiled. Two walks per day combined with fun activities indoors are enough to keep the Maltese happy, in shape, and ready for cuddles.
The Maltese is one of the healthiest dogs in the canine kingdom. Although they are generally healthy for most of their lives, they can sometimes be prone to certain health conditions such as dental conditions, luxating patella, white dog shaker syndrome, and eye conditions such as cataracts and progressive loss of sight during old age.
Maltese Life Span
The Maltese lifespan is 14-16 years. The Maltese life expectancy can extend to 18 and even 20 years if the dog is properly cared for, exercised, and fed high-quality dog food.
The Maltese are very smart dogs. Their cheerful nature and eagerness to learn allow for training sessions to be fun and entertaining activities. They are clever, fast-learning students with a knack for tricks and a great love for stunts. They are quick to pick up on basic commands and are more than capable of taking on complex tasks like obedience and agility.
The Maltese are easy to housebreak, leash train, and socialize. They are outgoing friendly dogs that love to meet and interact with new people, kids, and other pets. Introducing them to other dogs, cats, new situations, and new places when they are puppies is a great way to ensure they grow into well-behaved sociable dogs.
The Maltese are independent dogs. They are more than happy to entertain themselves when left alone. They love to nap, play with toys, and nap some more when they are home alone. They are also moderately quiet and not prone to excessive barking. It is always best, even with naturally independent dogs, to gradually leave them alone for short periods of time when they are young, in order to avoid any problematic behavior in the future.
The Bichon Maltese also referred to as “Ye Ancient Dogge of Malta”, “the Roman ladies' dog” and “the canine aristocrat”, is an ancient breed as old as time. The Maltese have been represented in ancient Egyptian drawings, ancient Greek monuments, English literature, and French poetry throughout history.
From the Island of Malta and across Europe, Asia, and the United States, the Maltese breed has gathered an impressive number of admirers and the well-deserved title of “more precious than gems” companion pet. Sweet, affectionate with an elegant demeanor, and a joyful personality, the Maltese has earned the favor of pharaohs, aristocrats, noble and royal families around the world for thousands of years, with more notable admirers like King Henry VIII, Queen Elizabeth I, Queen Victoria, and Aristotle.
During the 1800s the Maltese became known as a “living piece of jewelry” and would soon become one of the most popular companion pets at royal courts around the world. Enchanted by their small size and elegant demeanor, the ladies of the courts would carry the Maltese on their sleeves as a symbol of wealth and luxury. The cute Maltese also had quite a career as circus dogs across Europe, being especially adored in France, where they were very popular with the traveling circus. The gorgeous and comedic dogs moved on to become quite the champions in the show ring as well as in canine sporting competitions. Today, the precious and charming Maltese is considered to be one of the most popular breeds in the world. The breed was given official recognition by the American Kennel Club in 1888 and is now a member of the club’s Toy Group.
As the Maltese popularity reached its peak during the 1990s, Maltese breeders began the journey of creating more Maltese-type dogs. Among the most popular Maltese mixes are:
- Mal-Shi – Maltese Shih Tzu
- Morkie – Maltese Yorkie mix
- Maltipoo – Maltese Poodle mix
- Malchi – Maltese Chihuahua mix
- Maltichon – Maltese Bichon Frise
- Maltipom – Maltese Pomeranian mix
- Malshipoo – Maltese Shih Tzu Poodle
- Havamalt – Havanese Maltese mix
- Lhatese – Maltese Lhasa Apso
- Mauzer – Maltese Schnauzer mix
- Mauxie – Maltese Dachshund mix
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the average lifespan of a Maltese? The average lifespan is 12 to 15 years.
Does the Maltese shed a lot? No. The Maltese sheds very little if at all. They are considered one of the best breeds for people who suffer from dog allergies.
Is the Maltese a good option for a family with children? Maltese’s are very small dogs who enjoy play, however, they are not often recommended with families that have small children as young children may not quite understand how to be gentle, especially if left unsupervised.
What colors do the Maltese come in? White. Thought they do have some tan or lemon markings around their ears the rest of their coat is fully White.
What if any healthy issues should I be concerned with? All dogs will face ailments as they grow older, just like humans. The most common health issues found in the Maltese are patellar luxation, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), patent ductus arteriosus, portosystemic liver shunt, white dog shaker syndrome, and hypoglycemia.
Is the Maltese an intelligent breed? Yes, the Maltese are highly intelligent. They love learning new skills and performing learned tricks, which makes training a pretty simple process.
How much exercise does a Maltese need? This breed requires a minimal amount of exercise each day to remain fit and healthy. Short strolls either in a park or a yard are great for these pooches.
How often does a Maltese need to be groomed? This depends on the look that you’re going for. If you prefer your Maltese to have a longer coat then you’ll need to brush your little one daily as well as wash their face to avoid tear staining around the eyes. If you are keeping your dog’s coat shorter, brushing every couple of days as well as cleaning of the face each day is sufficient. A weekly bath will also keep your Maltese’s coat clean and soft.
Do Maltese come in different sizes? No. Unlike Poodle mixes, there is only one Maltese.
Are Maltese’s easily trainable? Like most small dogs, the Maltese is a spirited animal that tends to do things on their terms. The most effective way to train your Maltese is with proper socialization at an early age as well as practicing patience, consistency and most positive reinforcement. These dogs love to be told they did something well, so this is a big benefit in terms of training.
Where does the Maltese originate? This breed was founded on the Mediterranean island of Malta and was developed to be the companion pet of wealthy, cultured families.
What are Maltese halos? Halos are a part of the Maltese’s black points and are quite beautiful. Not all Maltese have these.
What's the best type of food for My Maltese? It's always best to feed a high quality dry dog food instead of wet canned food to help your dog maintain healthy gums and teeth. For optimal health, offer a formula with wholesome ingredients and all-natural preservatives (such as a vitamin blend and/or herbs). Avoid artificial preservatives when you can.
What breeds are similar to the Maltese? The Papillon and the Bichon Frise are both very similar to the Maltese breed.
I’ve seen advertisements for “tea cup” Maltese, what does this mean? Please be aware that there is no official separate breed called a “teacup Maltese.” This is a marketing and advertising ploy rather than a true recognized type of dog.