Navigate to chapter
► Chapter One: Understanding Maltese Dogs
► Chapter Two: Things to Know Before Getting a Maltese
► Chapter Three: Purchasing Your Maltese
► Chapter Four: Caring for Your New Maltese
► Chapter Five: Meeting Your Maltese Dog’s Nutritional Needs
► Chapter Six: Training Your Maltese
► Chapter Seven: Grooming Your Maltese
► Chapter Eight: Breeding Your Maltese
► Chapter Nine: Showing Your Maltese
► Chapter Ten: Keeping Your Dog Healthy
Chapter Two: Things to Know Before Getting a Maltese
Now that you know a little bit more about the Maltese breed and what makes it unique, you may have a better idea whether or not this is the right breed for you. Before you actually decide, however, you should consider some of the practical aspects of keeping this breed. In this chapter you will learn about licensing requirements for the Maltese as well as information regarding keeping it with other dogs and pets. You will also receive an overview of the costs associated with Maltese ownership and a list of pros and cons for the breed.
Before purchasing a Maltese dog, you should learn about local licensing requirements that may affect you. The licensing requirements for dog owners vary from one country to another so you may need to do a little bit of research on your own to determine whether you need a dog license or not. In the United States, there are no federal requirements for dog licensing – it is determined at the state level. While some states do not, most states require dog owners to license their dogs on an annual basis.
When you apply for a dog license you will have to submit proof that your dog has been given a rabies vaccine. Dog licenses in the United States cost about $25 (£16.25) per year and they can be renewed annually when you renew your dog’s rabies vaccine. Even if your state doesn’t require you to license your dog it is still a good idea because it will help someone to identify him if he gets lost so they can return him to you.
In the United Kingdom, licensing requirements for dog owners are a little bit different. The U.K. requires that all dog owners license their dogs and the license can be renewed every twelve months. The cost to license your dog in the U.K. is similar to the U.S. but you do not have to have your dog vaccinated against rabies. In fact, rabies does not exist in the U.K. because it was eradicated through careful control measures. If you travel with your dog to or from the U.K., you will have to obtain a special animal moving license and your dog may have to undergo a period of quarantine to make sure he doesn’t carry disease into the country.
The Maltese breed is very people-oriented and it requires a lot of personal attention. If you are worried that you might have to leave your Maltese alone for longer than a few hours on a fairly regular basis, it might be a good idea to get a second dog. Unfortunately, some Maltese dogs can be a little bit protective and nippy toward other dogs. Getting both of your Maltese dogs at the same time – especially as puppies – will help to prevent this from becoming an issue. Early socialization and training is important as well.
Another important factor to consider when thinking about Maltese dogs is whether you have young children in your family. Maltese dogs generally get along with older children who know how to properly handle a dog but they are prone to injury and rough treatment by young children. The Maltese may not understand that your children aren’t trying to hurt him and he may nip at them out of self-defense which could scare or injure your kids.
The Maltese breed may be small but these little dogs have big personalities. A Maltese will not hesitate to sound the alarm if a stranger approaches the property and they may even stand up to much larger dogs if they feel their family is being threatened. When it comes to getting along with other pets, each Maltese is different – their reaction will largely depend on socialization and training. Because Maltese dogs were developed as companion pets they do not have a strong prey drive so you probably don’t have to worry about your Maltese chasing your cat or bothering other small animals. If you are worried about a Maltese getting along with other pets your best bet is to get a puppy and raise the pets together from an early age.
Before you commit to becoming a dog owner you need to make sure that you can provide for the needs of your dog. Not only does this include food and shelter, but you also need to provide training, grooming, and veterinary care. These costs can add up quickly so it is a good idea to learn what to expect in terms of both initial costs and monthly costs for Maltese ownership. In this chapter you will receive an overview of the initial costs and monthly costs to own a Maltese so you can determine whether it is practical for you.
The initial costs for keeping a Maltese include those costs that you must cover before you can bring your dog home Some of the initial costs you will need to cover include your dog’s crate, food/water bowls, toys and accessories, microchipping, initial vaccinations, spay/neuter surgery and supplies for grooming and nail clipping – it also includes the cost of the dog itself.
You will find an overview of each of these costs as well as an estimate for each cost below:
Purchase Price – The cost to purchase a Maltese will vary depending where you get it. If you decide to get a puppy, it is always best to purchase from a reputable breeder because it will reduce the risk for your dog developing an inherited disease. If you want an adult dog, you can adopt one from a local shelter for under $200 (£180) in most cases. The average cost for a Maltese puppy from an AKC-registered breeder is generally between $800 and $1,200 (£720 to £1,080), though show-quality dogs may cost more.
Crate – Having a crate for your Maltese puppy is a must, especially if you plan to use the crate training method of housetraining. Your puppy’s crate will become his personal space where he can relax and take a nap if he needs to. Because Maltese dogs remain fairly small you should only need to purchase one crate that will serve your puppy into adulthood. The average cost for a small crate is about $30 (£19.50).
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