- Alternate Names: Bichon Maltese
- Country of Origin: Central Mediteranean Area
- Breed Characteristics: (1 = Low - 5 = High)
- Average Lifespan 12 years
- Average Weight: Under 3 kg (7 pounds) - 4 - 6 pounds is optimum
- Average Height: up to 25 cm (10") at the shoulder
- Available Colours: White
- Available Variations: none
- History: The Maltese is one of the oldest of the European small breeds. It is believed to be as much as 2000 years old and has been prized throughout the ages for both its beauty and warm companionship as a favourite lapdog for women. It appears that their ancestors were spaniels. Over the centuries of its existence it has had a number of names including Canis Melitaeus when Latin was still a living language. It has also been known as the "Roman Ladies Dog" and Bichon at various times. The final name was selected in the 1800's by the The Kennel Club located in England.
- Characteristics: Flat long silky coat that hangs close to the ground. The fur often has a center part running along the spine from the top of the head to the tip of the tail.
- Temperament: Intelligent, affectionate, sweet tempered and fearless. They are very playful and energetic when given the stimulation of a family. They make wonderful companions and are quite content to be part of the family. Good with children
- Space requirements: Like most other breeds of companion dogs, they require little in the way of space as long as it gets some room to exercise and play. Adaptable to apartment life.
- Recognized By:
- Canadian Kennel Club (CKC): Toy Dogs
- American Kennel Club (AKC): Toy Group - Recognized 1888
- United Kennel Club UKC): Companion Breeds - Recognized 1948
- Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI): Standard No. 65
- Breed Standards: