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Maltese Breed Information

Paws Pattern
adult maltese dog in a blue background

The cute Maltese puppies are the best source of unconditional love and joy. These adorable little puppies are smart, affectionate, very responsive to training, and as friendly as can be. They adore cuddles and chases and are very fond of making friends with everyone they meet. The Maltese puppies love to be a part of a family, especially if kids are involved. These jewel-like dogs are playful, kind, gentle, and very loving of their people. They can adapt to a lifestyle of adventures and family trips as well as to one of relaxation and blissful companionship.  

BREED TYPE / MIX Purebred ENERGY Moderate SHEDDING Minimum TRAINING Determined TEMPERAMENT Affectionate, Gentle, Intelligent, Loving, Playful ADULT WEIGHT 4-7 lbs ADULT HEIGHT 9-10 in LIFE SPAN 12-15 yrs


  • The Maltese is a recognized breed by the American Kennel Club and a member of their Toy Group. They are also part of the Barbichon (Bichon) family 
  • Maltese dogs are originally from the Isle of Malta. They are also known as Melitae dogs and the Ancient dogs of Malta 
  • A breed that is many centuries old, the Maltese is considered one of the world oldest dog breeds 
  • Hypoallergenic Maltese with low-shedding coat 
  • The Maltese weight is between 4 to 7 pounds for a full-grown adult 
  • Given their affectionate behavior and happy-go-lucky nature, the Maltese dogs are excellent students to be trained for therapy work 
  • Highly trainable and eager to please, Maltese puppies can be easily trained by non-experienced owners 
  • The Maltese are an adaptable dog breed. They are just as happy to be part of an adventurous lifestyle as well as a more laid-back one 
  • Maltese puppies and adult Maltese dogs are excellent with children of all ages. They are friendly with strangers and social with other pets 
black and white photo of a maltese with short hair


Petite, elegant, and pure white, the Maltese dogs are one of the most adorable dog breeds in the world. These toy-sized dogs grow to a maximum height of 9 to 10 inches and weigh as little as 4 pounds fully grown. The Maltese size and weight can vary between dogs in the breed, with some standard Maltese reaching a weight of 4 to 7 pounds or less than 5 pounds for Toy and Teacup Maltese.

These beautiful dogs have a rounded build with a sunny and round face, dark and round eyes, adorable floppy ears, and a puffy tail that is curled towards the back. The Maltese hair, if left to grow, can reach floor length and it is white, soft, silky, smooth, and straight. The Maltese colors are always white, although there are Maltese mixes that can have color combinations of black, brown, black and white, and chocolate. Multi-color Maltese are generally crossbreeds like Maltipom, Maltipoo, and Morkie. 


The best way to describe a Maltese pup is “a tiny dog with a giant’s heart”. Maltese dogs and puppies are good dogs at their very core. They are caring, sweet, gentle, and very aware of what the wants and needs of those around them are. The Maltese temperament and overall nature are what make it one of the most popular therapy dogs in the world.

The qualities of a good therapy dog include intelligence, trainability, confidence, calmness, affection, attentiveness, friendliness, and an upbeat personality, all of which are boxes that the Maltese dogs check proudly. The Maltese breed’s skills and qualities for therapy work aren't the only things that these beautiful white dogs are renowned for. Their appearance has won them countless titles in dog shows, while their trainability and eagerness to please have made them champions in the entertainment industry.

As family pets, the Maltese pups are very loving, attached, and loyal, and although they love being with their humans more than anything, they are not the type of overly dependent dog breed that can’t be left alone. Despite their attached nature, the Maltese are entirely capable of keeping busy on their own when their family is out of sight.  


Maltese Grooming

The Maltese breed can have low or moderate grooming needs depending on the length of their hair. Maltese hair can grow quite long, and if it is not clipped, it does require a more regular brushing routine. For a long hair Maltese, brushing is recommended every 2 days, if not daily, to help avoid knots and tangles. For haircuts like Maltese teddy bear or puppy cut, a brushing every 3 or more days will suffice. Your Maltese should be bathed every month or bi-monthly.

Because they are sometimes prone to tear stains, as most white dogs are, it is beneficial to clean their faces with a damp towel regularly. Their nails should also be clipped frequently, especially during puppyhood when the puppies are unable to file them down on their own. Brushing their teeth is also a necessary part of grooming that should be done weekly to keep the dogs from developing dental issues.  

Maltese Exercise Needs

Maltese dogs can be both energetic and relaxed, although most will fit the “moderately active” category. Some Maltese dogs prefer to be on the move more and will require up to 3 walks per day to keep them exercised, while others might prefer a more relaxed lifestyle with one or 2 daily walks. All Maltese dogs love games, fun activities, and trips to the dog park, so it is beneficial to entice them in a game of fetch or a chase indoors and provide social interactions with other dogs outdoors. 

Maltese Health

The beautiful Maltese dogs are one of the healthiest dog breeds around. Some conditions they can suffer from include allergies, dental issues, obesity, and ear infections.

Maltese Lifespan

 The Maltese breed has one of the longest lifespans among small dogs. These beautiful canines can reach 18 years of age, or even more, although their average lifespan is between 14 and 16 years. The Maltese life expectancy is 15 to 16 years.  

Maltese Training

Maltese puppies are very smart students when it comes to training. They are naturally obedient, eager to please, and ready to learn. Any interaction with your Maltese puppy will translate into its favorite activity, and training sessions most of all since treats, praise, petting, and most importantly attention, are involved.

These bright puppies are quick to pick up on everything. Basic commands are a breeze for them to learn, and challenges are what they crave. Maltese puppies also love tricks, especially ones they can use to grab attention, so make sure to add some to their lessons. To get the best results with these cute puppies, keep training sessions short, fun, and rewarding.  

Socializing your Maltese puppies is an effortless and fun activity. Maltese dogs are very friendly, and they love to meet and greet everyone in sight. The best way to begin socializing your little Maltese puppies is to first introduce them to family members and friends, make sure they are comfortable with every interaction, and once their vaccines are up to date, move on to introducing them to other dogs and pets.  

Although these small dogs are independent in nature, it's always best to practice some alone time before leaving them on their own for the first time.  


The Maltese dogs are considered one of the most ancient dog breeds in the world, having been around for close to a thousand years. The earliest depictions of white Maltese dogs date back to ancient Egyptian and Roman times. As their history suggests, white toy-sized dogs were often found at the side of Pharaohs and rulers of olden times. The Maltese breed is believed to have originated in the Isle of Malta near the coast of Italy. The breed was often referred to as “dog Melitae” and “the Ancient Dog of Malta”.  

As Maltese puppies took to ships to spread out into the world, the Maltese popularity began its climb as well. During the 1800s, as the unique puppies reached various countries across Europe, they were met with the favor of royal families, soon becoming favorites at royal courts. Noble ladies were often seen carrying their little white puppies on their sleeves as a display of affection and elegance. More notable enthusiasts of the breed were Queen Victoria, Aristotle, and King Henry VIII.  

The Maltese puppies reached the United States near the end of the 19th century and just as they set paws on land, their popularity skyrocketed. The American Kennel Club offered the breed its official recognition in 1880, allowing them to join the Club’s Toy Group. Today, the adorable white Maltese puppies are among the most popular dogs in the United States as well as in Australia, Asia, and Europe. These beautiful, pearl-white dogs are also the parent breed of countless Maltese mixes, of which the most popular are the Maltipoo (Maltese Poodle mix), the Morkie (Maltese Yorkie mix), the Maltipom (Maltese Pomeranian mix), and the Mal-Shi (Maltese Shih Tzu mix).