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Saturday, 12 March 2016

Maltese (dog)

HISTORY

The Maltese was likely descended from a Spitz-type dog found among the Swiss Lake Dwellers and bred to attain its small size thousands of years ago along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. It was believed to have been introduced to the island of Malta by the invading Phoenicians in about 1000 BC.

The tomb of Ramesses II who ruled Egypt from 1279 BC to 1213 BC contains statuettes of dogs, which resemble the Maltese.

They were much loved by the Ancient Greeks, who erected tombs for their deceased Maltese dogs.

The Roman Governor of Malta in the first century owned a Maltese, called Issa, that he held in very high esteem.

The first Maltese were taken to Great Britain by the Romans around 55 BC, and it wasn't long before they were as popular there as they were in their homeland.


Originally used as rat catchers, they were later developed as companions, especially favored by upper-class ladies who carried them in their coat sleeves and on their laps during carriage rides.

The Maltese have graced many royal laps, including that of Queen Elizabeth I.

The first Maltese shown n the U.S. was called Leo. He was listed as a Maltese Lion Dog at Westminster Kennel Club's dog show in New York, on April 8 - 11, 1879.

FUN MALTESE FACTS

Maltese dogs are small, up to about 25 centimetres (9.8 in) in length, and 4 kilograms (8.8 lb) in weight.


The Maltese have no undercoat, and have little to no shedding, and is therefore a good choice for people with dog allergies.

They are ranked 59th out of 79 in Stanley Coren's The Intelligence of Dogs, which indexes obedience and the ability of a dog breed to follow commands,

Elizabeth Taylor's Maltese Terrier Sugar was her constant companion. The screen legend allegedly almost refused to accept her title of Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1999 when informed that Sugar would not be allowed into Downing Street. After Sugar passed away in 2005, Taylor obtained two more Maltese terriers, Daisy and Delilah, who came from the same line,. Daisy and Delilah.

In her will New York-born hotelier and billionaire Leon Helmsley (1920-2007) left her Maltese dog, Trouble, a $12m trust fund.

Sources Europress Enyclopedia, Comptons Encyclopedia

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